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Amsterdam Coronavirus (COVID-19) Rules

Amsterdam is a Coronavirus Hotspot

Throughout the Netherlands many people no longer closely adhere to the basic anti-corona rules that have been in place since the end of March. As a result, the number of coronavirus infections has been steadily on the rise.

Amsterdam is one of the hotspots when it comes to the number of new COVID-19 infections.

Amsterdam-Amstelland Safety Region

The Netherlands is divided in 25 safety regions.

A safety region is an area in which public services and boards cooperate. Disaster- and crisis management teams, fire brigades, medical services, et cetera, coordinate their response to public order and safety issues.

Amsterdam is part of the safety region Amsterdam-Amstelland.

New corona measures in the Amsterdam-Amstelland Safety Region

A strong increase in the number of coronavirus infections is taking in 6 safety regions. The number of coronavirus related hospital admissions is also increasing. 

The government has therefore classified these safety regions, including the Amsterdam-Amstelland safety region, in the category ‘worrisome’ (level 2).

The following measures are in effect since September 20:

  • Horeca establishments must stop admitting guests at midnight. At that time, music – live or not – must cease as well. The establishment must close at 1:00 a.m. (Horeca is a Dutch term for the hotel- and food service industry: Hotels, Restaurants, and Catering).
  • Group meetings may not include more than 50 people. Exceptions can be made for funerals, religious gatherings, and licensed demonstrations.
  • Enforcement- and police officers continue to carry out targeted checks at places where people gather. They will check whether or not the national and local counter-corona rules are observed.
  • In order to combat illegal parties rural parks and nature reserves are off-limit after sundown.

By the way, throughout the Netherlands people are expected to entertain no more than six guests at a time in their homes.

Basic COVID-19 Rules in the Netherlands

  • Avoid crowds
  • Work from home if at all possible
  • Keep a distance of 1,5 metres (5 feet) between yourself and others (except if they are members of your household)
  • If you have any health issues, such as a cold or flu, stay at home. If you are short of breath and/or have a fever other members of your household must also stay at home.
  • Cough or sneeze into the inside of your elbow. Use paper tissues and toss them into a bin right-away.
  • Wash your hands

Additional rules:

  • Don’t shake hands, hug, or kiss with non-family members
  • When traveling on public transport, wearing a (non-medical) face mask is mandatory.
Ferry passengers in Amsterdam wearing face masks
When traveling by public transport in Amsterdam, face masks are mandatory. People who do not wear one, or who wear their mask incorrectly, risk a €95 fine. Shown in this photo by Rinke Dohmen are people traveling on one of Amsterdam’s free ferries across the river IJ.

Amsterdam: Everything’s Open, But Restrictions Apply

Shops, cinemas, theaters, museums, bar and restaurants, canal tour boats… you name it, and for the most part in Amsterdam it’s (almost) business as usual.

Of course, some restrictions apply. Museums, for instance, allow far fewer people than usual to visit at any given time. You’ll have to purchase timed-entry tickets in advance. (That’s good practice even in non-corona times).

Most restaurants work with reserved seating only. And many smaller establishments have switched to home delivery.

Oh, and there are great hotel deals right now.


This article was first published on August 24, 2020. It was last updated on September 23, 2020.


See also: No More Overtourism, for now

The coronavirus pandemic has stopped Amsterdam’s overtourism problem in its tracks. Many Amsterdammers rejoice about that.

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Last updated: Wednesday, September 23, 2020 at 4:49 PM, Central European Time (CET)   
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