TORONTO — Canadian overnights to Germany more than tripled in 2022, for a total of 485,348 for the year, marking the Canadian market’s “impressive return” to one of the top destinations in Europe.
The big increase marked a 253% jump from 2021, when on-off pandemic restrictions were still playing havoc with travel.
As strong as 2022 was, 2023 will no doubt top it, as the bookings keep rolling in. Could this year match or surpass 2019’s record number of Canadian overnights – an impressive 733,951? Anja Brokjans, Director, Canada for the German National Tourist Office, Toronto, is optimistic. She told attendees at yesterday’s GNTO press conference: “I’m excited for this year. Our hotel rooms in Germany are filled. There’s a feeling of hope in the air.”
More planes are in the air too. Star Alliance partners Air Canada and Lufthansa will offer up to 93 direct flights between Canada and Germany this year. And Condor’s Germany service from Canada includes gateways Toronto, Vancouver, Whitehorse, Halifax and Edmonton.
“There is huge demand among Canadians for international travel,” said Brokjans. “Germany is an attractive destination with exceptional offers. Our goal in the medium term is to reach the number of overnight stays we had before the COVID-19 pandemic. We have achieved a remarkable increase this year compared to 2021, which shows that our diverse campaigns and offers are attractive and appeal to Canadians. We know that Germany appeals strongly to Canadians that are interested in culture and history, city breaks and culinary experiences.”
Germany appeals to Canadians on key metrics like price too. The average room rate in Germany is 83 euros, compared to 90 euros across Europe.
The GNTO has four campaigns for 2023, here’s a look …
BARRIER-FREE TRAVEL IN GERMANY
The GNTO has many resources for information about barrier-free travel in Germany. Thanks to the persistent commitment of politicians and accommodation providers, accessibility has been improved in recent years and the necessary information is readily available to help people with disabilities plan their trips, said Brokjans. More info is at: https://www.germany.travel/en/accessible-germany/accessible-travel.html
EMBRACE GERMAN NATURE
Embrace German Nature, relanched by the GNTO earlier this month, is a campaign that shows how diverse and unique natural landscapes in Germany are and how resource-friendly they can be travelled to. From the mainland right up to the islands, there are amazing cultural and natural landscapes throughout Germany, and the country is home to more than 12,000 lakes and rivers, 300,000 kilometers of hiking trails, 76,000 kilometres of cycling routes and more. More info is at: https://www.germany.travel/en/campaign/embrace-german-nature/home.html
The FEEL.GOOD sustainability campaign promotes climate- and environmentally friendly offers. Travellers can discover Germany’s National Landscapes and sustainable holiday experiences in rural regions. One third of Germany consists of protected natural landscapes, plus the country has 16 national parks, 16 biosphere reserves and more than 100 nature parks. Brokjans noted that the GNTO’s site, Germany.travel, has a MyClimate CO2 calculator. And some of Germany’s Certified Green Cities include Celle and Freiburg. Brokjans said the shift toward sustainable travel is accelerating and well received by Canadians. More info is at: https://www.germany.travel/en/feel-good/sustainability.html
51 UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE SITES
Germany’s 51 UNESCO World Heritage Sites are as varied as Berlin’s Museum Island, the Garden Kingdom of Dessau-Worlitz, and the great spa towns of Bad Kissengen, Bad Ems and Baden-Baden. Promoting the sites dovetails with the GNTO’s goal to create itineraries that combine city stays and nature. Many of the UNESCO offers are accessible in a climate-friendly way by public transport. The campaign is designed to ensure that guests find the offerings so attractive that they plan a longer stay – which also supports a lower CO2 footprint. More info is at: https://www.germany.travel/unesco-en.