Slovenia Unique Experiences at the forefront of Slovenia's presentation at the ITB Berlin

Published: 6.3.2019

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Slovenia Unique Experiences at the forefront of Slovenia's presentation at the ITB Berlin

The presentation of Slovenian tourism at this year’s edition of the ITB Berlin focuses on the refreshed creative promotional image and the use of the action slogan “I FEEL SLOVENIA. My Way.”

Slovenia Unique Experiences at the forefront of Slovenia's presentation at the ITB Berlin


At this year's edition of the ITB Berlin, one of the world’s most important travel trade fairs, Slovenia is presenting a refreshed creative promotional image and the use of the action slogan “I FEEL SLOVENIA. My Way.” It highlights personalized experiences that each individual can have when visiting Slovenia. At the Slovenian stand, predominantly Slovenia’s cultural and gastronomic offer will be presented. Such offer significantly influences the guest’s authentic experience of the destination and represents great potential for products with added value that may appeal to guests with higher purchasing power. As many as 35 providers and destinations are presenting themselves at the Slovenian stand between 6–10 March, with the main partner being the Lipica Stud Farm.

"We strive to implement the vision of Slovenia as a green boutique destination for 5-star experiences."

“Apart from presenting ourselves to the broad public, our participation at the ITB Berlin fair is mostly intended to strengthen the connections with Germany, which is Slovenia’s most important trading partner. German tourists have always been of great significance for Slovenia. In 2018, they accounted for more than 1.36 million overnight stays, which stands out most among all foreign tourists. Slovenia has experienced record tourism growth rates and is well on its way towards gradually fulfilling the objectives defined in the Strategy of Sustainable Growth of Slovenian tourism in the Period 2017–2021. With numerous activities, we strive to implement the vision of Slovenia as a green boutique destination for 5-star experiences. We put an emphasis on products and experiences with higher added value for more demanding guests, which are also included in our Berlin presentation. I am certain that our presentation will attract the attention of the Managing Director of Lufthansa City Center Mr Uwe Müller, whom I shall meet at the Slovenian exhibition stand, and even strengthen the successful cooperation of Slovenia with this renowned international travel agency franchise network,” the Slovenian Minister of Economy and Technology Mr Zdravko Počivalšek explained before the official opening of the ITB Berlin fair.


"Our aim to increase the segment of more demanding guests, their consumption and visits outside the main season."

“In Berlin, Slovenia will be presented as a destination committed to sustainability, promoting unique experiences with an emphasis on cultural and gastronomic offer. The German market with its 12 % share in overnight stays is one of the most important markets for Slovenia; therefore, we are carrying out numerous promotional activities in Germany in cooperation with Slovenian tourist businesses. Apart from participating in important business events, such as the ITB Berlin fair, whose partnership with Slovenia in 2017 is still resounding very positively with the public, the Slovenian Tourist Board has intensified the informative digital marketing campaign on the most important German web portals, social media and television channels. Moreover, we also offer press trips for the media and fam trips for travel organisers, and create ties with associations, such as Lufthansa City Center, etc. German visitors appreciate products that include active holidays spent in the mountains and at the seaside, wellness and spa services, gastronomy and culture, with an emphasis on responsible and sustainable tourism. This is the reason why we are again very excited to learn about the winners of awards given by the Green Destinations Foundation, which declared Slovenia the ‘World’s first green country’ years ago. This year, we expect the moderate growth on the German market to continue, while it is our aim to increase the segment of more demanding guests, their consumption and visits outside the main season,” stresses Maja Pak, Director of the Slovenian Tourist Board (STB).

"Increased media coverage and the search for new opportunities"

“The German market remains stable; all indicators show that this year - the same as last year - will once again reward us with a growing number of arrivals of German guests. According to the information provided by FUR and CVP, Germans travelled 2% more last year than the year before, and their consumption also increased by 3%. The number of short trips made by Germans is on the increase as well; i.e. trips lasting 2–4 days. This extraordinary growth is noticeable in Slovenia as well. Last year, overnight stays of German guests rose by 17% compared to the year before, and this positive trend only continues in January. With the aim of increasing consumption, the STB representation on the German market tries to focus on those target segments of guests who are susceptible to the emergence of excessive tourism, or the segment that can be provided with unique and authentic experiences based on a sustainable tourist offer. The recognisability of our country will be further strengthened with increased media coverage and the search for new opportunities in cooperation with travel organisers and providers of incentive products.Certainly one of the most important links in the promotional chain is the informative digital marketing campaign on leading German channels, which will be upgraded in 2019 to reflect the new communication platform and the refreshed creative solution “My Way”. Let me also mention the presentation of Slovenia recently published on communication channels of National Geographic, which includes German-speaking markets, and targeted television and additional digital marketing taking place in the second half of this year,” explains Rebeka Kumer Bizjak, head of STB representation in Germany. 

Focus on authentic experiences

By its significance and size, the ITB Berlin show is ranked among the top international travel trade fairs, where supply meets demand. Last year, it hosted 10,000 companies and organisations from 186 countries, and boasted as many as 170,000 visitors, of which 110,000 were professional visitors. The leading topic of this year’s edition taking place from 6–10 March are trends in tourism. The Slovenian stand in the size of 248m², which is 46m² more than a year ago, is mainly characterised by culture and gastronomy, both providing modern travellers with unique and life-enriching individual experiences, which is one of the trends of global tourism.

The cultural tourist offer mainly focuses on the presentation of Lipica Stud Farm, the oldest stud farm in Europe with continued cultivation of the same horse breed, and the origin of the Lipizzaner horse. It presents the personalised boutique experience of the estate and the “Become a horse whisperer” product, which enables unique contact with Lipizzaner horses. Gastronomy is emphasised through KulinARTika“culinary performances” and show cooking, also joined by the artist Mitja Bokun, in connection with the title “Slovenia - European Region of Gastronomy 2021”. Culture and gastronomy are the main subjects of marketing & promotional activities undertaken by the STB in the period 2018/19 and 2020/21. As such, they have also been highlighted at special events for foreign agents and the media at the traditional Slovenian evening and at the welcome reception hosted by the Slovenian ambassador to Germany. At this occasion Irena Fonda has presented the family-owned Fonda Fish Farm and the unforgettable day spent there. This experience was included in the list of Slovenia Unique Experiences, a development and marketing platform with unique authentic experiences of premium quality Slovenian tourism.

Slovenia Unique Experiences were also placed at the forefront of the new communication platform, and are reflected in the refreshed creative image for the promotion of Slovenian tourism. With the action slogan “I FEEL SLOVENIA. My Way”, visitors are actively involved in the search for experiences and products of higher added value, and inspired to share their experiences on social media. The entire presentation of Slovenian tourism in Berlin is designed in the spirit of the creative image “My Way”, which supports the vision of Slovenia as a green boutique destination where you can enjoy 5-star experiences.  

Simultaneously with the presentation of Slovenian tourism at ITB Berlin, STB has launched a new global digital campaign including 16 foreign markets and running under the inspiring action slogan“My Way”. Via the Facebook, Instagram, VKontakte and YouTubesocial media, the STB will invite people to visit Slovenia and experience its tourist offer in an individualised way with native advertising on premium channels of the Outbrain network, programme advertising based on interactively enriched video contents, over the Teads network, search ads in Google and Yandex as well as Gmail ads. Slovenian tourist businesses with tourist package deals are also taking part in the campaign, and have already shown great interest in participation at the Berlin fair as well.


As many as 35 companies and destinations at the STB stand

During separate meetings, as many as 35 companies and destinations will presents their offer: Bernardin Hotels, M Tours Bled, Institute for Tourism Maribor – Pohorje, LifeClass Hotels & Spa, the Terme Krka Spa, Hit Alpinea Kranjska Gora, Sava Hotels & Resorts, Postojna Cave Park, Slovene Istria, Adria Airways, Unitur Hotels & Resorts, Kamnik Institute for Tourism, Sport and Culture, Kompas, d. d., Ljubljana Tourism, Jezero Hotel, Bohinj Eco Hotel, the Terme Olimia spa, Lipica Stud Farm and Maestoso Hotel, Škocjan Caves Park, the NoLimits Tours travel agency, Union Hotels, the destination Rogaška Slatina, the Rimske Terme spa, the Julian Alps, Britannia Tours, Thermana Laško, Happy Tours, Sonček travel agency, the Slovenian Spas Association, Agency Van Gogh,  TIC Nova Gorica & Vipava Valley Tourist Association, B&B Hotel Ljubljana Park, Palma travel agency, Roundabout Travel, and the Novo mesto Institute for Tourism, Sport and Culture.


STB will host members of the Lufthansa travel franchise network

The global Lufthansa City Center (LCC) travel franchise network is represented at 50 locations in over 90 countries, and is considered to be the largest and one of the most successful associations of agencies active in the field of leisure time and corporate travel. In 2017, the STB hosted the general meeting of LCC in Slovenia in cooperation with the Portorož Tourist Board, and it continues its successful cooperation with this renowned organisation in Berlin as well. LCC chose the Slovenian exhibition stand precisely as its location of the annual meeting of its members at the ITB Berlin fair, where guests, including the network’s Managing Director Uwe Müller,will be greeted by the Minister Zdravko Počivalšek and Mrs Maja Pak, and offered selected culinary delicacies.

Slovenia as an example of good practice for PATA

Promotion and marketing of Slovenia with a strong and highly recognisable I feel Slovenia brand will also be the topic of discussion at the annual seminar of the Pacific Asia Travel Association (PATA), which invited Maja Pak, Director of the STB, to report on the experience of the STB as an example of good practice in the field of addressing guests with higher purchasing power. 

In anticipation of awards for sustainability

In recent years, ITB Berlin has brought various flattering awards for Slovenian tourism. The finalists for Sustainable Top 100 Destinations, awarded by Green Destinations, a non-profit organisation for sustainable tourism, for innovative good practices in the field of sustainable management of destinations based on the evaluation of an international jury, include destinations that are part of the Green Scheme of Slovenian Tourism – bearers of the gold, silver and bronze labels Slovenia Green. Moreover, Ljubljana and Bled were placed among the finalists for the best sustainable practice in the category of the World’s and Europe’s best cities, which is why we are anxiously awaiting the announcement of winners on 6thMarch at the ITB Berlin fair.   

German market

The German market is one of the most important markets for Slovenian tourism. Last year, we recorded an extraordinary rise in tourists from Germany, which stood out among all foreign guests and accounted for the majority of overnight stays, i.e. over 1.36 million, which is 17% more than in 2017. As regards the number of arrivals, they came in second place among foreign guests, with 506,080 (+16% more compared to 2017). To conclude, last year German guests accounted for the greatest income and highest number of overnight stays since Slovenia became independent.

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