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Departure Media Airport Advertising celebrates successful first year with Kansas City International Airport

Kansas City International Airport, New Terminal
Kansas City International Airport, New Terminal

The new program includes over 80 displays, which feature a carefully curated combination of digital and static advertisements. Departure Media has also designed elements beyond advertising, including the ‘Welcome to Kansas City’ signage located on the bulkhead soffit seen by passengers on their descent to the lower level.

CHARLESTON, SC – Airport advertising company Departure Media is marking the first anniversary of its advertising concession partnership with Kansas City International Airport, as the airport commemorates the first birthday of its new terminal later this month.

In August 2022, a ten-year contract was awarded to Departure Media to manage the design, implementation, sales and maintenance of the terminal-wide advertising concession. Within three months of the terminal opening, 34 new advertisers were added to the program. These included a broad variety of businesses, with 85% being local advertisers, offering new opportunities for companies in the area to increase brand awareness, and the remainder being national advertisers.

The state-of-the-art advertising program complements the architectural design of MCI’s new terminal and supports the Kansas City Aviation Department’s vision of promoting a sense of place.  Showcasing local art and history was a key part of this vision, and the modernized advertising program provides the perfect accompaniment to the terminal’s art initiatives. Prior to the terminal’s opening, Departure Media partnered with the Kansas City Public Library to feature historic photography throughout the terminal in addition to the robust advertising program.  Kansas City is flourishing as a sports-centric region and the advertising program is poised to offer exciting opportunities during major international events, such as the 2026 FIFA World Cup, along with partnerships among key sports organizations including the Kansas City Chiefs, the Royals, the Current and more.

Leslie Bensen

Leslie Bensen, Departure Media’s founder and CEO.

The project offers to support a number of leading, local woman-owned businesses that include AlphaGraphics Kansas City, a print and marketing firm owned by Haley Harr, general contractor Structure Incorporated, owned by Dorothy Gardner, and cleaning company Immaculate Enterprise, LLC, owned by Jayne Njuguna.

Melissa Cooper, Director of Aviation for the Kansas City Aviation Department, said Departure Media had been selected because of its extensive experience with other mid-sized airports in the US, and the MCI’s commitment to working with minority and women-owned subcontractors: “Departure Media has a reputation for creating eye-catching advertising displays that draw the attention of passing travelers. These displays aim to heighten the overall travel experience while enhancing the new terminal’s unique aesthetics. Departure Media also focuses on building value for advertisers through individualized account services and customized concepts which provide a revenue stream to the Aviation Department.”

Leslie Bensen, Departure Media’s founder and CEO, commented: “This new venture is a testament to Departure Media’s growing market share in the Midwest, and our increasing traction in the region. Just as MCI’s passenger traffic continues to increase, so does the number of advertisers participating in the program. Creating a new display program for a new terminal with the focus of showcasing the community and welcoming folks to Kansas City has been both a challenge and an honor. Our ongoing success with this project highlights our talent and capabilities in the development of successful airport programs of considerable size and scale.” 

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Vicky is the co-founder of TravelDailyNews Media Network where she is the Editor-in Chief. She is also responsible for the daily operation and the financial policy. She holds a Bachelor's degree in Tourism Business Administration from the Technical University of Athens and a Master in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Wales.

She has many years of both academic and industrial experience within the travel industry. She has written/edited numerous articles in various tourism magazines.