Germany: new agency members, website for FDSV
Astur in Fulda and Lingoschools in Frankfurt joined the association bringing its total membership to 29 agencies. Meanwhile, the FDSV website has an enhanced course search function making it easier for German students to peruse courses offered by agency partners.
Peter Schuto, managing directer at Astur, which recruits students to Germany as well as sends German students overseas, said joining FDSV allows the agency to attract more attention on the global stage.
“We recognised that the FDSV itself grabs more and more attention from our international agents”
“Astur decided to join the FDSV because we recognised that the FDSV itself grabs more and more attention from our international agents sending students into our educational and language programmes,” he told The PIE News.
“We are strongly committed to the FDSV quality standards and to the European Standard EN 14804 [a certification of language study tour operators] as well – and that’s what we wanted to have certified.”
As the first operator certified for incoming programmes and camps in Germany, Astur has the chance to define the main requirements international agents recruiting to Germany should meet, he added.
Lingoschools is an online agency with a search platform for language programmes in 35 countries. Founded in 2010, it was acquired in 2015 for an undisclosed amount by two language school executives.
Julia Richter, managing director at FDSV, said the redesigned website will allow students to search more than 8,000 language programmes more easily via its “Sprachreise-Finder”.
“Our new internet page is aimed for students, agents, as well as for members,” she told The PIE News. In addition to the new search engine, the site provides general information about visas and education as well as a new language travel e-book (“Sprachreise e-book”).
The German study travel market has remained stable over the last two years, with FDSV members seeing only slight decreases (1.29%) in bookings last year.
Security concerns and an ageing population have reportedly impacted the market which has traditionally been very fruitful for overseas junior programmes.
Richter, however, said she is positive for the coming year. “The German economy is very well and therefore students will again invest in education,” she said. “The only uncertainty is the terrorism – let’s hope for quieter times!”