Experts recommend a combination of methods at ITB Berlin NOW
Holidaying in the outdoors is the new trend, and associated with it are such activities as mountain biking, running or hiking. “People want to spend more time in natural surroundings and that is great”, said Tilman Sobek, managing director of absolutGPS on Wednesday during a presentation on the topic of visitor management and monitoring at ITB Berlin NOW. The more people that are out and about, the more important visitor management becomes for the destination, and one of the prerequisites is the need for precise data. To achieve this various survey methods were demonstrated during the presentation, such as induction loops in the roadway and radar counters. “In setting up visitor management systems I recommend combining quantitative and qualitative survey methods, because such methods can then cancel out each other’s disadvantages”, Tilman Sobek explained.
Nico Graaff, general manager of the German Mountain Bike Tourism Forum, presented a nine-step process that can be applied when setting up a visitor monitoring system. It begins by defining the objective and also includes evaluations and such aspects as data protection and data security. A free manual is available and will be published on 24 March. The guidelines and these nine steps will feature in a Zoom presentation on the same day (apply through www.agps.me/itb21).
Sobek and Graaf emphasised that it is still not too late to set up a monitoring system for this year’s summer and outdoor season. The costs depend on the scope of the project and the extent of the area to be monitored, and can range from 10,000 to 100,000 euros. The two speakers also pointed out that the data that is collated by this visitor monitoring system can also be used to predict future visitor behaviour.