Over 800 leading German tourism players, who between them have a consumer base in the region of six to eight million travellers, were in the UAE capital over the National Weekend holiday for the 64th Annual Congress of the German Travel Association.
The meeting, which took place at the five-star The St. Regis Saadiyat Island Resort with social events at key Abu Dhabi hospitality destinations, was co-hosted by Etihad Airways and Abu Dhabi Tourism & Culture Authority.
Also supporting was Germany’s second largest carrier and strategic Etihad Airways’ partner – airberlin.
The congress featured some of the biggest names in the international travel business including chief executives and senior executives from tour operators and travel agencies of all sizes and service providers, including airlines, cruise lines and insurance companies.
The congress was presided over by DRV’s new president, Norbert Fiebig and the new DRV managing director, Dirk Inger.
More than 30 top German media representatives also travelled to Abu Dhabi to cover the event.
Welcoming the delegates to Abu Dhabi, Mubarak Al Shamisi, director, Abu Dhabi Convention Bureau, a dedicated division of TCA Abu Dhabi, said Germany remains one of the emirate’s leading source markets for hotel guests and with increasing air links, upward momentum looks set to continue.
“Germans are known for their love of travel, as adventure seekers and early adopters of new product—so you should all feel at home here,” said Al Shamisi.
“I want to also take this opportunity of congratulating airberlin on its new daily service from Stuttgart to Abu Dhabi.
“Altogether, airberlin now offers 63 flights per week from Germany to Abu Dhabi jointly with Etihad Airways, flying twice daily from Berlin, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt and Munich.
“Thank you for opening up new regional markets for us.”
Al Shamisi said many of Abu Dhabi’s tourism providers are highly focussed on delivering tailored product for German guests.
“You’ll find German speakers in most of our hotels and German speaking tour guides are now a norm.
“We have the beaches, the resorts of a standard that Germans appreciate – in fact everything here is now premium, except the price.”