Petra Hedorfer, CEO of the German National Tourist Board (GNTB), illustrates the numbers at hand: “Even compared with other European destination, Germany’s incoming numbers scored an above average result. According to the latest estimates by Eurostat, the number of international overnights in EU countries will grow by an average of 3.5%. With our prognosis of 5.7%, we are well above this value and also rank above all other big tourism destinations.”
For the year 2015, German incoming tourism is heading for the 80 million mark: According to the latest information from the Federal Statistical Office, the volume of international overnights in accommodation properties of at least 10 beds grew to 74.2 million overnights through November, an increase of 5.6% compared with the same period in 2014.
Over-proportionate growth from the overseas markets
With a growth of 11.1% through the end of November, the international source markets confirm their role as growth engines for German incoming tourism. Despite the current economic and currency risks in some high potential markets, overnight stays from China, for example, were 26.1% higher year-over-year, while they were 17.9% higher from the Arab Gulf States and 16.7% higher from South Korea. The U.S. confirm their position as the most important non-European source market in third place of all markets with an increase of 8.2%.
Robust European source markets
All important European source markets for Germany’s incoming tourism scored higher results through the end of November than during the same period the previous year. Ranked in first place are the Netherlands with an increase of 1.9%; with Switzerland recording significant growth (+8.6%) in second place. The United Kingdom recorded 7.6% more overnights. The biggest winner in the Top 10 markets is Spain with an increase of 23.2%, while the biggest loser amongst the European source markets is Russia – a decline in overnights of 29.7% puts the country back to its 2011 levels.
Cautious optimism for 2016
Some uncertainty informs the start to 2016. “Destination Germany, as an internationally popular brand with its outstanding infrastructure and excellent value-for- money offerings is predestined to continue its growth history in the international competition in a sustainable manner. However, economic uncertainties in many markets and the threat of terrorism attacks dampen the wanderlust. Furthermore, negative impacts of the refugee situation are recorded in some source markets. Therefore, we believe that a growth rate of one to three percent is realistic for 2016,“ states Petra Hedorfer about the current growth forecast.
Courtesy German National Tourist Office.