Continuous marketing efforts and new travel options combined promises further growth in Seychelles’ visitor arrivals from German-speaking market
Air Seychelles already launched nonstop, twice-weekly flights from Düsseldorf, Germany in March 2017, while Austrian Airlines will be starting once-weekly flight from Vienna to Seychelles as of October this year.
Following a series of trade fairs and exhibitions in Austria’s capital, Vienna, in the German cities of Stuttgart, Munich, Berlin and in St. Gallen, Switzerland during the first three months of the year, the second quarter of 2017 is focusing on roadshows and workshops aiming to inform travel agents of the new flight options.
Edith Hunzinger, Manager of the Seychelles Tourism Board office in Frankfurt together with Victor von Schweinitz from Air Seychelles were joined by representatives from several Seychelles’ hotels including Constance Hotels, Le Duc de Praslin, Eden Bleu Hotel, Hilton Hotels, La Digue Island Lodge, Raffles Hotel and Valmer Resort as well as Destination Management Company, 7°South on a three-stop tour of the Western German cities of Düsseldorf, Frankfurt and Stuttgart in April.
Düsseldorf was of particular interest with the recent introduction of Air Seychelles’ twice weekly service linking the capital of North-Rhine-Westphalia, Germany’s most populous state to Seychelles.
The workshops were supported by two German tour operators, Explorer Fernreisen in Düsseldorf and FTI in Frankfurt and Stuttgart. Over 200 travel agents in total responded to invitations to attend the events across the three cities.
Through a combination of casual talks, dinner, and short presentations by trade partners, the travel agents received first-hand information and were able to ask questions. Air Seychelles and other partners also offered air tickets, accommodation and additional services to two prize winners in each cities who will be joining a familiarization trip to Seychelles later this year.
In addition to the national airline, the Seychelles Tourism Board office in Frankfurt is also collaborating with other carriers that are already or will soon be bringing visitors from the German-speaking market to Seychelles. This includes Qatar Airways, Condor, Emirates Airline, Ethiopian Airlines, Etihad Airways, Turkish Airlines and Austrian Airlines.
A radio promotion with Condor, which is currently providing nonstop service from Frankfurt and a workshop with Austrian Airlines from 18th to 24th June in preparation for the launching of its nonstop service to Seychelles feature on the programme of upcoming events. As part of its marketing efforts, STB Frankfurt will also join a workshop being organized by Swiss tour operator Départ Voyages in the last week of June.
Visitor arrivals from Germany, Switzerland, and Austria stood at 28,354 as at 4th June 2017, according to the Seychelles National Bureau of Statistics representing a 24 percent increase over last year’s figures for the same period. Germany, which boasts a 28 percent increase in visitor arrivals so far, has sent 19,949 visitors to Seychelles, and is currently the second top market after France, which has sent 20,088 or 139 more visitors to the islands.
Manager of the Seychelles Tourism Board office in Frankfurt Edith Hunzinger is convinced that the ongoing increase in travel options, combined with the booming economy in this market and eagerness of German, Swiss, and Austrian visitors to spend large amounts of their incomes on vacations in far-away places promises an even better performance from these source markets in the coming weeks.
“Our steady presence in the media, our strong showing at important travel shows, and our hard training of and close cooperation with travel agents are, of course, helping to steer the market in the right direction. We have to educate the trade continuously, so they can provide knowledgeable advice to their clients. In the immediate wake of our workshops, we have already registered significant boosts in contacts and requests from these areas at our office. However, training of travel agents is a long-term investment, and we are expecting to reap the benefits of what we are doing at present for many years to come,” said Hunzinger.
Above: Pictured from left to right: Rui Oliveira (Eden Bleu Hotel), Hubert Hoareau (7 Degrees South), Victor von Schweinitz (Air Seychelles), Katrin Pauli (Constance Hotels), Roya Fadai (STB Frankfurt), Sylvia Fletcher (Raffles Hotel), Edith Hunzinger (STB Frankfurt), Paul Helmo (FTI), Carolin Diesel (Hilton Hotels), and Derek Savy (Le Duc de Praslin, Valmer Resort, La Digue Island Lodge).
Venue in Frankfurt is tastefully and stylishly decorated (left) to welcome the travel agents, who listen attentively to the presentation.