A German newspaper has led a counter-attack over Thomas Cook’s sunloungers, declaring ‘zis means war’ as it emerged they can also use the same booking system as Brits to bag the best spots.
On Monday tour operator Thomas Cook announced it was launching a new service for UK customers that would allow them to chose and pre-book their sunbed before they even leave home for their holiday.
They will be able to reserve their lounger up to six days in advance meaning there is no need to leap out of bed and race down to the pool to grab a spot with the quick throw of a towel.
The Sunprime Atlantic View in Las Palmas, pictured, is one of the hotels trialling the sunlounger booking system from the end of February
However, it has now been revealed that it is not just Brits that can use the service, German holidaymakers can too along with tourists from Nordic countries.
After hearing the news, Tanit Koch, editor of Germany’s biggest newspaper, Bild, took to Twitter and cheekily wrote: ‘Zis means war’, accompanied by a gun and sunshade emoji. The newspaper also ran a story on the sunbed booking service.
And now holidaymakers have joked that if the service is available to both Brits and Germans – it won’t solve any of the problems and could make the competition for sunbeds even tougher.
Announcing the news on Monday, Thomas Cook said: ‘Following the successful launch of Choose Your Room for Summer 2017, Choose Your Favourite Sunbed is part of our wider commitment to innovating today’s package holiday and adapting to the needs of the modern traveller.’
After hearing about Thomas Cook’s new sunlounger scheme, German newspaper Bild ran a cheeky story on it. The headline reads: ‘England plans a new offensive – new miracle weapon in the towel war’
The editor of Bild also posted a tongue-in-cheek post on Instagram where she said ‘Zis means war’
The new initiative is being trialled in three Thomas Cook own-brand hotels, such as the Sunprime Atlantic View in Las Palmas, from the end of February and will be available in 30 own-brand hotels for summer 2018.
It is the first service of its kind to be offered by a package holiday company in the UK, claims Thomas Cook, and ‘takes customers’ ability to “unpack” and personalise their package holiday to a new level’.
Choose Your Favourite Sunbed allows families and couples to pre-book sunbeds in their preferred location, helping them stay together, spend more time on their favourite activities, then returning to the pool when it suits them, safe in the knowledge their beds will be waiting, Thomas Cook said.
Customers will receive an email six days before departure asking if they would like to choose their sunbed in advance.
They will be able to choose their preferred location from a pool plan based on their personal preferences.
While some families may wish to secure their ideal spot by the kids’ pool, others may prefer to be in a more secluded, restful spot. The pool plans will include a compass that indicates when loungers will be covered in shade.
Customers will receive an email six days before departure asking if they would like to choose their sunbed in advance
This image is a mock-up of the pool plan Thomas Cook customers will have access to before they jet off
Chris Mottershead, Thomas Cook’s UK Managing Director, said: ‘Traditional package holidays are a thing of the past. Holidaymakers today want to personalise their package, mixing and matching the elements that best fit their needs and lifestyle.
‘Our recently launched services such as Choose Your Room, which has attracted more than 10,000 bookings during the trial phase, and Early Check In, are proving popular and we’re excited about the opportunity with Choose your Favourite Sunbed, particularly among families that want to secure a number of beds together in a specific spot.’
Choose Your Favourite Sunbed will cost €25 per sunbed per stay. Around 10 to 20 per cent of each hotel’s sunbeds will be bookable, so there are enough available for those who don’t want to take up the service.
Choose Your Room will be available in 300 hotels by summer 2018 and costs €30 per room.
For more information, go to: www.thomascook.com/holidays/choose-your-sunbed.