SomeOne’s new identity for Inntravel urges travellers to swap wheels for walking boots

Self-guided tour operator Inntravel’s new identity by SomeOne features a suite of fingerpost sign-inspired graphics and hand-drawn illustrations, helping to convince new hikers that it can show them the way.

When visiting a place for the first time – whether it’s an idyllic coast in Britain or a hilly landscape in Italy – do you really get the best view from a taxi or bus window? Arguably not, which is why self-guided tour operator Inntravel has spent the last 40 years curating hotel-to-hotel walking tours across Europe.

Last year, the brand commissioned design studio SomeOne to reposition it following a successful credentials pitch, for which the studio showcased its experience in rebranding firms in the travel sector, such as Saga & Crystal Ski. “Our specialism in creating challenger branding for challenger brands immediately resonated with the InnTravel team”, says SomeOne founder and executive strategic creative director Simon Manchipp.

In a post-pandemic world, “people are increasingly looking for more original ways to spend time away from home” he adds, and so the design team was tasked with rejuvenating the brand for a new, modern audience while staying true to its history.

Most might not think of travelling between destinations as an enjoyable or memorable part of the holiday, so Inntravel needed to be able to communicate the joy and ease in strolling from one hand-picked boutique hotel to the next, with envious lunch spots and gorgeous scenery along the way.

Based on behavioural studies, extensive interviews with staff and customers as well as sector-wide analysis, SomeOne discovered that while over 80% of seasoned foot travellers were willing to embark on another walking holiday, new hikers were hesitant due to a singular factor: a lack of confidence.

“Walking proves enjoyable when one is familiar with the route”, Manchipp explains. “However, in unfamiliar terrain, in warmer weather conditions, the appeal diminishes, which is why many opt to rent a car for the convenience of easily correcting a wrong turn by simply turning around.”

In response, the studio devised a brand strategy based on both the obstacles encountered by individuals and the enduring proposition offered by the company, including the fact that Inntravel offers a map for guidance and has experienced personnel on hand who have walked every step of the journeys.

The brand phrase “When you walk it, we make it worth it” aims to both inspire trust in the brand and reassure new travellers while “initiating a dialogue about Inntravel’s ability to circumvent the challenges of exploration while maximising the enjoyment of every step”, according to Manchipp.

Once a tone of voice, powered by clarity, was established, SomeOne went on to create a suite of graphic assets, with signpost leading the way. Inspired by fingerpost signs, the device takes on the literal job of guiding people through the brand, highlighting keywords and information and amplifying graphics. The studio also designed a subtle nod to the signpost into the logo within the crossbar of the ‘t’ in a bid to create an additional layer of personality and ownability.

Illustration plays a core part in Inntravel’s updated identity, differentiating it in a sector that is “awash with brands that conform to category norms”, says Manchipp. He describes its new visual language as “more idiosyncratic and reflective of the care and attention that goes into every trip” as hand-crafted, personal and unique connotations are communicated through illustrations to match the brand experience.

SomeOne lead designer Flo Campbell adds: “What’s special about Inntravel is how tailored and personalised their holidays are, so it made complete sense to convey this in their brand”.
“The personal touches of the script font, illustrations and signposts provide so much character and individuality. Travelling is such a joyful thing to do – it had to be a joyful identity.”

The illustrations appear in the margins of travel guides, drawn by what the studio calls the Inntravel Curator, revealing hints, tips and insights and adding a particular charm to the brand.

Inntravel marketing director Sara Fussy praises SomeOne’s structured approach and how the team utilised “customer research, team interviews and a deep review of Inntravel’s position in the market to come up with a renewed purpose that has significantly raised the bar and created a real buzz”.

Designing a brand world that could flex to reach a broad audience of walkers was key to the brief, so Inntravel’s identity is now cohesive across all its channels, from print to digital to physical.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.