INTO THE WILD BLUE YONDER
AS PART OF ITS COMPREHENSIVE SERVICE, FRONTIER AIRLINES PROVIDED PASSENGERS WITH AN INSIDER'S TRAVEL GUIDE TO POPULAR CITIES WRITTEN EXCLUSIVELY BY RESIDENTS AND FREQUENT VISITORS.
Content Strategy, Concept Development, Copywriting & Travel Writing, Research
Frontier Airlines wanted to highlight Chicago, New York and Washington, D.C. in their upcoming travel guides; I was familiar with all three cities, and was happy to contribute written content.
These “true” travel guides—only those who had firsthand knowledge of the cities were asked to write them—were printed in Frontier's inflight magazine, Wild Blue Yonder.
Past guides included descriptions of popular locales and events, featured enticing photos, and highlighted an interview with a person-of-interest who described a few of his/her favorite haunts. In addition, guides were concise to give passengers valuable insights in just a few pages.
The first order of business was to select people to interview, and I selected those who were associated with an attraction or activity that tourists might enjoy.
Celebrity chef Rick Bayless was an easy choice because he owns several, highly rated restaurants in Chicago, as was CIA veteran Peter Earnest, general manager of the popular International Spy Museum in Washington, D.C.
While the guide followed a template (e.g., Thread Count for lodging and Food Fix for dining), an interviewee could discuss whatever they liked. I gently directed conversations until I had suggestions that would both highlight their personas and appeal to travelers. For example, Bayless, known for his regional Mexican cooking, recommended Maxwell Street Market, which offers extraordinary Spanish and Latin American cuisine.
When selecting destinations for other categories, I was careful to offer a balance of well known landmarks with quirky, out-of-the-way places. For example: Grand Central Terminal and Storm King Art Center in New York; Millennium Park and Second City in Chicago; and Mount Vernon and The Most Haunted Houses walking tour in D.C.
Once finished, I submitted the lists to the editors for approval, and then wrote brief descriptions, giving readers an idea of what was special and unique about each location.
As mentioned above, the guides were included in Frontier’s in-flight magazine, and were also archived online in a format that was easily accessible by a number of devices.
All interviews and guides were completed on time, and maintained the magazine’s high editorial standards.