April Fools’ 2016: Roundup of the best fake travel news

From a kids-only airline class to virtual reality tour packages, our inboxes were filled with bogus news releases on April 1 that got us tickled, flabbergasted, laughing out loud, or all at the same time. Here are some that got the most reaction out of us


Travel virtually anywhere
Complete with a dedicated booking site, introduction video and compelling product descriptions, Contiki proudly announced it was the world’s first agency to offer virtual reality itineraries, all for the attractive price point of $149 per trip.

Called Virtually Unlimited, the self-proclaimed groundbreaking technology will allow its clients to experience Oktoberfest in Germany, paraglide in Sweden, climb Peru’s Machu Picchu, cycle through Vietnam and discover the Iguazu Falls in Argentina and Brazil at its ten Virtual Experience Centres opening across Asia.

Convincingly, Contiki also provided comments by Sam Morrah, director of sales and marketing, who said: “Contiki is taking travelling to the next level. Our new product is the future of travel and a disruptor to the entire tourism industry, especially for airlines and accommodation providers”.

Contiki almost got us with this one.


Grab a Tuk Tuk
Grab, formerly GrabTaxi, announced in Thailand that they have extended their booking capabilities to the country’s famed Tuk Tuk auto-rickshaws.

The GrabTukTuk service allows customers to hail Tuk Tuks via the Grab app just like they would a taxi, which would have been awesome, if not just fun to have, had it not been an April Fools’ prank.


Only kids allowed
With many complaining about the noise pollution children cause aboard a flight, Virgin Australia seemed to have come up with the answer – a kids-only airline class. Since only adults complain about them, why not take adults out of the equation? Right?

The news was revealed via a lighthearted video targetted at juniors on Virgin Australia’s YouTube channel. An introductory line read: “At Virgin Australia we recognise the magic of flying is discovered from a very young age.”

It adds that their new Kids Class is a 100 per cent adult-free service where kids get treated to a variety of cabin entertainment options such as hopscotch down the aisles, cushions to make kicking the back of seats more comfortable, and tent forts when it’s time for bed.


Flight boarding already la!
In a bid to further localisation efforts, Jetstar Asia decided to let customer-facing staff use colloquial languages, starting with the Singapore market.

A very legitimate-looking press statement, that even carried an embargo date, informed us about the airline’s move to introduce Singlish-speaking flights at Changi Airport, train pilots and cabin crew on the proper use of Singlish, as well as launch a Singlish language Jetstar Asia website.

Other Asian markets including Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines will soon get the same treatment, it added.

But what made this prank probably the best one out there is the dedicated fake training video of a ‘Singlish expert’ giving lessons to Jetstar Asia’s flight and crew. View it here.


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