Red packets lure Chinese shoppers in Europe

Lagardere Travel Retail and Phoceis used red packets and VR to get Chinese travellers shopping with WeChat at two European airports over Lunar New Year.

At Rome Fiumicino and Vaclav Havel Prague airports, Aelia Duty Free (a Lagardere Travel Retail Group brand) and digital agency partner Phoceis invited Chinese travellers to participate in a promotional campaign using WeChat, the Chinese social network.

Lagardere Travel Retail - Red packet 1

The interactive augmented reality campaign, developed by Phoceis, encouraged those visiting the shop to set off on a treasure hunt and find red envelopes (Hong Bao) throughout Aelia Duty Free shops. By launching the WeChat application and lining up their smartphone cameras with the QR codes displayed on various posters throughout the store, lucky customers could discover red envelopes and reveal their contents to obtain an on-screen cash voucher valid immediately in the stores.

The campaign kicked off February 12 in Rome and Prague, and ended Monday.

“Seeing the success of the WeChat offline-to-online activation campaigns we’ve already conducted with Phoceis in 2017 – such as Golden Week in October – we wanted to offer an even more fun and innovative experience for our customers in celebration of Chinese New Year,” explained Yilin Wang–Chenal, trade marketing manager with Lagardere Travel Retail).

Lagardere Travel Retail - Red packet 2

Sophia Mazouz, traffic acquisition manager with Lagardere Travel Retail, said the campaign allowed Aelia Duty Free to implement a digital strategy that offers an experience adapted to the digitalised consumption habits of its Chinese clientele.

“It is because of this that WeChat is the most relevant channel for this Chinese New Year event.

The campaign had a secondary goal – to compel customers to visit the store in order to discover the most interesting offers, and thereby direct traffic to the least visited areas.

Lagardere Travel Retail operates 4300 stores across travel essentials, duty free and foodservice operations inside airports, railway stations and other concessions in 33 countries worldwide, generating €4.2 billion (US$5.1 billion) in annual sales.


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