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Your holiday to Amsterdam is about to get more expensive

Tourist tax will go up from next year

  • Dave Turner
  • 11 September 2017

Tourism tax in Amsterdam is to be increased in an attempt to limit the amount of low-spending visitors to the Dutch capital.

Amsterdam locals are unhappy about a continuing rise in tourists, a figure set to rise to 23 million in the next few years, and protested in the city last week. Now, local authorities have announced plans to increase the amount of tax paid on rooms in the city centre. Right now it's at 5 per cent, with that to rise to 6 per cent next year.

Out of 16 million visitors in 2016, a quarter stayed in budget hotels, according to the Guardian. This has led to local councillor Udo Kock's plans to raise taxes to tackle visitors who don't spend much during their stay.

Speaking to Dutch newspaper Het Parool, Kock said: “We need more people who actually spend money in the city. We would prefer people who stay a couple of nights, visit museums, have lavish meals at restaurants, to people who pop over for a weekend eating falafel while sauntering around the red-light district.

“The number of visitors will grow from 17 million to 23 million in the coming years and that means more cleaning and a greater police presence in the streets. And I want Amsterdammers to profit from the success of the city.”

Another measure to add costs to budget trips could be introducing a "split-fee system". This would include paying a fee of up to €10 and a percentage of hotel costs.

However, hotel manager Rick Aaalders disagrees that a tax increase will deter tourists from heading to Amsterdam.

"The taxes are already high for tourists. Are people really going to stop coming because of a rise in taxes? I don’t think so. We have growth in numbers of 7% to 8% every month. I think the tax rise is about making money."

It's no surprise so many people are visiting Amsterdam with clubs like De School, Shelter and Claire. Read our feature on how Amsterdam became Europe's clubbing capital here. Jack, an LGBTI club, is also set to open soon.

We imagine the amount of UK visitors to Amsterdam will soar with the introduction of a direct Eurostar train by the end of the year.

Dave Turner is Mixmag's Digital News Editor, follow him on Twitter

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