Along with the holiday cheer, during an industry event in Toronto last night (Dec. 14), Antje Splettstoesser, director of marketing & sales at The German National Tourist Office, also spread the news that Canadian visitors to Germany increased beyond their predictions.
“The goal of tonight is to experience the German Christmas spirit, people getting together, having a good time and enjoying a mulled wine or two. We are also celebrating the great numbers for Germany – a 2.9% increase from January to October this year,” Splettstoesser told Press Today following an evening filled with stories of Christmas traditions in Germany. “We were expected to grow between 1 or 2%.”
Looking ahead to 2016, she says the German National Tourist Board will be focusing on nature and promoting the 500th anniversary of when Martin Luther nailed the 95 theses to the door of the Castle Church in Wittenberg in 2017. Canada will remain an important market with the goal of increasing tourism to 1 million overnights by 2030.
“Canadians wouldn’t travel to Germany just to see the nature, but once they’re there they have no idea that they just need to drive 20 minutes further and they’d be out in a beautiful scenery such as the Spreewald,” she says. “There are some pretty unique undiscovered things along the way and there are many things that will surprise you, like Germany has over 50 islands.”
She says visitors are looking to go off the beaten path while travelling and experience the culture, the food and the unique offerings of a destination.
“Target groups are changing too, we have a lot of single female travellers for example, we have all the millennials, which Germany is a great destination for because it’s very easy to get around, and it’s absolutely affordable.”
Pictured at the event are Juliane Ehrich and Antje Splettstoesser.