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Best year ever for tourism in Leipzig

Leipzig Skyline (Picture:  PUNKTUM-Peter Franke)
Leipzig Skyline (Picture: PUNKTUM-Peter Franke)

With around 3.2 million overnight stays, Leipzig set a new visitor record in 2017

Annual overnight stays have topped the three-million mark! For the tenth record year in a row, in 2017 Leipzig recorded significant year-on-year increases in arrivals and overnight stays, of 8.7 per cent and 9.4 per cent respectively. There were 1,708,913 arrivals and 3,171,353 overnight stays in total. Leipzig can thus look back on its most successful year for tourism in its history.
As of December 2017, Leipzig’s guests could choose from a total of 128 accommodation facilities with a combined 16,793 beds (December 2016: 14,864). The average length of a guest’s stay rose to 1.9 days (2016: 1.8 days).
In addition, there were 2,008,466 commercial overnight stays in the Leipzig region, resulting in a total volume of around 5.2 million overnight stays for the LEIPZIG REGION destination as a whole. This corresponds to a share of 26.5 per cent of all overnight stays in Saxony.
Volker Bremer, CEO of Leipzig Tourismus und Marketing (LTM) GmbH, is delighted with the new record number of guests: “More than 3 million overnight stays and an almost double-digit increase in arrivals and overnight stays are an impressive testament to how Leipzig has become one of the top cities in Germany. Our city’s national and international fame has continued to grow, which is also reflected in increasing media attention. We owe much of this to our extensive marketing activities at home and abroad, which we carried out in 2017 in even closer cooperation with our tourism partners and the congress initiative “Feel the spirit…” . The successful activities of Leipziger Messe GmbH – which, in addition to its traditional trade fair activities, succeeded in attracting numerous congresses and conferences to Leipzig – also contributed significantly to the success. In particular, the Chaos Communication Congress ensured an excellent year end in December, attracting around 15,000 participants.”
Furthermore, other major events and an outstanding array of cultural programmes, as well as the 500th anniversary of the Reformation and the Bundesliga matches of RasenBallsport Leipzig (RBL), generated more overnight stays and raised Leipzig’s profile even further.
Compared to the previous year, the proportion of German guests increased by 7.5 per cent (arrivals) and 8.4 per cent (overnight stays) in 2017. The proportion of international tourists also increased significantly. Their arrivals and overnight stays increased in 2017 to 252,040 (+16.2 percent) and 506,468 (+14.7 percent) respectively. This corresponds to 16 per cent of all overnight stays (2016: 15.2 per cent). The highest increases were observed among tourists from Poland (+40.6 per cent) and the US (+37.8 per cent), many of whom were attracted by the events held to mark the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. The anniversary also meant that 21.5 per cent more guests from the Scandinavian countries of Denmark, Finland, Norway and Sweden stayed in Leipzig (37,000 overnight stays).
Behind the US, Switzerland follows in second place with 38,866 overnight stays, followed by Great Britain with 37,655 overnight stays. At 12,770 overnight stays (+16.2 per cent), Sweden just missed out on a place among the top ten tourist nationalities.

Volker Bremer is optimistic about the future: “As Leipzig’s attractiveness and international reputation continue to grow, we expect moderate further growth in tourism in 2018. What’s more, short trips and city breaks are still fashionable in Germany. By stepping up our marketing activities in Germany and abroad, especially in the area of congresses, conferences and events, we want to build on our success.”
The cultural hub of Leipzig also has plenty in store in 2018. Above all, the 275th anniversary of the Gewandhaus orchestra, the 325th anniversary of Leipzig Opera, and the 140th anniversary of Leipzig Zoo will provide incentives for guests from all over the world to visit Leipzig.
It is encouraging that the Leipzig region is also becoming increasingly attractive for tourists. More than 2 million overnight stays were recorded in 2017, reflecting an increase of 2.7 per cent on the previous year. Guests stayed an average of 2.9 days.
Volker Bremer sees further potential in the development of tourism in the Leipzig region: “With short breaks, the trend is increasingly focused on nature and activity holidays. Guests spending the night in Leipzig are specifically looking for offers throughout the region. Major tourist magnets such as the theme park BELANTIS, the canoe park in Markkleeberg, and castles and stately homes are also attracting growing numbers of tourists. For this reason, our national and international marketing will increasingly focus on promoting what the region around Leipzig has to offer. This will be boosted in future by a research portal for journalists, which we are currently setting up. Among other information, the portal will provide editorial offices with texts and photos covering all 40 of the municipalities involved in our marketing cooperation.”
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Sources: Saxon State Statistical Office
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