Tourism in the bamberg district recovers

Is there a boom in domestic tourism? No doubt: vacationing in germany will be the trend in the corona year 2020. According to recent reports, rural regions seem to benefit more from rising guest numbers than cities. But can the beleaguered hospitality industry now hope to get off lightly, even recoup its losses?? Does this only apply to traditionally strong tourist regions such as the alps and the baltic sea, or is the trend also making itself felt in the bamberg district?? The latest figures are provided by the regional statistics office for june and july. And they are cautiously optimistic.

"I warn against talking about a boom", however, joachim kastner, hotelier in burgellern and district chairman of the dehoga industry association, makes this clear. This is also proven by the figures so far. After the complete collapse in april and may, the statistically recorded accommodation establishments (at least ten beds) in the district reported almost 24,000 overnight stays in june and almost 40,000 in july. However, in the last few years, the number of overnight stays has usually exceeded 40,000 in june. And july has not quite reached the previous year's figure of 43,000 overnight stays.

Tourism expert bianca muller, manager of french tuscany, is nevertheless optimistic about the situation. "We currently have a lot of inquiries from vacation guests." Above all the number of short term bookings had risen sharply. She points out that the businesses have only been allowed to offer tourist accommodation again since whitsun.

After bavaria on 16. Marz had declared a disaster, the number of bookings from 18. March overnight offers "only for necessary purposes", i.E. Business travel, allowed. The ban on tourist accommodation was lifted – under strict conditions on 30 march. May lifted. Accordingly, overnight stays in the bamberg district had already almost halved in march compared to the previous year. "The number of lost tourist overnight stays cannot be made up for", muller notes. A bed that was empty in the spring could not be occupied twice now. Losses of up to 95 percent, as they were in the city of bamberg, cannot be compensated for, kastner points out. "These months are simply gone, we will be lagging behind them for years to come."

Muller is pleased, however, that the number of overnight stays is now on the rise again. "We are in good spirits, says the tourism manager. The figures for august are not yet available. But traditionally, autumn is still a good time for regions like bamberg, which are ideal for hiking, biking and other vacation activities. "September and october will be good", muller is convinced.

In contrast to the spring, when only business trips were allowed, it is now tourism that can pull up the lodging industry again. Many germany vacationers were currently vacationing within a two- to three-hour drive, exploring the region outside their home, so to speak, tourism expert muller said.

On the other hand, there is still a noticeable restraint in business travel. Smaller seminars and conferences, such as those offered by many hotels in the county, were hardly ever held. "The companies renounce meetings", muller notes. Kastner also registers the trend toward short-term private trips. However, this is also associated with uncertainties, especially with regard to the personnel planning of the companies. There is only a shift in capacity, which is associated with considerable additional expense and planning uncertainty for the industry. In addition, there was a massive lack of income from celebrations, such as weddings. And there were hardly any firmly booked group trips either. This could not be compensated by individual tourism.

This fits in with reports that cities are currently continuing to struggle with declining accommodation numbers. Fairs and rough meetings still do not take place. But muller believes that bamberg is more of an exception than the rule. The world cultural heritage is also and especially for tourists an attractive destination. The potential of the bamberg region to come out of the corona-related tourism crisis with a black eye is thus definitely there. As far as the hotel industry is concerned, however, not even a quarter of the usual full-year target had been reached by mid-year.

Yet the year had begun promisingly. In january and february, the number of overnight stays was significantly higher than in 2019. But already in march they broke in. And in april, which is normally the start of the main season, the district recorded a drop of around 80 percent, while in the city of bamberg the figure was as high as 95 percent.

Several areas, however, are not included in the official statistics. About vacation apartments and houses and small guesthouses and inns with less than ten beds. The trend towards motorhomes, of which there seem to be many more on the roads in the county than in previous years, is only reflected in the statistics where campers stop at official tent and camping sites.

A camping boom is also confirmed by the state statistical office in its latest monthly report. For july, the further authority reports a 25.5 percent drop in overnight stays compared to the previous year for all of bavaria. In contrast, campsites recorded an increase of 7.2 percent in July.


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