Mecklenburg-Vorpommern – demonstrating exemplary crisis management
Exclusive interview: Tobias Woitendorf, CEO at Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Tourist Board
The Covid crisis has impacted all tourism destinations… some harder than others. We asked Tobias Woitendorf, CEO at Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Tourist Board whether his organisation has a plan to navigate “out of the woods”.
Yes, and we indeed need a minimum level of foresight. There is nothing that would be counterproductive to making plans subject to certain conditions being met. Federal and state level politics have promised people, businesses and also themselves that they will speed things up. The holiday destination Mecklenburg-Vorpommern was severely impacted by the negative effects of the corona pandemic early-on. We came up with complex strategies and step-by-step plans to manage the crisis as promptly as possible. For instance, since March 2020 (first lockdown), a strategic plan to restart tourism, and based on it a multi-phase model as well as a total of eleven protection standards for different sectors of tourism have been developed which were linked to the Corona Act by the state government. We received the Special Award for Exemplary Crisis Management from the German Tourism Association for these efforts.
Driven by foresight and accountability, with our partners, we launched a re-start scenario for the post second lockdown period as early as January 22, 2021. The tourism industry, which employs every fifth worker in the northeast urgently needs a perspective. Now we can only wait for the plans we have made – which also include a test strategy and a red/yellow/green light function for infection-related measures over the course of the year – to be heard.
We do whatever we can to generate positive effects for the industry in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern
Tell us more about your participation in ITB Berlin NOW this year. What can attendees see at your ITB Brand Card?
We are at ITB with the “All in for destinations” package and have 17 exhibitors “on-site”, including tourism associations and marketing companies, cities such as Rostock, Schwerin, Greifswald and Wismar as well as enterprises such as Deutsches Meeresmuseum, the Fleesensee Feriendorf GmbH or the Arcona Management GmbH.
What are your thoughts on the organisation of this year’s ITB Berlin NOW?
It is a gigantic challenge that requires a lot of coordination between everyone involved. We do whatever we can to generate positive effects for the industry in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern and of course also for ITB. With this year’s virtual performance, the ITB sends out a clear signal for the future. Let us hope that in addition to the definitely sustainable digital elements, actual personal encounters will once again be possible in Berlin starting in 2022.
Photo: Tobias Woitendorf, CEO at Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Tourist Board
“Königsweg” is being developed at the cliff coast in Jasmund National Park
Likely one of the most attractive construction projects in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern is the completion of the Königsweg on the Island of Rügen. An accessible scenic viewing platform is in the making at the Königsstuhl, one of the Jasmund National Park’s landmarks. It offers visitors fascinating views of the cliffs, the Baltic Sea and the Königsstuhl. Construction work is scheduled to begin in the first half of 2021 and ought to be concluded in 2022.
Remove barriers, increase participation:
Resort Stettiner Haff
The construction of Stettiner Haff Resort in Vorpommern draws attention to Mecklenburg-Vorpommern when it comes to accessible holidays. Under the motto “Designing the Future Together – Sustainably and Barrier Free,” a new resort, which will cover 18,000 square meters, is under construction near the Port of Altwarp at the Stettiner Haff. Based on information provided by the investors, Jana and Uwe Trinkus, its concept is one-of-a-kind in Germany.