In spite of the international economic downturn, Berlin closed its 2008 tourism year with record visitor numbers. In 2008, a total of 7.9 million guests checked into Berlin’s hotels: a 4.2 percent increase over 2007. Staying for an average of 2.2 days, visitors spent a total of 17.78 million overnights (+2.8 percent) in the city’s hotels and guesthouses.
Visitor numbers have been increasing steadily for the past five years. In Berlin, average hotel rates for 4-5 star properties were at around $173, which is less than half of what visitors are paying on average in London or Paris.
From January through December 2008, more than 230,000 Americans visited the German capital. This all-time high signifies a nearly 1 percent increase compared to 2007. However, reflecting the overall economic mood, U.S. citizens spent less time in Berlin than in the previous year, reducing the number of U.S. overnights by 5.4 percent to 565,600.
Canadian visitor numbers continued to rise by double digits. In 2008, 37,650 Canadians (+21.8 percent) spent a total of 95,347 overnights (+19.2) in the German capital.
For 2009, Berlin Tourism Marketing is hoping to keep its visitor numbers stable at the 2008 levels. Events and special sights and activities surrounding the 20th Anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall are expected to generate extra interest in the German capital.