We all love a holiday, and it’s no surprise that travel adverts are some of the most popular on TV. Throughout the year, you’ll likely spot several travel ads on your screen throughout the week – pushing cheap flights from airlines, hotel deals or even entire countries.
We’ve pulled together some of the most unique and memorable travel adverts on TV from recent years, to inspire your wanderlust and encourage you to dust off that passport…
Time For a Holiday, Thomson – 2011
Released by holiday company Thomson back in 2011, this advert offers a peaceful tone and soothing soundtrack in an attempt to remind us just why we all need a holiday.
Featuring a kid’s voiceover explaining how we all need a bit of a break from the daily grind, the advert shows all the best bits of our holidays. From family time by the pool to solo laps to clear our heads, to running on the sandy beach and having well-deserved holiday drinks – this travel advert reminds us why vacations are well worth splashing out on.
Travel Happy, Visa – 2008
While most travel adverts on TV are focused on a specific destination, the benefits of holidays or a method of transport, this one concerns spending money. This Visa TV ad uses the talents of Matt Harding, a YouTuber who became renowned for videos of him happily dancing in front of world landmarks.
The advert follows Dancing Matt around the world – locations include Japan, Bali, Vietnam, Singapore and the USA. In each place, he’s dancing and free to travel because he can use his Visa card without having to worry about cash withdrawal or conversion rates for notes. Travel made simple, with a wordless advert and a catchy, infectious positive vibe.
Visit California – 2010
The California Tourist Board certainly has its fair share of camera-ready local residents to choose from for their advert cast. This advert, promoting holidays to the Sunshine State back in the 2010s, makes the most of California’s host of Hollywood A-list natives.
Famous faces known to frequent the California sands – from former Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger to actor Rob Lowe and international football icon David Beckham – all partake in a pun-heavy script extolling the state’s virtues, to great effect. The advert has been remade and updated a few times, with different versions featuring stars including Anna Faris and Magic Johnson.
Coming Home For Christmas, Heathrow Airport – 2016
To celebrate 70 years of Heathrow Airport, this travel TV advert uses a tried and true method for creating effective and beloved advertising – festive spirit and cute animated characters! The airport advert features two adorable fuzzy bears making a long trip home to the UK.
The bears travel by plane to Heathrow and then make their way through all the familiar airport sights – from passport control to the temptations of Duty-Free. They then tentatively make their way to the arrivals gate (with one or two mishaps en route). As they stand looking around trying to spot a familiar face, we see the bears transform into equally adorable human grandparents. For every delayed flight and misplaced bag, this travel ad really does show the best side of airports.
The Most Wonderful Time of the Year, On The Beach – 2021
Another vaguely Christmas-themed travel advert (tentatively, we admit), the On The Beach TV advert has become well-known for its familiar soundtrack.
While most travel TV ads pair images of sun and sand with traditional summertime tunes, the UK travel company took a different approach for this 2021 advert. While the visuals are all classic summer holidays – beach scenes, ice creams and sunny skies – the advert music is the classic Christmas tune ‘The Most Wonderful Time of the Year’. Not only is it a catchy jingle that’s guaranteed to stick in your head long past the ad break, but it’s also a great new way to quantify what makes a festive season!
Any other travel TV adverts that give you itchy feet and a bit of wanderlust? Let us know below!