How travel companies should approach Brexit content

Posted By Emma Dodd on 11th July 2016

With Brexit being a hot topic at present, it’s not surprising that many companies will want to produce content about it for their websites. This is particularly the case when it comes to travel businesses, as they are likely to be directly affected in the future.

iStock_91771675_XXXLARGE (1).jpg

[Image credit: iStock/omersukrugoksu]

Content marketing around Brexit for travel companies should be approached with caution, however, and there are a lot of reasons why. These include the potential to incite panic and the fact that this is such unchartered territory we don’t really know what is going to happen. All of this and more, is explored below.

Don’t ignore it

First and foremost, don’t ignore the potential Brexit has for creating content for your site. Yes, pitching it at just the right level can be difficult, but that does not mean it can’t be achieved. While Brexit is throwing many areas of British life into turmoil, it’s a great opportunity to reassure your customers and show that you take such things seriously and are on their side about ensuring they will still be able to travel as easily as before.

Don’t cause panic

While you want to show that you have a serious attitude towards Brexit, do not cause any unnecessary panic. Only publish articles that have been well researched and show what the travel industry can really expect from a future in which the UK is outside of the European Union. We do not want everyone desperately searching for foreign ancestry to obtain alternative passports; holidaymakers hoarding their overseas currency; or people believing that post-Brexit they will never spend a summer in Spain ever again.

Admit that nobody can see into the future

All of us strive to be informative in the content we produce, but the truth of the matter is that the future is uncertain. This is the case at the best of times, but even more so now as we face the reality of Brexit. There are many elements that are yet to be established and foreign travel is just one of them.

When speculating about the consequences be sure to make it clear in your content that this is what you’re doing. Explain the numerous possibilities and the potential repercussions for Brits travelling abroad and allow your reader to draw their own conclusions. This will improve their understanding of the situation and see your site as an informative source as opposed to one that tries to predict the outcome of a situation that is essentially unpredictable.

The truth about Brexit travel

  • Despite the vote, the UK will remain in the European Union for at least two years, while details of leaving are slowly worked out.
  • Holidays in Europe, the US and other nations tied to the dollar are likely to feel more expensive on the ground, as the pound struggles to stabilise post-referendum. This could be a short-term or a more long-term situation. We’ll have to wait and see.
  • The actual cost of flights and holidays themselves, however, should not be adversely affected.
  • Freedom of movement through Europe is not likely to cease overnight, but will not be governed by the same Open Skies Agreement, which was put in place in 1994.
  • Low-cost flights were made possible by the removal of bi-lateral restrictions and open competition, which was passed by the European Union. Such arrangements will need to be renegotiated for cheap airlines to continue operating in the same way they do now.
  • Passengers who encounter flight delays may get less compensation under UK law or have to go to court in another country to take advantage of the levels approved by the European Union directive.
  • Everyone loves posting holiday selfies and many have been looking forward to roaming charges being abolished in 2017. Unfortunately, this promise is part of a European Union directive and the UK will no longer be obliged to implement such legislation.
  • The European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) is still valid and will remain so through negotiations on leaving the European Union. What will come afterwards only time will tell.
  • While Brexit could lead to the breakdown of the Schengen Agreement and therefore usher in more border controls, Brits are unlikely to need visas to travel to most parts of Europe. They could end up with more stamps in their passports though.
  • The duty-free allowance for British citizens visiting countries in the European Union is likely to revert to that which people from outside of it can claim. This means 200 cigarettes, 16 litres of beer and four litres of wine.