Germany Market Profile

In Germany, where traditional tour operator bookings outnumber travel online travel agency bookings four to one, Visit California’s dollars invested in travel trade go a long way. Despite the projected slow in travel in the short term, potential for growth still exists in a country that promotes vacation as a priority and where workers enjoy extended time off. Brakes on German trade due to Brexit are not expected to last after mid-2017, when overall market growth projects more travelers.


  • Planning ahead is believed to be important among German travelers, who book vacations well in advance
  • Safe and secure travel destinations are sought out
  • Germans have 25 to 30 days of paid vacation per year, which leaves them with enough time to combine different travel experiences during a single trip

  • Germans prefer to explore what other travelers have not seen
  • Travel agents are still key force in the market, and the majority of bookings in Germany are still made via classic travel agencies

Travel Profile

In-Person Trips, 2016
$813 Million
Visitor Spending, 2016

Market Conditions

GDP Annual Growth Rate

  • GDP growth rate is expected to grow by 1.7 percent in 2016, driven by strong private consumption and higher state spending. However, Britain’s decision to leave the European Union is likely to put brakes on German foreign trade until the middle of 2017. Britain is Germany’s third-most important export market, and Brexit is expected to cost the German economy 0.3 percentage points of overall growth in 2017. Additionally, a lower number of working days in 2017 will reduce the overall growth rate further. Germany will remain Europe’s powerhouse, with a robust labor market and low unemployment numbers that will continue to spur private domestic demand. In the long term, the GDP quarterly growth rate is projected to trend around 1.64 percent in 2020.

Exchange Rate

  • Over the last 12 months, the exchange rate was even more stable than the preceding 12 months with a low of 1.03603 and a high of 1.15272
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Travel & Planning Methodologies


  • 56 weekly nonstop flights
  • 20,000 weekly nonstop seats


  • Planning cycle: up to 6 months
  • Booking cycle: November-March
  • 65 tour operators package California in the German-speaking market but 10 main tour operators control 80 percent of long-haul travel (significant consolidation has transpired within the large operators with DerTour recent acquisition of Kuoni in Germany being of particular interest)
  • Ratio of traditional tour operator to online travel agency bookings remain four to one (80 percent to 20 percent online travel agencies)

Market Barriers & Rist Factors


  • U.S. Department of Commerce
  • Tourism Economics 
  • CIC Research, Inc.
  • DIW - German Institute for Economic Research
  • RWI - Rheinisch-Westf. Institute for Economic Research
  • Deutsche Bundesbank – Federal Central Bank Germany

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