Lonely Planet Writer

Inspire others to travel by turning out-of-office email into a real-time photographic travel journal

One of the most satisfying things about going on holidays is setting your “out-of-office” message, particularly as part of you knows that it will induce envy in those receiving it. So, it comes as great news that the automatic reply message has just had a fabulous upgrade, as Australian airline Qantas has launched a new service that transforms it into a real-time photographic travel journal.

Qantas has introduced a new service that allows users to customise this typical out-of-office message with their Instagrammed holiday photos. Image: Qantas
Qantas has introduced a new service that allows users to customise this typical out-of-office message with their Instagrammed holiday photos. Image: Qantas

The new service, called Qantas Out of Office, connects an email address with Instagram and updates the out-of-office with photos that are tagged with the hashtag #qantasoutofoffice. The airline hopes that the travelogue will inspire more colleagues, friends and family to travel the world.

 

To set it up, you go to the website, connect your Instagram account and email address, enter the dates you are out of the office and where you are travelling to, and add a simple message. Then, as you upload your holiday snaps to Instagram, you tag them with #qantasoutofoffice. After that, people who email you during those dates will get an auto-reply message that features a link to a webpage collection of your holiday photos.

Qantas has introduced a new service that allows users to customise their out-of-office message with their Instagrammed holiday photos. Image: Qantas
Qantas has introduced a new service that allows users to customise their out-of-office message with their Instagrammed holiday photos. Image: Qantas

Whether you’re surfing on Bondi Beach in Sydney, riding Splash Mountain with the kids in Orlando, or drinking rakija in Croatia, those who email you while you’re away will be treated to a glimpse of the fun you’re having. We’re sure that won’t be one bit annoying to them when they’re stuck in an office slaving away on a dreary Tuesday watching the rain pelting down outside, but hey, they can get revenge when their time comes to jet off.

Qantas has introduced a new service that allows users to customise their out-of-office message with their Instagrammed holiday photos. Image: Qantas
Qantas has introduced a new service that allows users to customise their out-of-office message with their Instagrammed holiday photos. Image: Qantas

Qantas says that the traditional out-of-office message can be both generic and impersonal in nature, and its research suggested that 60% of employees say they appreciate receiving something more creative. Knowing that tips from friends and colleagues are the highest driver for people when choosing their next holiday destination, it saw an opportunity to encourage travel through the millions of out-of-office emails being sent every day.

Qantas has introduced a new service that allows users to customise their out-of-office message with their Instagrammed holiday photos. Image: Qantas
Qantas has introduced a new service that allows users to customise their out-of-office message with their Instagrammed holiday photos. Image: Qantas

Qantas Out of Office is available globally to anyone with Hotmail and Gmail, including other domains that use the Gmail inbox. To activate your message, visit qantasoutofoffice.com