Informe semanal noticias Alemania realizado por la Oficina de Turismo de Tenerife en Fráncfort.
- Germans’ desire to travel at record level: In the 2018 travel season, more Germans travelled than ever before. Since the beginning of tourism analysis 35 years ago, travel intensity has reached its peak. According to the representative survey of 3,000 Germans, 62 percent of the population travelled last year. Travel intensity has increased in every age group, but most strongly in the over 55 generation and in the 65 to 74 age group. Travel duration has slightly decreased for the first time in 5 years – in 2018 Germans travelled an average of 12.7 days instead of 13 days. This was due to fewer long-haul trips than in the previous year, which usually last about 18 days. In Germany, travellers spent an average of 10.3 days at the holiday resort, whereas holidays in other European countries last an average of 13 days. Over 50 percent of the citizens spent their holidays in Europe. Spain continues to be one of the most popular destinations for Germans, however with booking figures falling from 13.7 to 12.7 percent year-on-year. Second place went to Italy with a growth from 7.7 to 9.6 percent and Austria was on third place, decreasing from 3.9 to 4.7 percent. Turkey, in fourth place, only grew minimally from 3.6 to 3.7 percent. In the long-haul segment, North America recorded the strongest year-on-year growth (from 2.2 to 2.7 percent) and was almost as the same level as destinations in Asia. Germany remained with 34 percent one of the most popular destinations in 2018 for all trips lasting five days or more.
- Weak incoming bookings in January: As shown by the current Synccess travel barometer of the back office provider aim, which collects data from around 1,500 tourist travel agencies every month, the first weeks of the main booking period are far from triggering a storm of enthusiasm in stationary sales. The incoming bookings in January were 7.4 percent below the previous year’s level, and cumulatively there was a decrease of five percent for the first three months of the financial year. On the other hand, people travelled slightly more than in the same period last year. Departures rose by 1.75 percent in January and by 2.6 percent in the first quarter of the financial year.
- Visit Britain informs about the impact of Brexit: Travel agents looking to inform unsettled customers of the impact of Brexit on trips to the UK are finding support at Visit Britain. The national tourism agency has updated its German-language website and provides all available and confirmed information there. Readers can for instance learn how Brexit affects flights between the EU and Britain and what documents are needed for entry.
- Venice to charge admission fees for day visits: From May onwards, Venice will collect three euros in admission fees from tourists visiting the city for only one day. The measure is part of the city’s efforts to combat overtourism. In 2020, the fee will be increased to six euros per person and could go up to 10 euros depending on the flow of tourists. Tourists staying overnight will be exempted as they already have to pay a city’s hotel tax
- Germania insolvency hits passengers, tour operators and airports: The privately-owned German airline was forced to file for insolvency late on Monday and stopped flights early yesterday. According to fvw, the move leaves some 1,700 employees, who reportedly have not been paid for January, facing the loss of their jobs. Germania, with a fleet of 37 planes, flew more than four million passengers a year from regional German airports to 60 destinations in Europe, North Africa and the Middle East. Just like with the insolvency of Air Berlin in 2017 and of niche charter carrier Small Planet Airlines last year, passengers impacted by Germania’s insolvency fall into two classes: package holiday customers who are legally entitled to alternative flights that their tour operator has to organise; and passengers who booked directly with the airline and have no legal right to compensation. Tour operators responded quickly to organise alternative flights for customers booked on Germania flights. Meanwhile, travel industry representatives and consumer protection organisations alike renewed long-standing calls for airlines to be forced to take out insolvency insurance, and thus ensure legal protection for passengers.
- Thomas Cook considers airline sell-off: According to fvw, Thomas Cook Group could sell off its airline operations partly or fully to raise funding for hotel investments amid higher quarterly losses, weak summer 2019 bookings and continuing Brexit uncertainty. Europe’s second-largest tourism group announced a strategic review of its profitable airline, which has some 20 million passengers a year and consists of Germany’s Condor and the ‘Thomas Cook’-branded airlines in the UK, Scandinavia and Balearics. CEO Peter Fankhauser said: “We recognise that we need greater financial flexibility and increased resources to accelerate the execution of our strategy of differentiation: to invest in strengthening our own-brand hotel portfolio; further digitising our sales channels; and driving greater efficiencies across the business.
Tour Operator News:
- TUI downgrades its profit outlook: As reported by fvw, slow bookings and lower margins for summer 2019 holidays, notably in the UK, have forced TUI to scale back its profit outlook for this year from its previous forecast of at least a 10% improvement in 2019 and 2020. TUI explained that with 34% of its summer 2019 programme booked to date “bookings are broadly in line with prior year, however, margins are not.” There are three main trading headwinds at present, including “a continuing negative impact from the extraordinary hot weather in 2018”, resulting in later bookings and weaker margins for its Markets (tour operators) & Airlines business.
- H&H Touristik files for insolvency: H&H Touristik GmbH, located in Karlsruhe, has filed for insolvency at the Karlsruhe Local Court. According to the court, the Stuttgart lawyer Michael Pluta was appointed provisional insolvency administrator, after previously handling the Nicko Tours and JT Touristik cases in the tourism sector. H&H Touristik is insured by tourVERS, whose managing director Michael Wäldle confirmed the insolvency to fvw. According to him, the aim is to maintain business operations and all departures up to February 20 are secured. Whether the future trips can also take place is currently under consideration. Guests are expected to be informed shortly. H & H Touristik is an established operator for group and package tours and has also made a name for itself with golf trips. In the tourism year 2017/18, H & H Touristik reported sales of 65 million euros with 84,000 participants, according to its own figures.
- ETI adds Ibiza and Menorca to its portfolio: Tour operator ETI now also offers holidays on the islands of Ibiza and Menorca. With the two new destinations, ETI wants to attract both party-loving customers and families.