Oh Amsterdam – Why are you so popular?

That over-tourism is a thing and Amsterdam is one of its ‘victims’ might not come as a surprise. But that the number of hotel-bookings is almost as high as the total population of the Netherlands did surely shock me. In 2018, Amsterdam registered 16.9 million hotel bookings. That’s crazy!

And it gets ‘worse’ (or better, who’s to say): in the first 2 months of 2019 they saw a 6.5% increase in hotel bookings compared to the first 2 months of 2018.

So let’s look at some more numbers. On July 1, 2018, Amsterdam counted 501 hotels, 34,800 hotel rooms and 76,800 beds, 7% more than in 2017! Of all jobs in the city, 11% is in the tourism sector. We’re talking about 69.200 jobs. And… this increase in tourism also boosts job opportunities in related sectors like restaurants, recreation and cultural enterprises.

“Spending on leisure and tourism is increasing worldwide and the same goes for the Netherlands. This can be seen in the sustained growth in turnover in the Amsterdam hotel and catering trade and retail, and the increased number of jobs in sectors allied to tourism and leisure. This growth is due not only to the increase in the number of tourists, but is also attributable to leisure activities among Amsterdam residents.” (Onderzoek, Informatie en Statistiek, 2019)


  • Onderzoek, Informatie en Statistiek. (2019). Tourism in Amsterdam Metropolitan Area 2017-2018. Tourism in Amsterdam Metropolitan Area 2017-2018. Geraadpleegd van https://www.ois.amsterdam.nl/downloads/pdf/2019_fact%20sheet%20tourism.pdf

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