AeroMexico approached American bigotry head on and came out with a video advertisement just funny and sweet enough to go viral. As the U.S. partial government shutdown neared a month in length, revolving around President Trump’s controversial Mexican border wall, the ad gives a tongue-in-cheek reminder that the hard distinction between Americans and Mexicans has never been all that real.
In the ad, residents of the U.S. southwest, who say they have no desire to travel to Mexico, find out they have Mexican ancestry. As part of the airline’s DNA Discounts campaign, the Americans are offered a discount on flights to Mexico, depending on what percentage Mexican they are.
A woman who learns she is 13 percent Mexican, for example, is told she gets 13 percent off a flight to Mexico. Her husband, who is 18 percent Mexican, gets 18 percent off.
“See?” he said, turning to her. “I’m better than you.” To which she slaps him on the arm.
The ad is a good move considering that Aeromexico, part of which is owned by Delta, is currently struggling in the U.S. market. Even putting aside Trump’s constant anti-Mexico rhetoric, the truth is that many Americans are simply scared by the cartels and the violence in the country.
In August, several major airlines reported fewer bookings to Mexican resort areas, with Delta citing “weak demand” to Mexican beaches following reports of tourists being drugged, robbed, and, in some cases, assaulted. Some airlines even cut flights to these areas, although Mexican tourism officials maintain that the resorts are safe.
This summer, both countries signed a bilateral trade agreement as a precursor to the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, and flights between the U.S. and Mexico increased overall. More flights means more seats to fill, which often translates into lower fares.
Like the very sentimental Scandinavian Airlines ad released last year, AeroMexico pairs a unique idea with high-quality filming. The result is something that’s charming and highly relevant — all while not being divisive. That’s a fine line to walk when dealing with a political issue that has literally shut the government down.
It’s unclear whether travelers can actually get the discount — and whether it would even be legal to offer bargain fares based on national identity. Aeromexico didn’t respond to a request for comment.
Here’s the ad.