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Launching Royal Brunei Airlines’ non-stop London to Brunei service

Summary


In 2018, 8020 was tasked by Royal Brunei Airlines to promote the launch of its non-stop route between London Heathrow and Brunei, the first time the two nations have been connected by a direct air route. 
8020 Communications Travel PR

Client/Brand: 
Royal Brunei Airlines

Sector: 
Travel/tourism

Date: 
Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Agency: 8020 Communications

The Challenge


Our brief was to raise awareness of Royal Brunei Airlines and its new non-stop London to Brunei route to UK travellers, drive interest in Brunei and Borneo as destinations, and position Royal Brunei Airlines’ Melbourne route as an attractive option for those looking to travel to Australia.

The Solution


Key to engaging the UK media about the new route was creating a sense of celebration, which we achieved through a series of activities:

In September, we invited five top national travel journalists to see Melbourne girl Kylie Minogue in concert at London’s O2, joining Royal Brunei’s UK & Ireland country manager in a private box for a briefing on the new route.

  • For the inaugural flight on 28th October, we were on-site from 5am and worked closely with Heathrow Airport to arrange a YouTube video, photography, interviews with pilots, crew and passengers, branded displays and celebratory treats for passengers. 
  • On 29th October, we organised media interviews for the airline’s CEO plus a VIP launch event at London’s iconic Gherkin building, attended by Royal Brunei’s leadership team, stakeholders, customers and media. Guests included Acting High Commissioner for Brunei and the UK’s Trade Envoy to Brunei.
  • In November, we supported Royal Brunei at World Travel Market, securing media interviews, content in the official WTM video and arranging a caricaturist to attract visitor traffic to the stand.

8020 provided full project management, working with partners, suppliers and venues to ensure that all activities ran successfully. 

The Results


Royal Brunei Airlines enjoyed a high level of media and stakeholder engagement during the launch phase.

Over a two-month period, we generated 33 pieces of media coverage with an online readership of 23.6 million.

We organised three events in central London and while Karam Chand, CEO, Royal Brunei Airlines, was in the UK for a two-day period, we were able to arrange one-to-one meetings for him with Flight International, Business Travel News, TTG, Buying Business Travel and Selling Travel. 

We engaged the UK's media with new stories about a relatively unknown and unexplored destination, highlighting its many attractions including unspoilt rainforests, eco-tourism opportunities, diving, architecture and cultural attractions.

Between 1 May 2018, when 8020 started the PR activity around the launch of the non-stop route, and 30 November 2018, there was a 13.71% increase in transactions on the website from the UK with a 37.81% increase in revenue.