a joint media event Aug. 29, American Airlines officially opened
its $1.3 billion terminal at New York's Kennedy Airport, and the
city of New York rolled out a marketing and advertising campaign,
called "Just Ask the Locals," designed to make visitors feel more
welcome in the Big Apple.
There is an
immediate connection between the two events: Some of the city's
advertising will be seen throughout the AA terminal through the end
of this year. American donated $4.5 million worth of advertising
space because, according to Gerard Arpey, American's chairman,
president and CEO, the line is "happy" to support Mayor Michael
Bloomberg's goal of 50 million visitors by 2015.
The "Just Ask the
Locals" campaign, created by NYC & Company, the city's official
tourism marketing organization, is designed to make visitors feel
more welcome and to thank them for coming to town.
noted that the Readers Digest last year tapped New York City as the
world's most courteous city, contrary to the impressions created by
late-night comedians, he said. However, "not enough people know
& Company lined up a number of resident celebrities -- Robert
DeNiro and Julianne Moore among them -- who were willing to appear
in ads and offer personal advice and tips on visiting New York.
Maps of walking tours suggested by the celebrities and cards
highlighting their insider tips on navigating the city will be
distributed to travelers at the airport and in hotels. Videos will
be shown in taxis that are equipped.
taped advice can be heard by dialing 311 in New York or (212)
NEW-YORK; additional tips are on offer at www.nycvisit.com.
Compared with "Just
Ask the Locals," American's project was much more expensive and
much longer in the making -- eight years -- but the carrier is just
as concerned about increasing traffic and about impressions
prospective travelers may have of New York or the U.S.
Arpey said the
carrier's main objective when expanding its space at Kennedy was
"customer-oriented. This forms the first impression that many have
of America, New York City and the U.S."
The sleek, modern
terminal -- which is twice the size of Yankee Stadium -- is the
biggest new thing to happen at Kennedy Airport in years. In
Bloomberg's words, "It's a highlight of Port Authority's
contact the reporter who wrote this article, send e-mail to Nadine
Godwin at [email protected].