Amsterdam – The tourism associations of Amsterdam and the Netherlands announced Monday they were jointly promoting tourism in wake of the economic crisis.
The two associations and a number of Amsterdam hotels launched a special promotion offering a total of 1,001 free hotel nights to tourists this Spring.
Therese Adriaans, spokeswoman of the Dutch tourism association NBTC, one of the initiators of the promotion, told the German Press Agency dpa that tourism in the Netherlands dropped by 8 per cent in 2008 from just over 11 to 10.1 million foreign tourists.
The drop was ‘substantial’, particularly considering that tourism had been increasing steadily since 2003.
The Amsterdam tourism bureau ATBC and the NBTC are financing the special promotion, with participating hotels paying for the free nights.
Tourists are entitled to one free hotel night per person, to be booked between Monday and June 30. The overnight stay can take place anytime between May 18 and July 31.
Adriaans said that, just hours after its launch, many rooms had already been booked. ‘The two websites www.iamsterdam.com and www.holland.com from where the rooms can be booked, were down twice this morning,’ she said.