In September 2021, domestic and foreign guests booked 45.3 million overnight stays in German accommodation facilities. As the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis) reports after preliminary results, that was 10.1 percent more overnight stays than in September 2020. However, the number of overnight stays was still 5.0 percent below the level of September of the pre-crisis year 2019.
According to the latest data on tourism in Germany, the number of overnight stays in the country by domestic guests increased by 8.1 percent to 40.8 million in September 2021 compared to the same month of the previous year. The number of overnight stays by guests from abroad increased by 30.2 percent to 4.5 million. Compared to September 2019, the number of overnight stays by domestic guests was even 3.0 percent higher. This continues to show a strong trend towards domestic vacations. However, the number of overnight stays by guests from abroad was still 45.7 percent below the pre-crisis level despite the significant increase compared to the same month last year.
Camping Still Popular
Broken down by the type of accommodation, almost 58 percent of the overnight stays in September 2021 were in hotels, inns and guest houses. Vacation rentals and similar accommodation made up almost 22 percent of overnight stays, followed by campsites and other tourism-relevant accommodations with 10 percent each. The distribution has changed compared to the pre-crisis year 2019, especially in favor of the camping sector. In September 2019, only 7 percent of the overnight stays were on campsites, in September 2020 it was 13 percent. A corona-related shift can be assumed here since low-contact accommodation is easier to achieve on campsites than in other accommodations.
11.6 % Fewer Overnight Stays until September 2021
From January to September 2021, the accommodation providers recorded a total of 224.0 million overnight stays. That was 11.6 percent less than in the same period of the previous year. However, the first half of 2021 was influenced over a longer period (in some cases until the beginning of June) by a corona-related ban on accommodation for private travelers which harshly impacted tourism in Germany. In the first half of 2020, however, only about two months (mid-March to mid-May) were affected.
Regional Consequences of the Pandemic
Regionally detailed annual results of the official tourism statistics reveal for the first time the small-scale effects of the corona pandemic in the tourism sector using geodata. It shows where the importance of the hotel industry has changed as a result of the pandemic, which areas that are normally evenly used for tourism, were suddenly exposed to strong fluctuations,
For example, up to and including February 2020, tourism in Germany was steadily growing for many years before the pandemic severely affected the tourism industry. In addition to massive fluctuations in the number of overnight stays in accommodation, the first Corona year 2020 also resulted in serious losses for the hotel industry.
Overnight stays plummeted, particularly in urban centers, which are often heavily geared towards business tourism and international guests. In 2020, the number of overnight stays in cities fell by more than half (-54.3 percent) compared to 2019. In the smaller cities and suburbs, the losses were slightly lower at just under a third (-32.9 percent) and in the rural areas a decrease of a good quarter (-27.6 percent) had to be accepted.