Germany has been voted into first place in the latest Anholt-GfK Roper Nation Brands Index 2014, in a global comparison of 50 nations, putting it ahead of the USA and the UK. Meanwhile, over one million Germans and people from worldwide celebrated on Sunday 9th November. To the strains of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, seven thousand illuminated helium balloons that traced the outline of the wall that once divided the city were released to commemorate the peaceful revolution of 1989 and the fall of the Berlin Wall 25 years ago.
Petra Hedorfer, Chief Executive German National Tourist Board, recognised the significance of Nation Brands premium rating from a tourism perspective: “Germany’s reputation as a country and as a tourist destination are intertwined. On the one hand this strengthens our outstanding reputation and attraction as a tourist destination; equally, we are promoting a successful incoming tourism industry and Germany’s image as a whole.
“In the category of tourism we could improve from eighth to seventh place and thus position ourselves on a par with classical holiday destinations such as the Mediterranean region, for example. In the field of culture, which involves among other things cultural heritage, we have risen from fifth to first place as voted by the participants of this survey. This confirms the direction of the GNTB’s global marketing campaigns.
Reunification Major Boost for Tourism
“Reunification has proven a huge benefit to Destination Germany and its incoming tourism industry. Since 1993, when incoming tourism began to be statistically recorded for the country as a whole, the number of foreign visitors to Germany has more than doubled, increasing by 107.4%. A total of 37.2 million additional overnight stays from abroad have been recorded since then. In the new federal states alone, the number of overnight stays by foreign visitors tripled this figure for Germany as a whole, increasing by 375%, topped by Berlin’s most significant increase of 508.9% in foreign visitors for 1993 to 2013.”
For the fourth consecutive year, Destination Germany achieved record results in 2013, for the first time clearing the 70-million hurdle of overnight stays by visitors from abroad to a total of 71.9 million, an increase of 4.5% over the previous year. For January to August 2014, the German Federal Statistical Office has recorded 51.6 million overnight stays by visitors from abroad in accommodations with 10 or more beds, an increase of 5.3% over the same period last year.
Presenting the great variety of Destination Germany’s tourist attractions, reunification has been the focus of GNTB’s international sales and marketing initiatives this year. Twenty-five years after the fall of the Wall, “Fascination Reunification” heads the GNTB’s current promotional campaign for Germany, with numerous exhibitions and events throughout 2014 reminding of Germany’s separation and, more importantly, the country’s reunification.