Middle East

Germans flock to resurgent region

The Middle East is back in business in the German marketplace with strong growth for several destinations throughout the region, the newly published fvw Destination Ranking 2019 shows.
Israel set new records in 2018 with a 13.9 per cent rise to 4.1 million international visitors, including a 20 per cent increase to 262,000 tourists from Germany, thanks to additional flights. Neighbouring Jordan posted an even more impressive 31 per cent rise to 44,000 German visitors.

Dubai, the region’s biggest destination, increased international visitor numbers marginally to nearly 15.9 million. However, German arrivals climbed 12 per cent to 567,000, powered by increased flight numbers. Abu Dhabi also did well with an eight per cent rise to 142,000 visitors from Germany. But the emirate of Ras Al Khaimah, which is promoting itself as an alternative beach destination, saw German tourist numbers fall for the second year in a row, although it registered strong overall growth. Meanwhile, nearby Qatar’s marketing investments paid off handosmely as German visitor numbers soared 43 per cent to 63,000.

In Africa, Kenya made a spectacular comeback as German visitor numbers surged 59 per cent to 78,000. In contrast, South Africa weakened in the German market, dropping 2.1 per cent to 324,000 visitors following the drought in Cape Town. Namibia was flat, with 124,000 tourists from Germany.