Cedar relaunches BA High Life on the magazine’s 45th anniversary
This month, the new-look British Airways’ High Life magazine is taking flight with a point of view designed to inspire and entertain the 21st century traveller.
Bold, bright and unashamedly British, the new High Life brings an optimistic and open-minded attitude to exploring the world, as a deliberate antidote to the pessimism, uncertainty and negativity that has defined the year so far.
Every month High Life will share with its 3.8 million readers new stories of extraordinary people and amazing places from across British Airways’ expansive route network. It will boast a diverse collection of exceptional writers, who hope to bring joy back to the travel experience, alongside world-class photography and a knowing sense of British wit. The overall aim? To leave readers excited and informed of what can be accomplished by seeing the world first-hand.
The new editorial and design strategy has been introduced by editor Andy Morris and art director Craig Baxter, together with Cedar’s Luxury and Travel team. Helen Whitaker, previously entertainment director of Glamour magazine, has also recently joined High Life as deputy editor.
Readers of the May issue, currently on board all British Airways flights, will find a fresh, clear design, including new distinct sections focusing on London, Britain and the world’s best hotels. They will also enjoy a special four-cover celebration of BA’s latest new destination, Nashville, exploring this vibrant US city from insider perspectives on food, sport, music and fashion. Inside the magazine, Tim Dowling meets artist David Shrigley in Brighton, Nneka M Okona gives a personal tribute to Atlanta, Michael Hann examines the world of non-league football, and Amelia Tait investigates what happens when a hotel pool goes viral.
The relaunch was influenced by wide-ranging Aerolab research conducted by High Life’s content marketing agency, Cedar, into the changing motivations of 2018’s ‘always-on traveller’. The findings revealed the essential role travel plays in modern life, as people’s core reasons for travelling tip in favour of relaxation and escape over knowledge and discovery.
Speaking at the relaunch, High Life’s editor Andy Morris said, ‘Reading High Life should resemble drinking a gin and tonic at 35,000 feet: strong, effervescent and alive with possibility. The High Life reader is now deluged with information in their everyday life – which is why the modern traveller needs an inflight read that offers a diverse combination of entertainment, elegance and escapism. After all, why do most people travel in the first place? They need to experience a world of possibility, what Jarvis Cocker once called “Life with the boring bits edited out”.’
The relaunch coincides with High Life’s 45th birthday. In 1973, High Life became the UK’s first-ever customer magazine, with contributions from Jilly Cooper, Michael Parkinson and Humphrey Lyttelton. Ever since, it has consistently set the standard for intelligent and ambitious travel journalism. Past cover stars have included David Bowie, Benedict Cumberbatch, Idris Elba, James Corden, Sir Ranulph Fiennes, Buzz Aldrin, Tracey Emin, and Tim Peake OBE.