Stories

May 03, 2018

The first food truck festival at an airport

Food trucks are everywhere. They are crowding the streets of cities worldwide and are the culinary stars of food festivals around the globe, offering their guests delicious and diverse street food items. HMSHost International decided it was time to bring the food truck festival experience - for the first time in Europe - to an airport. The Food Truck Festival at Oslo Airport provides guests a brand new and exciting way of experiencing food and drinks at an airport terminal.

A great atmosphere

The different trucks at the Non-Schengen area showcase a variety of international flavours, underlining the culinary creativity of street food and the joy food can bring. The offer is a mixture of recognizable and exciting products: from healthy comfort food to all day eggs to Mexican or Italian food. Every truck has its own branding - some down-to-earth, some quirky - its own point of ordering and a special pickup point to minimize the waiting time. By focusing on a great atmosphere as well as a high speed of service, the festival delivers a great customer experience and a higher captive rate per visitor. Based on the experience, the time factor and speed of service are of the utmost importance to almost all of the customers. That is why the menus are simple, easy to understand and easy to package as a ‘to go’ product.

 

 

 

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It’s a matter of time

To make sure the customers don’t have to wait long for their order there is a limitation of the handling time per order. To support this HMSHost International introduced the so called preparation kitchen (Back of House) which takes care of all the cutting, dicing and pre-cooking, better known as ‘mise-en-place’, in order to supply the food trucks with sufficient prepared ingredients. However the high speed of service is practiced in the food trucks itself. In the Italian truck for example, pizzas are baked in exactly 120 seconds. In peak times, the Turbochef keeps the momentum going with three high-speed pizza ovens that produce a freshly baked pizza every 30 seconds.

The route to success

Based on the worldwide experience that HMSHost International has on high traffic locations, the customer journey is a very important point of attention. HMSHost International started with a logical grouping of the area’s which based on the needs of the guests. At mezzanine level guests are at the heart of our experience where they can feel the buzz immediately. Downstairs is the seating area for passengers that want to take a moment for themselves before moving on.

The actual journey for the guest starts with clear signage at mezzanine level that draws the attention of passengers to the food trucks with ‘authentic street food’. When guests decide to enter the ‘Havnpromonade’ a digital screen displays the offer at the different food trucks which makes it very easy to pick a truck and grab a bite in a moment’s notice.

Getting the right attention

By working together with the landlord Avinor, HMSHost International developed a strategy to promote the Food Truck Festival for PR, press, social media, communication at the airport express train and an exhibition after airport security. Since most of the target group are members of Facebook and Instagram these channels were selected for the pre-launch and launch campaign. The main goal, building brand awareness through high-quality video content, is definitely achieved. In February 2018, the sponsored post on Facebook reached over 500,000 users. And although the goal was not to draw followers, 570 Facebook users and 258 Instagram users decided to like and follow the content in the first month.

To gain some extra attention before opening day, a pop up area was set up right after passport controlling. A vintage Volkswagen was hired and vibrant colour decals were plastered on the car in order to draw attention. Furthermore HMSHost International arranged advertising on digital screens on the airport express train from downtown Oslo to Gardermoen. Feedback has been received that travellers are enticed by the advertising seen on the train and visit the Food Truck Festival as a result.

Interested in what HMSHost International can offer or add to your location? Don’t hesitate to contact us.