Business continues to boom for German travel operators: federation

3rd March 2016, Comments 0 comments

German tour operators reported record business last year with the number of travel agencies even increasing, the sector's federation DRV said Thursday.

Despite a "difficult situation" in a number of destination countries and the strength of the US dollar business in 2015 was "more than pleasing," said DRV chief Norbert Fiebig.

Combined sales grew by nearly four percent to a new record of 27.3 billion euros ($30 billion), DRV calculated. That represented more than 45 million organised holidays.

While it is becoming increasingly easy for people to organise and book their own holiday via the Internet, many Germans still prefer to go to a travel agency. And the number of agencies increased for the second year in a row to 9,880 last year, equivalent to 11.2 agencies per 100,000 inhabitants.

The number of employees in the sector also increased, rising by more than two percent to 68,900.

Reservations for the coming summer may be proving a little slower than usual to take off, "people are only delaying their plans, not cancelling them," Fiebig insisted.

Germans "don't want to forego their holidays in 2016," he said. "The conditions are favourable for another successful year."

While most Germans still opted to holiday in their own country, the preferred foreign destinations were Spain, Italy and Greece. Mediterranean cruises were also popular and more exotic destinations this year included the Caribbean, Cuba, the Dominican Republic and Mexico.

At the same time, reservations to Turkey were down sharply, after a number of recent attacks there, as were reservations to Egypt and Tunisia.

© 2016 AFP

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