A Vodafone billboard in Levin seems to demonstrate a slight lack of geographical awareness, directing local customers to a store in Hastings.

The huge red billboard advertises a 36-month interest-free deal on new phones and
suggests people who might want to take up the offer should "come and see the team at Vodafone Hastings today" - which would mean travelling over 200km.

A Vodafone spokesperson said the billboard was there because the Levin store had closed in April.

"We have billboards strategically placed redirecting people to alternative stores," the spokesperson said. "The alternate stores are located in Palmerston North, Hastings and Paraparamutu [sic]."

Advertisement

However, the signage didn't mention the other two locations.

To get to Vodafone's Russell Street store in Hastings, Levin customers would have to drive over two and a half hours. Palmerston North and Paraparaumu were both 30 to 40 minutes away.

Vodafone billboard in Levin's main street, directing customers some 200km to the Hastings store.
Vodafone billboard in Levin's main street, directing customers some 200km to the Hastings store.

The spokesperson did not explain why Hastings would be considered a viable option for Horowhenua customers.

When the geography was pointed out, the matter was referred to a different team, which said the signage was a mistake by their billboard supplier.

"We've heard back from the team who checked in with our supplier and this is indeed a supplier error," Vodafone said. "The sign you spotted should have redirected customers to the Paraparaumu store. The sign will be replaced with the correct store location."

According to Nielsen media spending figures, Vodafone spent more than $45 million on advertising last year.

It moved its advertising account to a different agency just before Christmas in one of the industry's biggest shake-ups of the year.