Eurovision 2020: A tale of two cities: Rotterdam vs Maastricht

by Sanjay (Sergio) Jiandani 2,551 views

The 2020 Eurovision Host City will be unveiled in a little less than a month, two cities remain in the race, Rotterdam and Maastricht. Both cities have brought very strong bids to the table and will be battling for the right to host the 2020 Eurovision Song Contest in the Netherlands next year. All in all it’s a tale of two cities! Let’s check out their potential venues and bids.

A tale of two cities: Maastricht vs Rotterdam

Nine cities applied to host the 2020 Eurovision Song Contest, but only five cities officially submitted their bids to Dutch public broadcaster NPO. Herafter the 2020 ESC Committee shorlisted the candidate cities from five to two, with Rotterdam and Maastricht making it to the final round.

Both Rotterdam and Maastricht have worked very hard on their respective bids in their quest to bring the coveted contest on home soil.


Rotterdam skyline

The port city of Rotterdam is a hot favourite to host Eurovision 2020 at the Rotterdam Ahoy. Rotterdam is not new to Eurovision events, as it played host to the Junior Eurovision Song Contest in 2007.

Rotterdam is the second largest city in the Netherlands and is a major economic and logistic centre in the country.

The city boasts of the largest port of Europe and is celebrated for its majectic skyline consisting of modern sky- scrapers and unique architecture.


Rotterdam too has an excellent transport system connecting the city, an international airport (Rotterdam The Hague Airport) with direct connections to most European cities and a large number of hotel rooms. Visitors can also reach Rotterdam easily via the Schiphol International Airport in Amsterdam, which is only a 30 minute train ride away.

About Rotterdam Ahoy

Rotterdam Ahoy (Photo credit:

The Rotterdam Ahoy is located in the heart of Rotterdam and opened its doors in 1971. The venue can house circa 15,000 spectators during a concert. The venue has hosted numerous large scale concerts in recent years: Lady Gaga, Queen, Shakira, Kylie Minogue, Gloria Estefan, U2, Mariah Carey, Britney Spears etc.

Rotterdam’s bid

Rotterdam officially submits its Eurovision 2020 bid to NPO ( Photo credit: NPO)

The province of South Holland supports the candidacy of Rotterdam and is set to make a contribution of a million euros. Rotterdam has set a budget of 15 million euros in order to host the event. Rotterdam has blocked 3,000 hotel rooms in the city in order to host the competition.

The City of Rotterdam is also backed by Dutch Eurovision winners Duncan Laurence and Getty Kaspers (Teach In). Both The Hague and Breda have offered their assistance and help to Rotterdam if the city get to host the competition next year . The Hague has offered to hold side events and its hotels in order to accommodate the masses of visitors who are expected to arrive in the Netherlands for the competition.

Rotterdam is aiming to host the competition with the Rotterdam for Real slogan.



Maastricht is determined to welcome the Eurovision Song Contest next year with a very strong bid. The city is very enthusiastic to host the song contest and is working from strength to strength to bring Europe’s favourite television show home.

Maastricht is the capital of Limburg and is located in the south east of the Netherlands. The city is a 90 minutes ride from Brussels and Cologne. It has a small aiport (Maastricht Aachen Airport) operating flights to a few international destinations.

The Treaty of Maastricht was signed on 7 February 1992 in Maastricht, serving to officially establish the European Union.

MECC Maastricht

MECC Maastricht (Maastricht)

The MECC Maastricht is located in the center of the city, a 5 minute walk from Maastricht-Randwyck train station and a stone’s throw away from Maastricht Central Station. The venue is easily reachable from various Dutch and European airports: Amsterdam Schiphol International Airport, Eindhoven Airport, Cologne-Bonn Airport, Dusseldorf Airport, Brussels Charleroi Airport,  Brussels Zaventem Airport.

MECC Maastrich plan (Photo credit: MECC Maastricht)

Maastricht’s bid

Maastricht’s Eurovision 2020 Candidate City

Maastricht has worked worked very hard on its Eurovision bid, launching a massive campaign lobbying for hosting the event next year.

The City of Maastricht has built up a very impressive bid to host the competition having secured 3,000 hotel rooms and offering a hefty financial contribution in order to host the event.  The capital of Limburg has the full backing of its municipality and the region of Limburg.

Maastricht is aiming to host the 2020 Eurovision Song Contest with the slogan Come Closer!

The 2020 Eurovision Host City is expected to be unveiled on Friday 30 August.