Now that Halloween is out the way, we can well and truly get into the Christmas spirit. Too early? Alright, fine. We’ll wait until after the Black Friday/Cyber Monday sales frenzy before we start cracking open the mince pies and blasting The Pogues on full whack.
Whatever the case, it’s never too early to think about Christmas plans and what you’ll be getting up to on New Year’s Eve. I don’t know about you, but I always think seeing in the New Year ends up being a bit of a disappointment; such high expectations of an awesome night and so much pressure to make it so, that it can often end up a bit, well, meh. Apart from that one time my auntie had a house party and drunkenly jumped on the Christmas tree. That was hilarious.
Anyway, I digress. One company has thought of the perfect way to see in the New Year. Twice.
Yes, that’s right. Crystal Skye – not the name of an adult film start as you might think, but rather “the world’s largest and most luxuriously spacious private charter jet” – has put together a package that lets you see the clock strike midnight in Tokyo, Japan, before popping on over to Las Vegas, USA to do the whole thing again. The time difference of course makes this possible.
The only catch is that it’ll cost you… big time. £20,000 to be exact. The ‘New Year Double Countdown Celebration’ package, as it’s aptly named, will see guests flown through the International Date Line, where they gain 24 hours. You might be thinking that’s a tad on the expensive side for a flight, even if it does get you a 2-for-1 New Year’s Eve and enjoy more than just a touch of luxury. You’d be right.
Thankfully, those forking out will be pleased to hear that they also get a fancy Hilton hotel stay, followed by watching fireworks dance in the sky above Tokyo Disneyland and sumo wrestling as part of the entertainment. THEN, they’ll hop on-board the… let’s call it a palace with wings, where they can put their feet up on one of the 88 first-class flat-bed seats for the 12+ hour flight and either get some kip, pop to the on-board, 24-seat lounge or the stand-up bar for cocktails. There’s even an in-flight chef to cook up a storm. No turbulence here.
THEN – did you think I was done? – the passengers will land in Sin City and go along to a Celine Dion concert at The Colosseum in the famous Caesar’s Palace hotel before seeing in 2019 all over again. Phew! I’m exhausted just typing this.
As you can imagine, this has done wonders for Crystal Skye’s PR; with coverage on the likes of Lonely Planet, The Independent, Metro, Fox News and other titles all around the globe.
Let’s keep this airline themed, shall we? British Airways is in the bad books with some passengers after a flight from Orlando to London ended up being diverted to New York and people, including children, ended up sleeping on the floor of JFK airport in what turned out to be a 77-hour total delay.
The airline has been accused of “deplorable service” and even “inhumane” treatment and the press have been quick to pick up on the story, including The Guardian, Sky News and more. Some passengers live-tweeted the ordeal, which started with them boarding the plane in Orlando only to be told that there was a “technical defect” and they’d have to get off again. They were then put up for the night in a hotel in Orlando, before returning to the plane to attempt to set off once again.
Although it started well, the plane made an unplanned diversion to JFK in New York due to what was being called a “major technical fault”. On landing, the passengers were apparently greeted with fire engines on the tarmac (scary), but no BA staff and a lack of information for quite some time. Passengers also described having to try to sleep on the floor of the terminal, some with children and teenagers in tow, and spoke of how they didn’t get given access to food, drink or accommodation during the second stint of their wait.
A spokesperson from BA apologised for the delay and said: "Customers were rebooked where possible and while there were limited hotel rooms available, our teams on the ground cared for customers in our first class lounge providing bedding, food and drinks to ensure they were comfortable during their stay.” So, perhaps some passengers had positive experiences during the severe delays and others, pretty terrible. The New York marathon coinciding with the delay meant that many hotels in the city were fully booked and not everyone was able to be put up in alternative accommodation to the terminal floor.
The thing with social media is, it amplifies a PR crisis by 100% and people sharing there tales of woe quickly ends up as headline news. Unfortunately for BA, it sounds as though not everyone was impressed with its customer service or how it dealt with the situation and now it is left having to explain.
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