If the idea of a sm"rgås is enough to get you to a Volvo dealership, the company's U.S. marketing arm has a couple of offers for you. Volvo Cars of North America's (VCNA) is extending its Overseas Delivery Program, offering buyers an opportunity to pick up their vehicle from the factory in Sweden, with the automaker paying for the trip and the vehicle's trip back to the States.
The company is also launching a Web-based promotion with Sweden tourism organizations that dangles a chance for an all-expenses-paid trip to the Scandinavian country, whether one buys a car or not. For the latter program, the Rockleigh, N.J.-based VCNA is partnering with VisitSweden, Tourism in Skåne and the West Swedish Tourist Board. The Web promotion offers two people a chance to win a vacation in West Sweden and Skåne.
Through the end of June, people who visit CarPlusVacation.com and register for the sweepstakes can use the site's trip planner to create their itinerary, while also getting information on West Sweden and Skåne from the region's tourism organizations. When people submit an itinerary, they are entered into the sweepstakes. The winner gets a week-long trip for two to West Sweden, with airfare via SAS Scandinavian Airlines, accommodations, meals, activities, and the use of a Volvo car.
The site will follow several high-profile lifestyle and travel bloggers as they document their adventures traveling through Sweden. Their experiences will live on the CarPlusVacation.com Web site as well as on their own blogs.
For a sure thing, the automaker is offering a free trip to Sweden to people who buy a new Volvo car through its Overseas Delivery Program. Volvo provides two complimentary airline tickets to Gothenburg, where the customer picks up the new car directly from the Volvo factory. Then, they can head out on a European road trip, and when they're ready to return home, they can simply drop off the car and Volvo says it will ship the vehicle to the United States for free.
The company is touting the program at www.volvocars.us/mybagsarepacked.
A staffer on the call-in line for the Overseas Delivery Program said the company is no longer taking orders for 2011 vehicles, but only 2012, but for overseas delivery customers Volvo is offering 2012 cars at the 2011 base model price, she said. She said there are also discounts depending on the vehicle.
The downside? "You have to pay for the car 30 days before delivery," she said. And the delivery -- once one has finished driving around Sweden or points south -- can take six weeks. "We normally ship to the East Coast weekly; it's two weeks on the water, and three weeks waiting for customs, sometimes longer." She said 105 people signed up last week, around that many the week before, and between 70 and 80 the week before that. And a lot of them never visit Sweden. "A lot are military personnel, diplomats, expats or Americans working abroad who order a vehicle before coming back to the U.S.," she said.