For Europeans it is easy to move to The Netherlands, the European Union and Schengen Zone offer free travel to its citizens. That makes it hassle-free to just move to another country and start a life there. The only rule you have to follow are the rules of departure from your home country or country of present residence and the registration in the new country of residence.
For people planning to stay in The Netherland for more than 4 months, there is a registration policy.
You have to register within 5 working days in the city where you reside. You register at the local government’s GBA at the city hall.
If you are staying less than 4 months you can also register with your current address in your home country. You get a BSN, this number you need for all government contact and taxes. You become a (temporary) resident of The Netherlands. That includes paying taxes and lawfully you have to apply for health insurance at one of the many private insurance companies available.
For people coming from outside the European Union or Schengen Zone, you might need to apply for a Schengen visa. This visa allows you to travel all over the European Union on 1 visa, within 90 days. However, if you wish to work, study or live longer than 90 days in a country in the Schengen zone, you must apply for a visa in the country of your choice. For the Netherlands, you will need a resident permit.
Registration at the city hall always needs to be done in person, so when you travel with a family, every family member has to be present at the registration desk. Even minor children.
For more information on a Schengen Visa click here
Living in The Netherlands
many people dream of living in The Netherlands, especially people from developing countries. In the search for wealth and social securities, they dream of getting rich fast by working in this country where streets seem to be made of gold.
The Netherlands with its welcoming rules seems to be the gateway to heaven. The international atmosphere in the streets and neighborhoods makes assimilation rather easy. And every Dutch citizen speaks English, zo integration is seldom a problem if you are of goodwill. Yet the climate in the Netherlands is changing, too many economic refugees are crossing the borders annually and with high unemployment rates and shrinking social benefits funds the Dutch start to become less and less welcoming to their foreign neighbors.
Another problem new arrivals can face is housing. The waiting time for a house of over 8 years in the cities with the best jobs and the most economical prospects. In Amsterdam, the waiting list for housing is even longer.
Renting a house in the private sector is very expensive due to the shortage of houses in the Netherlands.
Daily life in The Netherlands
Dutch people are very goal orientated, and the 9-5 workforce commutes daily in private or company-owned cars, trains, and busses. The prices for public transport are high compared to other countries. You have to buy an OV-Chipkaart (A public transport-card) and have a threshold amount of money on that card always otherwise you cannot use public transport.
The Netherlands still has summer- and winter-time with the clock moving forward and backward every 6 months. (March and October). Voices are rising more and more to stop this summer-time system. It is said it makes people experience jetlag and makes them sick. Being sick in the Netherlands means 2 days of unpaid sick days.
People in the Netherlands live to work, With a 5 days work week for most of them, they all look forward to the weekends and the annual holidays.
Cost of living in The Netherlands
People live to work not by choice in The Netherlands, they have to work because of the high bills. Water, electricity, and gas, but also internet and TV subscriptions in the Netherlands are high. As is the rent.
Even in the social housing sector. For the poorest, there is a settlement, you have to apply, strict rules apply.
The cost of living in the Netherlands is high, the annual income of an average person in the Netherland before taxes is between 16.000-40.000 euros. Of course, there are people that earn a lot more, but they have specialized professions.
There are also people that earn less than 16.000 Euro’s, they can apply for financial assistance. The rules will decide if you qualify or not.
Lifestyle in The Netherlands
People live to work and everybody always seems to be in a rush, except on the weekends when most people have their days off work. People enjoy sports, walking on the beach when the weather allows, and go for a drink with family and friends.
Not everybody knows a warm circle of family and friends and in The Netherlands there are many lonely people struggling to participate in society.
The Netherlands is very efficient. Time-paths are set for government requests and proposals. And almost everything is listed on the Internet in different languages, this way the government makes all services within reach of all nationalities. The Netherlands is a very accommodating country for immigrants.
Although, like every other country, it has its fair share of bureaucracy, efficiency rules in the goal-orientated society.
Dutch people love riding bicycles, and there are plenty in the Netherlands and come in all sorts and shapes, even to transport children.
The climate in The Netherlands
The Netherlands knows 4 seasons, Spring, Summer, Autumn, and Winter. Due to climate changes the line between the season is not so clear anymore as it was in the past. You can have hot summerlike days in winter and cold rainy days in summer. The average temperature in the Netherland can be around 30ºC on a summer day, any higher people call it a heat-wave. It would not be The Netherlands if there was not an emergency-plan that becomes effective when temperatures rise that high.
In winter temperatures easily drop below zero, especially at night.
The moment that happens the Dutch people en mass start talking about a famous event held every time the frozen lakes and rivers allow: Elf StedenTocht, (11 city-tour) where ice skaters from all over the country come and skate by 11 cities in Friesland, one of the northern provinces.
When living in The Netherlands you could give the Dutch language a try. But be warned, it has a harsh pronunciation and some call it a cold language. It has no passion. But you will find the Dutch very willing to approach you in English and talk back in English even if you try your best Dutch.
If you want to live in the Netherlands permanently and become a Dutch citizen the “Inburgeringscursus” (nationalization test) demands that you learn basic Dutch.
The Ebook “Create your Emigration Profile” Will help you prepare well for your emigration and make your move to another country a success.
Articles about the Netherlands