IamExpat's top 10 news stories from 2020
Well, 2020 has felt approximately 92 months long, and so much has happened over the past 12 months it has certainly kept all the editors here at IamExpat very busy. While coronavirus might have dominated national (and global) headlines, the pandemic isn’t the only thing that happened this year.
So, what stories did you enjoy reading the most this year? What events and headlines captured your attention? Here are IamExpat’s top - and your favourite! - news stories from 2020.
1. Monster storm Ciara to hit the Netherlands this weekend
Cast your mind back to February when the Netherlands was hit by the first storm of 2020 - storm Ciara. You were all eager to read about the oncoming " monster storm" and prepare for a weekend of crazy weather.
2. Netherlands ranked as one of the worst countries for making friends
This one caused quite a few disagreements, as a lot of you weren't quite sure whether or not you agreed with the ranking that named the Netherlands as one of the worst countries in the world for making friends. What has your experience been like as an expat in the Netherlands - have you struggled to make friends?
3. Half of Dutch coronavirus intensive care patients are under 50
In March, just as COVID-19 was starting to spread throughout the Netherlands and the Dutch government was announcing the first coronavirus measures, a study conducted by the Dutch Association for Intensive Care (NVIC) revealed news that shocked many: half of the 96 people who were being treated in intensive care were under the age of 50.
4. Very real risk of coronavirus in the Netherlands
Yes, more coronavirus news! After months of daily updates and measures, it's strange to think back to a time when many still believed the virus wouldn't make it to the Netherlands. But in February, experts were starting to prepare for outbreak of the virus after the first case was confirmed in Tilburg.
5. Coronavirus update: 3 dead in the Netherlands
The same week that saw Prime Minister Mark Rutte give a press conference and announce the first phase of national coronavirus measures also saw some of the earliest confirmed deaths from the virus. On March 9, the National Institute for Public Health and Environment (RIVM) said there were 321 patients infected with the virus in the Netherlands, and that three of those had sadly died.
6. Amazon is finally expanding its services in the Netherlands
On a completely different note, way back in January Amazon finally announced they were expanding their services in the Netherlands. Perfect timing really - just in time for the shops to close in March! 2020 has really been the year of online shopping!
7. Virtual tours: Keukenhof is bringing its world-famous garden online
For many, visiting Keukenhof in the spring is one of the highlights of the year, and a sure-fire way to imbue your life with a little bit of joy and colour. Coronavirus meant we couldn't flock to see the flowers in real life, but luckily footage was released online that allowed fans all around the world to get a glimpse of what the park had planned for the 2020 season. Watch the video here!
8. Seven Dutch universities in top 100 of THE World Rankings 2021
Who doesn't love a good ranking? Whether it's about cities, family life, or universities, you guys clearly go mad for them. In September, you all loved finding out how Dutch universities had performed the best in the Times Higer Education 2021 rankings. How did your alma mater do?
9. The most popular baby names of 2019 in the Netherlands
Ahh, babies! Right at the start of this incredibly long year, we told you what the most popular baby names of 2019 were - and you loved reading about them! Any guesses for the top picks of 2020? How many children will have to go through life with a coronavirus-related name thanks to the events of this year?
10. These are the most popular places to live in the Netherlands
And last but definitely not least, we have another ranking! Perhaps not a particularly surprising winner, but in February Amsterdam was selected as the most popular place to live in the Netherlands. What's your favourite Dutch city? Did it make it into the top 10?