I’m now flying back and forth once a week for my new teaching gig between Toronto and Ottawa (approx. one hour flight) and am taking Porter Airlines. just wanted to rant on how good this company and design effort is-
This company is an excellent example of branding, design and experience design done right so would just like to call some attention to it.
The branding work was all done by Winkreative (run by Tyler Brulé of Wallpaper* magazine fame). http://www.winkreative.com/
The attention to detail and overall feel is amazing. They really have achieved their tagline of “Flying. Refined”.
Just a few highlights-
The airline is run out of the Toronto City Centre (Island airport). A 2 min shuttle bus from the main downtown subway/train station and 5 min from my house. From there there is a 100ft ferry to the Island airport, with 0 checkin lines and you only have to arrive 30 minutes before a flight.
The lounge is better than most Business Class lounges I’ve seen. Free snacks, wifi, newspapers, espresso machines, fridge with drinks, etc. All nicely decorated in a premium feel with designer chairs, leather sofas, free access computers, etc.
On board, every flight (even the short 1 hour ones I’m taking) have complimentary beverage service (incl. alcoholic drinks) plus a meal box with a sandwich, cheese and crackers or a breakfast box depending on the time of day.
Stewardess (all young and hot, BTW) have great uniforms including a retro pill-box box hat and all nice heels. Service is awesome.
The attention to detail on everything is amazing. All leather seats. The on board magazine is great with good content and a similar layout to Monocle magazine (Tyler Brulé’s new mag after leaving Wallpaper*). Heavy uncoated stock, great design, I’ even willfully pay for a copy. The checkin computers are all 24" iMacs, even though the software they are running is Windows (but you know that the macs just look better from the back view).
Branding is out of sight. They have a little raccoon as a mascot and dress hin up for various ads and applications. The water bottle has him with a snorkel, for example.
good overview here, for those interested-
In the days where most airlines are going for charging for everything and leaving design out of the equation, it’s great to see a company that is championing design. The company is also doing great financially (AFAIK) and building an expansion to the airport now in progress.
PS. The booking of flights is also super easy and cheap. 3 options - Firm, Flex, and Freedom class, with one-way flights about $100 depending on destination.
PPS. The experience on this airline is second to none. Every time I travel I feel like I’m on a private jet (which is their design ethos) and can’t help but smile at the details. A perfect example of how design and business can work together!