The logo shows a stylised version of the country’s figurehead, Marianne, and features a new strapline, ‘rendezvous en France’.
The initiative was launched by tourism minister Frédéric Lefebvre at the French Consulate in New York. He said the new approach was needed as France had lost its number one spot in Europe for tourism. “We may be number one in terms of visitors, but the real challenge is in terms of revenue. We have been overtaken by Spain and the Italians are close behind,” he said. “It’s time to change our strategy”.
Official figures from the World Tourism Organisation backed up his claim, showing that France earned $49.4 billion from tourism in 2009, compared to Spain’s $53.2 billion.
Responding to a question from a journalist that France was seen by foreigners as arrogant, the minister insisted the country wanted to “show a different side”. He identified the welcome offered to visitors at airports and train stations as key areas to improve.
The new design was chosen by over 87,000 voters in an online contest.