There’s one very reliable sign that Christmas is on its way: the arrival of the Christmas Coca Cola truck in cities around our country. For some reason, tracking and sighting the giant red vehicle has become something of a new Christmas tradition.

Any Silent Night around the country will be loudly disrupted by the arrival of one of Coke’s most enduring company icons. The truck (or lorry, if you’re feeling particularly British) is back this year on tour around the country, visiting a number of cities including Leeds, Newcastle and Glasgow, with more locations “under wraps”, though I don’t know anyone who’s going to be awake at night wondering where the truck will be going next. However, it’s a given that the eigtheen wheeler will be trundling into London at some point, so if you’re interested, you may want to keep your eyes peeled.

The soft drinks behemoth has created a new version of their Christmas ad for this year, which we’ve put below for your (and Coke’s) convenience. It depicts a child building a chimney chute for Santa when he realises his flat doesn’t have one, and has a predictably trite and vague slogan about family togetherness, or something.

Back for the first time since 2019, the truck will make its way toward the capital via several cities around the UK (assuming it follows a similar route to last time). It usually stops outside supermarkets like Asda and Sainsbury’s, spreading the Christmas (or Coca-Cola) cheer to the public.

The Coca-Cola Company has a long history with the festive season...

Last time, those who visited the truck were given 150 ml bottles of Cola, which seems like a bit of a small amount given it’s meant to be Christmas. The campaign does at least encourage recycling and a good cause; in 2019 the company donated 10p for every can recycled to homeless charity Crisis.

The Coke Christmas trucks first appeared in the famous (or infamous) “Holidays Are Coming” ad campaign in the 1990s. The adverts began to disappear in later years, but were brought back along with the trucks, apparently because of people calling the company saying that the ads marked the start of Christmas. Apparently, advent calendars and the influx of Christmas ads in around September weren’t enough.

As well as now apparently being the ultimate decider of when Christmas officially begins, the Coca-Cola Company has a long history with the festive season and of course Father Christmas himself, Santa Claus. The brand’s many snowy ad campaigns helped to shape the image of Santa, popularising the jolly old man we know today.

Contrary to popular belief however, they were not the first to depict him in red and white clothing, so you can pull that card on any bore this December that tries to enlighten you with that old story, as if it’s not something everyone’s head a million times before.

The truck tour has become a popular part of the run up to Christmas...

In any case, the adverts and trucks have become iconic, and the truck tour has become a popular part of the run up to Christmas. Keep an eye on Coke’s social media channels to find out exactly when the moving red billboard will be in London so you can go and see it for yourself. Or, you can look up the dates to know where to avoid being advertising at by a giant multinational corporation taking advantage of Christmas.

Something something, capitalism.


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