‘Your Brexit proof holiday starts here’; in the midst of the looming uncertainty of Brexit, Eurotunnel’s marketing promise is unequivocal. This ‘Brexit Promise’ is at the heart of the brand’s marketing communications which state, ‘We recognise that, given the uncertainty around Brexit, you may be wondering when to go ahead and book your travel this year, so we want to give you absolute reassurance that we’re Brexit ready.’
British holidaymakers are not necessarily feeling quite so Brexit ready. Where once they would happily pack up the car and bundle the family over the Channel, now it seems many are forgoing that option for a ‘staycation’.
It is estimated that in 2018, 15.7 million people decided to swap a holiday abroad for a British camping and caravanning trip, according to a Mintel report released in December 2018. So, how to convince people that Europe is still a viable, and easy, option for a summer holiday?
Jae Hopkins, Sales and Marketing Director at Eurotunnel believes that the beauty of the brand is that while, “Marketers try to invent USPs all the time; ours is genuine. Our biggest challenge is convincing people to do something they never do.” Holiday-goers, says Hopkins, just aren’t familiar with the concept of driving your car onto a train in England and emerging, 35 minutes later, in France. But, as she says, “That’s an exciting thing to know as a marketer that you have an amazing product, but that people just don’t have the awareness.”
The reality, when it comes to summer holidays, is now two-fold. People want ease and speed, but they are also increasingly environmentally aware. Hopkins believes that “with the environmental sensitivity and flight shaming, we are by far the most sustainable way to holiday in Europe.” She acknowledges that Eurotunnel is not the cheapest option but that they are, she believes, the most efficient.
More travellers than ever are seeking to go at their own speed, to explore the world on their own terms and to get off the beaten track. They want to have experiences others may not, to share stories, and Instagram photos, from those places. Hopkins explains, “I can see in the age of people wanting to find that backroad…those adventures that require you to have your own wheels… I can see why the road trip through Europe is something that can grow.”
The reason Hopkins chose to move to Eurotunnel, after initially saying no was because, as she says, “I saw the challenge and thought yes…I want a part of it.”