Amsterdam plans to ban tourists from cannabis coffee shops

Posted on 14 January 2021

Amsterdam is known for being one of Europe’s top destinations for tourists, and it’s easy to see why. Aside from the countless museums, canals, and beautiful architecture, the city is known for having a large number of cannabis coffee shops open to tourists and locals alike.

Amsterdam plans to ban tourists from cannabis coffee shops

Coffee shops serving cannabis in Amsterdam might soon be off limits to tourists.

Now, it looks as though tourists could soon be banned from the famous coffee shops as a way to discourage organised crime and cut back on drugs in the tourism sector. According to The Guardian, Amsterdam’s mayor Femke Halsema, has presented a proposal that will only allow Dutch residents to enter the cities cannabis-selling coffee shops. The new proposal is rumoured to go into effect in 2022.

The reason the new proposal would only come into effect next year is because there would need to be a period of consultation and transition for coffee shop owners. The city is also looking to introduce a hallmark scheme for approved vendors, which could take some time.

‘Amsterdam is an international city and we wish to attract tourists – but for its richness, its beauty and its cultural institutions,’ Halsema told The Guardian. She then went on to say that the city’s cannabis market was simply too big and that it had unwelcomed links to organised crime.

According to Government research, 58% of foreign tourists who visit Amsterdam come for the coffee shops. Another study found that the number of coffee could decrease to fewer than 70 if only locals were allowed to be served. For comparison, there are currently 166 active cannabis coffee shops in the city.

The sale and use of cannabis is technically illegal in the Netherlands for possession of fewer than five grams. This law came into effect under the ‘tolerance policy‘ in 1976. Production remains illegal but the coffee shops are allowed to sell it.


Picture: Pixabay

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