Please note: the following information has been compiled from the most important German-speaking Trade Media.
Current major topics within the tourism industry in the DACH region
- Tourism recovery: Industry reckons headwinds to be only shortterm: The recovery of tourism after the Corona pandemic could take longer than expected due to the economic slowdown. Nevertheless, exhibitors and experts at the World Travel Market (WTM) in London exude optimism: the long-term trends are intact, they say.
After the pandemic, travel business rebounded strongly everywhere this summer, with the organized travel market in Germany reaching sales levels comparable to the 2019 summer season. But the impact of the pandemic and now new uncertainties from high inflation rates and energy costs, the Ukraine war and the global economic slowdown are having an impact. The WTM London Industry Report, based on a survey of 250 attendees and exhibitors from around the world and unveiled at the start of the show on Monday, shows that 53 percent of respondents do not expect a full recovery and 2019 levels until 2023. A quarter of respondents (24 percent) even say they do not expect business levels like 2019 either this year or next, but only in 2024. Among respondents from continental Europe, as many as 40 percent were of this opinion. Read on
- How things could continue at Galeria Reisen: The announcement of closures by the head of the insolvent department store chain Karstadt Galeria Kaufhof, Miguel Müllenbach, also affects the travel agency chain Galeria Reisen. However, the extent and possible consequences are by no means a done deal. The business model of Galeria Reisen is not up for discussion, according to industry insiders. Mühlenbach told the FAZ last week that at least one in three of the group’s current 131 department stores would have to close. This raises questions for the employees of the 84 travel agencies of Galeria Reisen, 74 of which are located in the department stores of the parent company. For which locations are to be affected and in how many of them travel agencies are located has not yet been determined. As a number of similar cases show, it will be at least six months before a final decision is reached. And even then, the department stores concerned will not be closed overnight. Galeria Reisen is therefore likely to have a longer period of time to analyze the developments and examine the options for action. Moreover, only the stationary part of the Galeria Reisen brand is subject to the ongoing protective shield proceedings. Digital sales via galeria-reisen.de and urlaub.de as well as the central functions are not affected by the insolvency as an independent company. Read on
- Travel agency sales in October significantly below 2019: Billed tourism sales show a 15 percent drop in October compared to 2019. Air travel sales are down 23 percent. Other sales are five percent below those of the pre-crisis year. The number of tickets is 43 percent below that of 2019 and sales from the tourism subdivision cruises are minus four percent. Cumulatively, total invoiced travel agency sales in the months from January to October are 25 percent below 2019. Tourism is down 24 percent. Air travel is down 29 percent, and the number of tickets is down 45 percent from 2019, indicating that average revenue per ticket is up more than 50 percent. The cruise sub-segment recorded a cumulative minus of 26 percent compared to 2019. Order intake also developed weakly in October. According to Tats, it was down 15 percent month-on-month compared to 2021. In the cruises sub-sector, order intake was minus five percent month-on-month. Read on
- TUI terminates travel agencies without bookings: Last week, travel agencies that did not generate any TUI sales in the past fiscal year received termination without notice. The letter states that „they have not achieved the sales target set for the 2021/2022 fiscal year and have fallen far short of expectations.“ TUI leaves open how many travel agencies are affected. „The termination of the agency contract only affects individual agencies that do not make any TUI bookings at all,“ the tour operator says. Read on
Current topics within the transportation industry in Germany & Europe
- IATA Survey: comfort beats costs: After three years of Covid, passengers‘ priorities have shifted. According to the annual Iata Global Passenger Survey, customers now value comfort and simplification of travel processes. After mandatory masks, quarantine and entry restrictions due to the pandemic, passengers simply want to take off. This desire is clearly reflected in the „2022 Global Passenger Survey“ (GPS), which is based on the responses of 10,000 respondents from 222 countries. For example, when booking a flight, 75% consider the closeness of the airport and only 39% the cost of the ticket. 67% would rather not choose a destination that requires a visa or has other complicated entry requirements. In addition, customers value an online source for planning and booking information wherever possible. It is also important that they can pay using their preferred payment method. 18 percent of survey participants also said they offset their flights, while 36 percent said they were not even aware of this option. Read on
- Frankfurt Airport holds out the prospect of millions in profit after strong summer: The recovery of passenger traffic from the Corona crisis has given Frankfurt Airport operator Fraport a surprisingly strong summer. As a result, CEO Stefan Schulte now expects around 50 million passengers at Germany’s largest aviation hub in the current year – the upper end of the previous target range. For 2023, Schulte expects a further upturn in passenger business despite the threat of recession. Fraport is now looking to train many employees for additional tasks in order to cope with the rush of passengers and baggage next year better than before. Passenger traffic at Frankfurt Airport in the first half of the year was still 38 percent below the pre-crisis level of 2019. In the third quarter, the shortfall was only 26 percent, and in October, just over 23 percent. The fact that the recovery is not coming even faster is due to the slower return of business travel, which traditionally accounted for a large share of traffic in Frankfurt before the pandemic. Also missing is air traffic to China, where strict Corona protection rules still apply. Read on
- Hamburg – New flights next summer: Several airlines have already announced new routes from Hamburg for the next summer season. Of particular interest to U.S. travelers is the plan by the Icelandic low-cost carrier Play to add the Hanseatic city to its route network after Berlin from mid-May 2023. The airline has announced plans to connect Hamburg with its Reykjavik hub three times a week from May 16. There, travelers will be able to continue to the U.S. destinations of New York, Washington and Boston with a short stopover. Returning to Hamburg after a lengthy Corona hiatus is another Nordic carrier: Wideroe will resume flights to Bergen, Norway, from March 23, 2023. Four round trips per week are planned. From the end of April, the Munich-Bergen route will also start with two flights a week. Also at the end of March, Lufthansa subsidiary Swiss will resume direct flights between Hamburg and Geneva. According to the airline’s announcement, the route will be flown four times a week with an A220-300 Airbus. Read on
- Lufthansa – Climate compensation on board: The test run was successful, and Lufthansa is now offering the service on a permanent basis in its global route network: Passengers can also offset CO2 emissions during their flight. The service can be used on all Lufthansa flights with an Internet connection via mobile devices, according to the airline. Alternatively, the new offsetting options are also offered in the in-flight entertainment system. Here, guests decide for themselves how they want to compensate: Either with sustainable aviation fuel or via carbon offset projects run by the non-profit organization Myclimate. A combination of both options is also possible. Read on
- Latam airlines declares to be back into green numbers: A few months after the beginning of the pandemic, Latam filed for bankruptcy. Today, more than two years later, Latin America’s largest airline group announces the completion of its turnaround. Latam says it has successfully completed its turnaround. The company explains this by reducing debt, finding new sources of financing, cutting costs and generally transforming its business.
- Caribbean: Hurricane Nicole upsets Caribbean cruises. The next storm has been building in the Caribbean with Nicole, which is expected to hit the Bahamas today and Florida tomorrow. Already, the hurricane is causing cruise lines to make itinerary changes. Carnival, Disney and NCL are rerouting ships.
- Florida: Meteorologists have issued a hurricane warning for southeastern Florida. The east coast of Florida and the Georgia coast could experience storm surges with large and dangerous waves. Flooding was possible in Georgia and South Carolina on Thursday.
- Korea: Following a failed landing and an engine incident after takeoff a few days later, Korean Air has temporarily grounded its entire Airbus A330 fleet. Twenty-four Airbus A330s were taken out of service for an „intensive inspection.“ The airline is retiring six older Airbus A330s. Korean does not specify an exact time frame.
- Spain: Mallorca’s mass tourism is to become green, because the consequences of climate change can no longer be overlooked on Mallorca either. Heat and drought are affecting the popular vacation island. The aim now is to make mass tourism sustainable without stalling the island’s economic engine. Opinions are still divided on how to achieve this.
- Taiwan: the Asian country is now connected with Germany with the first direct flight with Eva Air
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