If you’re planning to visit Amsterdam next year, head’s up: It’ll soon cost more. Government officials in the Netherlands announced a new tourism tax that will go into effect at some point in 2024—one that will be the highest in all of Europe.
While no exact date has been given, Amsterdam will increase the tax on hotel rooms to a flat 12.5 percent in 2024. Currently, the rate is 7 percent of the room rate, plus €3f per person occupying the room. The tax for cruise ship passengers stopping in the port will also rise from the existing €8 (US$8) per head to €11 per visitor per day.
“Visitors will thus help to pay for the city to carry out its tasks,” Hester van Buren, the deputy mayor for finance, said in a statement. “This allows us to address the consequences of over tourism and direct additional resources to keeping the streets clean and solving acute problems in neighborhoods and districts.”
According to the city of Amsterdam, the average nightly room rate is €175 (US$185). Under the current model, that would mean a couple would pay €12.25 for the room and €3 each, equaling €18.25 total per night. With the new model, they’d pay €21.80 (US$23).
Amsterdam has long been working to reduce tourism and curb bad visitor behavior. In the past year, the city has banned cannabis smoking in designated areas and reduced the hours of operations for bars, clubs, and the Red Light District. In July, Amsterdam’s city council voted to ban large cruise ships from the city center, due to “cruise ships in the city center [not fitting] into Amsterdam’s assignment to reduce the number of tourists,” Ilana Rooderkerk, leader of the centrist D66 party that put the proposal forward, said in a statement.
It’s not the only place that has implemented or increased its tourism tax in recent years to combat overcrowding. For example, Venice’s city council just approved the introduction of a €5 entry ticket for day-trippers to the city. Additionally, when Bhutan reopened postpandemic, it announced its visitor fee would triple to $200 as part of its “High Value, Low Volume” tourism policy (those rates have since been reduced to $100).