(JNS.org) New data from the German National Tourist Board shows that among non-European nations, Israel was the sixth-highest source for tourists to Germany in 2014.
Nearly 870,000 Israeli tourists stayed in Germany overnight in 2014, an increase of 14 percent from 2013, according to statistics cited by Yedioth Ahronoth. Forty-six percent of Israelis who stayed in Germany stayed in the city of Berlin. Based on a breakdown of the average number of nights a tourist stayed in Berlin, Israelis stayed the longest, with an average of three nights.
The U.S. is the top source for tourism to Germany among non-European countries, followed by China.
The new statistics follow a number of recent media reports on Israelis choosing to move to Germany, for factors such as Israel’s increasingly high living costs. Official estimates of Israelis living in Berlin range from 5,000 to more than 15,000, according to a New York Times report from October 2014.
The decision by some Israelis to relocate to Germany has received some criticism in Israeli society.
“People move to where Hitler designed the Final Solution and do it happily?” said Aluf Benn, editor of the Israeli daily newspaper Haaretz. “The Holocaust is the most important pillar of Israeli education. Going to Berlin is like, ‘Have you learned anything?’ It’s the ultimate failure of Zionism."