TUI ‘welcomes back’ holidaymakers with nostalgia filled campaign

TUI is looking to build confidence as the travel sector begins to reopen with a multi-million pound campaign aimed at inspiring holiday nostalgia.

TUI is welcoming back holidaymakers with a multi-million pound campaign aimed at building confidence in the travel market as the UK government confirms travellers from France, Spain, Germany and Italy will no longer need to quarantine from 10 July.

Designed to inspire nostalgia, the Welcome Back campaign reminds consumers of the joy of going on holiday, from the first dip in the pool to feeling the sand in their toes. The scenarios featured in the campaign are based on research conducted by TUI into what consumers are most looking forward to when lockdown ends.

TUI’s UK and Ireland CMO, Katie McAlister, tells Marketing Week: “We want to be the first people to welcome back our customers after four months of hibernation. It’s a really nice feeling to go back on air.

“We feel like for a period we weren’t allowed to look forward, we had to live in the present and this is all about looking forward to those things you only get to do on holiday.”

TUI is looking to reach its “heartland audiences” of couples and families with the ad, which follows children, parents, grandparents, friends and couples as they enjoy all the things they have missed while holidays have been on hold.

The 30-second ad opens with the line ‘It’s time to look forward’, while the voiceover reassures audiences that TUI’s package holidays are ATOL protected. The finishing tagline reads ‘Welcome back to looking forward’.

The campaign will run across TV, video-on-demand, radio, press, social and digital out-of-home between July and September, with an aim of reaching 96% of ABC1 adults. The plan is to grow brand awareness and purchase intent.

While TUI is opening holiday bookings on 11 July, it does not want consumers to feel pressured.

“Normally we would have offers on the go, but we are not doing that with this campaign. We are very aware that customers will choose when its right for them to go on holiday so the campaign really is that invitation to start looking,” McAlister explains.

TUI has been able to use much of the media it paused when the coronavarius travel ban began. While some brands did advertise during the lockdown, TUI felt it was “inappropriate” and paused all marketing aside from providing legal updates on its own channels.

“As the world started to close down we immediately paused all our advertising because it was inappropriate,” McAlister explains.

Despite this break in advertising, she is confident the travel sector will bounce back and TUI will be able to inspire consumers, in large part because of having “such a high rating as a brand”.

McAlister concludes: “Hibernating our business for four months has been the biggest challenge. I can safely say we are much better at taking people on holiday than we are at not.”