How Changi Airport turned itself into the ultimate destination

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Martin Moodie
Martin Moodie is the Founder & Chairman of The Moodie Report.

“No travel, no problem!” That’s the Changi Airport Group (CAG) philosophy as it strives to keep the world-famous gateway in the hearts and minds of the Singapore people and it has taken the notion to extraordinarily ambitious heights.

CAG’s latest promotional campaign, dubbed Changi Festival Village, invites locals to explore, stay, eat, shop, and create magical memories at the airport. They can even get their own Festive Passport.

The concept offers exciting dinosaur and tokidoki-themed activities, fun-filled stays, educational camps, craft workshops, a weekend festive market filled with indulging treats, and more.

At Jewel Changi Airport, ‘A Night at the Airport’, for example, allows families to camp out overnight at Changi Experience Studio and enjoy a range of other activities.

Or you can take a ‘Glampcation’ at Shiseido Forest Valley. Listen to the following copy line and tell me you wouldn’t be tempted to indulge – “Ever wanted to wake up to the serenity and calmness of lush greenery? Be one of the first to spend a night at Jewel’s Shiseido Forest Valley this festive season! Rest and relax after a fun day out at Jewel in one of these exclusive glamp tents nestled in the atmospheric Shiseido Forest Valley.”

Not surprisingly, the Glampcation – priced at S$320 (US$238) a night weekdays and S$360 (US$275) at weekends – is sold out. So are many of the other concepts.

Terminal 3 offers ‘Dino Wonderland’ and ‘Air tokidoki’ (‘explore a tokidoki-themed plane cabin and snap some insta-worthy photos’). T4 has ‘Changi Jurassic Mile’, dubbed as Singapore’s newest outdoor display of larger-than-life dinosaurs along the Changi Park Connector.

And of course, Changi being Changi, you can eat and shop to your heart’s delight while you’re there. What brilliant person or team thought of this amazing notion? Take a bow.

The whole concept is the best example I have seen yet of an airport adapting to crisis and one that has the added benefit of permanently underlining the allure of Changi as a destination in its own right.

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