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
- The booking boom for the 2022 summer business continues: Travelnews predicted a few weeks ago, following the publication of an Easter vacation survey, that – spurred on by the dismantling of Corona entry restrictions worldwide and a large pent-up demand for travel among the Swiss population – a „ketchup effect“ would set in from May, i.e. a booking explosion. Now, just a few weeks before the summer vacations, this effect should be noticeable. How is it going with the major tour operators and what is being booked strongly at all? Travelnews asked seven tour operators. In addition to destination trends, they also wanted to discuss estimates of price trends and the future of booking flexibility. With regard to the trend destinations, there is a return to old patterns, i.e. the Balearic Islands, Canary Islands and the Eastern Mediterranean (Greece/Turkey) dominate on the short/medium haul, while the USA and destinations in the Indian Ocean are highly popular on the long haul. However, there are quite different statements on the price development and also on the question of maintaining or abolishing the Corona-related special booking flexibility. Rebecca Murphy, Senior Public Relations Manager at Ebookers reports a shift from domestic to international destinations, with interest in long-haul destinations generally increasing. City breaks are also becoming more popular, and interest in classic summer destinations has increased again, with Mallorca and Ibiza particularly in focus. Carmen Doré, Managing Director, FTI Touristik AG, also reports rapid increases in booking figures. The entire April was very successful and the reservation trend is further strongly rising. In this respect, they are extremely optimistic about the current booking trend. Destinations around the Mediterranean are particularly in demand, especially Greece, Turkey and Egypt. Read more
- Booking rally continues in travel agencies: After an excellent booking situation in April, sales for May remain at a very high level. Most travel agencies rate their situation significantly better than in April. 47 percent of the agencies surveyed describe their current situation as good (April 37.6 percent). Satisfactory“ accounted for 45.4 percent, about as many as before. The figures for „Poor“ fell from just under 16 to just over 7 percent. Looking back over the past two to three months, travel agencies are also satisfied. Just under 92 percent were able to increase their sales compared with the corresponding period last year, which, however, brought hardly any business due to Corona. Read more
- TUI plans to repay state aid with capital increase: On Tuesday evening, following approval by the Supervisory Board, the Group announced its intention to place up to 162.3 million securities on the financial market. The proceeds from this issue would then be used „to repay the German government’s silent participation 2 in full,“ according to a statement in Hanover. On Wednesday night, Tui finally announced gross proceeds of around 425 million euros. Accordingly, the new shares have a price of 2.62 euros each. The offer is aimed only at large institutional investors. The state aid that the company wants to return in concrete terms with the latest step involves a partial package worth 671 million euros. The German government’s Economic Stabilization Fund (WSF) had provided it when Tui came under considerable pressure during the pandemic due to collapsing business. Tui also wants to reduce a KfW credit line by a further 336 million euros – this would then stand at a good 2.1 billion euros. Read more
- GlobalData: Travel will reach 68% of pre-crisis levels in 2022: GlobalData forecasts that international departures worldwide will return to 68% of pre-COVID-19 levels in 2022 and are expected to improve to as low as 82% in 2023 and 97% in 2024 before fully recovering by 2025. However, the recovery in international departures is not linear across regions or countries, according to data and analytics firm GlobalData. International departures from European countries are expected to return to 69% of 2019 levels by 2022. With Europeans‘ travel confidence also growing again, GlobalData says the intra-European market could also recover faster than previously thought. Asia-Pacific is expected to continue to lag in terms of recovery, according to GlobalData, with outbound departures from these regions reaching only 67% of 2019 levels in 2022, due to the relatively slower lifting of travel restrictions and the propensity for renewed domestic restrictions during the COVID-19 outbreaks. As a result, analyst Hannah Free concludes, „While global international travel will recover to pre-pandemic levels by 2025, tourism demand could look very different. Several long-term shifts and short-term trends have emerged from two years of very limited travel. Consumers are now more likely to seek authentic experiences, demand personalized travel packages, combine business and leisure travel, and be more aware of their overall environmental impact. There is still a long way to go before normality. However, a possible full recovery by 2025 at the latest makes the travel and tourism industry optimistic about the future.“ Read more
Current major topics within the aviation industry in Germany and Europe
- Fragile recovery at Ryanair: Ryanair wants to reduce its loss to zero in the next two years. The Irish airline announced on May 16 that it aims to achieve „reasonable profitability“ this year. In the fiscal year that ended in March, the no-frills carrier narrowed its loss to EUR355 million from a billion in the year-earlier period. „The recovery remains fragile,“ said company CEO Michael O’Leary, which is why he declined to provide a more specific outlook. Despite the uncertainties caused by the Ukraine war and the Corona situation, Ryanair aims to increase its passenger volume to 165 million, up from 97 million in the previous fiscal year. Bookings in the current quarter would have improved. However, ticket prices could not have been raised as much as initially hoped, chief financial officer Neil Sorahan told Reuters news agency. Read more
- Fraport hopes for a quick return to pre-crisis levels: Frankfurt Airport Group Fraport believes it can possibly return to operating earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (Ebitda) as in pre-Corona times as early as 2023. The foreign investments in particular will contribute to this, as Fraport CEO Stefan Schulte said in his speech published on Tuesday for the upcoming Annual General Meeting, which will take place on May 24. According to Fraport’s assessment, the airports in Greece or Brazil, for example, with their numerous domestic and tourist flights, are recovering faster than the complex Frankfurt hub. They should reach the traffic figures of 2019 again as early as next year with lower costs. Fraport assumes this for Frankfurt in 2025 at the earliest. Schulte commented, „For the operating result Ebitda, this means that we expect to reach the 2019 level here in the Group as early as 2023/24.“ Read more
- Israel: Tourism recovery & further easing: Travelers to Israel can look forward to further relaxation of entry requirements: in view of the decline in the number of infections, the testing requirement at Ben Gurion Airport will be abolished on May 20, 2022. This measure will once again give a strong boost to the country’s tourism. However, the past relaxations have also had an impact on tourism: in April 2022, around 207,000 tourists – and thus around 50% of the tourists compared to before the COVID-19 pandemic – entered Israel again.
- Dubai leads the world in hotel occupancy: In the first quarter of 2022, Dubai achieved a 214 percent increase in visitors compared with the same quarter of the previous year. A total of 3.97 million tourists visited the beach metropolis. Dubai was also the world’s No. 1 destination for hotel occupancy in the first quarter of 2022, with 82 percent.
- Rapid recovery for Africa’s tourism industry: The travel and tourism sector in Africa could create around 14 million new jobs within the next decade, according to the study. As the World Tourism Council (WTTC) further emphasized in its study presented on Friday, the roughly 1.4 million new jobs created annually could be an important driver of economic growth for countries on Europe’s neighboring continent.
- Mallorca is the most sought-after destination in the world: Tripadvisor has ranked the most popular and trendy destinations in the world for the current year. The ranking was made in the category „trendy destinations“. Mallorca performs best among all destinations and is in first place. In the ranking, Cairo is in second place, followed by Rhodes, Tulum, Dubrovnik, Ibiza, Natal, Arusha, Göreme and Santorini.
Just read on and enjoy! And if you have any doubt or would like to talk to us about how to approach these markets better, just get in touch with us. We’ll be delighted to help you.