I don’t know about you, but I often wonder what it’s like to be an influencer: constant PR packages, sponsored posts, and of course, attending one of those fancy brand trips you see all over FYP and IG. fodder Right now, my mind (and probably TikTok’s too) is completely captured by one special impact event: the Tarte Dubai trip.
If you have not heard about this event, I will explain. On January 17, Alix Earle posted a video on TikTok where she is preparing to participate in a brand trip to Dubai sponsored by makeup brand Tarte. Meanwhile, several other TikTok influencers like Monet McMichael and Xandra Pohl have also shared that they will be attending the Dubai trip. Since then, TikTok has been flooded with travel diaries, GRWMs and other videos from the trip. While the travel influencers seem to be living their best (luxurious) lives, TikTok has some big questions about the branding event. Or rather, how much it costs.
On January 18, TikTok creator and Barstool Sports journalist Jack Mack released a video about his brand trip. On TikTok, Mac starts off by saying something isn’t right about this trip, and he’s ready to get to the bottom of it. “Now, for the influencers out there on this trip, ladies, I don’t blame them — go get your bag,” Mac said on TikTok. “But the economics of this trip don’t make sense.” I am interested.
With all the influencers flying first class, staying in beautiful villas and being able to bring a plus, let’s just say the internet is totally confused about the inner workings of this trip. Needless to say, the attendance list is pretty stacked. If you’re scratching your head at this whole ordeal, don’t worry – here’s what the internet has gathered about this arduous Tarte Dubai journey.
Wait… How much does a Tarte Dubai trip cost?
While Tarte hasn’t published a full cost breakdown of the trip (and why would they, like?), there’s been some speculation online. Currently, a first class flight from New York’s JFK to Dubai costs about $22,000. Pocket change! Combine that with a plus and you’re looking at $44,000 for the trip according to the influencer – it’s someone’s college tuition. Not to mention, there are quite a few influencers on this trip, so if you want to know how much it cost Tarte… it ain’t cheap. I’m talking over $100,000 and that’s probably the bare minimum.
However, airfare isn’t the only expense: Invited influencers stay in beautiful Ritz-Carlton villas. If you’re itching to find out how much an overnight stay in one of those babies costs, brace yourself. These villas are apparently so expensive that the nightly rate isn’t made public – some users claim it’s at least $5,000.
What’s even wilder is that travel and lodging are not and a half of expenses required for a major brand visit. Think private tours, events, decorations, food, merchandise, products and other luxury accommodations. Mix all that up and multiply it by the number of influencers (and their guests) and you’re looking at a multi-million dollar three-day vacation. It’s math, it’s love.
Who’s Going on the Tarte Dubai Tour?
Obviously, there is no written list WHO is participating in this trip, but some of TikTok’s biggest names have announced their attendance. Influencers such as McMichael, Earle, Pohl, Meredith Duxbury, Christine Abraham and the Mian twins all favored the lavish event and had a blast during the visit.
TikTok’s reaction to the trip is mixed.
It’s worth noting that other influencers like Ally Shapiro are also involved else A brand trip to Dubai in partnership with Atlantis, The Royal hotel. However, both of these trips have sparked controversy in Dubai’s (and similar destinations) tourism industries.
A TikTok creator named @tinfoilcouch has released a video that points out several key controversies surrounding brand visits. In the video, the creator talks about how the UAE Tourism Board can get behind the funding of these trips to cover up the issues currently happening in places like Dubai and Qatar. Her Campus reached out to Tarte for comment on the allegations, but it did not respond by the time of publication.
Other TikTok users have accused these lavish brand trips of being “out of touch” with other world issues such as inflation, massive layoffs and fears of a 2023 recession.
I am positive that more information and debate, walking around this brand will emerge over time on social media. But until then, you can find me scouring the web to find out more about this mysterious Tarte journey.