The coronavirus pandemic has turned the whole world upside down. You will most likely also have to reschedule your summer vacation.
Industry experts believe that the coming summer will be a time for camping holidays and domestic German travel destinations.
Holidays in holiday homes and apartments are also possible to a limited extent – as long as the contact restrictions apply, but only for people who live together.
Campsite operators, hoteliers, innkeepers, vacation home owners and tour operators are waiting for the green light for the summer travel season in the Corona crisis. At the moment it is likely to be a vacation between Rügen and Zugspitze instead of Mallorca or Crete. The first attractions such as museums, zoos and exhibitions may be reopened in all federal states subject to conditions. Some prime ministers have also presented a three-stage plan for a gradual start-up of tourism, gastronomy and the hotel industry in Germany.
The German Tourism Association anticipates a gradual easing, from which holiday homes and other self-catering accommodation should initially benefit. Holidays on the farm should also count.
The offer for vacationers will shrink
“Generally speaking, rural areas will play a special role this summer. Because tourism has to be distributed a bit better, ”says Norbert Kunz, Managing Director of the German Tourism Association. But he also warns: “Many actors can survive in the crisis for a maximum of one to two months without state aid. There is a risk that some accommodations or hotels will no longer be there in the summer, so the offer for holidaymakers will shrink. ”
In addition to assistance, the industry is demanding a nationwide coordinated timetable. “We have to know what happens and under what conditions,” says Christian Günther, managing director of the Federal Association of the Camping Industry in Germany. Holidays in Germany will not be entirely without restrictions either.
When it comes to traveling in holiday homes or apartments, it becomes difficult at first. “Traveling as a large group or with several families will not be possible as long as the general contact restrictions remain,” expects Michelle Schwefel, branch manager of the German Vacation Home Association. First of all, people who live together could probably also travel together: families, shared apartments or couples.
Hoteliers do not yet know which protective measures to take
A holiday at the campsite could be easier. “We assume that the operators can implement protective measures such as acrylic glass at the reception, sufficient dispensers for disinfectants, distance rules in restaurants or training of employees within a week,” says Christian Günther, Managing Director of the Federal Association of the Camping Industry in Germany. So far, a lot has been canceled in the camping area. “If the decision is made to open the campsites to holidaymakers, the bookings should go up very quickly.”
According to the Dehoga Hotel and Restaurant Association, many hotel companies have already created a security concept. “But we still do not know in detail which specific protective measures the federal states will adopt for our companies,” said Dehoga managing director Ingrid Hartges. The “Bild am Sonntag” she said: “On May 6, a clear roadmap for my industry and a rescue fund must be decided.”
The Baltic Sea coast and the foothills of the Alps are currently in demand
From the point of view of the German tour operator FTI, it could be an option to fill hotels only about 50 percent in the start-up phase. “New approaches would have to be developed for buffets, but restaurant and café operations could certainly be organized well using new hygiene and distance concepts,” says Ralph Schiller, Managing Director of the FTI Group.
As far as the holiday regions are concerned, FTI says that the Baltic Sea coast and the foothills of the Alps are particularly in demand in Germany. “However, we expect that in the coming weeks even hotels close to nature with a high recreational factor not too far from home will be in great demand,” says FTI manager Schiller.
The main holiday season is not yet affected by the travel warning
Before the expansion of the corona pandemic, about 70 percent of bookings for popular regions such as the North and Baltic Sea or Bavaria were already made for the summer, according to the German Tourism Association. Members of the association for summer travel have not yet registered a wave of cancellations. Kunz is confident: “Holidays in Germany will be very popular this summer.”
The classic holiday destinations around the Mediterranean, however, will not be accessible in the foreseeable future. The Federal Foreign Office’s worldwide travel warning for tourists is valid until at least June 14. This means that holiday travel abroad is not yet possible at Pentecost, but the main holiday season in summer is not yet affected – school holidays only start on June 22. The travel industry is not yet losing summer. Tui, the largest German travel provider, has so far recorded no trend from abroad to inland. “The guests who rebook stay true to their goals. They only postpone their trip by one or more months, ”says a spokesman.