Nils Kraus - Sep 23, 2008

It is no secret that the Netherlands is not the largest country in the world, that it has a huge population and also a very large base for inbound tourism, especially the capital, Amsterdam. Unfortunately for the Dutch, these elements are beginning to clash and cause problems for the country’s tourism industry as a whole.


The simple fact is that the size of the Netherlands is hindering tourism development, as there is no space for building new hotels. At the same time, the streets of Amsterdam are becoming dirtier and more crowded as space is rapidly running out.


This year and last year have shown only very slight increases in the hotel rates and numbers of rooms being booked in the Netherlands. There has been an increase of just 0.4%, which is much lower than the rates of increase in other western European countries. It is not that people are not coming to stay in Dutch hotels. The problem is the compact nature of the country, which leads to huge competition and a shortage of space for further development. The Amsterdam and Schipol areas are almost totally stagnated. At the same time, the outlook looks bleak.


Dutch tourism authorities have predicted that an astonishing 14 million business and leisure visitors should be visiting the Netherlands by 2020, spending a possible total of EUR 8.4 billion. This is wonderful news. However, where exactly are these people expected to sleep?


The Dutch improvisation systems, making use of all space possible can only last for a limited period of time. Of course, not all visitors have to stay over the night, yet the shortage of hotel rooms could become a serious problem in years to come. Maybe the Netherlands will be the most popular day-trip destination in Europe.


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