In a surprising incident, every passenger travelling from California to Hawaii on Southwest Airlines got ukuleles as a gift and a 20-minute inflight lesson on how to play the instrument at about 30,000 feet above ocean level. The airlines partnered with a Guitar company called Guitar Center to promote the Hawaiian culture and “underscore our everyday commitment to serve and celebrate the spirit of Aloha,” the airlines told Today.
Southwest airlines tweeted a photo in which passengers can be seen holding ukuleles in their hands. The airlines in the captions said by the time the passengers reached Hawaii they were all pros. “We teamed up with @guitarcenter to surprise a flight full of Customers flying out of Long Beach with a ukulele and a lesson. By the time they arrived in Honolulu they were pros” read the caption.
Check out the photo here:
We teamed up with @guitarcenter to surprise a flight full of Customers flying out of Long Beach with a ukulele and a lesson. By the time they arrived in Honolulu they were pros. pic.twitter.com/XsEx10sRJK
— Southwest Airlines (@SouthwestAir) September 20, 2022
The passengers got a new Mitchell MU40 Soprano ukulele from Guitar Center. While the passengers in the picture and video look quite elated with the surprise, the social media users were less keen on the idea.
A user on Twitter wrote, “Seems like not everyone enjoyed this PR stunt. Might be a good idea to send a survey to those booking their tickets to ascertain if this is worthwhile rather than subjecting passengers to something they may hate. This makes me less likely to fly with you.” Another user read, “That sounds like a really, really horrible surprise. I’m autistic and sensitive to sound. Being trapped on a plane full of people trying to play the ukulele for the first time would be an absolute nightmare for me.” “You harassed an entire flight for a promotional partnership?! As someone with sensory processing issues related to noise, I would literally have been bent double in my seat, arms over my head, sobbing, and having a panic attack,” the third commented.