At least three travel influencers posted photos tagged as paid promotions with Air Canada Vacations in December, as provinces tightened public health restrictions and infections soared.
The travel influencer duo @jennexplores and @mitch_explores appear to have taken a trip to Mexico over Christmas in partnership with Air Canada Vacations and Iberostar.
Neither responded to a request for comment, but Mitch noted in a recent article that traveling from Canada “comes with additional considerations these days, and we have internal plans lined up for our time in quarantine. .
Mitch also said their compound was about three-quarters full and there was “plenty of room to breathe and catch rays and waves.”
Daniel Reyes, another travel influencer, also identified some photos from his December trip to Vancouver as a paid partnership with Air Canada Vacations. In captions, he praised Air Canada for its pandemic safety precautions, ease of booking, and lower prices for travel during the pandemic.
“This trip was exactly what I wanted for our 5th wedding anniversary,” he said, posting a photo next to a West End mural.
Reyes confirmed he visited Vancouver in early December 2020, but declined to comment further.
Daily Hive reached out to Air Canada to ask why they are running new influencer marketing campaigns at a time when Canadians are being told to stay home. The company did not respond.
Ken Wong, professor of marketing at Queen’s University, thinks it was a bad decision on Air Canada’s part.
“The problem right now is not that there is no demand for air travel. There is a demand, ”he said, adding that he believed there will be an explosion in air travel once the pandemic is over.
“I don’t need marketing or publicity to get me on the road. What is holding us back is the fear – of the pandemic. ”
Influencer marketing makes sense for airlines, because receiving a glowing review from a third party often goes further in the eyes of a consumer than hearing an airline sing its own praises, Wong said. .
But he believes airlines would do better to restore consumer confidence after many customers reported difficulty getting reimbursed at the start of the pandemic. He would also like governments to provide more resources for consumers on whether an airline, restaurant or other business is adequately following public health measures.