Pokemon aircraft debuts in Japan
(CNN) – It’s a bird, it’s an airplane, it’s a … Jigglypuff?
Some Pokémon-themed planes appear in the sky in Japan.
Solaseed Airlines, a local airline based on the Japanese island of Kyushu, made its debut on December 19 with an airplane painted by Pokémon. The maiden flight led from Miyazaki City to Haneda Airport in Tokyo.
The aircraft is part of a tourism collaboration between The Pokémon Company (which owns and licenses the characters) and various regions of Japan. Miyazaki on the east coast of Kyushu is the eighth prefecture to join the partnership.
Exeggutor’s signature colors are part of the on-board design.
Courtesy Solaseed Air
Each prefecture is assigned its own Pokémon. Miyazaki is exeggutor, chosen because it resembles the phoenix palm native to the region, while the north island of Hokkaido has the Alolan Vulpix (cold weather suitable for the snowy prefecture) and Fukushima is represented by pink colored chansey which has healing powers .
And it’s not just the exterior of the aircraft that features exeggutor. On board the seats have exeggutor headrests, and some passengers have special exeggutor loot such as pens and stickers.
For people who are not planning to travel by air, there are also exeggutor-themed buses in Miyazaki City, Miyakonojo, and Nobeoka, all in Miyazaki Province. The special aircraft and buses will be in operation at least until the end of 2021.
Paintwork painted with popular characters has an entertaining tradition in the aviation industry. Jake, Finn and Princess Bubblegum from the popular TV show “Adventure Time” have performed in Cartoon Network aircraft on Thai Smile, a regional airline in Thailand.
CNN’s Junko Ogura contributed to the coverage.