During an extraordinary year that was marked by unprecedented economic turbulences Destination Germany proved to be extremely competitive in terms of incoming tourism in 2009. Arrivals declined by only 2.7 per cent according to UNWTO (United World Tourism Organisation), whereas international arrivals decreased by as much as 5.6 per cent in Europe.
In Britain in particular, the volume of travel to Germany was off to a rocky start at the beginning of 2009, however a strong December finish saw a plus of +0.7% (up from November 2009) due to Christmas market traffic and ever popular skiing holidays over the holiday period. While the volume of travel to some European countries has shrunk by as much as a quarter, overall British overnights in Germany have decreased by only 12.4 % between January and December 2009.
The positive trend returns with British overnights being up 3.3 per cent in January 2010 from the same month last year.
Overall in 2009, of all foreign visitors to Germany around 8.4% came from the UK and another 0.7% arrived from Ireland. The UK therefore represents the third biggest European visitor group after Switzerland and The Netherlands with an overall number of 3.7 million tourists.
In the coming years the German National Tourism Board’s (GNTB) marketing activities are focussing on culture and events-based tourism starting in 2010 with its ‘European Capital of Culture RUHR.2010’ and ‘Creative Germany’ themes.
2011 will be all about health and fitness and it ties in closely with the upcoming FIFA Women’s World Cup which will be held in nine different venues in Germany in the summer of that year.
“Over the next couple of years the GNTB is expecting an overall growth in overnights stays between 1-3 per cent. We are looking very positive into the future”, says Klaus Lohmann, Director UK & Ireland.