After two hard Corona years, the travel industry is celebrating a comeback. Organizers benefit from people’s desire to travel in Germany, which has not been dampened by record-breaking inflation.
“After more than two years of the pandemic, there is an enormous amount of pent-up desire to travel,” reports, for example, Ingo Burmester, head of Central Europe at DER Touristik. Despite the rapidly increasing energy costs, according to industry representatives, sun-seekers do not currently have to prepare for large price increases for package holidays in the 2022/23 winter season. The chaos at German airports causes displeasure among some managers.
FTI boss Ralph Schiller sees a comeback of the package tour. “If you extrapolate it based on the trend, on average 15 percent more package tours will be booked with us this financial year than before the pandemic,” said the manager recently. In recent months, demand has even been up to 25 percent higher than in the 2018/19 period.
Trend towards higher-priced offers
According to the tour operator Alltours, it has already exceeded the pre-crisis level in the current financial year. “In the current summer season, we are seeing an increase of 10 percent in guests and an increase in sales of over 20 percent,” reported Alltours owner Willi Verhuven. “Because our customers treat themselves more, book higher-quality hotels and more all-inclusive offers.”
DER Touristik also sees the trend towards higher-priced offers and long-distance travel. The sales of the current summer season are therefore significantly above the level before the pandemic.
No price jumps expected
According to Burmester, holidaymakers do not currently have to prepare for price jumps in the upcoming winter season, despite the significant increase in energy prices. “A largely stable picture is currently emerging,” says the manager of DER Touristik. As is usual in the industry, hotel and flight capacities for the 2022/23 winter season were purchased months ago at the prices of the time and were therefore correspondingly cheaper.
“When inflation is high, we as organizers buy on average more cheaply than booking portals that charge prices at the current time. So the high inflation tends to favor package tours,” explains Burmester. Alltours owner Verhuven speaks of a moderate increase in prices for winter holidays of an average of 3 percent so far.
Customers unsettled by airport chaos
Ingo Lies, founder and head of the special tour operator Chamäleon Reisen, finds clear words for the chaos at the airports during the peak travel season: “At the beginning of the year, the airlines offered many more flights for the summer than they could have served with their staff. That’s a bit negligent.” The airports would have let it run as well.
According to Lies, the provider specializing in sustainable travel received an increasing number of calls and emails from customers who were unsettled by the situation at the airports. In addition, demand after the strong months of April to June flattened out with bookings well above the pre-corona level from the end of June.
According to FTI boss Schiller, the current holiday travel boom was difficult to predict. But: “In our opinion, the lack of preparation for the main holiday season and excessive austerity measures are the reasons for the chaotic conditions at the airports, for example.”
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