EVA Air Hello Kitty Flight BR5288 Takes Off for Fun
published : 11 Aug 2020 at 11:44
Flies TPE-TPE, giving families special way to celebrate Father’s Day
EVA Air’s special Hello Kitty flight BR5288 took off On Saturday, 8 August, 2020), giving passengers a special way to celebrate Taiwan’s Father’s Day. EVA President Clay Sun hosted the event and welcomed passengers at Terminal 2 of Taipei’s Taoyuan International Airport (TPE). Special guests included Taiwan’s Political Deputy Minister of the Ministry of the Interior Chen Tsung-Yen, Deputy Chief of Aviation Police Bureau Lin Shui-Shun and Chief Operating Officer of Sanrio-Taiwan Branch Lee Ming-Hsun. To the crowd’s delight, a costumed Hello Kitty made a special appearance and greeted passengers in her uniquely cheerful way.
“We are thrilled with all of the positive feedback we have received for our special Hello Kitty BR5288 flight. Tickets sold out as soon as we opened the flight for booking,” said EVA Air President Clay Sun. “Response was so enthusiastic that we scheduled a second flight for August 15 and it is already fully booked, too. We especially appreciate the assistance and encouragement from the Ministry of Transportation and Communications, Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC), Civil Aeronautics Administration (CAA), Taoyuan International Airport, Aviation Police Bureau, Immigration Agency, Customs Administration and our partner Sanrio who have worked with us to make this special flight possible.”
EVA also extended a special thank you to the 309 passengers booked on the flight and media friends at the departure gate.
“The support you have given for this special Taipei-to-Taipei flight experience not only shows travellers’ desire to fly but also encourages airlines to sustain flight services through COVID-19 lockdowns and difficulties. We hope that this pandemic will be over soon. And we look forward to resuming operations and services so our passengers can once again fly with confidence and relish the joys of traveling abroad,” Sun added.
EVA and Sanrio teamed up to inspire fun from the check-in counters to the boarding gate. As passengers arrived at the airport, they could take photos by a colourful banner, reading “Dream Come True – EVA Air Semi-Travel Abroad New Experience.” After they passed through security, they could enjoy the exclusive "EVA Air Hello Kitty Joyful Dream Lounge" where they could take selfies with Hello Kitty and her adorable friends, including Pompompurin, Bad Badtz-Maru, Keroppi and Cinnamoroll or surround themselves with more Sanrio characters in a colourful photo backdrop. Passengers also got a peek at the Hello Kitty-themed inflight service items and meals they would enjoy during flight in displays around the lounge.
EVA used its Hello Kitty Joyful Dream Jet to operate the Father’s Day flight BR5288. An Airbus A330-300, the aircraft is configured with 30 seats in Business Class and 279 in Economy. Total flight time from take-off to landing for the special flight was 2 hrs. and 45 mins. EVA A330 Chief Pilot Captain Leonard Lee commanded the cockpit and served as the onboard tour guide, introducing passengers to landmarks and scenery at altitudes from 20,000 to 25,000 ft.
The flight departed TPE at 10:15 a.m. to fly over Yangming Mountain and Bee-toe Cape Lighthouse in northern Taiwan before turning west over Japan’s Ryukyu Islands. The aircraft then turned around to travel along Taiwan’s east coast above landmark attractions, including Guishan Island, Qingshui Cliff and East Rift Valley before setting a course for Sanxiantai, Ludao (Green Island), Cape Eluanbi and Liuqiu Island in southern Taiwan. The flight returned to TPE along the same route so passengers seated on both sides of the cabins could enjoy the views and landed at 1:15 p.m.
EVA flight BR5288 attracted Hello Kitty fans, aviation enthusiasts and families, looking for a special way to thank dads. “In the past, we used to celebrate Father’s Day at a restaurant but this time, we chose to fly EVA’s special flight. The enjoyable experience of dining in the air with my family definitely made this our most memorable Father’s Day,” passenger Mrs. Shen Ming-Chu said. “We were very impressed by the beautiful chirashi don presentation created by Michelin 3-star chef Motokazu Nakamura and EVA’s classic braised beef noodles were delicious. The chocolate fondant cookie was an especially nice touch as the finish for our Father’s Day meal.”
Mrs. Shen echoed other passengers’ sentiments as she described the special Taiwan Father’s Day experience.
“EVA made us feel special from the time we arrived at the airport this morning until our flight returned and we headed home,” Mrs. Shen continued. “My husband was incredibly happy with his meal and our kids were excited to take photos with the Sanrio characters. I finally had the opportunity to buy duty-free items. Everyone on this flight got what they wanted and could enjoy some of Taiwan’s most beautiful landmarks and scenery at the same time. It was a creative new way to celebrate Father’s Day that our family will treasure.”
EVA treated passengers on its special flight to Hello Kitty-themed services from check-in to the time they disembarked, surrounding them in all the cheer and fun that comes with travel on board one of the painted planes. EVA also presented passengers with gift bags filled with seven decks of Sanrio Family playing cards, a Hello Kitty postcard, a Hello Kitty ball-point pen, an EVA Air Home Delivery Shopping discount code, an I-Free Global Data SIM card and many more goodies. Every Business Class passenger received a hard-case Ferragamo amenity kit and those in Economy got charming Kipling soft bags, both typically reserved for long-haul flights only. After the plane returned to TPE, EVA presented passengers with keepsake Hello Kitty Jet flight certificates, designed to be attached to boarding passes.
In addition, EVA offered passengers a 30% discount on duty-free product pre-orders and gave them 32% discount off of selected items. It enabled passengers to pay for in-flight duty-free items with Taiwan’s Triple Stimulus Vouchers, introduced by the government to stimulate the economy. All purchases of two items or more were eligible for a further 15% discount.
With loyalty and support from passengers around the globe, EVA has once again won global recognition for quality service, flight safety, inflight meals and service items. In addition to recognition among TripAdvisor’s Top 10 Airlines in the World, EVA has been awarded SKYTRAX 5-Star Airline certification for the fifth year in a row.