Air New Zealand mocks Qantas with new 'Lions' ad

  • 01/06/2017

New Zealand's national carrier has taken a potshot at trans-Tasman rivals Qantas after the British and Irish Lions chose to fly here on the Australian airline.

Teasing new footage of the Lions following their arrival in Auckland, Air New Zealand instead produced a montage starring actual lions.

But rather than clips of the felines stalking prey and playing with one another, all the footage was of the lions lying down, yawning, or fast asleep - setting up the airline's punchline perfectly.

"Next time fly with Air New Zealand and arrive refreshed," the advert said.

The video, posted to Facebook, received more than 175,000 views in its first 14 hours - with the airline's followers commenting it was "funny as", "very clever" and a "massive burn".

One commenter even offered Air New Zealand a remedy to the lions' drowsiness - by feeding the airline's new board director and former Prime Minister John Key to them.

Qantas and Air New Zealand have a long-standing rivalry - although it's all in good humour.

In November 2015, crew members on a Qantas flight were forced to wear All Blacks jerseys after the two airlines bet on the outcome of the Rugby World Cup final.