In 2005, Travelocity sought to launch a culture building program that would enable the unique character of their internal culture to become a visible and defining element of their brand. The Travelocity brand represented more than just a travel website, and a far more human sensibility than even their loveable roaming gnome. We needed to find a way to express their corporate culture and passionate belief in travel.
What began as an HR volunteer initiative evolved into the creation of a CSR program for Travelocity called Travel for Good. The social responsibility and humanizing facets of the SocialVoice® brand framework were applied in the creation of the strategy and guiding concepts for the program. We created a scalable framework and collaborated with cross-functional Travelocity and Sabre teams to bring concepts to life as programs. The pillars that define the program are: Green Travel, Voluntourism, Carbon Offset and Change Ambassadors. The pillars inspired a new level of internal collaboration, innovative thinking and pride amongst employees.
We crafted the program promise which captured the belief shared by Travelocity employees and leadership regarding the social good that travel can enable. To this day, the Travel for Good promise remains true to its original founding:
“We believe the world is a global community where individuals rely on one another. We know the gift of travel comes with responsibility, and we’re committed to making the world a better place, one trip at a time. ”
Prior to Travelocity’s Travel for Good program, there was no industry standard or central reference guide for “Eco Friendly” hotels. This meant that in order to find out whether a hotel was eco-minded or not, you would have to contact hotels individually to find out. Yet, even with such information there was no industry standard or credible authority to back up green claims.
We helped Travelocity create an opportunity that was innovative, good for business as well as the environment. Travelocity now has the largest collection of Green Hotels to offer travelers. They partner with second and third party certification programs and NGOs to audit and certify each green hotel claim. Green travel can now be easily factored into the decision making process when booking travel and help introduce “green” into the criteria for selection.
Travel is about more than just recreation, transportation or consumption. The Travelocity team believed that it can bring the world together through travel. To foster such connections, we created different ways for people to engage in a volunteer opportunity. Now people can easily integrate volunteer and community service into their travel itineraries.
Prior to Travel for Good, in order to find volunteer opportunities one would either have to dedicate their entire trip to volunteering and expend significant time in researching opportunities. Now, whether they have a week or even a day to give back during their trips, they can look to Travelocity’s “Trip for Good” recommendations for idea starters.
Since Voluntour travel can be very costly given access to remote areas and limited options, Travelocity created a grant called Change Ambassadors that would enable the self-less wishes of those seeking to volunteer time to others. Winners are selected every year and awarded $5,000 towards a volunteer vacation that seeks to create positive change by helping others. This contest is open to the public as well as Travelocity employees.