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Students present Thomas Cook with loads of ideas during Bootcamp

Thomas Cook may consider itself very lucky indeed: during the Bootcamp organised by Tio, ANVR (the Dutch Association of Travel Agents and Tour Operators) and Thomas Cook, Tio students of International Tourism Management are bubbling with ideas for improving the ancillaries (by-products for holidays) of Thomas Cook Hotels & Resorts. They will be presenting their ideas to the jury during today’s final.

Real cases

During the project, third-year students study real cases from businesses in the travel industry and come up with all sorts of ideas that can be applied in practice. Student Pepijn: “The fun thing about this project is that you are working with real businesses and real people from those businesses.” This year’s case was set by Thomas Cook: how can Thomas Cook optimise its customer experience with the help of ancillaries?

Well-oiled team

The students of all Tio campuses know one another well: they went on a study trip to Belgrade together just last week, and the participants have been grouped using the DISC model, which provides insight into conscious and unconscious preferences in behaviour and communication. “I have learnt things about myself I really didn’t know yet,” student Femke says. “And it is a lot of fun to do this project together with students from other Tio campuses.”

SUP yoga and a private photographer on your holiday

In seven groups, the students present all of their ideas to the critical jury. These ideas range from a loyalty programme or laundry service to chip bracelets which you can use to pay for almost everything during your holiday. And the winners are…? Students Chantal, Sofie, Floris, Danique and Bianca with their idea of offering customers of Thomas Cook SUP yoga, a private photographer, and a cooking workshop on their holiday. Aftersales were not forgotten either: after the holiday, the customer can buy a photo book from HEMA at a discount.

Innovative ideas

Jury member Daniel Bogaards of Thomas Cook: “I am very pleased with the presentations I have seen, such innovative ideas! The winning presentation was very well done with a lot of humour and fun personas (read: Tarzan and Jane), and the students had a good sense of costs.” Jury member Gerben Hardeman of ANVR explains: “This group placed the focus on the activities at the destination itself, and it is great that we can reward these ideas.” Chantal, member of the winning group: “It was an amazing project to do, and lots of fun most of all!”

Travel Work Student Challenge

But that was not all: five tickets for the Travel Work Student Challenge were also given away today. Students Pepijn, Lotus, Chantal, Sofie and Deveny will have the opportunity to show their talents next year during the six-day event, at which 60 excellent bachelor students will be working on current topics from the travel industry. Congratulations!