New Holidays Forever brand outlines Thomson and First Choice’s five year sustainable tourism commitments
Wednesday 30, June 2010
The UK’s leading tour operators Thomson and First Choice are delighted to unveil their new brand Holidays Forever. Launched during the Travel Foundation’s Make Holidays Greener Week, the new brand brings together all the holiday company’s sustainable tourism initiatives under one clear and stylish umbrella.
Holidays Forever represents the next stage of Thomson and First Choice’s sustainable development strategy and aims to get its customers on board supporting sustainable tourism to help preserve their holidays long into the future. The new brand will also be used to raise awareness of sustainable tourism amongst the companies employees.
Holidays Forever encompasses 20 sustainable commitments that Thomson and First Choice have pledged to achieve. These include reducing the carbon emissions from the TUI Travel airlines, by 6% by 2014, working towards having all of its suppliers Travelife-awarded by 2014 and aiming to recycle approximately 30% of the cans it hands out onboard its flights, equating to 13 tonnes of aluminium in the next year.
Thomson and First Choice decided to launch the brand after carrying out customer research that found 96% of holidaymakers polled care about protecting the local environment and wildlife in the resorts they visit. A further 83% said they appreciate advice from a tour operator on how to make their holiday more environmentally and socially responsible when they’re abroad, and 73% want to be able to easily identify a greener holiday*. The tour operators also noticed a change in customer behaviour when comparing these results to similar research First Choice carried out in 2005***. It showed customers are more familiar with the concept of sustainable tourism than in 2005, however although the percentage of people recycling has increased, they are still less likely to recycle on holiday than at home.
As a result, the company is planning to launch Holidays Forever microsites for both brands to educate customer on sustainable tourism issues, how Thomson and First Choice are addressing these, and also to give them tips to help them have a greener holiday. Each microsite for Thomson and First Choice will reflect that Holidays Forever is a joint initiative, but each site will have its own voice in keeping with the brand identity. A joint landing page is already up and by end of July the sites will be fully functional.
Jane Ashton, Head of Sustainable for Development said, “We appreciate our holidays have an impact on the environment and the people who live and work in our destinations across the planet. Whilst we are proud of the efforts we have made to date, we recognise that we are still at the start of our sustainability journey. With Holidays Forever we are making 20 commitments to do what we can to drive real change. Through our new microsites we are inviting our customers to take this big, yet important, journey with us.”
On Friday an internal celebration at Thomson and First Choice head offices has also been organised to mark Make Holidays Greener Week and to launch Holidays Forever. Managing Director Dermot Blastland will be making presentations to colleagues at Wigmore House in Luton about the new strategy and the commitments the company has made as part of the Holidays Forever launch. A green fair has also been arranged, with green organisations and charities setting up stalls to promote sustainable tourism internally. Fun green activities will also happen across the business, including prizes for best team dressed in green.
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