Technology

Using VR, Finnair and ZOAN take families to Rovaniemi to meet Santa Claus

The two Finnish companies’ new campaign is an effort to bring the Christmas spirit to global audiences.
By JOHAN MAGNUSSON
December 22, 2020

Earlier this year, leading Extended Reality (XR) studio ZOAN worked with the Finnish National Opera and Ballet and the City of Helsinki, helping the latter to hold a virtual concert that gathered 1.4 million viewers. The new campaign with Finnair visits Rovaniemi, located on the Arctic Circle in Lapland, Finland, and known as ”the official hometown of Santa Claus”. The experience can be enjoyed from personal VR devices, laptops, and mobile phones. It will include a first-class flight with refreshments and both northern lights and a surprise guest are guaranteed.

— Thanks to the magic of virtual reality, we can ”fly” families to Rovaniemi — despite the travel restrictions — to enjoy a winter wonderland and meet Santa. I hope this brings a big smile to those participating, commented Mikko Turtiainen, VP of global sales at Finnair.

And VR is nothing new for the airline, that has invested in developing VR technologies since 2016 and believes the pandemic has driven up the need for virtual experiences in its industry.

— We think VR is an important tool which could be used to complement the physical in-flight experience, envisions Tiina Tissari, VP of customer experience. Customers could, for instance, choose their holiday destination or make travel plans by checking out sights and locations through VR. We also believe the in-flight experience will become more personalized so that customers can customize and enhance their journey to fit their individual needs and preferences.

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