Travel Industry

German Tourists Flying High

A tourist looks at temple of Parthenon atop the hill of Acropolis in Athens
Wish you were here! Source: Reuters/Yorgos Karahalis

Citizens of Europe’s largest economy and most populous nation are not only globe-trotting more, but spending more on travel overall. According to Handelsblatt research, Germans on average spent €983 ($1,092) on holiday in 2016, compared to €792 ($879) in 2000.

It’s creating a boon for the travel industry, particularly Europe’s second-largest tour operator Thomas Cook. German bookings are already up 12 percent compared to a year ago, and will rise further in June through August, the industry’s bread and butter revenue months.

Thomas Cook CEO Peter Fankhauser told German news agency DPA that in 2017 bookings are 15 percent higher – primarily because of German customers.

Greece is the most popular travel destination this year. The Greek tourism ministry has stated that the number of German visitors to the country should jump by about 50 percent to up to 3 million this year.

Demand for Turkish holidays is at about the same level as it was in 2016, said the tour company boss, after overall tourism there fell by a whopping 35 percent in the wake of political unrest and terrorist attacks. For Germans a Turkish holiday costs a meager average of just €76 a day now, according to a study cited by German magazine Focus.

Germans are likely to continue traveling more this year, with the number of low-cost connections from Germany higher than ever, and competition between low-cost airlines in Europe set to push prices down.

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