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A Trip into the Unknown with

A Trip into the Unknown with
17 October 2017 James Brooke

“All growth is a leap in the dark, a spontaneous, unpremeditated act without benefit of experience.” Henry Miller.

‘You’re getting on a plane, but you don’t know where to?! That’s crazy!’, exclaimed my friend when I informed her of my weekend plans. A sentiment echoed by many upon hearing that I was off on a surprise city break to who-knows-where, arranged by our exciting new travel client

At Rooster we’re all about working with brands that inspire us, getting under the skin of the brand to get into their mind-set. So when we started promoting’s ‘destination unknown’ trips where your getaway is only revealed just before you jet off, I jumped at the chance to trial the experience (check out the latest case study to see our work).

Having done a Tarzan swing through the jungle and conquered the 1,353ft high, glass-floored ledge of one of the world’s highest building this year, I count myself as a pretty adventurous traveller. However, these adrenaline fuelled activities were not entirely spontaneous, but booked in advance and factored into a much laboured over itinerary. I’m by no means alone in this over-planned approach, in fact according to Expedia’s latest white paper, British consumers visit a whopping 121 travel sites in the 7 weeks before they book a trip to research possible destinations.

Bypassing this stress and setting off to Gatwick armed only with a weather forecast I’d received seven days before and a black envelope, I had no preconceptions about my destination and had a refreshing feeling that anything was possible.

So where did I end up? See video evidence of the big reveal. I was off to… Bordeaux! A place characterised by world-class wine and culture – where could be better?!

Going with recommendations from people I met on the plane and in our hotel, I spent the weekend indulging in French wine and cheese at La Cite du Vin, the world’s largest wine museum no less, wandering the cobbled streets of Saint-Émilion and venturing round the region’s beautiful Chateau Franc Mayne. Being able to travel in the moment and go with the flow gives you a rare chance to properly switch off and embrace a new found openness to stepping out of your comfort zone.

Aside from these amazing ventures, it turns out the biggest surprise of all was waiting for me back at the hotel. Arriving back one day to find a box sitting on the bed, revealed a cuddly sloth wearing avocado socks (who now has pride of place in the Rooster office!) Whilst this may sound slightly random, those who know me know that this gift combines my favourite things and it’s special touches like this that make travel that much more personal.

So, despite the world of media and the nature of the PR meaning forward-planning for the newscycle is essential, I discovered there’s certainly something to be said for daring to be spontaneous and adventurous, whether that be with campaigns, or in everyday life. Even something as simple as taking a new route on your commute can be significant, you never know what you might encounter…

By Rachel Sewell.