Claudia Donia, Head of Mobile Delivery, discusses how the mobile segment at TUI has evolved, and the importance of diversity in tech

A surprising fact about Claudia Donia, Head of Mobile Delivery at TUI, is that her education is not in IT or engineering. Actually, she’s a linguist by study and unintentionally fell into the IT world. The interest in technology was always there. Her dad used to build computers from parts at home and she would help. But it wasn’t the original career goal, so her first serious job was as a project manager for a digital marketing agency. She had just moved to London to become more fluent in English, and ended up staying.

“The digital marketing gig combined my drive to get things done and oversee projects from start to finish, while also allowing me my very first interaction with the tech world in a professional setting,” says Donia. “Because of my multilingual skills, I was utilised to deliver some SEO work like keyword research in Spanish, French, and Italian. Eventually I took the leap from the agency side to in-house, and then took on a role at Canon Europe. Again I was a project manager, but in a more technical setting.”

Joining the TUI family

“I really wanted the job because I speak multiple languages, I love to travel, and I’ve lived in multiple countries. Working for a travel business felt like the perfect fit,” Donia says. “TUI creates and offers to customers beautiful, memory-worthy products. Plus, it was another IT gig and I wanted to explore that further.”

Moving up

In April 2022, the opportunity to be promoted to Head of Technology for Mobile came along, and Donia took it enthusiastically. Her career trajectory has been incredible. She has climbed from Project Manager to Head of Technology in just three years, and Donia is justifiably proud of that. “When I first joined TUI, my role was obviously less influential. Once I became involved in the customer side, however, what I was doing became instrumental. Being able to liaise with so many elements of the business was very exciting and pushed us towards an integrated ecosystem.”

The mobile evolution

The mobile side of TUI has never been more vital. TUI’s mobile apps were officially launched in 2013 and began as something of a proof of concept. For the entire international industry, moving from web to mobile devices was a huge shift. The initial set of apps were very skeletal and only integrated for UK and Nordic customers.

One of this year’s goals is to accelerate the native journey to make all the customer journeys native. This will further improving the customer experience. After a recent UI refresh, the app look and feel is fresh and sleek, and has plenty of exciting features for customers to enjoy. “Just in the last couple of months we’ve introduced an integration with OpenAI for a travel planner that helps you choose excursions,” Donia adds. “Seeing it grow over the years is so exciting.”

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