Destination trends

Turkey slumps as German bookings weaken in October

German bookings for top holiday destinations dropped back in October with a slump in demand for Turkey, Greece and parts of Spain, the latest monthly package holiday booking figures from Amadeus show.

The overall 3% fall last month follows a surprisingly strong 8% rise in September. However, this latter figure may have been distorted by a surge in new bookings by Thomas Cook customers, given the 27% rise in summer 2019 bookings in September reported by researchers TDA who highlighted this one-off effect (see separate article here).

In October, demand appears to have tailed off again as German consumers mostly focused on destinations for winter 2019/20 holidays in the sun or booked early for next summer, according to the Amadeus figures for package and online bookings for the top ten mass destinations (click on interactive graphic to see previous months' figures).

Bookings for the top destination Antalya dropped by over 9% last month after a high 16% rise in September. In contrast, Hurghada (+11%) bucked the general trend with a double-digit increase for the second month in a row. However, bookings for the smaller Egyptian destination Marsa Alam were well behind the levels of the same month last year.

Demand for Spain fluctuated strongly last month. Bookings for Palma tumbled by 15%, continuing the generally weak demand for Majorca in recent months.

Further west, however, three of the four main Canary Island destinations grew on the German market last month. Bookings for Fuerteventura (+12%) and Lanzarote (+9%) increased strongly while Tenerife South (+1%) showed a slight rise. But Las Palmas (-7%) once again suffered a significant decline.

Greece had a poor month in terms of the German package and online bookings. Both Heraklion (-7%) and Rhodes (-6%) saw weaker demand in contrast to strong double-digit growth in September.

Amadeus Leisure IT (formerly Traveltainment) claims to handle the bulk of offline (travel agency) and online bookings for tour operator holidays on the German market, making its booking figures a reliable indicator of demand trends.