British Airways Unveils Star-Studded Safety Video — But at What Cost?

Jul 18, 2017

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In the traditional sense, airplane safety videos aren’t the most exciting cinematic productions. But, British Airways is attempting to make its latest video one, which it’s calling, “Director’s Cut.”

The video stars British comedian Asim Chaudhry as he auditions English actors and actresses for a part in a new safety video. The video features appearances from figures such as Gordon Ramsay, Ian McKellen, Gillian Anderson, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Thandie Newton, Rowan Atkinson and more. You can watch the video, which is set to air on BA flights beginning September 1, 2017, below:

With the bits of dry British sense of humor scattered throughout, there’s no doubt that it’s uniquely BA. But, it raises some questions from the flyer perspective. The new video comes at a particularly difficult time for the carrier — when employees are striking over pay disputes and it’s making cuts to its in-flight experience for passengers.

Earlier this year, the carrier announced that it was going to require passengers to pay for drinks — even tea — and snacks on short-haul BA flights. In addition, it announced some more cost-cutting moves, such as scaling back meal service on some transatlantic routespulling some amenities for passengers in its Club World cabin and reducing seat pitch on some of its short-haul aircraft. And who can forget the massive IT meltdown that forced the carrier to cancel more than 700 flights. Of course, that turned out to be human error rather than a cost-cutting mechanism, but nonetheless, BA has left a sour taste in travelers’ mouths for a while now.

So, it begs the question: Why is British Airways spending money on celebrity appearances in its on-board safety video when it’s making such drastic costs to its in-flight experience? Maybe we don’t know the whole story behind these celebrity appearances, but it’s a question worth asking.

What do you think of BA’s new safety video?

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