Guests from abroad spent 39.8 million nights in German hotels in the first half of 2019 – an increase of of three percent compared to the same period in 2018, according to preliminary figures published by the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis).
But it's not just foreigners who are making the most of Deutschland’s cool cities and stunning nature spots – domestic tourism is developing well too. The number of overnight stays by Germans travelling in the first half of 2019 within their country rose by four percent to 182.6 million compared to the same period last year.
Popular destinations for Germans include the North and Baltic Sea coasts, while foreign travellers opt for the likes of Bavaria, Berlin and Baden-Württemberg. Nature reserves, like the sprawling Sächsische Schweiz (Saxon Switzerland) National Park, are frequently visited by holidaymakers from both home and abroad.
Overall, during this time there were 222.4 million overnight stays by domestic and foreign guests in accommodation in Germany, an increase of 3.8 percent compared with the first half of 2018.
In June, a record-breaking month for high temperatures in Germany, the number of overnight stays by guests rose by 9.7 percent year-on-year to 50.7 million. Of this total, 8.3 million overnight stays involved guests from abroad (plus 3.3 percent) and 42.4 million to people in Germany (an increase of 11.1 percent).
Tourism in Germany achieved its ninth record year in a row in 2018. And that growth is expected to continue.
The island of Vilm at the Baltic Sea. Photo: DPA
For the year as a whole, an increase of 1.5 per cent is expected, according to data from the German Tourism Industry (BTW) based on a survey by consumer research company GfK.
Travel mood despite climate worries
The increase comes despite worldwide concerns about travelling due to climate change.
“The travel mood has so far proved resistant both to darkening economic clouds and to various voices critical of tourism in the course of the climate debate,” said BTW President Michael Frenzel. The industry must and will face up to its climate responsibility, Frenzel said. “But it must be a well thought-out political overall solution.”
According to the Tourism Industry, Germans spent 408 million days on excursions and trips between January and April, around 5 million days or 1.2 percent more than in the same period last year.
The statistics published by Destatis with regards to overnight stays refer to tourism accommodation establishments, such as hotels and hostels, with at least 10 beds.