April 1 has come and gone, and we’ve witnessed some pretty funny jokes from a few of our favourite Dutch companies that we think deserve some more love. Here are some of the funniest April Fools’ pranks and jokes from Dutch companies in 2024.

You’ve heard of the Smart Doorbell, now get ready for the Stupid Doorbell

In a critique of modern-day technology, the civil rights group Bits of Freedom announced plans to distribute “stupid doorbells” from April 1. Instead of the well-known Smart Doorbells – with cameras and microphones that record people passing by and those who call in at your home – the company wants to bring back the good old regular doorbell. 

“No camera. No voice function. No surveillance,” BoF writes on its website. The company wanted to use their joke to draw the Dutch public’s attention to the 1,2 million smart doorbells that surveil many of the country’s homes

Housing association in the Hague hits out at long waiting lists for social housing

This one might hit a little close to home for some of us, but Housing Association Staedion in The Hague ran a “temporary promotion” where people could register their newborn baby on the waiting list for social housing on April 1, so that by the time they are an adult they will be able to qualify for social housing.

The organisation said that they wanted to run an “April Fools’ Day joke with a serious message” about the length of waiting times for social housing and the gravity of the Netherlands’ nationwide housing crisis, especially for people on low incomes. 

ProRail asking for volunteers to change the clocks in Dutch train stations

Another great joke came from the Netherlands’ rail infrastructure provider ProRail, who asked for volunteers to go around the country’s train stations changing the clocks to Dutch summertime as the clocks went forward during the Easter weekend. 

ProRail’s rail manager received many volunteering applications from those wanting to change the clocks. Their response? “We fooled you,” ProRail wrote on Instagram. “But hey, we really appreciate your enthusiasm and willingness to help.”

AI flights without pilots and crew and AI bankers

An airline ticket seller came up with a novel idea for 2024 that might terrify some fliers, even if it is just a joke – AI flights that are able to operate without a human pilot or any cabin crew on board. 

Scared of AI’s capabilities? Then you’re probably also not going to like the Banking Disciplinary Foundation’s idea to give their AI chatbot – Chazia Chatbot – the ability to take the banking oath.  “Now that chatbots have acquired their own place within the banking sector, it is more than logical that they too can take the banker’s oath,” the organisation stated.  

Dominos’ “Just Crusts” on the menu

For foodies, April Fools’ Day is also a fun time. Pizza chain Dominos celebrated the day with the launch of “Just Crusts”, a box of only pizza crusts for those who really love to chomp on the chewy edges of their favourite pizza. They even shared an image of a box full of just crusts and dipping sauce on the company’s Instagram page to commemorate the occasion, before letting fans know that the whole thing was just a prank. 

Mayonnaise liqueur???

There really is no logical explanation for this one but it made us chuckle a lot – a Zaanse mayonnaise x Gall & Gall April Fools’ collaboration has us in tears of laughter after the companies launched their joint venture: Zaanse mayonnaise liqueur – a combination of alcohol and mayonnaise – who wouldn’t want to dip a frikandel in that?!

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