The blog

Tourism: the Press and the Perspective

Our nation's largest newspaper by circulation will soon run out of synonyms for the impact of tourists on the Dutch capital. A characteristically subtle headline, Holland is getting Stuffed, precedes a 100-word article, that including some of our favorite words. Inundated, busy, full-on, a massive open air museum, masses of tourists, growing numbers of Chinese, chockfull as well as our favorite: hordes of tourists.

At weCity we think we could distinguish a slightly different situation. We don't hear a lot of folks in the Big Apple complain about the $40B tourism brings into their island. The ratio of Amsterdam's inhabitant-to-tourists-in town is similar to Manhattan. Amsterdam's hotels hosted 11 million nights and Manhattan 30 million. Our capital has 800k inhabitants and Manhattan stands at three times that: 2,5M.

We all know that tourism creates a city that's rich and varied, a testament of which is the highest ratio of restaurants per inhabitant: 14 per 10,000. So, of course we're talking to the Municipality about all the opportunities tourism offers and the digital solutions we think we have found for some of the most pressing challenges.

But let's put it all in yet another perspective…. This website shows that agglomeration of Amsterdam is not that different from other tourist cities. We can't get enough of looking at Paris. But it's interesting to see that the City of Lights Intra Muros, so within the Péripherique, is pretty much the same size as Amsterdam within the A10 Ring…

Do we ever hear anyone claim Paris is turning into a Venice? Paris receives some 32 Million international visitors, against Amsterdam's 7. Actually Paris has already received 8 million visitors this year, and counting.

So there might just be some room. If only every tourist would have an iPhone….