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June 2006 issue

Contents
News
Travel News
Agency News
Agency Survey
Feedback
Direction
Special Report
Market Report
Course Guide
Spotlight
Destination
Regional Focus
Status

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Swiss hopes

The outbound student market in Switzerland experienced improved fortunes in 2005, according to 12 education travel agencies, with the needs of business fuelling increasing interest in language learning programmes.

Key points
The total number of students placed by the 12 agencies in our survey was 3,120

Individual agencies placed between 35 and 2,000 students on courses per year

Average business growth was 5.2 per cent in 2005

The average length of stay for Swiss students was 6.9 weeks

Overall, 79 per cent of Swiss students stayed in host family accommodation when studying overseas

Ten agencies charged clients a handling fee of between CHF40 (US$31) and CHF75 ($60)

On average, agencies worked with 66 schools in 18 countries


Top destinations Most popular courses
1. Australia 29%
2. Canada 23%
3. UK 10%
4. Malta 7%
5. New Zealand 4%
5. USA 4%
7. France 2%
7. Spain 2%
7. South Africa 2%
1. Intensive 33%
2. General 20%
3. Academic/exam prep. 14%
4. Junior progs.13%
5. Summer vacation 8%
6. Business lang. 7%
7. Lang + work. 3%
8. Other 2%

Reasons for language travel Top languages
1. Current work 30%
2. Future work 22%
2. Studies at home 22%
4. Pleasure 12%
5. Other 10%
6. Studies overseas 4%
1. English 69%
2. French 14%
3. Spanish 8%
4. Italian 4%
4. German 4%
6. Other 1%

How do agencies recruit students?

How do agencies find new schools to represent?
Word of mouth 55%
Website 16%
Other 14%
Mail shots 9%
Advertising in press 5%
Seminars to students 1%
Workshops 41%
Fairs/expos 23%
LTM/ETM 19%
Internet 9%
Other 8%

Percentage of agents who recognised each of the following organisations
Australia
Acpet 25%
English Australia 58%

Canada
Capls 33%
CLC 42%

France
Souffle 50%
L'Office 0%
Unosel 8%
FLE 0%

Ireland
MEI~Relsa 50%
IEAI 8%

Italy
Asils 33%
Italian in Italy 25%

Malta
Feltom 58%

New Zealand
Appel 0%
Ed. NZ 33%
English NZ 25%

Portugal
Aeple 8%

South Africa
Eltasa 0%
English SA 17%

Spain
Fedele 58%

UK
ABLS 8%
English UK 83%
British Council 92%

Europe
Eaquals 50%

USA
AAIEP 33%
Accet 58%
CEA 8%
UCIEP 0%

International
Ialc 58%
Quality English 25%



Market growth
Most of the agencies taking part in this year's Agency Survey on Switzerland reported business growth in 2005, although two said that they had experienced declines of seven per cent and 25 per cent respectively. Percentage increases ranged from one to 30 per cent among the rest of our 12 respondents, while the overall change in business was growth of five per cent. When we last looked at the Swiss market, just seven of nine agencies reported an increase in business, although the overall growth was larger at eight per cent (see Language Travel Magazine, August 2004, page 14-15). Agents highlighted better economic conditions as having a positive effect on their business last year, while one of the agencies that experienced a decline in bookings in 2005 said that this was due to strong competition.

Language and destination trends
Languages other than English were requested by a greater proportion of students this year, according to our agents, with English asked for by 69 per cent of clients, compared with 77 per cent in 2003. French was the most popular language after English, chosen by 15 per cent of clients (up from nine per cent previously), followed by Spanish (eight per cent – down from nine per cent), Italian (four per cent – up from three per cent) and German (four per cent). The UK's popularity as a study destination has also decreased since our last survey, attracting just 10 per cent of students, compared with 25 per cent previously. Instead Malta has emerged as a more popular destination, while Australia and Canada remained the most popular countries for students wanting to learn English.

Student and course trends
Language skills are becoming an increasingly common requirement within the workplace and a large proportion (30 per cent) of agency clients indicated that they were learning a language for their current job. This is in contrast to the findings of our previous survey when a greater percentage (44 per cent) were said to be learning a language largely to help their current studies at home. In our current survey, just 22 per cent of students had current studies as the motivation behind their language travel trip. Correspondingly, business courses were a more popular course choice, making up seven per cent of placements compared with three per cent previously, while academic-focused language courses decreased in popularity from 24 per cent in 2003 to 14 per cent in 2005.

Agency business
Most students found their agency by word-of-mouth recommendation and this proportion increased slightly from 47 per cent to 55 per cent. Agent respondents said that 41 per cent of their new school contacts were made at workshops, up from 32 per cent previously. An increasing number of contacts were also made through Language Travel Magazine and Education Travel Magazine last year (19 per cent compared with six per cent in 2003).

Looking ahead
Most agents who expressed an opinion predicted business would grow in the future, in line with an improving economy. Some agencies also described initiatives that they were planning, which included overhauling a website and increasing a range of programmes in Australia and New Zealand.


Economic overview

Economic growth in Switzerland improved during the second half of 2005, driven mainly by the export sector. Real GDP in the third quarter was up 4.3% on the previous period, while the number of employed persons increased slightly.

Merchandise exports in 2005 totalled US$121.5 billion in 2005, while merchandise imports were US$114.9 billion, resulting in a trade surplus of US$6.6 billion.

Economic growth is expected to continue throughout 2006 with the Swiss National Bank predicting a 2% growth in real GDP year on year. Exports are likely to increase due to a robust global economy.

Source: Swiss National Bank, The Economist


Swiss agents named a range of language programmes they work with, including, in Australia: Australian College of English, various; Geos Australia, Perth, WA; International House, various; Milner College, Perth, WA; Phoenix Language Academy, Perth, WA; St Mary's, Perth, WA; University of the Sunshine Coast, Maroochydore, QLD; In Canada: Canadian College of English Language, Vancouver, BC; Global Village, various; International Language Academy of Canada, Vancouver, BC; Language Studies International, Vancouver, BC; Pacific Language Institute, Vancouver, BC; In France: Institut Linguistique Adenet, Montpellier; In Germany: International House, Freiburg; In Malta: Easy School of Languages, Valletta; European Centre, St Julians. In New Zealand: Crown English Language Academy, Auckland; In the UK: Anglo-Continental, Bournemouth; Regent Language Training, various; In the USA: Embassy CES, various; Florida Language School International, Pasadena, CA. Worldwide: CCI, St Giles International.

Thank you to the following agencies for taking part in this survey: AD Voyages Langues et Cultures, Akzent Sprachbildung, Australia Europe Connection, Canada Live, Follow Me Schülersprachkurse, Globo Study Sprachreisen, Lingua Service, Linguista Sprachaufenthalte, Live & Study, Sniggle Rider Schoenenberger, STA Travel, STS Student Travel Schools.

Contact any advertiser in the this issue now

The following language schools, associations and accommodation providers advertised in the latest edition of Language Travel Magazine. If you would like more information on any of these advertisers, tick the relevant boxes, fill out your details and send.

Name

Company
Country
Telephone

Email


ASSOCIATIONS/
GROUPS
AAIEP
Education New
       Zealand Trust
English Australia
English UK
Feltom
Turlingua -
       Consortium of
       Language Travel
       and Tourism

INSURANCE COMPANIES
Interglobal Limited

WORKSHOPS/EXPOS
Alphe Agent
       Workshops
English Australia
ICEF

TOURIST BOARDS
Malta Tourism
       Authority

AUSTRALIA
English Australia

CHINA
Mandarin House

ENGLAND
Active Learning
Aspect (Australia,
       Canada, England,
       France, Germany,
       Ireland, Malta,
       New Zealand,
       Scotland, South
       Africa, Spain, USA)
Bell International
       (Malta, UK)
Bristol Language
       Centre
Ceran Languages
       Ltd. (Belgium,
       England, France,
       Spain)
Concorde
       International
       (Argentina,
       Australia, Canada,
       England, France,
       Germany, Greece,
       Hawaii, Ireland,
       Italy, Malta, New
       Zealand, Russia,
       Scotland, Spain,
       Sweden, USA)
Eden House College
English Language
       Centre Bristol
King Street College
LAL Language and
       Leisure (England,
       Malta, South Africa,
       USA)
Languages Out
       There (England,
       Germany, Ireland,
       Italy, Spain)
Malvern House
Langbourne College
Queen Ethelburga's
       College
Regency College
Shane Global
       Language Centres
       (England, New
       Zealand, South
       Africa)
Study Group
       (Australia, Canada,
       England, France,
       Germany, Ireland,
       Italy, New Zealand,
       South Africa, Spain,
       USA)
Westminster
       Kingsway College

FRANCE
Accent Français
Centre d'Etude des
       Langues de
       Saint-Malo
French in Normandy
Institut Français
       Riéra

GERMANY
Eurasia Institute
Lichtenberg Kolleg
       E.V.
Prolog- International
       House Berlin
Teikyo University
       Berlin Campus

IRELAND
Celtic School of
       Languages

JAPAN
Tokyo World
       Language School

MALTA
Feltom
Lingua Time
Malta Tourism
       Authority

NEW ZEALAND
Education New
       Zealand Trust
Languages
       International

RUSSIA
Liden & Denz
       Language Centre

SCOTLAND
Live Language

SOUTH AFRICA
International House
       - Durban

SPAIN
Turlingua -
       Consortium of
       Language Travel
       and Tourism

SWITZERLAND
EF Language
       Colleges Ltd
       (Australia, Canada,
       China, Ecuador,
       England, France,
       Germany, Ireland,
       Italy, Malta, New
       Zealand, Russia,
       Scotland, Spain,
       USA)
Eurocentres
       International
       (Australia, Canada,
       England, France,
       Germany, Italy,
       Japan, New
       Zealand, Russia,
       Spain, Switzerland,
       USA)

USA
American Language
       Communication
       Center
Ashland University
California State
       University San
       Marcos
Columbia University
Kaplan Educational
       Centers (Canada,
       England, USA)
University of
       Nevada Reno
University of West
       Florida
Western Michigan
       University
Zoni Language
       Centers

WALES
Coleg Glan Hafren