Jetstar’s air sickness bag: proudly brought to you by Buderim Ginger sweets

Advertising is everywhere these days.

I’m travelling on Jetstar from Melbourne to Queenstown, New Zealand.

The doors are closed. The cabin crew complete the formalities.

As we taxi and await our turn on the runway I undertake the pre-take off ritual of going through the seat pocket in front of me.

There’s the in-flight magazine with its features on far-flung destinations on the Jestar route, exercises to prevent deep-vein thrombosis, some duty-free shopping and the crossword and Sudoku that someone’s already filled in.

Then I pull out the familiar white paper bag, only it’s not.

At the very top: it reads as standard “If affected by motion sickness, please use this bag.”

But underneath there’s this in capital letters:



And on the left-hand side a photo of Buderim Ginger’s sweet ginger pieces (complete with naked venus)

On the right, there’s a story about the painter Boticelli painting the “Birth of Venus” and possibly starting his day with a bit of ginger in his cereal and then a history lesson about how Marco Polo brought ginger to Europe in 1293 and some handy hints on how to enjoy your ginger.


I turn the bag over.

On the other side there’s a recipe for “MAKING DELICIOUS GINGER BEER AT HOME” using Buderim Ginger Refresher Cordial, which I am told is “the perfect summer drink” with soda water or “great with lemonade” or just plain “icy water”.


There’s even a word search puzzle to do underneath with words including “ginger”, “refresher”, “Buderim”, “Australian” and “supermarket”

I mentally join the dots and create my own slogan:

“Need a refresher? Get your Australian Buderim Ginger cordial the next time you’re at the supermarket.”

Brilliant, I should be in advertising, or maybe even a guest panelist on the Gruen Transfer

And that’s not all, written down the one narrow side of the bag:  a recipe for making Buderim Ginger’s world famous scones and on the other side there’s eight interesting facts about ginger including that “In Merry olde England, ginger was called the royal spice…and rumour has that it cost more than gold”.

The paper bag now safely stowed back in the seat pocket (and not intended for use) I’ve yet to decide if this is all a stroke of marketing genius (given that ginger is used to treat nausea) or some sick joke on those already queasy by suggesting they remove all their clothes, eat a packet of sweets, think about baking some scones, drink a soda or perhaps do a word search puzzle.

But it does go to show how far the claws of advertising can stretch and perhaps its the marketing department at Jetstar that is the true genius for thinking of selling the space on the vomit bag in the first place (perhaps it was Buderim which approached them with the idea).

There’s advertising in movies (via product placement), there’s advertising, above men’s urinals when you’re peeing (do women have anything to look at I wonder?), there’s advertising on train windows and now Buderim has paid Jetstar to advertise their ginger beer to those suffering from motion sickness.

I never made it to the toilet during the flight, but I wonder if Jetstar toilet paper comes with product advertising?

If not might I suggest an ad for Inner Health Plus to relieve constipation with this slogan:

“If  your bowels are moving, taker Inner Health Plus to get them grooving.”


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