Frankfurt am Main, 10 November 2023 – The German National Tourist Board (GNTB) sees great potential for a recovery of inbound tourism to Germany from the high-potential markets in Asia.
In the first eight months of 2020, the number of overnight stays in Germany by Asian tourists fell by more than three quarters (-76.5 per cent) from 7.0 million in 2019 to 1.6 million due to the coronavirus pandemic. In the same period of 2023, the German Federal Statistical Office registered a rise to 4.7 million overnight stays by Asian tourists in German hotels and accommodation establishments with at least ten beds. The gap compared to the record year of 2019 has thus reduced to 33 per cent.
Petra Hedorfer, Chief Executive Officer of the GNTB: “Asia is the biggest long-term growth market for global tourism. We recorded strong growth from China, the Arab Gulf States, Japan and India in the past, and Germany is one of the most popular European travel destinations in these countries. In the South East Asian countries of Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, and Malaysia, we had already established strong business links before the outbreak of the pandemic, and we intend to maintain and strengthen them.”
The Tourism Economics think-tank predicts above-average growth in inbound tourism to Germany from source markets in the Asia-Pacific region in 2025, with overnight stays expected to rise to 20 per cent above the 2019 figures.
Focus on cultural tourism
Tourists from Asian countries are very interested in Germany’s exceptional arts scene and cultural landscape. In this context, Germany’s 52 UNESCO World Heritage sites are prime examples, bearing witness to a universal legacy of cultural history, architecture, literature and music in Europe. The UNESCO-listed cultural monuments and stunning natural landscapes are synonymous with high-quality tourism, the preservation of heritage and the maintenance of customs and traditions. The sites symbolise new eras, and out-of-the-box thinking from early human history across all cultural epochs to the present day.
The diversity of Germany’s cultural offerings is integral to the quality of urban life and a strong draw for international tourists, while the country’s cosmopolitan cultural and arts scene is a defining feature of urban centres and rural regions. Germany maintained its top rankings in the 2023 Anholt Ipsos Nation Brands Index (NBI), confirming how highly its vibrant cities, historical buildings and natural beauty are rated internationally.
The celebrations to mark the 250th anniversary of the birth of painter Caspar David Friedrich, a key figure in the German Romantic movement, will be a highlight of 2024. His life and artistic legacy will be honoured in exhibitions, concerts and art projects in Berlin and Hamburg, and at sites closely associated with him in Dresden, Saxon Switzerland, Greifswald and the island of Rügen.
Football is more than Germany’s national sport; it is an international platform that brings people from diverse cultural backgrounds together. During UEFA EURO 2024, which is being held in Germany from 14 June to 14 July, the host cities Berlin, Munich, Frankfurt, Stuttgart, Cologne, Düsseldorf, Dortmund, Gelsenkirchen, Leipzig and Hamburg will welcome international visitors with an attractive programme of art and culture to accompany the 51 games.
In 2025, the title of European Capital of Culture will be going to a German city for the fourth time. After West Berlin in 1988, Weimar in 1999 and the Ruhr metropolitan region in 2010, Chemnitz is the next German city to be named European Capital of Culture, and will mark the occasion with 65 major international projects and hundreds of initiatives across the region.
Overview of high-growth markets in South East Asia:
Research by IPK International highlights the great potential in South East Asian countries right up to the outbreak of the pandemic, and the importance of the travellers to Germany’s economy. The latest findings of flight analyst Forward Keys shows the ongoing recovery of air passenger arrivals in the first nine months of 2023 compared to 2019.
Source market Trips to Germany
Recovery of air passenger arrivals
Jan–Sep 2023 vs Jan–Sep 2019
Singapore 117.000 67.7% Indonesia 115.000 66.0% Thailand 102.000 73.1% Malaysia 95.000 81.2%