Moving to the Netherlands
Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague, or the fields of flowers in between — expats can’t go wrong when choosing where to live in the Netherlands. All areas offer something unique, and although Dutch culture does vary from one location to the next — slow and steady with the utmost efficiency is how the Netherlands and its occupants operate.
The country is peppered in history reflecting both bright and darker days of the past. Museums are aplenty throughout, from the renowned Van Gogh Museum and the Anne Frank house in Amsterdam, to Rijksmuseum in The Hague and a slew of others memorializing history and the Dutch fondness of art and fashion.
The capital Amsterdam is a city unlike any other — iconic narrow towering houses line the canals. Bicycles largely replace cars. People are seen constantly in motion and well-fed cats bask in windowsills. Duck into a mouthwatering cheese or pastry shop on almost any city block. Careful not to break your wallet on the cherished antiques and jewelry sparkling from storefronts on Nieuwe Spiegelstraat! Tourists flock here to enjoy legalized marijuana and edibles in local “coffeeshops” since the 90’s. Vibing in a greenspace on a trip of magic truffles is a favorite pastime for some. Similarly, the famous Red Light District is a bewildering must-see for tourists — evidence of the progressive attitude of the Dutch who set the world pace on not only the legalization of prostitution, but also marijuana and gay marriage.
Slightly over an hour by train from Amsterdam, arrive at The Hague — the hotspot for diplomats and peacemakers. Home to the United Nations’ International Court of Justice and Permanent Court of Arbitration, a coveted intern or employment destination for those in this arena. Visit here for an international conference and fall in love with the Gothic-style architecture mixed with a modern style skyline in this city where new meets old.
Rotterdam is favored by those looking for more affordable home prices in vibrant neighborhoods. Home to Europe's largest port, the city serves as a logistical and economical center for industries (and spies). The upbeat personality of Rotterdam is inspiring and young!
The Netherlands is known for an excellent work-life balance and orderliness, and the country recruits around 50,000 lucky foreigners per year to enter its workforce. The high taxes paid here are well-reflected in all aspects of infrastructure, cleanliness, health care, education and tap water. Most expats benefit from the country’s 30% ruling of being taxed on only 70% of their salaries for the first 5 years. The Dutch are highly educated and tend to go straight through Master’s studies, so if you’re looking for employment expect the bar to be set here.
Stand on a chair and peer across the entire country — the Netherlands is completely flat! Ideal terrain for bicycling, but may be less desirable for hiking enthusiasts. The mostly mild year-round weather could be construed as gloomy with high precipitation. Still, the Netherlands offers the perfect groove and balance many seek.
Visa and Immigration Options for the Netherlands
There are several types of visas that allow you to stay in the Netherlands for a short or long period of time. Here are some common options:
Tourist visa: This is a short-stay visa that allows you to visit the Netherlands for up to 90 days. This type of visa is intended for tourism, visiting friends and family, or participating in cultural or sports events.
Business visa: This is a short-stay visa that allows you to visit the Netherlands for business purposes, such as attending meetings, negotiations, or trade fairs.
Study visa: This is a long-stay visa that allows you to study in the Netherlands for more than 90 days. You will need to have been accepted to a Dutch educational institution and have sufficient financial means to support yourself during your studies.
Work visa: This is a long-stay visa that allows you to work in the Netherlands for an extended period of time. You will need to have a job offer from a Dutch employer and meet certain other requirements.
Family reunification visa: This is a long-stay visa that allows you to join a family member who is living in the Netherlands. You will need to prove your relationship to the family member and meet certain other requirements.
You can find more information about these and other types of visas on the website of the Dutch Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND).
Can I work remotely in the Netherlands?
Yes, it is possible to work remotely in the Netherlands. However, you will need to obtain a work visa if you want to work in the Netherlands for an extended period of time.
There are several types of work visas available, depending on your specific circumstances. For example, if you are an employee of a company based outside of the Netherlands and you will be working remotely for that company while in the Netherlands, you may be eligible for a "home-based work permit." This type of permit allows you to work remotely for a foreign employer while living in the Netherlands.
Alternatively, if you are a self-employed individual and you will be working remotely for clients outside of the Netherlands, you may be eligible for a "self-employed person's permit." This type of permit allows you to work remotely as a self-employed individual while living in the Netherlands.
To apply for a work visa, you will need to have a job offer or a contract of employment from a Dutch employer or a foreign employer with a branch in the Netherlands. You will also need to meet certain other requirements, such as having sufficient financial means to support yourself during your stay in the Netherlands.
It is recommended to consult an immigration practitioner for more information about the specific requirements for obtaining a work visa and working remotely in the Netherlands.
Dig deeper into our FAQs, on-the-pulse information about the Netherlands and connect with our leading immigration Advisors in the Netherlands today.