Please note: The following information has been compiled from the most important German speaking Trade Media.
Short Situational Overview – DACH region
- The COVID infection numbers are currently going down after having reached an all-time high. the occupancy situation in hospitals is relaxed and death rates very low. About 76 % of the German population are now fully vaccinated, 69,4% in Switzerland and 74% in Austria.
- On April 3 all restrictions were lifted in Germany, only basic measures (or AdHoc, if necessary) stayed in place. However, most Germans still, for example, wear their masks indoors even where it is not an official requirement.
- Germany’s geopolitical situation because of the war between Russia and Ukraine has led to much anxiety about the Germans‘ planning for 2022. It is not only the peace crisis that worries them, but also various aspects, ranging from the country’s energy supply to the highest inflation in the last 30 years, as well as the threat to the country’s economic activity after two years of pandemic.
Current major topics within the tourism industry in Germany
- Travel machine continues to run at full speed: The Easter vacation is on, the planes are full, BER Airport is recording record numbers, and rental cars are in short supply in popular destinations. With the easing of the Corona restrictions, Germans‘ desire to travel is coming back with a vengeance. This is also shown by the current sales climate index from the beginning of April. According to this, a good 85 percent of all travel agencies surveyed consider the current situation in travel sales to be good or at least satisfactory. And this applies not only to April, but to the past two to three months. It seems that while concerns about the impact of the Ukraine war are weighing on consumers‘ minds, they are not dampening their desire to travel. The outlook for the future also appears to look rosy. More than 70 percent of respondents believe that demand will continue to rise over the next six months. Only seven percent expect interest in vacationing to decline, and 20 percent expect demand to remain stable. However, travel agencies are not quite as optimistic when it comes to their own earnings. Only 60 percent expect their economic situation to improve in the coming months. Just under 30 percent expect earnings to remain unchanged, and ten percent even expect them to fall. Read more
- 40 percent of travel agencies employ career changers: The issue of recruiting lateral entrants is a hot topic in the industry – and not just since the travel agency chain Lufthansa City Center launched its own program to recruit employees from outside the industry. While some see new entrants without tourism training as an opportunity to counter the shortage of skilled workers in tourism sales, others warn of a loss of competence and an erosion of the job description. As an online survey launched on Tuesday by Counter vor9 shows, lateral entrants are already the norm in travel agencies. In any case, 40 percent of survey participants declare that their company already employs colleagues who come from other industries. As can be seen from comments, the range of professional backgrounds of the entrants extends from the hotel industry to the real estate business. A good quarter of respondents describe themselves as career changers. Many of them point out in comments that they had made intensive efforts to familiarize themselves with the subject matter. And perhaps surprisingly for some, a whole series of career changers now run their own travel agency. Read more
- What the EU intends to do with tourism: Two years ago, the European Union (EU) decided on its new economic strategy: to make as many sectors as possible greener, more digital and more resilient to crises in a massive effort. Now the EU has launched the project, which is one of the most ambitious in its existence, with the first „transition path“: for tourism. After several months of discussions with companies, governments and associations from the 27 member states, the EU politicians have formulated their most important goals on 60 pages. A total of 27 points deal with measures, some of which are quite concrete. These range from a fairer legal regulation for short-term rentals, which is intended to break Airbnb’s monopoly, to the possibility of booking a trip digitally intermodally – i.e., a one-way ticket for the entire route. In addition, the EU wants to standardize the tourism data of all member countries and combine it on a special EU dashboard platform. This data, in turn, which industry representatives can access freely (open data), is to be used as the basis for national and regional tourism strategies that focus on economic, green and social aspects. There are two main reasons why the EU is starting its economic transformation in tourism. „First, this industry has been particularly hard hit by the consequences of the pandemic, and second, it is characterized by a relatively complex ecosystem,“ the EU Commission says. Even before Corona, tourism accounted for 9.5 percent of the EU’s gross domestic product and 22.6 million jobs (9.6 percent of all jobs). And: No other industry is as strongly characterized by small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) as the travel industry: In the EU, a total of 3.2 million companies are active in this segment – 99.8 percent of them are considered SMEs. „These, however, often have a low level of digitalization,“ the EU Commission said. „At the same time, the industry faces major challenges in achieving climate and sustainability goals.“ To achieve its goals, the EU is relying on intensive cooperation with travel associations and key companies in member countries. An online survey is currently underway in which tourism stakeholders can indicate what measures they themselves are taking in terms of sustainability and how these pay into the EU targets. „We are collecting these self-commitments,“ the commission said, „and want to help companies and institutions implement them.“ Read more
Current major topics within the aviation industry in Germany and Europe
- Air traffic recovers faster in North America: North America is recovering fastest from the Covid 19 pandemic. A recent analysis by MoneyTransfers.com shows that the region has a projected seat capacity of 21.2 million per week in 2022. That’s down 2.1 million from 24.3 million in March 2019, which MoneyTransfers.com estimates is still 14.8% below pre-pandemic passenger numbers. Western Europe is also somewhat on the road to recovery, at least until Russia’s war of aggression on Ukraine led to no-fly zones. The company estimates 14.9 million planned weekly seats for the current year, down from 20.6 in the pre-pandemic year of 2019. In other regions, things look less good. In Southeast Asia, for example, current seat capacity is a far cry from pre-pandemic numbers. Today, the region reports a planned seat capacity of 5.4 million, compared to 9.9 million passengers per week in the region prior to March 11, 2019. Read more
- Finnair flies to 77 destinations in winter: Finnair is adjusting its 2022/2023 winter flight schedule – in addition to the noticeable upturn in tourism, the adjustments also take into account the closure of Russian airspace. The Finnish airline will fly to ten Asian, five U.S. and 62 European destinations from its Helsinki hub in the winter. In addition, Finnair offers direct flights from Stockholm Arlanda to the USA and Thailand. Read more
- Easter air traffic not yet at pre-Corona level: Zurich Airport handled an average of just under 70,000 passengers daily from Good Friday to Easter Monday, as media spokeswoman Bettina Kunz reported in response to a query from the „Keystone-SDA“ news agency on April 18. That’s a total of 280,000 in four days, which is about 70% of the passenger volume in the period before the Corona crisis. According to Jasmin Bodmer-Breu, also a spokeswoman for Zurich-Kloten Airport, comparable passenger numbers last occurred on March 1, 2020. At Easter a year ago, Zurich Airport had recorded an average of about 13,200 people per day, according to „SRF,“ and at Easter 2020, only about 850. Geneva’s Cointrin Airport handled just under 180,000 passengers over the four Easter holidays. This represents about 75% to 82% of Easter 2019 traffic, although the airport had expected 187,000 passengers in advance. Read more
- Rising Stars Roadshow: On April 25, Ferien Touristik and Coral Travel will launch their will be launching their „Rising Stars Roadshow. Until May 19, the organizer will be making stops in twelve cities. In addition Münster, Potsdam belong, Hamburg, Hanover, Cologne, Frankfurt and Stuttgart. On each evening there will be at least one free stay of the participating partners will be raffled.
- Info trip to the south: From May 7 to 11, expeditors can get to know Sardinia with Vtours get to know. The info journey leads into the northeast of the island. Beside hotel inspections a day on the Mediterranean Sea expects the participants and a attendance in Olbia. The participation costs 280 euro in the divided double room, the single room surcharge amounts to 70 euro.
- Switzerland Tourism: Invitation to Live Trade Events: The Swiss destination and rail partners Switzerland Travel Centre, St.Gallen-Bodensee Tourismus, Bern Welcome as well as Pilatus Bahnen and Rhätische Bahn (in Vienna and Linz) are looking forward to the live events in Graz, Linz and Salzburg in May 2022. At the exclusive small group events, attendees will learn all about what’s new and on offer in Switzerland during the short presentation and subsequent discussions. Of course, an aperitif and snacks will also be served at the cozy event of the Genussdestination Schweiz.
- Myanmar: Since April 17, Yangon Airport has allowed international flights to land again. Business travelers and tourists can apply for an electronic visa after an interruption of more than two years. In addition to complete vaccination, two PCR tests are required for entry.
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