Fly the Branded Skies


Airline: Japan Airlines

These are posts from Fly the Branded Skies about Japan Airlines.


Japan Airlines Wings
Japan Airlines Wings
Japan Airlines Wings (no shield)

Flight 1

There’s one facet of airline branding that’s subtle, yet intensely symbolic. And best of all, it doesn’t cost a thing. It’s the flight number.

In the age of rail, railroads often reserved lower numbers for their most prestigious trains. By the jet age, Pan Am used “flight 1″ for its fabled round-the-world service (flight 2 flew the same route, but in the opposite direction.) The flight an airline designates as “flight 1″ has powerful meaning. It may reflect the airline’s history (as in the cases of Southwest, JetBlue, and American.) Or it might reflect present priorities (as for Air Canada.) Sometimes flight 1 can give you a deep insight into an airline’s soul. And sometimes not.
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The oneworld alliance has chosen Dentsu America as its advertising agency of record after a review. Dentsu’s U.S. outpost also holds the account for Japan Airlines, a oneworld member.


It seems the worldwide coloured paint shortage continues to rage. Japan Airlines has announced a new, all-white livery that brings back the red crane logo that graced the tails of JAL’s aircraft for decades. The new livery strongly resembles, minus the cheatlines, the livery used by the carrier in the 1970s and 80s. Back then, JAL was a growing global powerhouse; now, as it teeters on the edge of oblivion, it’s not surprising the airline would want to hit the rewind button.

Tropes: Sunsets

Every kind of advertising has—well, let’s call them “conventions.” Airline advertising is no different. This is part of a series of posts on the clichés of airline advertising.

So relaxing. So reassuring. So predictable. It’s just not a real airline ad unless it finishes with an airplane flying off into the sunset—or, in the case of Eastern Air Lines, flying directly at the camera from the sun. Hey, if your tagline is “The Wings of Man,” you’ve clearly got chutzpah to spare. The clips in this video span decades and this cliché shows no signs of going away. The only difference is now the sunsets are computer generated.   Read more