Shop in heavenly peace using a web app
Avoid the Shopping Crowds is a very simple web app to avoid the madding crowds during holiday shopping in Amsterdam. However, it only takes into account the main shopping areas: downtown, the ‘9 straatjes’ area, South, and the Arena shopping mall.
Downtown is always kind of busy, as it is also full of tourists all year round, while the ‘9 straatjes’ is full of locals trying to avoid downtown. South is quite spread out, but has its busy moments, and the Arena shopping mall, somewhat out of town, should be avoided at all costs when there’s a football match going on.
“Most people don’t have the luxury to go shopping when nobody else does,” app builders THEY (that’s their name) claim.
I disagree: there are enough part-time working women (75% of all working Dutch women!), stay-at-home parents (mostly moms), unemployed, students with free periods, pensioners, tourists and self-employed to make me stress out during the day as well, never mind anyone in these categories coming from outside the city. In fact, it often feels like nobody works and everybody has busloads of disposable income.
Here’s what the Haarlemmerdijk (slightly out of downtown) looked like in 2008 during Christmas. The clincher is the traffic trying to get by the delivery trucks and all blocking the road. And it is a great shopping street.