Public opinion of the Dutch king plummets

Over the course of 2020, the Dutch have lost a lot of confidence in King Willem-Alexander, according to a survey by research agency Ipsos, commissioned by Nieuwsuur.

In April of this year, 76% of Dutch people had trust in their king, but by December this fell to just 47%.

Satisfaction with the king’s performance has also fallen, reports NOS. In April, 67% of the population were very satisfied, and this figure now stands at 51%. Those who are very dissatisfied has risen from 3% to 14%.

A controversial holiday to Greece

A number of things have influenced public opinion of the king this year, including the royal family’s vacation to Greece. This occurred just one week after the cabinet had urged everyone to stay at home as much as possible. A photograph of the royal couple posing with a Greek restaurant owner without masks or observing the 1.5-metre rule caused quite a stir.

It was also revealed that the king had bought a sailing yacht for his holiday worth two million euros, much to the disgruntlement of the Dutch people.

Seeing the controversy that their holiday was causing, the king and his wife returned home early. But when it emerged that two of the princesses had remained in Greece to carry out their vacations, outrage ensued once more.

King Willem-Alexander and Máxima sent out an apology video, acknowledging that they were “not infallible” and that they regretted damaging public confidence in them.

The royals and the coronavirus

Technically, travel to Greece at the time was still allowed since the travel advice was “code yellow”. However, three-quarters of Dutch people think their vacation trip was “unwise”, and almost 70% believe the reputation of the royal family has been damaged as a result of the trip.

Even so, around 40% of Dutch people think the royal couple has shown solidarity with the public, with only 25% thinking this is not the case. People over 55 are especially impressed with the royals’ solidarity with the people.

Regardless, NOS reporter Royal House Kysia Hekster says there is “work to be done” to restore public confidence.

Has your opinion of the royal family changed this year? Let us know in the comments below.

Feature Image: RVD – Erwin Olaf/

Emily Burger
Emily Burger
Emily grew up in South Africa but has also lived in Egypt, the UK, Canada and now the Netherlands. She first came here for her Bachelors in Arts and Culture at Maastricht University and soon fell in love with the land of canals, clogs and cheese. When she's not daydreaming about sci-fi movies or countries yet to explore, you can find her writing for DutchReview.


  1. I’m not a royalist. The king and his family seem likeable. But, like most privileged people, they live in a bubble. King Willem-Alexander and Máxima should burst their bubble and get out more with the people. Remember to wear a mark, social distance, and wash your hands often.


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