‘Don’t come’: Amsterdam doesn’t want young British tourists

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They are loud, obscene, drunk, rude, argue, give a bad image and also spend little. This is how authorities in the Dutch city of Amsterdam view young male British tourists.

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If that image is not only the one held by the authorities of that coveted city and in other European tourist destinations, one can think of something similar, the Dutch are the first to launch an advertising campaign asking these young Britons to find another destination.

The mayor’s office of Amsterdam gets to work. Threatened with fines and begins to distribute, in the city but also on British websites that organize trips to that city in the Netherlands, advertisements with the title of “Stay away” (could be translated as ‘Stay Out’) aimed at a potential audience of men aged 18-35.

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The campaign is explicit. It includes videos where, for example, a young man can be seen waiting while an ambulance is ready to take him to the hospital. Or another inmate being fingerprinted.

The red light district of Amsterdam, coveted by tourists.  Photo: Shutterstock

The red light district of Amsterdam, coveted by tourists. Photo: Shutterstock

explicit campaign

These videos include messages warning that these could be the consequences of “coming to Amsterdam for a crazy night” and explaining that fines will be imposed for uncivilized behaviour and which will be registered as a criminal record.

The red light district wants to “clean up” its image

The city that for decades has been a reference point for Europeans who wanted a weekend of prostitution and legal and easy-to-find soft drugs, Amsterdam, the city of the ‘Red Light District’ and the Coffee Shops, has tried to shake that stain for a while.

At the same time, the British authorities have been trying for years, with limited success, to prevent their young people from touring Europe on weekends to get drunk as if it were the end of the world. And his excessive alcohol consumption is studied.

This is ensured by a report by the British authorities, published in 2013 most young Brits drink more alcohol when travelling on vacation and during the rest of the year.

In the press release announcing that the anti-young British male advertising will be launched this week, the City of Amsterdam assures that later it could also affect young people of other nationalities, including its own. And that the ads show “the risks and consequences of excessive use of drugs and alcohol: fines, being arrested, being hospitalized and suffering serious damage to health”.

In the same text, the deputy mayor Sofyan Mbarki states that “visitors will be welcome, but not if they behave incorrectly and cause problems”.

Among other measures, last year the mayor’s office anticipated the closing time of the bars from five to three in the morning. You are now also launching an information campaign for tourists in which you explain how to behave (don’t make too much noise on the street, don’t urinate in public or don’t buy drugs from street dealers).

The Dutch city doesn’t seem to have a problem attracting tourists. In 2021 (last year with consolidated data) and still with some restrictions due to the Covid pandemic, the city received more than nine million.

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Source: Clarin

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