Cycle tourism is a mainstay of sustainable travel and becoming more and more popular worldwide. "In Europe, cycle tourism generates over 44 billion euros a year and contributes to the economy with over 600,000 jobs. We believe that by strengthening our partnership with ITB Berlin and Allgemeiner Deutscher Fahrrad-Club (ADFC) we can expand even more in the future", was how Ádám Bodor, Advocacy and EuroVelo director of the Belgian-based European Cyclists' Federation (ECF) commented on this growing segment, to which ITB Berlin is devoting a whole day again this year.
Following its successful launch at ITB Berlin 2018, and taking as its slogan 'Gran Fondo towards biodiversity conservation', on Friday, 8 March, at 11.30 a.m. the second edition of the cycling tourism conference will be taking place at the 14th Pow-Wow for tourism professionals in Hall 4.1b. Louise Böhler, head of Tourism at the ADFC, will be presenting examples of best practice in Germany. According to the association, cycle tourists are not only travelling longer distances, they also have greater demands. Böhler shows it is possible to develop cycle routes that feature natural and cultural attractions or certain themes in order to make relevant destinations both more attractive and more competitive. Afterwards, at a panel discussion, international experts will debate the prospects for an ecologically responsible development of cycle routes in attractive natural settings.
E-bike tourism is booming
Not only are e-bikes everywhere on the roads, they are also creating a new target group in the cycle tourism market. In her lecture, Susanne Brüsch, e-bike ambassador and CEO of Pedelec Adventures Germany, will offer an insight into the latest market trends and illustrate why e-bikes are the perfect way to tour for everyone, particular when in groups. The e-bike specialist will also talk about her travels in Europe, Asia, Africa and the USA, across deserts, mountains, grasslands and in snow. In addition to relating her own experiences she will have practical tips on how to transport e-bikes and manage battery power.
At the subsequent workshops the ECF and ADFC will present successful cycle routes featuring natural and cultural attractions all over Europe. Three interactive seminars will offer participants a detailed insight into how cycle tourism products are successfully developed at European national and regional level. The workshops will also have useful tips on how to attract cycle tourists, including information on route networks, communication and marketing. The best example is the EuroVelo 13 – Iron Curtain Trail. This 10,000-kilometre long cycle route runs along the Iron Curtain border which formerly separated East and West.
The theme day is sponsored by the European Cycle Route Network, EuroVelo and ADFC.