If you keep tabs about airline marketing on Twitter (either that really great or really pointless site, depending on your view), you’ve probably heard about United’s Twitter-only special fares named Twares. And recently, JetBlue followed with Cheeps.
Well, move over Twares and Cheeps because there’s some thunder from downunder.
Virgin Blue’s long-haul carrier V Australia has announced its 4320 LA campaign.
Entrants will compete via radio station quizzes for a spot on the three-person team that will fly later this month to Los Angeles on V Australia and spend three days in LA. They will have to write one Tweet (that’s what an update on Twitter is called for the non-Twitter inclined) every minute they are there–4,320 in total.
Provided the team is successful and does not need hand surgery for life, each member of the team will win an around-the-world ticket with V Australia and Virgin Atlantic (V Australia flies from Sydney to LA, Virgin Atlantic from LA to London and London to Sydney via Hong Kong).
The carrier says the challenge aims to raise awareness that LA can be a three-day getaway from Australia and just as affordable as a trip to the Great Barrier Reef since the carrier’s entry into the market has “inspired fares never seen before”.
A spokeswoman said in a statement, “The reality is, Los Angeles is easily within reach and a short break market. You can leave home on Friday, spend three days star spotting in Hollywood, hanging out at the beach in Santa Monica and checking out the LA nightlife before sleeping all the way home.”
But the airline has found itself with a low level of awareness on its home turf. It’s also still reeling from having arguably the worst-timed launch in history. A Boeing strike delayed their launch from the beginning of the popular Australian summer traveling season to the very end, and then the economic crisis hit. The carrier has also defferred delivery of two 777-300ERs. Back in February, Flight’s Victoria Moore (and sidekick Stefan the Pilot) covered an eight day around-the-world trip to help celebrate the launch, and Victoria also wrote a cover story for Airline Business.
Sadly, the competition is only open to Australian residents, otherwise a number of entrants from Flight would have applied considering how many of them are on Twitter.
One last fine print detail, and one that could derail the competition: team mates must have “no prior criminal convictions”. Doesn’t that rule out the entire country since they’re all descended from convicts?
(Just kidding, dear Aussie readers, even though we’ll question your sanity for Tweeting 4,320 times in 3 days. Nothing personal, but we won’t be following you.)