Economy

Amsterdam introduces beer bike ban after residents complain about drunk tourists

Amsterdam introduces beer bike ban after residents complain about drunk tourists”

The "beer bike", a 12-seat rolling bar popular among partying tourists in Amsterdam, is no longer welcome along the city's picturesque canals.

Beer bikes are popular with tourists, especially those visiting for hen or stag parties to which special packages are often promoted by tour operators. They complained the beer bikes blocked roads and cycling lanes and encouraged drunk and unruly tourists.

"The combination of traffic disruptions, anti-social behavior and the busy city center justifies a ban", the court said during the ruling. Passengers sit around a table on stools fitted with pedals and ride while gulping down beer and other drinks.

Following his decision, however, four beer bike operators appealed the ban in court a year ago, accusing the city of "imposing on people's freedom". A resident reportedly said Amsterdam "has become a giant attraction park" with the flood of tourists heading to the city each year, according to the BBC.

The beer bikes have become a "terrible phenomenon" in Amsterdam. Judges struck down the ban at the time, arguing that it was not properly motivated.

In Tuesday's ruling, however, the judges agreed that problems caused by the beer bike including shouting, public drunkenness and lewd behaviour such as urinating in public were causes for the beer bike to be no more. The court approved the ban so the bikes would "stop ... being a nuisance".

In the past decade, the number of people visiting Amsterdam has increased by 64%, with a record 18 million tourists travelling to the city of 850,000 residents a year ago.



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