Ignoring the rules: many Dutch café owners say they won’t check coronavirus passes

On September 25, new rules will come into effect in which cafés and restaurants will need to check their patron’s coronavirus passes. However, dozens of Dutch café owners have announced that they will not do this, as they don’t want to exclude people.

At the most recent press conference, it was announced that as of September 25, the requirement to maintain a 1.5-metre distance will be dropped. However, this is due to be replaced by the condition that catering and other entertainment venues check their customer’s coronavirus pass (proof of recovery, vaccination, negative test) at the entrance.

From the minute these plans were leaked, there’s been backlash from the catering industry. Owners have cited concerns over the additional time pressure that checking each guest’s coronavirus pass would add, and the fact that they don’t want to exclude people, RTL Nieuws reports.

Loyalty and financial implications

Tanita van Ham, the owner of Grand Café de Polderei in Anna Paulowna, says that she doesn’t want to turn away guests who don’t have their coronavirus pass because it doesn’t feel good.

She adds that “They are our regular guests, who have always supported us during the coronavirus crisis, who came to pick up food when we were not allowed to open. And I should refuse them access?” This is a dilemma. 🤔

Of course money talks, and there are also financial considerations. 🤑 According to Van Ham, “Some of our regular guests have not been vaccinated, but they bring in a few hundred euros per week.” She says that “We just can’t afford to lose that money.”

Other plans to ignore the rules

According to a Google Doc that’s floating around on social media, more than 600 restaurants and cafés also intend not to check people’s coronavirus passes — eek!

There’s even a new platform where establishments that will flout the government’s rule by not checking people’s coronavirus pass can register. The Keuze Vrij Bij Mij platform says that so far more than 200 catering and tourism venues have registered.

Will they be fined?

According to RTL Nieuws, most major cities will start to do random spot checks for compliance in the near future. However, the likelihood that these cafés will be fined is not very high for the time being.  

READ MORE | Simply not possible: Amsterdam will not ask everyone for corona pass, mayor confirms

What are your thoughts on cafés ignoring the regulations and not checking people’s coronavirus passes? Tell us in the comments below!

Feature Image: photoweges/Depositphotos

Jen Lorimer 🇿🇼
An avid tea drinker, Jen was born and raised in Zimbabwe. She moved to Utrecht in 2017 to pursue her history degree. She loves people-watching, canoeing the Utrecht canals, and observing how the Dutch come alive in summer. Having been traumatised by a Dutch circle party, Jen wants to help equip other internationals with tips and tricks to survive and thrive in this wonderful flat country.


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