Madeleine photo used to advertise Portugal holiday

I can think of few worse PR gaffes for a travel company. To advertise a break in Portugal, using the face of missing toddler Madeleine McCann, is a monumental cock-up. That it was advertising a £20 coupon for said holiday makes it that little bit more crass.

How this has happened is not clear. Genuine mistake? Sick joke? Hacking? Whatever the reason it has prompted an angry response from the McCann family, who have branded it offensive and a disgrace.

I’m inclined to agree.

Low Cost Holidays, who own the trip, have denied any working relationship with the discount company VoucherDigg, who advertised the coupon. VoucherDigg themselves have declined to comment. One has to assume their crisis comms people are going into overdrive.

One word: #fail.


About hanifleylabi

MA PR student at the University of Sunderland, and graduate of the University of Leeds with a BA in Politics and Parliamentary Studies. I have experience in non commercial PR, having worked as an Events and Communications Assistant for a non-profit organisation based in London. Also have experience in political PR having completed at internship as a Junior Member's Assistant to a Member of the Canadian Parliament. Top of the national #socialstudent influence list for 16 of 18 weeks. I have a keen interest in social media, catering, travel and all things food related!
This entry was posted in crisis, Ethics, prfail and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Madeleine photo used to advertise Portugal holiday

  1. Sarah says:

    Suspect they harvested a photo from a google image search. What an awful mistake though.

  2. Jenny says:

    Ouch. But it can happen. A while back a posh boutique gift shop near me had some lovely silver picture frames in the window, with nice old-style photos of a girl in them. It was Anne Frank. (They had changed them the next time I walked past).

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