Tourism figures for 2013: Berlin sees faster growth than Germany as a whole

New record with about 27 million overnight stays and more than 11 million visitors / Senator Yzer: tourism key factor for Berlin’s economy

© visitBerlin - Philip Koschel

Berlin, 27 February 2014 For the tenth time in a row, the tourism figures for Berlin have broken records as 26.94 million overnight stays (+8.2% over 2012) and 11.32 million guests (+4.4%). By December 2013, the 25 million threshold in overnight stays was crossed for the first time.

Berlin’s Senator for Economics, Cornelia Yzer, comments: “Berlin has been setting tourism records for ten years straight. The capital is one of the fastest growing destinations in the world. It’s firmly placed among the top three destinations in Europe and is also one of the leading international destinations for conventions and conferences. And tourism has become a key factor to Berlin’s economic success.”

Numbers of international visitors to Berlin growing twice as fast as the German average
“International visitors made up 43 per cent of the overnight stays in Berlin last year—a new record,” says Burkhard Kieker, CEO of visitBerlin. “Berlin’s growing twice as fast as the general trend in Germany, showing once again that Berlin is driving the growth of international tourism in Germany. In particular, our investment in overseas markets is paying off.”

In 2013, Berlin saw 11.6 million overnight stays from international visitors, an increase of 9.2 per cent (compared to +4.5% for Germany as a whole). The number of international visitors increased by 5.1 per cent to 4.3 million.

German visitors accounted for 57 per cent of overnight stays, while people from other European countries made up 31 per cent and 12 per cent were visitors from overseas. Most of the foreign overnight stays were generated by visitors from the UK, Italy, USA, Netherlands and Denmark. Berlin is also showing high levels of growth in visitors from the Gulf States
(+33.6%), China (+ 21.6%) and Russia (+ 21.5%).

If one compares Berlin’s 11.6 million overnight stays by international visitors with the 71.9 million stays in all of Germany, Berlin is responsible for 16.1 per cent of all nights spent by international visitors in Germany.

“The growth of tourism in Berlin for guests from both Germany and abroad is once again well above the national average. The number of overnight stays by international visitors to Berlin last year equalled the numbers we posted in 2004 and 2005 combined. This reflects the annual growth in the number of available beds in our city, especially in the city districts. New medium-size operations (250-499 beds) have seen a particular increase in the past ten years,” says Astrid Langer of the Amt für Statistik Berlin-Brandenburg.

Convention business setting new records
Berlin continues to grow as a destination for meetings and conventions, as can be seen in the latest conference statistics for 2013 from the visitBerlin Berlin Convention Office*.

Last year, 10.6 million participants (+1% over the previous year) visited 126,200 single- and multi-day events (+3%) held in the German capital. The number of overnight stays generated by the meeting and convention market rose by 1.5 per cent to 6.7 million, which equals about a quarter of all hotel stays in Berlin. Consequently, Berlin was able to expand its position as one of the leading convention destinations in the world.

“In Berlin, 345 events are held each day on average. This makes Berlin one of the world’s major meeting and convention locations,” says Burkhard Kieker, CEO of visitBerlin.

Science and politics meet in Berlin; one in five participants comes from abroad
Berlin is a popular location for science and medical events: Measured by the number of participants, meetings and conferences related to medicine, science and research represented 14 per cent of the total in 2013 (+2%), followed by politics and public bodies (12%). Around 18 per cent of all events had an international presence. The number of participants from abroad stood at 1.9 million, meaning one in five participants at events in the city came from outside Germany. Associations are also increasingly opting to hold their gatherings in Berlin: 20 per cent of the events were held by associations.

Visitors to the city had 132,600 beds in 786 establishments (not counting camp sites) to choose from this past December. With an average of 56.4 per cent, occupancy rates were the best posted in the past 25 years.

Facts and Figures at a glance

*2013 convention statistics from the independent market research company ghh consult GmbH on behalf of visitBerlin