Germans and the travel bug

Published: 13 July 2016
The average German spends over 3% of their total available purchasing power on vacations. Compared to other European countries, this is considerably above average. Austrians and the French spend about the same amount for their holidays, and the Polish just a bit less than 3% of their purchasing power. But the Swiss have traditionally been the most fond of vacationing: a whole 5% of their (not exactly low) purchasing power are spent on holidays.
In total, Germans spend 88.3 billion euros on vacations and short trips (those without additional expenses at the destination) in 2015. This represents another increase of total spend compared to the previous year. The largest share of this spend (some 75%) comes from those vacationers who go on holiday for 5 days at least once per year. The remaining 25% of holiday spending comes from travelers making shorter trips (2 to 4 days). On average, each resident spent 1,090 euros.
Following a longer phase of decline, the average vacation time reached its lowest point in 2013, with 12.2 days. Since then, this number has been slowly rising again, coming to 12.5 days in 2015. This can be explained in part by changes in consumer behavior, since an increasing distance to the destination tends to lead to more days spent on vacation. Long-distance travel has become more affordable (favorable USD exchange rate, cheaper flight costs, lower prices overall) and is thus being chosen more often.
The Germans’ most popular travel destination in 2015 was Germany itself, with a market share of nearly 30%. The top 5 destinations profiting most from this were Bavaria, Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, Lower Saxony, Schleswig-Holstein, and Baden-Württemberg. Spain is without a doubt the most popular destination abroad, with a market share of 13.5%. The top 6 is rounded out by Italy (8.5%), Turkey (6.6%), Austria (5%), as well as Croatia and France (3%). Trends show that German vacationers are spending 10% and 5% more money on domestic and long-distance travel, respectively, and 3% less on destinations within Europe excluding Germany.
During the past 10 years, Austria’s and France’s shares as destinations have continually been dropping by small amounts. These decreases are above all a result of the increasing popularity of Mediterranean destinations, as well as the growing attractiveness of destinations in Asia and Central America, where improvements in infrastructure and available offers (e.g. good price-performance ratio, remarkable nature, interesting cultural differences) are catching the interest of more and more tourists. In addition, a lack of package offers can have a negative effect on the flow of German vacationers – package holidays registered an increase of 10% in the previous year.
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Download this file (0716_Holiday-expenditure.jpg)Download chart: Holiday Expenditure Germany 2008-2015

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