Alberta welcomes top German travel agents for DERTOUR Academy

CALGARY, Dec. 2, 2013 /CNW/ - DERTOUR Academy kicks off today in Calgary with more than 600 top travel agents, key tourism partners and journalists from Germany, Austria and neighboring countries arriving in Alberta. This is the first time Alberta has hosted DERTOUR Academy, a prestigious incentive and destination promotion event for the German travel industry.

"Hosting the 2013 DERTOUR Academy provides an outstanding platform to further grow our German market," said Bruce Okabe, Travel Alberta's Chief Executive Officer. "This event is held annually all over the world and we are very pleased Alberta was chosen as this year's Academy location."

Less than five per cent of the travel professionals attending DERTOUR have been to Alberta. Travel Alberta is working with DERTOUR and Alberta's tourism industry to showcase the authentic experiences our province has to offer through 19 pre- and post- provincial familiarization tours.

The event starts today and runs until December 9, 2013. Attendees spend the first day in Calgary and then head to Banff for three days of training programs and workshops. DERTOUR is held in two repeat sessions with a second group arriving December 6.

"Working with key tour operators like DERTOUR, and having the opportunity to showcase the province to top performing travel professionals, is part of our strategy to grow tourism revenues to $10.3 billion by 2020," said Dr. Richard Starke, Minister of Alberta Tourism, Parks and Recreation.

Destinations that have previously hosted DERTOUR Academy have shown increases of at least 20 per cent in traffic from Germany to their destination in the following year. For Alberta, this means potential for an incremental 15,800 person-visits and $16 million in tourism expenditures from Germany.   Germany is Travel Alberta's second largest overseas market. The latest data from Statistics Canada shows that in 2011, there were 74,000 overnight person-visits to Alberta from Germany, resulting in $76 million in trip expenditures.

About DERTOUR Academy
DERTOUR has created the largest and most important training and promotion event for travel agents in the German and Austrian travel industry—DERTOUR Academy. Every year at the beginning of December, 576 travel agents join DERTOUR Academy to explore the host destination for four days and four nights for the main seminar which is held in two repeat sessions. Since its establishment in 1974, DERTOUR Academy has taken place all around the globe. Over 27,000 participants have been trained thus far.

About Alberta
Alberta, located in western Canada, is as vast as it is varied in landscapes and adventures.  Alberta is an exceptional vacation destination that promises authentic experiences in breathtaking landscapes.

About Travel Alberta
Travel Alberta is the tourism marketing organization of the province of Alberta. A provincial Crown corporation of the Government of Alberta, we lead the Canadian tourism industry in marketing Alberta's extraordinary experiences around the world.

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SOURCE: Travel Alberta

For further information:

Media contact:
Jennifer Anderson - Director, Communications
Travel Alberta
403-648-1074
jennifer.anderson@travelalberta.com
travelalberta.com


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