Dutch Quirk #67: Bring their own food to amusement parks

HomeUltimate List of Dutch QuirksDutch Quirk #67: Bring their own food to amusement parks

The Dutch are known for their overwhelming frugality (or should we say stinginess?) Well, this habit of saving money, combined with their inclination to be prepared may occasionally push a Dutchie to bring their own food wherever they go — even to the amusement park. 🎡

The Dutch seem to have perfected the “we have food at home”-mentality, by making it applicable even outside the home! 

Because who wouldn’t love a boterham (sandwich) when waiting in line to get on a rollercoaster? Fingers crossed they can keep it down after the turbulent ride… 🤞

What is it?

A way of thinking ahead, one may say! Or maybe just another downright stingy thing Dutch people do?

We all get tempted by the smells of some lekker churros, waffles or cotton candy at the amusement park — the important thing for the Dutchies is not to give in to this temptation by having a snack from home instead. 

READ MORE | The guide to 10 thrilling theme parks in the Netherlands

So, be it a frikandelbroodje, an emergency krentenbol, or a simple piece of fruit — it’s getting slapped in a sandwich bag and coming to Efteling! 🎢

Why do they do it?

To save money, of course! 

To be fair, the food at theme parks can be quite overpriced, so it’s definitely an economically wise decision. Bring a homemade boterham, instead of buying a €10 one at the amusement park (which, let’s be honest, probably won’t even taste that good…).

But besides good ol’ Dutch stinginess, there may be other reasons for bringing your own food to the amusement park, such as food preferences or intolerances. 

Read More | The Dairy Dilemma: Lactose Intolerance in the Netherlands

Especially for the vegans among us, bringing food from home may often be the only viable option!

Why is it quirky? 

Considering that most people wouldn’t want to pass up a portion of fresh poffertjes, this Dutch habit may seem unusual to most. After all, many people consider the food at the theme park to be a ‘part of the experience.’ 

At the same time, there is just something inherently schattig (cute) about a Dutch family sitting on a picnic bench sharing a meal they brought from home — while the rest of us are waiting in line to buy overpriced amusement park food. 🤷‍♀️

Should you join in? 

If you need to make smart financial decisions (which means: if you need to save money) — natuurlijk! The entrance to a theme park alone can be quite pricey, so it’s understandable if you would like to save some money on food and drinks.

But if you can’t pass up a sweet treat, maybe it’s enough to find a middle ground and just bring a drink from home! 🧃

What do you think of this Dutch quirk? Have you experienced it? Tell us in the comments below!

Editor’s Note: This article was initially published in December 2022, and was fully updated in September 2023 for your reading pleasure.

Feature Image:Depositphotos
Lyna Meyrer 🇱🇺
Lyna Meyrer 🇱🇺
Say 'hoi' to Lyna, our Senior Writer at DutchReview! Fueled by a love for writing, social media, and all things Dutch, she joined the DR family in 2022. Since making the Netherlands her home in 2018, she has collected a BA in English Literature & Society (Hons.) and an RMA in Arts, Literature and Media (Hons.). Even though she grew up just a few hours away from the Netherlands, Lyna remains captivated by the guttural language, quirky culture, and questionable foods that make the Netherlands so wonderfully Dutch.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

More Dutch quirks