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A TPG Reader Dishes on Successful WOW air’s “Dream Activity” Commute Contest

On March 28, 2019, WOW air — the low-cost airline that made Iceland an attainable bucket-list travel destination — shocked the world when it announced that it was ceasing operations and canceling all remaining flights effective immediately, leaving thousands of passengers stranded in cities and countries that were not their own. But few people were …

On March 28, 2019, WOW air — the low cost airline that made Iceland an possible bucket-list go back and forth vacation spot — stunned the sector when it introduced that it used to be ceasing operations and canceling all last flights efficient right away, leaving 1000’s of passengers stranded in towns and international locations that weren’t their very own.

However few other folks have been as saddened to listen to the inside track as Roberto Serrini, a New York Town-based filmmaker (and faithful TPG reader) who spent final summer season lugging his digicam, and very best good friend, Brad Stuart, round 10 towns and exploring the sector of WOW because the winner of the airline’s Commute Information festival.

Serrini and Stuart noticed the gig, which the airline described as, “a 3-month paid summer season process, the place you’ll transfer to Iceland and go back and forth the sector together with your very best good friend,” as a chance to indulge their shared hobby for go back and forth whilst growing content material that would supply would-be vacationers the risk to find off-the-beaten trail puts.

And all of it came about in a bit of of a whirlwind: Simply two weeks after filing their utility video, Serrini and Stewart realized that they had received. That they had only one week to close up and transfer to Reykjavik.

The Issues Man spoke with Serrini concerning the WOW air enjoy, whether or not he noticed any caution indicators that the corporate used to be in hassle and the intense loss of laundry amenities in Reykjavík. This interview has been edited and condensed.

What kind of coaching did you get for the “process?”

“It used to be not anything lower than scary how a lot they relied on us, but additionally extraordinarily freeing and rewarding. After an off-the-cuff dialog at the telephone with the top in their advertising division, we have been on a aircraft to move are living in Reykjavík for the summer season. We went to their workplaces, met in short with Skúli Mogensen, the landlord of the corporate, who gave the impression in point of fact excited to have us there, after which they gave us the login data for his or her YouTube, Instagram and web page and informed us to move make some amusing stuff.”

“There used to be no overview procedure or any actual emblem pointers which, running in promoting, used to be completely petrifying, however once more, freeing. Having the ability to absolutely keep an eye on manufacturing from starting to finish used to be what made this enjoy remarkable for us. We labored in combination on what towns we needed to hide, they arrange flights and inns, and the remainder of the process used to be as much as us.”

How hands-on used to be the WOW crew in the case of what you posted?

“They selected 4 towns and we selected the remainder. Rather than that, they have been utterly open to no matter we needed to hide, which I feel used to be the aim of the entire contest. They sought after actual vacationers to discover towns and get others serious about go back and forth, which is strictly what we believed in. We didn’t wish to make content material that used to be simply some other voice within the echo of go back and forth movies already in the market on-line.”

“There may be this unhealthy cycle that occurs, the place influencers and influential websites like TripAdvisor or Yelp will most effective ship vacationers to the ‘Best 10’ puts in anyone town, after which the ones other folks finally end up writing most effective opinions concerning the most sensible 10 puts, artificially inflating their significance and price. Regardless of the unique enjoy used to be that made it nice can’t be sustained, because it’s simply flooded with vacationers, and it in the end loses all its native vibe. We felt a duty to do the paintings and uncover stories that have been lesser identified, however simply as magical.”

(Photo by Roberto Serrini)
Rob and Brad discover Edinburgh for WOW air.

What used to be the largest problem you confronted coping with the corporate?

WOW used to be a beautiful nice spouse; they didn’t call for anything else from us that we weren’t keen to supply, and after all were given much more than they have been anticipating. For probably the most section they allow us to do our factor and set up our time as we wanted. Any drive we felt got here from us using ourselves to provide dynamic content material. We ended up making smartly over 100 motion pictures for 10 towns around the globe in just below 3 months — which used to be insane — however the enjoy of studying the right way to produce such a lot of segments successfully is one thing that can indisputably receive advantages us in long term tasks.”

In what tactics did the enjoy exceed your expectancies?

“What used to be maximum remarkable used to be having the ability to do what you’re keen on with a very best good friend. I feel we regularly put out of your mind how fortunate we’re to be dwelling right now in historical past, and simply having the ability to go back and forth and make motion pictures and lifetime recollections with a chum is the true prize in all this, to not get all Hallmark card or anything else. I didn’t be expecting it to be so rewarding in that sense, even if we have been exhausted from being up all night time enhancing, or having walked 30 miles with a backpack of drugs thru a town all day. It used to be that feeling of achieving one thing tricky for one thing you in point of fact love doing this is the easiest recipe for truthful success.”

(Photo by Roberto Serrini)
Chowing down in St. Louis.

What used to be probably the most difficult facet of the process?

“Laundry. Have you learnt that there’s no longer a unmarried laundromat in all of Reykjavík? Now not one. I are living in New York Town and there are two — learn that, two — simply in my development. The place the hell do those other folks wash their garments? We didn’t have one in our little condominium, so we ended up having to clean the whole thing within the bath with a damaged broom stick find it irresistible used to be 1926.”

“Joking apart, it used to be a coarse get started evidently. We took an excessive amount of apparatus and didn’t have a running technique on the right way to plan our journeys successfully. However what used to be in point of fact superb is how streamlined the method in the end changed into from the enjoy of running thru it. We learned what tools we in point of fact wanted, the right way to plan our day successfully, the right way to touch puts and other folks to agenda our day, the right way to edit the whole thing and ship and also have time to throw a couple of again at Pablo Discobar prior to the solar set. That’s a comic story since the solar doesn’t set in Reykjavík in the summertime.”

Have been you in any respect conscious the corporate used to be as regards to ceasing operations? 

“No. On the time they have been a fluid, virile corporate that used to be forward-thinking sufficient to ship two go back and forth maniacs around the globe to make motion pictures for them. From an promoting viewpoint, the competition used to be a genius transfer. There’s a pattern taking place now the place manufacturers will pass direct to content material creators and influencers to provide media for them, as an alternative of running with a standard company, and for any individual who works in promoting, I in point of fact sought after to determine what used to be the potential for this kind of paintings and the way a long way lets push the bounds. It used to be a unique option to a summer season advert marketing campaign and the theory used to be that they have been going to stay the Commute Information web page up endlessly and feature new guides every yr pass to new locations. It used to be an incredible idea, and I feel in point of fact had the possible to hook up with their shopper base.”

(Photo by Roberto Serrini)
Chasing waterfalls — and rainbows — at “house” in Iceland.

In the event you had the risk to do it far and wide once more, would you?

“In a heartbeat. However in fact, we by no means in point of fact stopped. We will not be growing content material for WOW, however we’re repeatedly making new content material to repeatedly develop our personal emblem and channel. We’re simply tremendous grateful that we had the chance to take action a lot amusing paintings with them whilst they have been in trade, and can indisputably pass over the joys little airline that did issues a bit of in a different way.”

Even though WOW air’s Commute Information web page folded with the corporate, Serrini and Stuart might be posting all in their go back and forth movies to their very own TravelClast YouTube channel.

All footage supplied by means of Roberto Serrini.

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