Three out of five travel brands leveraged video to connect with people’s holiday sentiment and knocked it out of the park. Bring on the tear-jerkers.

Each week, we call out travel brands that have stronger than usual activity on social media. Using SkiftIQ, we’re able to track current performance versus past (60-day averages, unless otherwise noted) as well as notice spikes in activity that demonstrate a brand has either a viral hit on its hands or a public relations mess to clean up.

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The latest social activity on SkiftIQ for the week ending November 29, 2014:

1. Air Canada on YouTube

Air Canada went beyond the extra mile. Two representatives surprised Canadians who live in London at a local bar with free roundtrip tickets to go home for the holidays. They captured lucky patrons who were shocked, ecstatic, and in tears. The clip was uploaded on December 4, and for three days, it blew the cap off Air Canada’s 12,000 views per day average by 3,000%, that’s a growth of 350,000 views per day from December 3-5.

2. Cebu Pacific Air on Twitter

Philippine typhoon season is from June to December. Around this time last year, the Haiyan/Yolanda typhoon took a toll of 7,300 lives. Last week on December 3, another typhoon made the headlines. Although the Hagupit/Ruby had a smaller impact, it still wreaked havoc on air routes. Cebu Pacific Air took to Twitter to inform its audience about cancellations and offered people who were flying from December 5-8 free rebookings and full refunds. From December 3-5, its daily status updates increased by 360% on those three days, raising its 44 tweets/day average to 203 tweets/day.

3. Matador Network on Facebook and Twitter Matador Network’s interactive map that allows travelers to pin countries they traveled to, is still making its rounds and converting new fans on Facebook and Twitter. Matador Network posted about the map once a day on Facebook, and on Twitter it retweeted people who shared their personalized maps, regardless if they made it to five or 55 countries. Matador Network grew its Facebook page likes by 8,150, an impressive 272% increase from its 1,000 page likes daily average. On Twitter, it doubled its audience from a 50 followers per day average to 104 followers per day from December 4 to December 6.

4. Qantas Airways on Facebook

Qantas Airways last week rallied its nationals despite Phillip Hughes’ unfortunate death and Brisbane being pelted with mother nature’s golf balls. The gains were seen on Twitter but this week Qantas grew its audience on Facebook by 164%. The direct video upload of its heart-warming video of a little girl who lives in Los Angeles and her trip back home to her parents in Australia resulted in 380,000 views, 2,200 likes, 130 shares, and 145 comments. In one day, the airline gained 1,100 new page likes over its 675 page likes per day average.


5. Airbnb on YouTube

For the past two weeks, Airbnb retained its spot on the weekly top winning travel brands on social media. It was back again last week with a recent brand video that showed a miniature view of the world, unique accommodations, hosts, and the Airbnb booking process. The whimsical toy train journey was aimed towards its APAC market, evident in its multilingual iteration in English, Mandarin, Korean, and Japanese on YouTube. For five consecutive days, December 1 to 5, Airbnb gained an average of 135 subscribers per day, a 120% gain from its 61.4 subscribers per day average.

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Photo Credit: A shocked patron at a Canadian pub in London. Air Canada / YouTube