Discount, what else? The Holiday Participation Centre (“Steunpunt Vakantieparticipatie”), a service of Tourism Flanders, targets people and families who are unable to take a holiday, including people on a low income. After over 15 years of making holidays accessible for all, The Holiday Participation Centre wanted to innovate in its offer and discover new ways to make a real difference for its target groups.
Otherwhere embarked on the journey with Tourism Flanders in fall 2016. We proposed a service design process putting the interests of the targeted tourists and the social tourism providers at the core of the process.
To get a clear idea of the context and to define the precise design challenge, we used a variety of methodologies such as in-depth interviews, focus groups, shadowing and a widely-disseminated survey. The preliminary results were presented at a workshop with tourism providers and representatives of social organisations where assumptions were tested, refined and corrected. This resulted in a set of concrete design challenges that served as the basis for the continuation of the service design traject: How can we provide a carefree holiday to holidaymakers? How can we enrich our offer by complementing discounts with alternative services? How can we shape a feasible and affordable discount model?
In April 2017, the process continued with a two-day meeting with 20 tourism providers. Firstly, we provided space for discussion on the context and relevant trends such as sustainable and ethical tourism, increasing individualisation and changing demographics of the population. Secondly, in the diverging phase a brainstorm took place where a maximum amount of ideas where generated, followed by a prioritisation exercise where the four most supported, desirable and impactful ideas where selected. Those ideas where further developed during the rapid prototyping phase, making use of different creative materials at hand.
Action plans were then developed for the four prototypes and are currently being tested by The Holiday Participation Center.
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