Club 18-30 will enjoy its final fling this summer after Thomas Cook said it was to discontinue the sun, sex and booze brand.
The travel operator said on Thursday that it was calling time on the business – once notorious for its innuendo-heavy ad campaigns – after this year’s peak season.
It comes days after Thomas Cook disclosed that it was “exploring options” for Club 18-30.
The changing tastes of millennials have been blamed for the demise of the brand, which was founded in 1965 and once attracted about 100,000 guests a year.
Young holidaymakers are now seen as more likely to favour trendy destinations which will make them look good on social media.
Thomas Cook has switched focus with the launch of a new brand called Cook’s Club, offering popular DJs and upmarket cocktails.
The group said in half-year results that it intended “to discontinue the UK market’s Club 18-30 holiday brand after summer 2018 as a result of the continued strategic review of our differentiated holiday offer in the UK”.
It is launching 15 new hotels under the Cook’s Club brand by next summer.
Chief executive Peter Fankhauser said the brand was “aimed at attracting a different audience to Thomas Cook” with clientele who “want to have fancy and cool pictures on Instagram”.
Thomas Cook bought Club 18-30 in 1998 and in recent years has been trying to shore up its appeal by toning down its raunchy image and marketing campaigns.
It still boasts of “hosting the wildest party holidays” to destinations such as Ayia Napa, Kavos and Magaluf but the sun is now setting on the five-decade adventure.
Thomas Cook’s interim results showed half year pre-tax losses for the group overall for the six months to the end of March narrowed by 3.5% to £303m – in an industry where profits tend to be weighted towards the summer season.
It said bookings at its airline businesses were up 18% as it attracted more customers following the failure last year of rivals Monarch and Air Berlin.
(c) Sky News 2018: Sun sets on Club 18-30 as Thomas Cook pulls plug