• 05.08.12

Orbitz Wants You To Take Your Vacation Back

Orbitz breaks the price-focused clutter with a new campaign urging Americans to “Take Vacation Back.”

Orbitz Wants You To Take Your Vacation Back

It hasn’t been the easiest time for the American worker of every collar-hue over the past few years, what with a recession and leaner companies translating to more work to be done with fewer resources.


All that stress adds up, and to make matters worse, it appears that most American workers aren’t even availing themselves of their due time away from the grind–stats show that only 57% of U.S. workers take all their vacation time compared to 89% of workers in…wait for it…France.

Orbitz is looking to address that sad state of affairs in a new pro-vacation campaign that also seeks to give the company a new voice apart from the price-focused noise of the online travel category.

The campaign, created by Orbitz agency BBDO New York, is based around the tag line “Take Vacation Back” and features TV spots, print, and a Facebook pledge all aimed at encouraging people to reclaim their due time off. The campaign is part of a re-branding that also included an overhaul of, which has a new look and added functionality, including the ability to coordinate travel searches across mobile and desktop.

The campaign launch spot features a series of proud vacationers proclaiming their leisure-time intentions (“We the people will take our vacation days.” “We’ll detox and then retox”). Chris Orton, President of and, says the campaign was part of a bigger brand push to define the company as it, and the category, have grown. For much of the history of online travel, marketing has been relentlessly focused on who has the lowest price. As the company matured, he says, it was time to create a more meaningful brand statement.

Orton says that the campaign was very much driven by Orbitz employees–the company undertook a major internal research project that had all its staff asking fundamental questions about the brand and what it stands for (if you look closely, you can see employee input in the TV spot–the golfer at the end is sporting a cap with the logo of gay rights organization, Human Rights Campaign). The campaign is also a good example of a marketing initiative that rallies the company’s workforce as much as consumers.

“There was a very high enrollment in this internally,” says Orton. “Everyone was invested and that makes a big difference in how the company evolves.”

About the author

Teressa Iezzi is the editor of Co.Create. She was previously the editor of Advertising Age’s Creativity, covering all things creative in the brand world.