World news story
Sofia Embassy prevention campaign contributes to safer holidaying in Bulgaria
This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government
The Holiday Hangover campaign encourages reasonable behavior in Bulgaria’s most diverse and visited resort Sunny Beach.
The Consular Section at British Embassy Sofia has launched a summer prevention campaign in the resort of Sunny Beach for the first time in Bulgaria. The campaign, targeted to young tourists, aged 16 to 30, tries to engage those with risky behaviour and help them have a safe and enjoyable holiday.
The Holiday Hangover campaign relies on simple messages with strong impact and high potential to engage young people. The messages are narrowed down to four main topics: Up for it – You’ll go down for it: violent behaviour will lead to arrest; Risking it – You’ll pay for it: reckless behaviour (including fooling around on balconies will lead to hospitalisations or even death); Do it – Don’t overdo it: alcohol consumption should have limits and 112 – International emergency number and consular offices numbers.
To increase the visibility of the safety tips, the Holiday Hangover campaign uses highly popular among young people channels. These include Twitter and Facebook, TV and radio fillers, as well as information materials such as posters, contact cards, wristbands and beer mats, which are distributed in the resort.
The campaign is supported by local partners that the Consular Section at the Embassy has identified and is working closely with. Among those are tour operators, bars and clubs, the local police force, the Union of Hotel Owners in Sunny Beach, Business Association Sunny Beach, the Municipality and Sunny Beach AD.
Teodora Maneva, British Vice Consul in Bulgaria, said:
Bulgaria has been a popular tourist destination among British nationals since the last decade. More than a quarter of a million Brits visit Bulgaria every year and possibly over 100,000 come to Sunny Beach. Since a large number of the last year‘s consular problems were preventable, we decided to launch the Holiday Hangover campaign in Sunny Beach, the most populated and diverse Bulgarian resort. Tailored to young people, the campaign doesn‘t seek to stop them from having fun, but only to make them aware what the consequences are when they go over the top. I am very glad that the campaign is already giving good results and look forward to seeing its evaluation after the end of the summer season.
The Holiday Hangover campaign is largely related to the messages communicated in the FCO‘s Know Before You Go campaign. These are: check the foreign travel advice and the health risks, look at the travel checklist before planning a trip, get comprehensive travel insurance, research the destination, and check your passport is valid and you have the necessary visa.