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Thanks for the memories  July 26, 2012

Go to New Zealand, arrive in Middle Earth

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CNET Editor

Michelle Starr is the tiger force at the core of all things. She also writes about cool stuff and apps as CNET Australia's Crave editor. But mostly the tiger force thing.

(Credit: Michael Tritter)

Hobbit fever is in full swing in New Zealand — and if you're visiting from overseas, you're going to get a few Tolkien-esque surprises.

First there was the brilliant airplane safety video by Air New Zealand. Then there was Air New Zealand's Hobbit-themed 777-300.

Now, Twitter user Michael Tritter has uploaded a photograph of his passport after arriving in New Zealand and collecting his stamp — which reads, "Welcome to Middle Earth".

We're of divided opinion here at CNET Australia. Some of us think that it's a clever move; after all, who wouldn't want that stamp in their passport? But some of us think that it's starting to take the exploitation of the tourism potential of the film in a crass direction.

Nevertheless, people are talking about it, which can only be a good thing; and, as one respondee said to Tritter, it's like Flight of the Conchords come to life. Actually, we can't tell if that's a good thing or not.

What do you think?

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Im Batman posted a comment   

Its bringing back the allure of passport stamps... which are a bit lost these days when travelling Europe.

I don't think its tacky or anything, but it is part of the tourism/marketing machine... its just another part to the big story, e.g. its building on the hobbit air safety video etc.


Michelle Starr posted a reply   

I thought it was a bit of good fun, myself. I love getting my passport stamped.

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