When’s the last time you flew and had a family-friendly experience? Yesterday? Last year? Never? Occasionally, airlines will have a coloring book or pass out pilot wings. Perhaps there may be a lid for your child’s drink, but overall, as you likely know, the focus isn’t on the kids. In fact, there’s rarely anything special for tots on most airlines. However, that changed, at least for one airline, last fall when KLM Royal Dutch Airlines introduced their cute new mascot named Bluey the plane.
Bluey is the spunky star of the animated series. Also featured are his father and his female sidekick Windy. (Fun fact: a real father/son team are the voices behind the characters.) A number of short films are being rolled out on Youtube with the first adventure based around the Zundert flower parade in Holland (yes, a real event). Not only do the kids get to associate an airline with a fun character but they get to learn about events around the world. That is pretty neat. You can check out the video below. My 11-month-old watched with me and she was intrigued as was my nine-year-old. Apparently, the show appeals to all ages.
KLM says over a million children between the ages of two and twelve fly on KLM – that averages to ten kids a flight. Aboard European and intercontinental flights Bluey-themed play kits will entertain kids during their flights and the good news is the kids package for European and intercontinental flights are different. Contents, depending upon your route, will include colored pencils and a passport holder or a card package, a coloring book, coloring pencils, a crew badge, and eye shades. International flights offer a Bluey meal box (be sure to order ahead of time at klm.com). Parents will especially appreciate the children’s channel on the Inflight Entertainment System.
That’s not all. Schiphol Airport is hosting Bluey for unaccompanied minors. The KLM Junior Jet Lounge is a playroom in Schiphol’s Lounge 2 and it has recently been renovated with help of the KLM Design Studio. This brilliant idea will help kids feel comfortable, relate flying with something fun and kid-friendly, and, if you ask me, create customers for life. A favorite Maya Angelou quote is “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” And that’s what KLM is doing here and I for one appreciate it as a mother and for the times when I’m flying childfree.
You can learn more about traveling with kids on KLM on their website. This page is very informative and covers booking, travel documents, seats, carrycots, car seats, CARES harness, preparing for travel with kids, on board meals, baggage, strollers and children traveling alone.
As more and more families travel it’s imperative children have a comfortable environment that they can enjoy and that’s what Bluey and friends are providing. Thankfully, KLM found a fun way to bring friendly to family travel.