Holiday company TUI UK is ditching its Britannia Airways brand after 40 years, and is bringing the charter airline under the aegis of its Thomson Holidays brand.
TUI management believes there is much stronger consumer awareness of Thomson than of charter airline Britannia. The company wants to compete with the no-frills airlines and believes it can make more seat-only sales using the Thomson name.
The first part of the operation to be rebranded will be the Britanniadirect.com seat-only website, which will become thomsonflights.co.uk. Repainting of the actual aircraft has also begun, with half the fleet expected to display the new name by the end of this year.
TUI UK managing director Chris Mottershead says: “Thomson is an extremely powerful brand and we need to maximise it. The TUI smile logo already connects Lunn Poly, Britannia and Thomson, but we need to go one step further.”
He adds that it makes more marketing sense to put money behind promoting a single company.
Rival Thomas Cook changed the name of its chartered airline from JMC to that of the main brand in April. MyTravel’s flight operation, Airtours International, became MyTravel Airways in May last year. First Choice’s fleet is still branded Air 2000.