Japanese low-cost carrier Skymark Airlines has announced it is collaborating with Pokémon Air Adventures and has revealed a Pikachu-themed jet. The 2-year-old Boeing 737-800, registered JA73AB, departed Tokyo Haneda Airport (HND) this afternoon for Naha Airport (OKO) in Japan’s Okinawa Prefecture.
Skymark Airlines flight number SK519 departed HND at 15: 35 and arrived at OKO at 18:20. The return leg of the 953 miles (1,533 kilometers) journey, flight number SKY522, departed OKO at 20:30 and arrived back at HND at 22:55.
Skymark Airlines says that they came up with the Pokeman idea to help enrich society by connecting people and communities. In its statement, Skymark Airlines said:
“We want everyone to look to the skies with a smile on their face, so we’ve come up with some new ways to put a spark in your journey with the PIKACHU JET.”
ANA had a Pokemon-liveried Boeing 777-300
The Skymark Airlines Pikachu livery plane is the first Pokemon-themed aircraft since ANA’s Pokeman-themed Boeing 777-300 had the livery removed in 2016. Before the Pokemon triple seven, ANA also had a Pikachu-themed Boeing 747-400. While Pokemon is happy to collaborate with Skymark Airlines, it also works with non-Japanese airlines, including Singapore’s low-cost airline, Scoot.
— skymark_jpn (@SkymarkJ) June 21, 2021
According to Skymark Airlines, the Pikachu’s are everywhere, from the airport check-in desks to your boarding cards and even the food and beverages served during the flights. Regarding the food and beverage service on the Pikachu Jet, Skymark Airlines is offering free drinks and an exclusive menu! Timed to mark Pokemon’s 25th-anniversary, Skymark Airlines has included special Pikachu features in the 25th row of the aircraft and advises hardcore fans to try and book those seats early.
The project is designed to promote Okinawa
Called the “Flying Pikachu Project,” Skymark Airlines wants to use Pikachu to help promote tourism in the Okinawa Prefecture. Located in the East China Sea between Taiwan and Japan’s mainland, the Okinawa Prefecture is known for its tropical climate, broad beaches, and coral reefs.
And it is not just Skymark Airlines where you will find Pikachu, as Pokemon has also teamed up with Okinawa’s public transport, who have painted a monorail and several buses in a special Pikachu theme. If that is not enough for Pokemon lovers, 12 Pokemon-themed utility hole covers are dotted throughout the prefecture. If you want to find all 12 of them, it will take some good detective work as they are spread over three islands.
Unfortunately for Pokemon fans outside of Japan who would like to participate in the Pokemon adventure, it will not be possible until Japan lifts COVID-19 entry restrictions for non-resident foreign nationals.
IGN Japan, reporting on Skymark Airlines’ Pikachu launch, also talked about a couple of new additions to Pokemon Go. Pokemon Go app users can now also try and find a special Pikachu wearing a Kariyushi shirt. A Kariyushi shirt is Okinawa’s version of the popular flower-themed shirts worn in Hawaii. The special Kariyushi Pikachu can only be found in Okinawa and will only be available for a limited time.
Pokemon Go also introduces Corsola, a dual-type Water/Rock Pokemon who only appears in warm tropical climates like Okinawa, Florida, the Caribbean, and parts of Australia.
The Skymark Airlines Pikachu-themed jet sounds like a good idea and will hopefully attract Pokemon fans keen on visiting Okinawa to find a Kariyushi-wearing Pikachu.
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