Published on Monday, May 4, 2020

Travel brands back campaign to provide holidays for essential workers

A new initiative to provide essential workers from around the UK with access to a range of bespoke, discounted holidays at the end of the Covid-19 pandemic, has been launched.

Operating under the name Give Them A Break, the group aims to build a travel industry-wide collaboration that provides '10,000 holidays for helpers', and is inviting travel brands to get involved ahead of a launch to the public this month.

Give Them A Break is divided in to two 'asks', and travel brands can get involved in either - or both.

The first section involves inclusion in the Give Them A Break discounts and offers hotel directory.

When it officially launches, the Give Them A Break website will feature a section featuring those brands and industry partners who have agreed to make a selection of discounted or even free holidays and experiences available exclusively to essential workers.

Each 'partner' will have a clickable module, which will then take them directly to the brands' websites, ideally landing on a dedicated page, where the details of the holidays on offer are given, and from there, into the brands' existing booking flow.

Abercrombie & Kent, Sanctuary Retreats, Intrepid Travel, Transindus, London Unites (the London Visitor Attractions scheme for NHS workers) , Travelbag and Travel Republic have already signed up to appear on this partner page.

The second section of the Give Them A Break website will be a public-facing fund to which companies and individuals are invited to donate whatever they can afford.

The monies raised will be managed by the campaign's charity partner, the Family Holiday Association, which will work with Give Them A Break to allocate holidays to essential workers and their families most in need of a holiday when travel restrictions ease.

The travel industry has been quick off the mark and several schemes have been launched offering holidays, hotels stays and experiences to NHS staff and other keyworkers. Give Them A Break is in touch with several of the schemes that have launched and those still in development. Rather than duplicating the efforts of others, it aims to pull things together in one public facing campaign.

The Give Them A Break campaign is the idea of sustainable tourism expert Rachel McCaffery.

She comments: "While I was trying to get my head around the scale of the crisis, and thinking about my background in sustainable travel, it struck me there was a way to bring those two things together; by finding a way to give something back to those risking their lives to treat the sick and keep the country running, and help to stimulate the tourism industry and save jobs by rebuilding confidence in travel.

"We're calling on brands across the UK, from holiday camp operators or short haul specialists, right through to companies catering for the long-haul market, to get involved and offer what they can to Give Them A Break.

"We'll be giving the public the opportunity to contribute too, but want to get as many of our colleagues in this fantastic, big-hearted, industry together to help us provide at least 10,000 holidays for the people who have healed us, held our hands and helped the country to stay together since this awful disease took hold."

Give Them A Break is launching this month, using social media to build momentum and awareness around the hashtag #givethemabreak.

Brands that lend their support will be invited to promote their involvement through their own channels to their own communities and encourage their customers and followers to donate to the fund. 

To get involved, email [email protected]

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