FlightFunding via KLM social media a great success

KLM friends help Juanita visit her grandson in Canada


She was given 24 hours, but Juanita needed only 8 hours to collect the amount needed to cover for her ticket to Canada. Juanita is a Dutch grandmother who has never met her grandson Ace in person, because he lives in Canada. Thanks to KLM’s social media experiment FlightFunding, Juanita was able to launch an appeal to KLM’s friends on social media channels, asking them to help fund her flight. And she succeeded!


Juanita’s colleagues and family approached KLM with a request to donate a ticket to her. Owing to dire personal circumstances, the money she had saved for a ticket had gone up in smoke.

Juanita’s appeal initially ended up on a pile of similar appeals. Karlijn Vogel-Meijer, Social Media Manager at KLM, says that people send in hundreds of such requests every year. “Our webcare team answers more than 70,000 queries a week from travellers and fans. It bothered us that we could never fulfil requests for free tickets, which is simply not an option for a company that relies on the sale of air tickets.”

However, KLM has millions of friends, fans and followers on Facebook and Twitter. “That prompted the concept of FlightFunding,” says Vogel-Meijer. “What if we let specific people ask our followers for help? What if we use our social media channels to make dreams come true? Would people be prepared to help? That was the essence of the FlightFunding experiment.”

“And the rest is history,” says Vogel-Meijer, who is thrilled for Juanita. “She had no idea about this yesterday, and now she’ll be getting on the plane. That’s the power of social media.”

KLM will now conduct a in-depth evaluation of the trial with all involved, to see whether FlightFunding campaigns could be run more regularly.

Visit to see the final score, responses from supporters, and a live report of Juanita’s response.