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Press article fom  18.07.2005

More and more incoming and business travellers

Frankfurt-Hahn Airport, 18th July 2005. The number of both incoming tourists and business travellers at Frankfurt-Hahn Airport has risen considerably. This is the result of the latest opinion poll conducted in February and May 2005 by the IFAK Institute in Taunusstein as part of an ongoing passenger survey. In addition, it has become clear that there are four types of traveller amongst the cost-conscious private users of Germany's first and only truly low-cost airport.

Incoming tourists
The combined efforts of the Rhineland Palatinate Tourist Office and the airport company have shown the first results: Frankfurt-Hahn Airport is gaining in popularity and attractiveness as a travel destination. Twenty-one percent of passengers travel to the airport and are therefore so-called incoming passengers. With a passenger level of 1,474,177 in the first half of 2005, in absolute figures this corresponds to more than 150,000 guests visiting the region around Hahn. This is five percent more than in the previous year (sixteen percent). In the comparative period of 2003, this was only twelve percent. Most of those surveyed gave a stay of between three and ten days for the duration of their journey; the average was six days. At the same time, compared with the result of the previous year, 51 percent of passengers stayed more frequently in hotels and guesthouses - in 2004, it was only 42%. The number staying with friends, acquaintances and relatives remained about the same at 46 percent.

Business travellers
The number of business travellers has also risen. Whereas, in the same survey period in 2003 and 2004, 16 percent flew for business reasons, this year the figure has already hit the 20-percent mark. This means that about every fifth passenger at Frankfurt-Hahn Airport is a business traveller. Visits to customers or branches of their own company were the main reasons. These account for 50% of business journeys. Business travellers value the attractive airfares from Hahn and the choice of destination airports in equal measure. The most popular destination continues to be London, followed by Stockholm and Gothenburg. Business travellers generally fly more frequently, and also more frequently from Frankfurt-Hahn. On average, they are somewhat older and have a higher average income.

Private travellers
Four out of five passengers fly predominantly for private reasons. With the help of a cluster analysis, a mathematical process for forming groups, four types of travellers have been identified. The "price-conscious holiday-maker", with 41 percent of private travellers, represents the largest group. For them, the price is important. They are thrifty, and look for a good price-service ratio. The range of interests in the formation of the holiday is wide. People look for relaxation and a little culture, but also enjoyment and activity. The average age is 37, and the income is average.

The second largest group is that of the "generous holidaymaker". They are not so concerned about the price when it comes to a holiday. They mainly want to relax, and enjoy comfort and a little luxury. They have a good in-come and fly more frequently during the year. Their level of education is above average. Their average age is also 37. This group encompasses 25% of private travellers.

Eighteen percent belong to the group of "older smart shoppers". They save on the price of the flight in order to indulge in other areas. They take note of the price-service ratio without being generally thrifty. They are interested in culture, and at 40 have a somewhat higher average age. They also have a good income and a higher level of education.

The smallest group with 16 percent is the "younger smart shopper". They also save on the price of the flight in order to indulge in other areas - with a lower income. They are not interested in comfort, peace and quiet, or luxury - they mainly want enjoyment and activity from their holiday. With an aver-age age of 33, they are rather younger and are often students.

IFAK Institut GmbH & Co Markt- und Sozialforschung in Taunusstein has been conducting a long-term passenger survey on behalf of Flughafen Frankfurt-Hahn GmbH since January 2003 in order to determine passenger structure information in different periods. In the first wave of the survey this year, which took place between 14th and 20th February 2005, questions were asked of 1035 passengers over 16 years of age flying from Hahn. The second wave was carried out in the period from 16th to 22nd May 2005. On this occasion, 1069 travellers were surveyed verbally face-to-face. Weighting was carried out based on the actual number of passengers in the respective waves of the survey. Selection was made based on a random sample (every n-th passenger), all departing flights on all days within the weeks of the survey being taken into account. The next survey - the third wave - will take place in the middle of August.

The passenger survey at Frankfurt-Hahn Airport is part of the DART project ("De-veloping Active Regions and sustainable Tourism") promoted by the European Union within the framework of the EU Community Initiative Interreg-III-B for North West Europe. DART concentrates on the development of tourism in weak structural areas and the expansion of touristic, economic and cultural bonds between the partners. The three regions belonging to this partnership are South Ayrshire in Scotland; the region around Hahn Airport, Hunsrück-Mosel-Nahe and Middle Rhine in Germany; and the North and East of County Cork in Ireland. The main focus of DART consists in the maximisation of advantages, which can grow tourism through the passengers of low-cost airlines - by encouraging passengers to spend time in the partner regions, by developing attractive touristic products, by the use of inno-vative methods and by initiating positive synergy effects through transnational co-operation. Especially for the passenger survey 2004 and 2005, in agreement with the Rhineland-Palatinate Central Tourist Office, Frankfurt-Hahn Airport has in-cluded a section of questions on incoming traffic within the questionnaire. On the German side, the two administrative districts of Rhine-Hunsrück and Bernkastel-Wittlich as leaders, as well as nine other partners - including Flughafen Frankfurt-Hahn GmbH - are involved in the project.

Further information on the Institute can be found at www.ifak.de and on the Inter-reg-III-B DART project at www.interreg-dart.com.

You will find further information on Frankfurt-Hahn Airport under www.hahn-airport.de.
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