Keeping the trade up to date - and dreaming - with Germany & the GNTO

Keeping the trade up to date, and dreaming, with Germany: GNTO

TORONTO — The year started off well for Germany, but like every other destination in the world, it saw a sharp decline after the first couple of months of 2020 due to the pandemic.

The good news is, Germany is well positioned to rebound quickly once travel resumes, as the country is a top choice for travellers looking for safe countries to visit post-pandemic, according to traveller surveys, says Julia Dywelski, Director Marketing and Sales Office Canada, German National Tourist Office (GNTO).

Germany has good company on that list – Canada is up there too.

Keeping the trade up to date - and dreaming - with Germany &the GNTO

“We started 2020 with a double-digit increase from Canada,” says Dywelski during yesterday’s Destination Germany update.

The uptick was especially heartening because it shows Germany has become a year-round destination for Canadians, she says.

Germany is strong on the world stage too, ranking 8th on UNWTO’s list of top 10 list of world destinations by international arrivals. It had 1.4 million international arrivals in 2019, and 89.9 million international overnights.

From Canada, overnights totalled 733,951 in 2019. “Germany has always been in the top five European countries for Canada,” says Dywelski.

Keeping the trade up to date - and dreaming - with Germany &the GNTO

The rest of 2020 didn’t turn out like anyone planned, and Germany, like many of its European neighbours, has entered stricter lockdown in an attempt to bring down its COVID-19 numbers. On Dec. 16 Germany’s schools and shops closed as officials keep an eye on the caseloads.

It can be tough for the trade to keep up with the ever-changing protocols and policies for countries around the world. In her virtual presentation Dywelski highlighted several ways for agents to learn more about Germany amid the pandemic, including COVID-19 updates at Agents can also check out the regular postings from Petra Hedorfer, CEO, German National Tourist Board, at the helpful ‘From the Desk of Petra Hedorfer’ update section here.

For flights, there are currently 24 nonstop weekly flights from three Canadian gateways to Frankfurt, with Lufthansa and Air Canada. “The service is there, we just need an easement to the travel restrictions, when the time is right to travel again,” says Dywelski.

In the meantime, she adds, “who says you can’t dream now and visit later?”

Highlights include an extension to September 2021 of Germany’s Beethoven celebrations, marking the 250th anniversary of the composer’s birth.

Dywelski also shared a list of bucket list destinations in the country for 2021. Here are some of the must-sees, with more info at

. Linderhof Palace, in southwestern Bavaria near the romantic village of Ettal. The smallest of three palaces built by King Ludwig II of Bavaria, it has a dining room with seating for exactly one. The king liked his own company best, said Dywelski.

. Rudesheim am Rhein, a UNESCO site right in the heart of wine country.

. Schwerin Castle, one of Dywelski’s own personal favourites. Perched on an island in Lake Schwerin, it has no fewer than 653 rooms.

. Wuppertal and its suspended monorail in North Rhine, Westphalia. It’s the oldest electric elevated railway with hanging cars in the world.

Keeping the trade up to date - and dreaming - with Germany &the GNTO

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