Luggage Tags


Reaching travelers with development education




Cake base


In order to get our luggage labels to the target group, we planned to distribute the luggage tags at a special exhibition for tourism. This way we could reach YMPs as visitors, and travel agencies who would then distribute the luggage tags to those YMPs visiting these travel agencies as customers.

The International Tourism Exhibition (BTL) took place in Lisbon between the 23rd and the 27th of February, 2011. That year, more than 60.766 visitors attended BTL to get acquaintance with innovations and trends in the sector. The main exhibit sectors shown at BTL are:

diverse tourist accommodations, hotels and hotel services, tourist carriers, tour operators, travel agencies, national and international organizations, regional and local tourism organizations, tourist leisure attractions, health tourism (spas / warm springs infrastructures / services, equipment and consumables for spas), active tourism / nature / adventure, ecological tourism, golf, tourism of Portuguese vineyards, senior tourism, technology (telecommunications, booking systems, databases of tourist destinations, video conferencing), services for the tourism industry (consulting, professional training, decoration, insurance, banking), and specialized press.

Having this great opportunity to develop an action in one of the most important exhibitions in Lisbon for traveling, and following our casual learning methodology, the development education department team of our organization scheduled an internal meeting with the communication team to initiate the creative process.


1st step - Choosing the format and material of the luggage tags

When developing an action that is part of a package of actions, we should maintain our profile and standard procedures.

Therefore, we decided to use recycled material and the standard format of luggage tags. This is to say, one of the faces of the labels should contain the traditional information: name, address, telephone number & country of residence.


2nd step - Designing the tags

Design is a key point for anyone who wants to address a target group that is focused on style like the YMPs. They want to buy good-looking luggage, and they really give importance to the look of their luggage. Remember that many times it is important to have a good-looking piece of luggage because it may represent the style of the person that is using that tag (creative, formal, luxurious, geek, etc).

In order to maintain the coherence with other actions of IMVF (Instituto Marques de Valle Flor) for YMPs, our choice was to use the colors and icons of MDGs. This also allowed that in the future there is the possibility for a visual recognition of MDG symbols/icons.


3rd step - Number of tags

Individual labels or a package of labels? We started thinking that for traveling we use more than one piece of luggage, so how many labels should we made?  We decided to make three different tags.


4th step - Asking for the design and printing budget

We contacted the art designer, and provided all the first information about the tags, namely:  two-sided labels; standard format, with one of the sides having the basic information (name, address, country, telephone); and also the logos and the Facebook page name. With all this information it was possible for the designers to send us a first budget.


5th Step - Choosing the MDG icons

Our purpose was to have a short, clear, and strong message related to the MDG icon.  Because we opted for developing three tags, we started deciding which MDGs should we promote. MDG 7 was immediately chosen. It‘s very simple to establish a connection between traveling and the environment. After a few hours of brainstorming we also decided to use MDG 8 because the idea made sense for us that when we travel we are making partnerships: cultural, social, and economic partnerships. And for educational reasons, the third tag should contain all the MDGs.


6th step - Message

Our purpose was to have a short, clear, and strong message related with the MDG icon and travels.

To give the right tone for the package we agreed that the slogan should be “Destiny...2015. 8 Steps for a Dream Destiny". Below this message should appear the 8 MDGs.

For MDG 7 (Ensure environmental sustainability), we started thinking about CO2 footprint, fuel, flight emissions, etc. The final message was "smart people, smart choices, green options". This neutral message allowed us to approach a range of issues on the Facebook page.

For the third label, MDG 8 (Develop a global partnership for development), our option was “you don’t need to be a super hero to save the world”.

To validate our messages, we conducted a simple poll on Facebook, asking our fans which tags they liked most. The majority vote was for label MDG 8. As always when addressing a new target group, this step of pretesting is important to get immediate feedback on the materials that you have prepared, even before the initial action starts.


7th step - Giving the final messages to the art designer

We received the first draft of the final art. The results were amazing. We really made some great work with the luggage labels, so our first step was...


8th step - Ways of reinforcing the action

The best way to reach out to the BTL fair is through a travel agency. Also when thinking about our target group, YMPs, addressing travel agencies is a good option because YMPs are often traveling for business and thus book their flights with travel agencies and not on the internet. So we needed to contact a travel agency to present the luggage tags. We contacted one of the travel agencies with whom we work (usually to book our flights), and presented them with the idea. They scheduled a meeting, and in a few days we presented the luggage labels. They were really impressed by the luggage labels and they agreed to present the luggage labels in their stand at the fair. This was a major victory because they are one of the biggest national travel agencies. This institutional support was mentioned also on the luggage labels, with the agency logo. We also had a guarantee from the travel agency that they would make some publicity of our 'Connected for a better world' Facebook page on their own Facebook page with more than 22.000 fans.


Tip: As we did in this case, a strategy of using third-party service providers is always good advice if your target group can not be directly reached by your organization. In our case, we could not wait in the travel agencies, or at the airport, all the time to approach YMPs with bags in person.

Including service providers means that you will have to agree with them to a design and message. But if you manage to convince them and make them feel that it is also their material, they will distribute it widely and reach members of the society that you could not have reached. So involving those intermediate service providers between us and the target group is an excellent possibility to extend the range of your action.


9th step - Producing the luggage labels, eyelets, and ropes

As with all recipes you will find on this web page, we kept this action around €1000 so that other organizations which may have small budgets can reproduce this action. Hence, the budget constraints only allowed us to print the luggage tags. But they still needed holes and ropes so that they can be attached to bags. Now it was time to make the hole in the labels to insert the eyelet.

As usual, when you do something on your own, it is cheaper but takes a lot of time.

With the eyelet machine, we made 6000 holes in the tags! We spent more than 100 hours to make the holes and insert the eyelets.

After a few hours of making pressure to insert the eyelet we almost lost our hand sensibility.

Then, we decided to use 23 cm of waxed cotton rope for each tag. This permits YMPs to tie the labels on their luggage.

Our option for “a rope to each tag” could be explained by the perception that YMPs will not use the three luggage tags if they only have rope for one.








10th step - Addressing the media

We made a press release and prepared the information to use on Facebook. We also advertised the action on our Facebook wall.

 Press Release.pdf

Summary:IMVF raises awareness on MDGs at the International Tourism Exhibition -

Instituto Marques de Valle Flôr, a Non-Governmental Organization on Development (NGO), in partnership with Top Atlantic, will make available at the stand of the agency at BTL, MDGs Luggage Labels that appeal to more sustainable lifestyles. Within the European project "Lifestyles and MDGs”.


11th step - Sending the luggage tags to the travel agency

Two days before the exhibition we sent the luggage labels to the travel agency, as they were responsible to bring the luggage labels to their stand.




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