JetBlue Is Selling Kitschy ‘Office Souvenirs’ for Workaholics Who Never Take a Vacation

Keepsakes from that place you never leave

Headshot of Tim Nudd

Among other indignities, people who never take a vacation don’t get to bring home souvenirs from their travels—those cheesy tchotchkes, like mugs, plates and hats, that remind you of your week away in some exotic locale.

JetBlue feels sorry for these people. It would like them, first and foremost, to actually take a vacation (preferably a JetBlue Vacation). But failing that, the carrier has another solution. It’s come up with a line of “Office Souvenirs” merchandise, so workaholics everywhere can take home a cherished piece of their most recent (and constant) destination—the workplace.

The items are available at JetBlue’s online store, and range from snow globes with an office printer inside, to “Remember those free bagels?” commemorative plates, to “Let’s circle back on that” mugs, to Human Resources-scented candles, to beach towels with a blank spreadsheet printed on them.

Most of the items are $10 or $15, though the cheapskates out there can snag a little statue of an office phone for just $5.99.

The kitschy, sarcastic products, courtesy of MullenLowe New York, are a fun way to illustrate an actual problem—that Americans love to make memories on vacation, but are taking fewer such trips all the time.

“If your last good memory is that time free bagels were left in the break room, we feel for you,” says Heather Berko, manager of advertising and content at JetBlue. “These Office Souvenirs are just our way of reminding everyone there are blue skies and fresh air waiting to provide much happier memories.”

The creatives at MullenLowe were inspired by research, then put a twist on it.

“We came across the fact that 91 percent of people agree that some of their best memories are from vacation. And yet, as a country, we’ve stopped going on vacation,” says creative director Amy Ferguson. “That begged the question: What kind of memories are we making? The answer must be boring work memories. That’s when Office Souvenirs was born.

“Of course, everyone knows cheesy vacation souvenirs, but cheesy vacation souvenirs from a sad, drab place like the office? That felt weird and new. And when we started brainstorming souvenirs we could actually make, we couldn’t stop laughing. That’s when we knew we’d stumbled onto a really funny idea.”

Everyone seems to have a favorite office souvenir, adds creative director Julia Neumann.

“The Circle Back mug is a top seller, and the Spreadsheet Towel was an early client and fan favorite,” she says. “As for the creative team, we all have lot of love for the Printer Snow Globe because it was one of the very first ideas we came up with that brought this idea to life. We still think it’s funny.”

Neumann adds: “There’s never enough PTO, yet the little PTO we get we don’t take. That’s just plain wrong. Reminding people at their work place to go on vacation felt right and different.”

The souvenirs are being promoted in a variety of ways, from Instagram ads to a pop-up shop in Manhattan (which was open for a single day earlier this month) to a partnership with Reddit featuring promoted ads in travel and office-related sub-Reddits.

“As fulfilling as your work may be, it’s probably not healthy to fondly reminisce about office lighting and your latest TPS report,” says JetBlue’s Berko. “Our Office Souvenirs are a fun reminder that there really is something better to look forward to.”

See pics from the pop-up store below.

Client: JetBlue Vacations
Title: Office Souvenirs
Agency: MullenLowe

Chief Creative Officer: Mark Wenneker
Executive Creative Director: Tim Vaccarino
Executive Creative Director: Dave Weist
Creative Director: Julia Neumann
Creative Director: Amy Ferguson
Associate Creative Director/Copywriter: Ian Fairbrother
Associate Creative Director/Art Director: Chris Cavalieri
Art Director: Alyssa Cavanaugh

Production Partners
Experiential Production Company: NA Collective
Director: Kevin Starkes
Executive Producer: Nicolette Coan

Photographer: Andrew B. Myers
Producer: Ahmer Khan
Prop Stylist: Wendy Schelah

Production Co: Apostrophe
Director: Andrew B. Myers
Line Producer: Ahmer Khan

Editing House: PS260
Editor/Animator: Matt Posey
Executive Producer: Zarina Mak

Audio Mix: Plush
Engineer: Rob Fielack

Account Management
SVP, Group Account Director: Emily Brooks
Account Director: Molly Bluhm
Account Supervisor: Matthew Duerr
Account Executive: Bayla Werman

VP Group Strategy Director: Ellie Gogan-Tilstone
Senior Strategist: Mike Patrick

Production – Agency
Executive Director of Integrated Production: Lisa Setten
Director of Broadcast Production: Zeke Bowman
Executive Producer: Melissa Bemis
Art Producer: Kate Moore
Motion Art Director: Jorge Noujaim

Photographer: Erika LaPresto
Digital Imaging Supervisor: Nick Bleil
Digital Imaging Artist: Alex Abdalian
Associate Digital Imaging Artist: Jana Heidenreich
Associate Director, Print Production and Experiential: Kristine Ring-Janicki
Senior Project Manager: Christina Gratton

SVP, Group Media Director: Jade Watts
Associate Digital Media Director: Paula Berkel
Media Supervisor: Lauren Meyers
Digital Media Planner: Ellie Clayman

SVP Account Director: Jaclyn Ruelle
Account Director: Becky Brand
Account Supervisor: Brittany Zahoruiko
Senior Account Executive: Kelsey Labrot
Assistant Account Executive: Meg Weldon

@nudd Tim Nudd is a former creative editor of Adweek.