New Amsterdam daily testing rules catch out tourists

The Netherlands do not yet accept the UK’s proof of vaccination for indoor venues

Helen Coffey
Tuesday 28 September 2021 13:33 BST
Amsterdam is a popular city break destination
Amsterdam is a popular city break destination (PA)

Tourists in Amsterdam have been caught out by the Netherlands new rules on daily testing in order to access indoor venues such as attractions, restaurants and bars.

Although the country lifted its previous onerous quarantine restrictions for travellers, it has since introduced stricter on-the-ground rules for visitors.

To enter indoor venues, including museums, galleries and cafés, visitors need to present an access pass to prove they are fully vaccinated or have recovered from Covid-19.

However, the Netherlands currently doesn’t recognise the UK’s NHS Covid Pass for this purpose. It means British tourists must present a negative test to enter establishments.

Tests are free for visitors but only last 24 hours – a daily Covid test is therefore required during a trip, unless travellers are content with staying outside.

Outdoor restaurant terraces, for example, do not require patrons to present a negative test or access pass.

Some tourists in the Dutch capital have already been caught out by the new restrictions, which came into force on 25 September, just after previous mandatory quarantine rules were eased.

“Now they say that you need a QR code. We thought, what?” one foreign couple told Amsterdam broadcaster AT5 about the measures. “They should have made it clearer. We'll have to stay outside. We're stuck outside.”

Another tourist said: “My 24 hours just ended half an hour ago. So I have to get tested again.”

And one visitor to Amsterdam expressed surprise that even the toilet would be off limits.

“Someone told me that I can't go to the toilet if I can't show a coronavirus pass,” he said.

“I didn't have one with me, but I was vaccinated twice. So I was surprised that I couldn't use the toilet.”

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