Image via Shutterstock

Tui has confirmed how it plans to phase out the long-standing Thomson brand over the next 18 months.

Travel Weekly exclusively revealed the plans to replace Thomson branding with that of its parent company Tui in April 2015.

Europe’s largest travel group today confirmed that staff in resort will be rebranded under the Tui parent company brand from next month.

The Tui name will also start to appear alongside Sensimar and Family Life brands in summer 2017 brochures and on the operator’s website.

The new Thomson Cruises ship will be named Tui Discovery as part of the rebrand which will see the whole of Thomson transition to Tui.

Tui Discovery will also be the first of the fleet to offer an all-inclusive drinks package as standard.

The changes were unveiled as the company revealed that the island of Cayo St Maria off the coast of Cuba, St Lucia and Sardinia are new destinations featured by Thomson and First Choice for next summer.

The summer 2017 programme goes on sale from late April as the operator follows Thomas Cook in launching next year’s holidays.

Tui UK & Ireland managing director, Nick Longman, said: “Tui is a recognised and trusted brand in other countries and we want customers in the UK to get to know and love it too as we transition from Thomson to Tui.

“Investment in our product to enhance and personalise the customer experience is fundamental to the ethos of the Tui brand and what better way to demonstrate this than unveiling our newest addition as Tui Discovery and introducing all-inclusive as standard.

“The introduction of Tui Discovery marks a new era for our cruise business in the UK which will continue with the introduction of two more Tui ships to the fleet over the next three years.”

Tui Discovery and Thomson Majesty will both be based in Palma for summer 2017 with Thomson Dream sailing from Corfu.

Thomson Spirit will move to Dubrovnik and offer adult-only cruising while Thomson Celebration will split its summer between Malaga in May and October and ex-UK sailings from Newcastle between June and September.

Thomson and First Choice product director, Mark Hall, said: “Summer 2017 is our biggest programme ever and will offer customers even more choice for their holidays.

“I’m delighted that we are continuing the expansion of our adults only Sensimar collection, whilst the opening of new Thomson Family Life resorts will offer those travelling with children a fantastic variety of activities and entertainment.

“Our focus remains on the growth of our long-haul using our fantastic 787 Dreamliner and I think St Lucia will be a particular highlight for summer 2017 with its luxurious hotels, palm-fringed beaches and lush rainforest.

“Equally we’re pleased to introduce the stunning island of Cayo St Maria in Cuba and, closer to home, the beautiful beaches of the Olbia region in Sardinia to our line up for next year.

“All this, combined with our fantastic Tui resort teams dedicated to looking after our customers every need, and it really has never been easier to enjoy your perfect holiday.”