For the first time ever, more Netherlands residents traveled to their vacation destination abroad by plane than by car. The number of plane trips increased by 3 percent to 10.1 million last year, while the number of car trips decreased by 3 percent to 10 million, according to figures from the Dutch Tourism Board, NOS reports.
Students and educators at the University of Amsterdam will get an extra vacation week added to their calendar starting with the 2020-2021 academic year. The free week will take place every year at the end of April or early May beginning in 2021.
Travelers guarantee fund SGR opened an emergency number for Dutch travelers who are currently on a vacation booked through Thomas Cook. On Monday evening it was announced that all Thomas Cook Nederland and Neckermann trips scheduled for Tuesday were canceled. Around a thousand Dutch are affected by this, NU.nl reports.
All Dutch flights scheduled for Tuesday on Thomas Cook or Neckermann were scrapped as the parent company continued to deal with severe financial problems. Thomas Cook Group Plc declared bankruptcy early on Monday, and the company assured travelers that those using the Dutch branch of the travel agency would still be able to complete their holidays.
British travel agency Thomas Cook ceased all its activities due to money problems, leaving hundreds of thousands of travelers stranded worldwide. The consequences for Thomas Cook Nederland, which includes Neckermann Reizen, are still unclear, a spokesperson said to NOS.
At least 40 thousand tourists have been affected by TravelBird's money problems, the majority of them are Dutch, according to guarantee fund SGR. The Amsterdam based travel agency filed for deferment of payment last week, newspaper AD reports.
Traffic organization ANWB expects a busy evening rush hour on Friday. Schools in the central and northern regions of the Netherlands are closing for autumn holidays on Friday, and many vacationers are expected to hit the road, ANWB reports.
A quarter of Dutch people will not be going on summer vacation this year, according to the annual Vacation Survey by Nibud. The main reason for staying at home is money, according to the researchers, RTL Nieuws reports.
Around 54 percent of Dutch skipping summer vacation this year, said that they couldn't afford it. Last year 42 percent of those who stayed at home gave expenses as a reason.
Residents of the province of Zeeland spent the least money on vacationing abroad last year, according to data platform Localfocus based on figures from Statistics Netherlands. The average expenditure per Zeeland resident was 697 euros per resident. Noord-Holland residents spent the most money, 902 euros per holiday, NU.nl reports.
Destinations also differed between the two provinces. Zeeland residents preferred to go to Spain. While Noord-Holland residents opted for more expensive holiday countries like Germany and France.
Over 16 percent of Dutch households say they have too little money to go away on holiday one week per year, according to figures from Eurostat. That is well below the European Union average, where 33 percent of households can't afford a vacation, NOS reports.
The Netherlands is ranked 6th on the list of EU whose residents go on holiday most. Sweden counts the most vacationers - only 8 percent of households stay home year round. Luxembourg, Austria and the Scandinavian countries are also above the Netherlands on the list.
Dutch tourists get into increasingly serious accidents with hired scooters while vacationing abroad, according to Eurocross Assistance.
"The injuries reported to us are more serious than a few years ago. Think of a femur fracture, a pelvic fracture and head injury", Nicole Bootsma, head of the Eurocross emergency medical team, said to news wire ANP. Eurocross Assistance is the Dutch alarm center for helping Dutch who get into trouble abroad.
A total of 11 million Dutch are going on summer vacation this year, 3 percent more than last year, according to research by NBTC-Nipo. That means that about 7 in 10 Dutch will be going away on vacation this year, NOS reports.
Most people are going abroad for vacation - nearly 8 million. Like last year France is the most popular destination for Dutch vacationers, with 1.3 million visitors. Spain follows in second place. Greece took a massive leap in popularity and can expect 50 percent more Dutch visitors this summer than last year.
The ongoing political spat between the Netherlands and Turkey resulted in hundreds of Dutch travelers rebooking their vacations to another destination, Arjan Kers, CEO of travel agency TUI Nederland, said to BNR.
"There are now several hundred, most of which found an alternate in Greece or Spain", Kers said, but added that "because a few hundred thousand Dutch annually go to Turkey on holiday, these numbers are not too bad."
The Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs updated its travel advice for Turkey, due to current political tensions between the two countries. The Dutch government does not advise against going to Turkey, but does warn Dutch travelers to watch out for gatherings and avoid public places, ANP reports.
These warnings are on top of the already in place advice of risks in Turkey due to terrorist attacks and political tensions.
Dutch residents went on vacation more often in 2016, though more of them stuck to vacationing in the Netherlands rather than going abroad, according to figures from NBTC NIPO Research. Dutch also paid closer attention to safety last year, avoiding places with terrorism threat or political unrest. Turkey in particular was a place to avoid for the Dutch last year, with visits there decreasing by 30 percent, NOS reports.
The Wadden Sea islands are a very popular holiday destination, especially among the Dutch themselves. Last year 1.3 million tourists found their way to the islands, 80 percent of whom were from the Netherlands, according to figures Statistics Netherlands released on Tuesday.
After years of spending vacation pay to settle debt or replace broke appliances, Dutch people are finally spending it on what it was meant for again this year - going on vacation, according to the National Institute for Budget Information (Nibud)
From this autumn travel agencies' trip information will include data on how much damage consumers' vacations will cause to the climate. Travel industry association ANVR is currently researching how to best make this information available.
A rapidly increasing number of Chinese tourists is visiting the Netherlands. The number of nights Chinese tourists spent in hotels last year increased with 33 percent compared to 2014. Though most foreign tourists visiting the country still come from Germany, Belgium and Britain, according to figures Statistics Netherlands released on Friday.
Travel agencies in the Netherlands area concerned that the terrorist attacks in Brussels on Tuesday will lead to mass cancellations of booked holidays. "The terrorist threat is getting very close for people now. More and more people are afraid to take the plan or the train to go abroad", Frank Oostdam of ANVR said
Holiday bookings to Turkey has taken a dip after the attacks in recent weeks.
An increasing number of Dutch people decide not to go away during the summer holidays because they can't afford it. This year a quarter of Dutch people have opted to rather stay home, in 2012 the figure was 18 percent.
Dutch travellers are being told to avoid the Gambian capital of Banjul after an attempted coup there. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the Netherlands issued the travel warning for Banjul on Tuesday.
With the Dutch summer holiday season expected to kick into gear this weekend, travel association ANWB is predicting heavy traffic around the country. The organisation told newspaper AD they expect people to be disappointed if they plan to leave town tonight thinking they will beat the traffic on Saturday, especially if headed south.