Airports creating holiday spirit for passengers around the world

As Christmas is fast approaching, airports around the world have transformed their terminals into a Christmas wonderland to bring cheer to passengers. Here we take a look at some of the most memorable initiatives, ranging from special Christmas promotions, interactive activities and festive performances.

Christmas lights at Milan Bergamo

During the entire Christmas period, thousands of lights will shine inside and outside Milan Bergamo Airport. Christmas decorations have made the renewed check-in area even brighter and lighter. A cascade of sparkling lights adorns the back of the brand-new 33 check-in counters, making the wait for check-in more pleasant and festive. In the departures area, near the food court, a large airplane driven by a friendly Teddy Bear pilot greets and welcomes guests in transit through Milan Bergamo airport. Not only lights and decorations, Christmas also means delicious foods. Traditional Italian desserts such as “Panettone”, “Pandoro” and “Torrone” are also available at the  airport stores.

Sparkling Christmas at Budapest Airport

Budapest Airport started its Christmas celebrations earlier this year with yet another Sparkling Xmas special promotion for its visitors. The airport invites customers to make a purchase at any of the selected shops participating in the promotion and receive a glass of Hungaria sparkling wine or a unique Christmas tree decoration at the promotional stand, free of charge. For a spend over €50 passengers can receive a 0.2 litre Hungaria product, with a glass in a decorative box. Throughout December, the airport is also organising small concerts at its SkyCourt every Friday afternoon.

Great British Take Off at Heathrow Airport

Heathrow Airport surprised passengers with a 50kg gingerbread model of the airport, created by Great British Bake Off 2016 winner Candice Brown and food artist Michele Wibowo. The hand-made creation required ten people to install, took more than 200 hours to make, features over 1,000 gingerbread pieces and measures 40m2. Using more than 20kg of flour, 30kg of sugar, 20kg of butter and thousands of detailed decorations, the sweet structure was designed, baked and assembled by Michelle Wibowo in collaboration with Great British Bake Off 2016 winner Candice Brown. The mammoth gingerbread features Heathrow’s four terminals, the runways and the control tower, as well as the much-loved stars of Heathrow’s Christmas advert, Doris and Edward Bair.

Ross Baker, Chief Commercial Officer at Heathrow, says: “Gingerbread is a real festive favourite.  We are expecting 1m passengers in the week leading up to Christmas alone, and hope our gingerbread airport will give them a memorable moment on their journey to loved ones. We hope it spreads a bit of festive joy to our passengers.”

Celebrating tradition at Sea-Tac Airport

At Seattle-Tacoma Airport parade of costumed characters, live music, and reindeer are a part of the holiday spirit over the festive season, as three million travellers are expected to pass through the airport between 13 December and 4 January.

The airport is inviting passengers to join it in celebrating cultures around the world with traditions of brining light to the wintertime darkness. Some of the activities between 16 and 24 December include:

  • Santa, elves, and other costumed characters will surprise and delight passengers in the terminal with entertainment and music, souvenir giveaways, and more.
  • Holiday parade departing from Concourse C at 9:30 a.m. every day
  • Season of Light decorations throughout ticketing, Gina Marie Lindsey Arrivals Hall and Concourses A and C, as well as near the Children’s Play Area.
  • Gift wrapping station benefiting USO Northwest.
  • Special food and beverage items by the Concessionaires at Sea-Tac.
  • A collection of festive art in partnership with The Nordic Museum showcases the wintertime celebrations and traditions of the Nordic peoples. Passengers and visitors can view the collection pre-security on the south end of the ticketing level of Sea-Tac Airport throughout the month of December.

Moreover, the airport will treat passengers to some featured activities between 19-20 December, including live reindeers from 9am to 1pm on the Light Rail Platform, as well as an opportunity to pet reindeer, take selfies and enjoy carollers.

A Wizarding World at Singapore Changi Airport

Singapore Changi Airport is surprising passengers this year with a magical atmosphere. From 16 November 2018 to mid-February 2019, visitors at Changi Airport can embark on a journey inspired by J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts stories and films and experience the airport’s annual festive campaign. A first-of-its-kind collaboration with Warner Bros. Fans will have the chance to explore a magnificent recreation of Hogsmeade Village, dress up as a wizard, learn how to cast a spell, and practice their Quidditch skills at the Wizarding World Holiday at Changi.

Four captivating, life-sized setups are spread across Changi Airport’s three terminals, all inspired by some of the most iconic locations seen in the Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts films such as Hogsmeade Village, Diagon Alley, the Whomping Willow found on the grounds at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, and Newt Scamander’s Menagerie as seen in the new film, Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, which recently opened in theatres. A series of interactive activities and themed backdrops transport fans into the Wizarding World, providing hours of fun for fans of all ages.

A range of official Harry Potter merchandise is also be available exclusively at Changi Airport.

Festive joy at Hong Kong Airport

Hong Kong International Airport (HKIA) is also celebrating the seasonal joy with Christmas decorations and an array of festive activities at the terminals. Starting from 15 December, various spots in the terminal have turned into stages for festive performance to delight passengers from around the world.

To kick-off the festive activities, choral group “Santa Mama” joined hands with students from Braemar Hill Nursery School to perform a series of classic Christmas carols at Meeters & Greeters Hall. Other activities during the holiday season include performances by the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts, members of the airport community, primary and secondary schools, and other organisations.

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