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Amsterdam is prohibiting cruise ships in an effort to reduce overtourism.

As part of its latest effort to curb overtourism, Amsterdam’s city council has approved a proposal to ban “polluting” cruise ships.

The council in Amsterdam approved a proposal to close the city’s cruise ship terminal on Thursday, according to a spokesperson for Deputy Mayor Hester van Buren, who is responsible for the port.

On Thursday, councilmembers from the center-left D66 party issued a statement calling the proposal “adopted with a clear majority.”

According to van Buren’s spokesman, the city of Amsterdam will now look into how to put the proposal into action. The North Sea Canal’s management, other canal city councils, and the Dutch government will all be consulted.

In the statement, D66 party chairperson Ilana Rooderkerk highlighted that polluting cruise ships do not match with Amsterdam’s ecological aims.

“The presence of cruise ships in the city center is incompatible with Amsterdam’s aim of reducing the number of tourists,” Rooderkerk added.

This year, more than 18 million overnight visitors are anticipated in Amsterdam. This figure could reach 23 million by the year 2025, with another 24 million to 25 million day visits added on top of that. In accordance with a 2021 ordinance titled Amsterdam Tourism in Balance, the council is required to intervene when the number of overnight visitors exceeds 18 million.

Earlier this year, the city launched a campaign rethinking its attitude to tourism, notably incorporating methods geared expressly to deter British tourists on stag parties.

The “Stay Away” web campaign targeted young British men (18–35) who were planned a trip to Amsterdam with the intention of “going wild,” i.e., binge drinking, drug use, and antisocial behavior.

This year, Amsterdam also announced it would prohibit the use of marijuana on the street and adopt new measures to discourage the consumption of alcohol in its red light district.

As part of its goal to “limit tourism and prevent nuisance,” Amsterdam wants to end river cruises, turn hotels into offices, and close pubs and clubs earlier.

However, it is unlikely that the city center will become a cruise-free zone in the near future, according to a spokesperson for the deputy mayor, who acknowledged that the proposal will “take some time” to implement.

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