Vienna convention tourism set a new record in 2007. The number of conventions and similar events increased by 19 per cent to 2,764 last year. Overnights linked to them rose by 23 per cent to 1,419,044, and value added to the city economy went up by 30 per cent to 760 million Euros.
Overnights by convention attendees constituted 14.7 per cent of all overnights in the city last year, and city officials hope that the percentage will rise to 15 per cent by 2010.
The largest convention last year was that of the cardiologists in September, which attracted 33,000 visitors to the city.
Vienna Deputy Mayor Renate Brauner and city tourism director Norbert Kettner reported the news Wednesday but said that they doubted that another new record would be set this year.
Euro 2008, they explained, had already caused organisers of a number of conventions to choose different cities as the sites of their conclaves.
Christian Mutschlechner, the head of the convention bureau at the city tourism office, said that so-called “classic” conventions were headed elsewhere in June, a month during which no large conventions would occur in Vienna.
He added that Euro 2008 would have at least one positive impact. A number of individual businesses had decided to hold events in June in the Austrian capital.
Convention attendees spend more per day on average, 420 Euros, than regular tourists, who spend only 266 Euros a day on average.