Ahead of the May 27 Children’s Day celebrations, Dubai- based Emirates Airline on May 25, 2019, put the Nigerian children in a celebration mood with a myriad of social activities at the Maryland Mall, Lagos.
The event organised by the multiple award winning airline was fun-filled with shows ranging from photographs, eating, drinking and ultimately, the cinema show which held the children spellbound for about 90 minutes.
At the early hours of that Saturday morning, the Maryland Mall had been filled to the brim with lots of children dressed in Emirates pilot and cabin crew uniforms and moving towards the well decorated Emirates’ podium.
The occasion which kicked off at about 10:30am engaged the over 100 children who attended the event.
Aladdin, unlike Sherlock Gnomes featured last year in Lagos by Emirates, is a 2019 American musical fantasy film directed by Guy Ritchie, who co-wrote the screenplay with John August. Produced by Walt Disney Pictures, it is a 90-minute live-action adaptation of Disney’s 1992 animated film.
Addressing the children in his short welcome speech before the children and their parents went into the cinema session, Emirates country manager in Nigeria, Afzal Parambil, thanked the children and their parents for massively turning up for the event.
He used the occasion to brief them about some basic information about the airline, saying that Emirates was committed to children, particularly young flyers, whether they were flying alone or with their families.
Stating that animal toys and goodie bags inspire the greatest imaginations and encourage tomorrow’s explorers, Parambil said,“Fly with me Animals magazines is a fun and colourful magazine produced exclusively for Emirates’ young flyers aged 3-8 years old. Each magazine includes a colouring set which features Emirates Little Travellers characters — iconic Emirates cabin crew and pilot characters exploring the world.”
On meals and special products for babies and children, the country manager said, “For babies and toddlers on all Emirates routes, they can enjoy: amenity kits with wet wipes, cream, bib, teething ring and tissue pack; child-friendly liners for the bassinet; baby food, formula, feeding bottles and diapers.”
He said Emirates recently designed meal trays featuring the emirates little travellers; special kids meals which can be ordered in advance; special meals such as jollof rice, beef stew porridge yam, braised chicken thighs, rice with black eyed beans, fried plantain, sautéed spinach, sweet potato mash, and chicken stew were also available.
He informed that Young travellers on Emirates receive specially – designed headphones for a better fit and they can enjoy dedicated channels of children and family programming. These fun and colourful new headphones, he said have larger speakers for a more comfortable fit and improved sound quality.
“Emirates offers a wide variety of children’s programming including the very best movies and television from Disney, Cartoon Network, CBeebies and Nickelodeon channels. Others are 50 Disney Classic movies on ice Digital Widescreen including: all 4 Pirates of the Caribbean movies,3 Toy Story movies, 101 Dalmatians, Alice in Wonderland, Cars 1 and 2, Cinderella, Dumbo, Finding Nemo, Mary Poppins, Monsters etc.
According to him, a dedicated marvel folder including: Ant Man, Marvel’s The Avengers, Captain America: The First Avenger, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Guardians of the Galaxy, Iron Man, Iron Man 2, Iron Man 3, Thor, Thor: The Dark World were available.
On unaccompanied minors’service, he said “Parents whose children are travelling alone can be assured of a smooth and stress-free journey from start to finish with our friendly and helpful staff. The unaccompanied minors service is available for children from 5 to under 12 years travelling alone or children under 8 years of age travelling in a different cabin class from their parents. This service has to be booked in advance and includes: separate check-in facilities; dedicated staff to accompany the minor or young traveller throughout the journey; dedicated lounge with toys and entertainment for kids.”
During the event, Parambil also presented special gift items to the winner of the competition on Sisiyemmie platform, Mrs. Funmi Unuajefe at the children’s party.
At the end of the party, children and their parents were given free Emirates souvenirs, including bags, books, food, drinks amongst other valuable items.
Speaking on the event, a parent, Mr. John Fabamise, who brought two of his children to the party thanked Emirates for having the children in mind, adding that the event which has almost become an annual event was now very significant for the children.
According to him, “Emirates is now consistent with this children party and that has made the children to always look out for that date. It is very interesting and I must tell you that it is something other airlines should emulate. I was at the same occasion last year at Ikeja City and it was quite interesting also.”
Another parent, who simply identified herself as Mercy said, she was satisfied with the party while thanking the airline for such child-friendly initiative. She hopes, Emirates would host the children once again in 2020.
Also commending Emirates, is Reward Awunor, an 8-year old student of New Crown Stars in Ogun State who expressed excitement for the airline’s kind gestures.
Master Awunor, a JSS 1 student said “Emirates Airline has made our children day celebration very memorable and interesting. We hope to get more of this treat continuously. Last year they entertained us with Sherlock Gnomes and this year they have come up with another top hit by way of Disney Aladdin. This shows that Emirates is a top class airline that cares for the children.”
To Abdulrahman Lamidi, a 10 year – old student, the party was fun and full of interesting events. Asked if there was anything he would like Emirates to add to the children’s annual event, he said, “I think everything was okay. I was at the last year’s event and it was equally interesting. I want to use this opportunity to thank and express my appreciation to the Emirates Airline.”
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