Guardian Labs and Vodafone launch 'Alternative Europe' guide

Guardian Labs has collaborated with Vodafone UK to create 'Alternative Europe', a crowdsourced guide to Europe's less obvious city destinations.

Vodafone: teams up with Guardian Labs
Vodafone: teams up with Guardian Labs

Launched this week, ‘Alternative Europe’ aims to inspire holidaymakers to discover new and exciting city break destinations and to share their experiences and tips using their mobile phones.

The campaign, brokered by MEC’s Team Red, seeks to educate people on the benefits of Vodafone’s EuroTraveller service, which lets customers takes their existing UK minutes, texts and data with them when travelling abroad for just an extra £3 a day.

‘Alternative Europe’ identifies five less well-known European city destinations – Turin (Italy), Lyon (France), Gothenburg (Sweden), Ghent (Belgium) and Leipzig (Germany) – and invites readers to contribute their tips and photos through GuardianWitness and Instagram.

It will use local instagrammers to document and capture their alternative perspective of their cities. There will also be a Spotify playlist curated by a local musician for each destination.

Each week will focus on a different city and the best photos and tips will form part of an editorially independent travel guide to the city, labelled "sponsored by" in line with the Guardian’s paid-for labelling guidelines, which will be hosted on the Guardian’s online travel section.

Vodafone will also have a partner-zone hub with further content about travel and using your mobile phone abroad, which will be labelled ‘brought to you by’ in line with the guidelines.

Anna Watkins, managing director of Guardian Labs, said: "This is informative, engaging and creative branded content at its best.

"By harnessing the benefits of mobile technology and people’s enthusiasm to share tips, photos and travel experiences we are able to create a valuable proposition to our readers and to Vodafone.

"These stories will be unstoppable as our intrepid readers seek out travel inspiration and help spread the word of this alternative Europe."

Cindy Rose, consumer director of Vodafone UK, said: "It’s the tips that aren’t in the traditional tour guides which are often best, so harnessing the power of using ultrafast 4G across Europe with all of the capabilities that allows makes perfect sense to add richness to travelling.

"Mobile phones are such an essential part of all of our lives that we take them everywhere and customers want to be able to use their phones abroad just like they would at home, sharing their own travelling experiences with their nearest and dearest.

"It’s why EuroTraveller is such a great service for our customers."

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