It's big. It's growing and it's becoming more international. These are the key messages from a new analysis of tourism economy in the Fehmarnbelt region soon to be published by STRING.
Coherent cross border statistical documentation covering the five regions in Germany, Denmark and Sweden - Schleswig-Holstein, Hamburg, Region Zealand and the Capital Region of Denmark, and Region Skåne in Sweden - has been published for the first time.
The key results of the new study are:
With almost 59 million commercial bed nights, tourism in the Fehmarnbelt region easily compares to European mega-destinations such as the Canaries (58 million), Croatia (56 million) and London (51 million)
Tourism in the Fehmarnbelt region is growing even during the financial crisis in Europe. Supported by the growth of the dynamic metropolitan centres of Hamburg and Copenhagen, bed nights in the region increased by 16% between 2004 and 2011. The Fehmarnbelt region offers great growth potential for both regional and international tourism from long haul markets such as China and the USA.
The region's tourism industry is becoming increasingly international. Looking exclusively at international bed nights, growth figures are even more impressive. International bed nights grew 30% in the region.
Intra-regional tourism within the Fehmarnbelt region is at a surprisingly low level. Disregarding the extensive one day tourism related to shopping and business activity across the region's national borders, the early figures for intra-regional overnight tourism indicate a level under 10%.
The report is part of the background material for the "Building Tourism" project that will feed proposals for a new, coherent tourism strategy for the entire Fehmarnbelt region stretching from South Sweden across Zealand in Denmark and North Germany. The project will be completed during the summer of 2013, and will outline suggestions for strategies and ideas to develop the entire region.