• Welcome Expatriate!

    The Expat Guide Netherlands is created especially for expatriates who are relocating to Holland and works pretty easy, use navigation above to explore our expat guide. We hope you can use our guide as a guideline to help your moving to the Netherlands easier and more enjoyable. The guide is a work in progress and is updated daily.

  • Some questions answered

    Is speaking Dutch a necessity in The Netherlands?
    The answer is no. Almost all the dutch speak English and will not be offended when approached in English.
    Good place for my children?
    Dutch children rated the happiest in Europe and North America

    Quality of life?
    Other expats gave the quality of life in Amsterdam an average score of 8 out of 10

Moving to The Netherlands

New to Holland? In our guide Moving to the Netherlands : Quick checklist for moving to The Netherlands. We explore Immigration, Housing, Taxation, Learning Dutch, Schools, Jobs and more. Read more.


Register with the GBA (gemeentelijke basisadministratie persoonsgegevens) at your local town hall within five days of arrival, and make an appointment with the IND for a residence permit, if you need one. Make sure your documents have all the right stamps. Read more in our Immigration section.


Finding a home, renting or buying? In our Housing section we explore tax benefits due to savings and tax regulations in the Netherlands when buying a home. For assignments of less than three years, in the current market, it is usually better to rent.

Dutch bank account

There are several global banks in The Netherlands (ING/ABN AMRO/RABOBANK). After choosing a bank in the Netherlands you'll need to go along with your passport and/or residence permit and BSN (Burgerservicenummer), proof of address (for instance bevolkingsregister extract, utility bill, rental contract). Read more in our Banking section.

Health Insurance

A basic health insurance policy is compulsory in the Netherlands, and if you own a car, you must have liability insurance for it. In the Netherlands, insurances can be obtained at your bank, as well as other companies and organizations. Please consider beforehand which voluntary insurances are necessary in your particular situation. Read more in our Insurance section.


The Dutch government aims to create an attractive environment and welcomes knowledge workers and talent from abroad. The Netherlands is on the international list of most attractive countries to do business with. However, administrative hurdles and bureaucracy need to be targeted to make access to our country a reality. In our Taxation section we explore more.


Schools in the Netherlands offer high-quality education. The philosophy behind Dutch education reflects Dutch society and aims to encourage students to be open-minded, and able to think and learn in a creative manner. Children have to go to school from age 5 to age 16. Learn more in our Education section.


Our community writes about all aspects regarding moving to The Netherlands, meeting new people, exploring the culture, learning the language and so much more. If you want to contribute, visit our Blog page.

Welcome to the Netherlands: Psychology tips for newcomers

Whatever your reason for moving to the Netherlands, there was a moment when you decided to overcome your doubts, change your life and become a cell of the Dutch society. Taking this step, whether or not you feel excited about it, means that you have some hopes and expectations.

In the beginning, you see, as most people do, this life change with the eyes of a tourist. This means you are eager to explore this new place and you are curious about the dutch way of life. You may feel relieved to find out almost everybody speaks English and think that life here may not be as hard as you...
Read more
Moving to Amsterdam
Expats moving to Amsterdam will find everything within reach, culture, fun, sports, star restaurants, two universities and very impressive architecture. Everything in reach with your bike, public transport or when it's raining by taxi. The local Amsterdammer is direct, funny and speaks fluent English. Amsterdam once again ranks among the top 10 hottest European destinations to visit in 2013. Learn about all topics regarding your move to Amsterdam by using green navigation links above.

Quick links
Rental Agencies in Amsterdam
Dutch Language Schools in Amsterdam
City website
Moving to The Hague
Expats moving to The Hague will live in a city which houses 150 international organisations. The Hague is known for seating of the Dutch government and parliament, the Supreme Court, and the Council of State, the International Court of Justice and the International Criminal Court, which makes The Hague one of the major cities hosting the United Nations, along with New York, Vienna and Geneva. The Hague offers great beaches, culture, shopping and amazing nightlife.

Quick links
Rental Agencies in The Hague
Dutch Language Schools in The Hague
City website
Moving to Rotterdam
Expats moving to Rotterdam will live in a city with great history, architecture, culture and night life. Be sure to visit a game of Feyenoord to experience the real "Rotterdam" feeling. Rotterdam is located in the province of South Holland with a population of around 600.000. The city has grown into a major international commercial centre and one of the largest ports in the world. Locals are known as hard workers and loyal.

Quick links
Rental Agencies in Rotterdam
Dutch Language Schools in Rotterdam
City website

Moving to Utrecht
Expats moving to Utrecht will live in a city which features many buildings and structures from the Early Middle Ages. It's the fourth largest city of the Netherlands, with a population just above 320,000. Utrecht is host to Utrecht University, the largest university of the Netherlands. The city has the second highest number of cultural events in the Netherlands, after Amsterdam.

Quick links
Rental Agencies in Utrecht
Dutch Language Schools in Utrecht
City website
Moving to Amstelveen
Expat moving to Amstelveen will live in a suburban part of the metropolitan area of Amsterdam. Amstelveen has about 80,000 inhabitants. It's a very friendly town with several great restaurants, nice shopping in Stadshart and sports in Amsterdamse Bos. It's great for families who want to live in quit surroundings but with a great city and airport nearby (Shiphol).

Quick links
Rental Agencies in Amstelveen
Dutch Language Schools in Amstelveen
City website
Moving to Alkmaar / Bergen
Alkmaar is a nice medium sized city in the province of North Holland. Alkmaar has about 105,000 inhabitants. It is the third largest city in North-Holland, after Amsterdam and Haarlem. Alkmaar has a historic downtown with 399 national monuments and 700 municipal monuments. The city is known as "the cheese town". A cozy beautiful city and a great place to live.

Quick links
Rental Agencies in Alkmaar
European School Bergen
City website
Moving to Delft
Expats moving to Delft will live in a historic town centre with canals, also known for the painter Vermeer, Delft Blue pottery , the Delft University of Technology, and its association with the Dutch royal family, the House of Orange-Nassau. A local is called Delftenaar.

Quick links
Rental Agencies in Delft
Dutch Language Schools in Delft
City website
Moving to Haarlem
Expats moving to Haarlem will live in a city with a population of around 155.000. It's located 6 km from the beach (Bloemendaal / Zandvoort), 20 km from Amsterdam and 15 km of Schiphol. With several museums (Teylers Museum and Frans Hals Museum). The city contains several theatres, cinemas and other cultural attractions (apart from the museums). The Philharmonie is a concert hall in the centre of the city near the Grote Markt. Next to it is the Toneelschuur theatre, which also has some movie theatres (often referred to as the Filmschuur). The Stadsschouwburg on the Wilsonsplein reopened in 2008 after a major renovation and can seat 698. Haarlem is home to many different sport clubs practicing a great diversity of sports.

Quick links
Rental Agencies in Haarlem
Dutch Language Schools in Haarlem
City website
Moving to Hilversum
Expats moving to Hilversum will live in a city with a population of 85.000. The town is often called "media city" since it is the principal centre for radio and television broadcasting in the Netherlands. Hilversum is well connected to the Dutch railway network, and contains three stations. The town of Hilversum has put a great deal of effort into improvements, including a recent renovation to its central train station, thorough renovation of the main shopping centre (Hilvertshof), and development of new dining and retail districts downtown including the "vintage" district in the Leeuwenstraat.

Quick links
Rental Agencies in Hilversum
Dutch Language Schools in Hilversum
City website