Dutch Festival Market Grows

Amsterdam may have reached the point of saturation, as the total number of festivals in the Netherlands increased by 4.5 percent to 837 in total in 2015, according to a report by Holland’s two main live entertainment associations, VVEM and VNPF.

More than 23 million people visited those events, which marks a new record as well as a 2.7 percent increase compared with 2014. The majority of events – 68 percent or 572 in numbers – were music festivals. They attracted a combined 14.4 million people, 63 percent of total visitors. The amount of money visitors spent at music festivals in 2015 increased by 9 percent to euro 513 million, or 76 percent of total festival expenditures. The average amount guests at music festivals spent was euro 37.

The number of art and cultural festivals in the capital Amsterdam decreased by one, suggesting that the market reached the point of saturation. The remaining country, however, especially the north, is still experiencing growth. Towns like Alkmaar, Haarlem and Zaanstad seem to benefit from the fact that Amsterdam has reached its festival peak, the report reads. For the third time in a row, Amsterdam Dance Event emerges as the leader in terms of size. It attracted 365,000 visitors to its 20th edition, Oct. 14-18. The International Film Festival Rotterdam (302,000) and Amsterdam’s IDFA film festival (255,000) came in second and third.