This years’ ITB took place between the 5th and the 9th of March, and proved yet again to be a success, both for professionals and private visitors. Throughout the week, there was a revived feeling of positivity that has long been gone in the tourism sector. With positive signals from the world economy, the tourism sector is expected to regain its’ momentum in the year to come. Innovation Norway as usual organized the Norwegian pavilion and hence offered Norwegian destination companies, hotels, transportation companies and tourist agencies a unique opportunity to market themselves and get in touch with leading tourism actors from Germany, as well as the rest of the world. ITB Berlin proved its’ position as the world’s leading travel trade show and experienced an increase in trade visitors compared to last year. 10,147 exhibitors from 189 countries – more than two-thirds of whom came from abroad – were represented in 26 halls which were booked to capacity. Overall, some 114,000 trade visitors (2013: 109,616) travelled to Berlin. The ITB Berlin Convention registered record levels of attendance. A total of 22,000 took part in around 200 lectures, discussions and workshops, over 5 percent more than in 2013. And despite a strangely warm weekend in Berlin, more than 60,000 members of the general public came to find out about the wide-ranging information on offer from exhibitors and providers of niche market products.
German Tourists vital for Norwegian Tourism Sector Backed by a stable employment market, good wage agreements and positive forecasts for economic growth, German citizens aim to spend more money on their holidays than in previous years. This can only be a positive sign, considering that approximately 20 percent of all tourists to Norway are German. This positive expectation was certainly felt at the Norwegian pavilion, as the Norwegian exhibitors filled their first three days with meetings with major German actors for inbound tourism. The Norwegian pavilion also received a lot of attention from the private visitors on the last two days of the fair trade. The impression that ITB still is the most important meeting place for Norwegian companies that want to get in touch with German actors, therefore, remains. Innovation Norway cooperates with DERTOUR Academy DERTOUR is one of Germany’s major tourism agencies. Each year, the company sends its’ employees to a new destination, in what is called the DERTOUR Academy. DERTOUR Academy is the largest and most important happening within training and promotion in the German and Austrian market. In December 2014, over 600 German agents will visit Fjord Norway and Northern Norway to learn more about the destinations they are selling. This was made official in a press conference at the Norwegian pavilion on the 6th of March.