Amsterdam’s Van Gogh Museum halts Pokémon card giveaway due to safety concerns
The Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam has discontinued its Pokémon promotional card giveaway, citing concerns for the safety and security of visitors and staff.
Last month, The Pokémon Company faced backlash after scalpers disrupted a planned collaboration with the museum, resulting in a range of unique Pokémon x Van Gogh merchandise being made available.
Initial availability of the merchandise led to massive crowds swarming the museum, with videos on social media showing people grabbing items. Reports also indicated that many individuals boasted about reselling the items for profit.
One of the promotional cards, the “Pikachu with Grey Felt Hat”, was given to customers for free with any purchase. However, it quickly appeared in large numbers on auction sites with prices exceeding $500.
On Friday, the Van Gogh Museum announced the discontinuation of the card giveaway due to safety concerns.
“The Van Gogh Museum and The Pokémon Company International prioritize the safety and security of our visitors and staff,” stated the museum in a press release.
“Recently, a small group of individuals created an undesirable situation that has led us to make the difficult decision of removing the Pikachu with Grey Felt Hat promo card from the museum.
As a result, visitors can now enjoy the special collection of Pokémon paintings and the rest of the museum in a safe and pleasant environment.”
However, there will be another opportunity to obtain the Pikachu with Grey Felt Hat promo card through Pokémon Center (United Kingdom, United States, and Canada), and the card will also be reintroduced in participating retailers in the Netherlands early next year. It will not be available at the Van Gogh Museum.