Germans will keep travelling this year after remarkably stable demand in 2016 despite terror attacks around the world, according to a new FUR Reiseanalyse survey.
Although various crises hit different destinations last year, the overall performance of the German outbound travel market was surprisingly stable, the annual Reiseanalyse survey by market researchers FUR found.
In total, Germans went on some 69 million holiday trips and spent about €66 billion on travel last year, according to the provisional results of the representative survey of 2,542 adults last November and continuous surveys during the year. In addition, the number of short leisure trips increased by 4% to 88 million.
These results were better than expected at the start of 2016 when headlines were dominated by terror attacks in several destinations and a public debate over whether politics should influence the choice of a holiday destination, said Prof. Martin Lohmann, FUR’s academic adviser and head of the Institute for Tourism and Spa Research in Northern Europe, who presented the study at the CMT trade fair in Stuttgart.
However, he stressed: “These trends have not reduced the overall volume of demand for holiday travel. But there were significant shifts in the tourism travel flows.”
Looking ahead to 2017, Lohmann was optimistic about prospects and predicted another stable year. “We expect a stable high level of demand with a volume of about 69 million holiday trips and spending of €66 billion,” he said. “Terror, crises, political and social changes might affect this picture in the future but the impact will be limited,” he predicted.
Nearly four of out every five Germans (79%) are already thinking about this year’s holidays, their desire to travel has increased (to 56% from 51% last year), and a clear majority has both time and money for private travel, according to the Reiseanalyse survey. About 23% of Germans want to travel more than last year and only 13% plan to reduce travel. “These figures point to stable demand,” Lohmann stated.
In terms of destinations, 41% of Germans want to visit a new country this year compared to 42% last year. However, the favourite destinations remain the same as in recent years, led by Germany (30%), Spain, Italy, Austria and Turkey. “Much suggests that the relative shifts in Mediterranean tourism to Western destinations will also continue in 2017,” the experienced market researcher commented.