German airports are vying with each other to provide more direct connections to Indian cities, said Simon Miller, Senior Consultant Airline Marketing, Marketing and Public Relations, Berlin Airports on Tuesday.

Briefing newsmen, he said “at present 63 flights are operating between India and Germany every week. Private airliners such as Jet Airways and Kingfisher are planning to connect with German cities. We hope the numbers would increase to 80 flights per week in the next two years. Berlin's new airport will be opened by June 2012.”

Mr. Miller along with eight other officials was in Chennai to promote Germany as a preferred leisure destination for Indians. The year 2011 will be celebrated as ‘health and fitness holidays in Germany' and 2012 as ‘Germany as destination for business travel.'

To enhance Germany's presence in India, in 2008, the Indian operations of German National Tourism Office (GNTO) created ‘Germany India Pool' with a group of 14 partner agencies. GNTO together with the Germany India Pool would market the destination in India with an investment of 1.5 million Euros.

The activities included training workshops and seminars, media and trade study trips, said Romit Theophilus, GNTO Director of Marketing and Sales India.

GNTO commenced its second phase of sales activity here on Monday and Tuesday, followed by its next visit to New Delhi on Wednesday. The team will visit Bangalore and Mumbai during October. In the first phase, the team members visited Mumbai and Ahmadabad.

“Germany is the second most popular destination for Indian visitors to Europe, as the visitors are increasingly becoming aware of the unlimited possibilities that are available for leisure in Germany. Last year, we received 4 lakh Indian visitors and our aim is to reach 1 million by 2015,” said Horst Lommatzch, Director Destination Management Asia, German National Tourist Board.

Sybille Wiedenmann, CEO, BAYERN TOURISMUS Marketing GmbH (by.TM) said, “between January and May 2010, the number of arrivals rose to 9,000 showing an increase of 20 per cent compared to the same period last year whilst overnight stays increased to 35,000 registering a growth of about 11 per cent. The aim is to reach 100,000 overnight stays originating from India by the end of 2010.”

Keywords: Germany tourism

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