Nobody really wants to be in an airport. But a clever tourism stunt around next weekend’s Super Bowl in Minneapolis offers an unexpected way to get out.
Imagine walking through the terminal, past vaguely off-putting chain restaurants and willfully bland decor, then stopping to see one of those old-school binocular stands—the coin-operated, rotating metal kind mounted at outdoor tourist sites everywhere.
But when you put your eyes up to the goggles, you don’t get a closeup of the nearest Starbucks. Instead, you’re transported to a gorgeous, snowy ski vista 6,237 above sea level.
Visitors to Minneapolis-St. Paul Airport this week, many of them arriving for Super Bowl LII, will have just that chance, thanks to a clever VR campaign promoting Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Agency Colle McVoy created the gadget, called a VRnocular, by rigging up some 360 degree video into one of the classic machines.
Passersby can select from four views, spanning from mountaintop trams to happy skiers and the Tetons themselves. And they don’t even have to part with a quarter.
Sure, it’s a bit gimmicky, and plays heavily on nostalgia. It’s also one of the more fun, intuitive and arguably scalable advertising applications of VR headsets. Consider the opportunity to shuffle through stunning, immersive footage of a 100 destinations and deciding where you want to actually go (assuming you’re fortunate enough to be able to show up at the airport and buy a ticket to your vacation of choice, on a whim).
Maybe it is a one-off (or just a high-end travel agent’s dream). In the meantime, the Jackson Hole version will be on Concourse G at MSP International for two weeks surrounding the Philadelphia-New England showdown on Feb. 4. And the VRnocular’s creators hope Eagles and Patriots fans alike will consider some of Wyoming’s famous slopes for their next getaway.
• For all the latest Super Bowl advertising news—who’s in, who’s out, teasers, full ads and more—check out Adweek’s Super Bowl LII Ad Tracker. And join us on the evening of Feb. 4 for the best in-game coverage of the Super Bowl commercials anywhere.