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Amsterdam launches ‘Stay Away’ campaign for drinking Brits

The city council of Amsterdam will launch a digital campaign this week designed to deter “nuisance tourists” planning on visiting the location for boozy weekends.

Targeting British men aged 18-35, Amsterdam’s ‘Stay Away’ initiative will pop up online anytime someone searches terms such as ‘pub crawl Amsterdam’ and ‘stag party Amsterdam”.

Phrases such as ‘cheap hotel Amsterdam’ will also prompt the video campaign to appear, which takes the form of two separate pieces of film. One shows footage of drunk male youths smashing glasses and shouting at police before being arrested.

Viewers are presented with an equation to consider at the end of the video, with overlaid text reading:

“Coming to Amsterdam for a messy night and getting trashed = € 140 fine + criminal record = fewer prospects.”

A second video shows an unconscious man being taken away in an ambulance after overdosing on drugs.

Text that appears over the bleak scene reads:

“Lose control = hospital trip + permanent health damage = worried family.”

Both videos end with the stark words “Stay away”.

The campaign is the first step in a long-term plan to clean up Amsterdam’s streets and reduce tourism in the city to below 10 million overnights stays per year. Brits are considered by the local government to be among the key offenders when it comes to antisocial behaviour, with drunk and disorderly groups causing havoc in the popular European destination.

“Visitors will remain welcome, but not if they misbehave and cause nuisance,” said Sofyan Mbarki, Amsterdam’s deputy mayor who is responsible for tourism in the city.

“In that case, we as a city will say – rather not, stay away.”

The drinks business has reached out to Heineken to learn whether the Dutch brewer is likely to take a hit on beer sales in light of the city’s campaign.

Its brewery, based in the heart of Amsterdam, invites visitors to participate in the Heineken Experience, a tour which includes two beers in the € 21 ticket price, plus an extra beer if guests wish to access its rooftop bar.


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