It looks like Amsterdam’s ‘cannabis tourism’ may be coming to an end, after the city’s environmentalist mayor Femke Halsema announced plans to ban foreign tourists from coffee shops by the time coronavirus travel restrictions are lifted.
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As reported by Forbes, Mayor Halsema has had enough of “the attraction of Amsterdam as a holiday resort for soft drug tourism” and wrote as much in a recent letter to her city council, revealing her wish to permit marijuana sales only to Dutch nationals and residents of the Netherlands.
Pre-Covid lockdowns, Amsterdam’s coffee shops and red light district attracted more than a million visitors a month – more than the entire permanent population of Amsterdam.
You’d think this was a good thing, but apparently not. According to Halsema, the cannabis trade in Amsterdam has become “too big and overheated” and cannabis tourists in particular are a “nuisance” in the city.
We can be an open, hospitable and tolerant city, but also a city that makes life difficult for criminals and slows down mass tourism.
Welp, I guess that’s one way to turn Amsterdam into a ghost town. I mean what is this Mayor thinking? So much of Amsterdam’s identity is based around marijuana culture and its coffee shops. Seems very strange they would want to change this now given how well it’s worked for them since the 70s.
Unless, Mayor Halsema is getting ahead of the curve? After all it’s only a matter of time before cannabis is legalised around the rest of Europe, at which point weed tourism in Amsterdam might be dead anyway. So I guess they may as well get used to the idea of losing all the money that they’ve been raking in from these awful tourists for so many years?
In any case, if you’re reading this and were planning a trip to Amsterdam, maybe try somewhere else like Los Angeles or Vancouver for now. Meanwhile, Amsterdam will have to come up with a way to make up for their lost revenue. Will they manage it though? I guess time will tell!
For the mum who tried to blame her sunbed for the noise of the weed farm in her bedroom, click HERE. Busted.