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ITB Berlin: Findings of the World Travel Trends Report 2008 now available on the internet

ITB Berlin: Findings of the World Travel Trends Report 2008 now available on the internet (Forimmediaterelease.net) ITB Berlin 2009 11 to 15 March 2009 PRESS RELEASE ITB Berlin Convention Market Trends&Innovations: Findings of the World Travel Trends Report 2008 now available on the internet Berlin, 17 April 2008 – Rising fuel costs and aviation taxes, fluctuating exchange rates, the continuing threat posed by terrorism in various parts of the world, and natural disasters: despite difficult background conditions there has been substantial growth on the world travel market. A summary is now available of the annual findings of the World Travel Monitor®, which was presented exclusively at the ITB Berlin for the third year in association with IPK International. The World Travel Trends Report 2008, entitled “Message from the ITB Berlin Convention”, reveals that 2007 saw a continuation of the upward trend for the fourth year in a row, with a worldwide increase of six per cent in the total volume of outbound travel. The report also showed the significant changes taking place on the worldwide travel market. In Europe approximately 50 per cent of all international travel reservations were made using the internet, and payment for 36 per cent of all journeys were made online. Compared with 2006 this represents a 12 per cent increase in online bookings. There is a very definite and continuing trend towards greater individuality. As the study shows, an increasing number of consumers are organising their own travel instead of relying on ready-made package arrangements. Current developments also reveal that holiday travellers have become more demanding. Quality and value for money were even regarded as important when picking up “bargain" offers. Changes in the types of holiday are also helping to create a new tourist profile. Instead of only lying on a beach, travellers are showing a greater interest in sporting and cultural activities as well as in educational travel. Characteristic features of this changing market have been a stronger focus on hospitality, authenticity and tradition, as well as an increased demand for uniqueness, individuality, travelling in order to experience nature, and sustainability. People from Germany, the United Kingdom, France, Italy and the Netherlands continue to rank among keenest travellers in Europe. However, as far as growth rates are concerned, in 2007 Russia and Spain led the field, with above-average increases of 15 and 16 per cent respectively compared with the previous year. In inbound travel growth was at its highest in the Asia Pacific region, in Western Asia, the Middle East and Central Asia, where the number of international visitors rose overall by nine per cent. Tourism from Europe recorded a nine per cent increase too, compared with just over 3.5 per cent more from America. The survey conducted by IPK World Travel Monitor® indicated that this positive trend is set to continue in 2008. However, experts are conscious of the fact that the housing crisis on the US market and a general downturn in the economy could inhibit the present upturn on the worldwide travel market. IPK International and its World Travel Monitor® provide the world’s largest ongoing investigation into global travel behaviour on 57 of the world’s most important markets (36 in Europe and the remaining 21 elsewhere in the world), covering some 90 per cent of all outbound travel around the world. The 28-page report containing the findings of the World Travel Trends Report 2008, prepared in association with IPK International, is presented by the ITB Berlin, and an English language version is now available at www.itb-berlin.com/Media Centre/ Publications.

Press contacts: Messe Berlin: Michael T. Hofer Group Press and Public Relations ITB Berlin: Astrid Ehring: Press Officer Messedamm 22 D-14055 Berlin tel.:+4930 3038-2275 fax: +4930 3038-2141 ehring@messe-berlin.com IPK International: Barbara Postel Senior Consultant Gottfried-Keller-Strasse 20, D-81245 München tel.:49 89 82923713 fax: + 4989 82923726 postel@ipkinternational.com For additional details: www.itb-berlin.com

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