Germany as tourism destination from Russia. Analysis till 2017
Germany is in the TOP 10 of popular foreign countries visited by Russian tourists. According to the annually published data of Rosstat, Germany was visited:
2014 year - 1 435 000 Russian tourists
2015 year - 1 111 448 Russian tourists
2016 year - 1 057 388 Russian tourists
2017 year - 1 229 000 Russian tourists
The Head of the German National Tourism Committee (NTC) Petra Hedorfer said at a press conference at the international exhibition GTM-2015 in Erfurt: "Russia is a country with one of the highest potentials among incoming markets for Germany. In the long term we see a lot of opportunities for growth and we hope that by 2030 the number of night stays of Russian tourists will be 7.2 million. This is due to the fact that the federal states offer various types of recreation: excursion, event, ecological tours, treatment and culinary travels. In addition, rest in Germany, according to statistics, is cheaper than in other popular EU countries".
According to German NTC, in 2014 the guests from Russia spent 3.1 billion Euros in Germany and occupied the second position among Europeans by this indicator (the first place belongs to Swiss citizens who left 3.6 billion Euros in Germany), in 2015 - 2 billion Euros, in 2016 - 1.8 billion Euros. This amount includes transportation, accommodation, food, shopping and other spending. The average cost of the trip was 1107 Euros (119 Euros per day with 9.3 nights of an average duration of the trip). In the list of cities popular for shopping the leaders are Munich, Berlin and Dusseldorf. On average, in 2017 Russians spent 350 Euros for one purchase.
Also, according to German NTC, Russia is in the TOP 20 countries, the tourists from which spent the most time in Germany in 2015.
Due to the crisis and sanctions, the tourist flow fell slightly in 2015-2016, but now it began to grow again. In 2017, this is evident from the table, the growth of visits of Russian tourists to Germany was 16% against 2016. In 2017, in visa centers of German embassy approximately 30% of visa application were made for visiting relatives and friends, 40% were tourist visas, 22% - business, and 6% - medical. The remaining 2% - are other goals, connected with, for example, cultural exchange. According to the embassy of Federal Republic of Germany, in 2018 the number of issued visas is expected to be 10% more against 2017.
“In 2017 the number of night stays in Germany increased by 302.5 thousand or 20.3% in comparison with 2016”, - underlined the Head of the National Tourist Committee at Germany Travel Mart forum in Dresden. In the past year among European countries Russia occupied the second line by increasing of number of nights stays. The leaders were Ukrainians.
Undoubtedly, the work of German NTC representative office in Russia (Moscow) contributes to the growth of interest for Germany among Russians, which promotes and advertises Germany as a year-round tourist destination on the Russian market. It provides all interested Russian organizations, travel agencies, tourists, journalists with up-to-date information about Germany, opportunities for business trips and recreation, assists in finding partners in tourism business in Germany and Russia, and provides travel companies with the necessary advertising products.
An increase of the volume of transportation from Russia encourages the growth of demand for travel to Germany. Over the past year and a half several direct flights to Germany were opened: UTair launched regular flights from Moscow to Munich and Berlin, Pobeda airline now flies from Moscow to Berlin, Cologne, Baden-Baden, Mannheim, Leipzig and Germania has air connection between Dresden and Petersburg.
Traditionally popular destinations in Germany among Russians are Munich, Berlin, Hamburg, Baden-Baden, Dresden and Leipzig. Every year non-standard tours become more and more popular, mostly bicycle and river cruises, as well as combined tours with neighboring European countries (Switzerland and Austria). The depth of sales of the business segment is also increasing, already trips to exhibitions in November 2018 and in January-March 2019 are actively booked.
Each year Germany chooses a key theme for the promotion of tourism. In 2017 it was the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. But the theme of 2018 - Culinary Germany - certainly, is very close for Russians, unlike the Reformation. Thus, the accent from historical events shifted towards gastronomic tours so beloved by the Russians.