Club 18-30: Thomas Cook to close holiday brand this month

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Foam party on Club 18-30 holiday.
Club 18-30

Club 18-30 holidays, once a staple of lurid tabloid stories, are to sail into the sunset at the end of this month.

From a low-key start in the 1960s, they became notorious, embracing their image with risqué advertising slogans.

Now owner Thomas Cook, which took over the brand in 1998, has confirmed it will be wound up on 27 October.

It wants to concentrate on its Cook’s Club brand, which it launched in April and believes will appeal to its millennial customers.

Thomas Cook tried, unsuccessfully, over the summer to find a buyer for Club 18-30.

Ingo Burmester, Thomas Cook’s UK chief executive said: “We are increasingly focused on our core own-brand hotel portfolio and feel that the Club 18-30 brand no longer fits in with our wider programme.

“Having taken the summer to explore our options we have, in the absence of a viable alternative that makes sense for Thomas Cook or the brand, decided that Club 18-30 will close at the end of this season.”

The last holiday will be a trip from Manchester to Magaluf, Majorca.

  • Have millennials killed off Club 18-30?

Club 18-30 was founded in the 1960s to offer package holidays targeted at young singles and couples who wanted to travel without families or children.

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The first destination was Lloret de Mar on the Costa Brava. In 1973, it was bought out by the management, the first of a series of changes of ownership.

Its controversial, playful, image kept it in the public eye throughout the 1990s and 2000s, but it is now seen as a dated brand.

In 2002, ITV made the programme Club Reps, based on the life of its resort staff.

Full of salacious details, it is said to have boosted bookings significantly.

In 2005, Channel 5 showed a documentary called the Curse of Club 18-30. The company was not amused and complained to Ofcom.

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