Pros And Cons of Moving To Netherlands – that will be the topic of today’s article. Before introducing this article, if you are interested in our core services which are expat financial, insurance and mortgages, you can contact me here.
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Several times, we’ve discussed the major cities in the Netherlands. Notwithstanding, it’s better to know the pros and cons of living in the Netherlands. Moving to the Netherlands from a western culture could be a painless experience. While the Dutch strive for an egalitarian society, they’re pretty known for liberalism.
With that being said, the Netherlands certainly has a rich culture and a unique history. Almost everyone speaks English in the Netherlands, which makes starting a new life in Holland a piece of cake. Moreover, the downside is that the pressure to learn the Dutch language in the Netherlands is virtually nonexistent.
Before you relocate to any country, it’s always worth knowing what the pros and cons are. This way, you’ll be able to know whether this is the right destination or not. So, before you move to this beautiful flat land of tulips and windmills, what are the things to put into consideration? Well, let’s keep reading!
If you’ve been surfing the internet to get the right information about moving to the Netherlands, we’ve got you covered. You can check our previous blog post about living in the Netherlands to know more about the country’s cultural heritage and lots more. Guess what! We’ve unleashed more things to know here.
Starting from the excellent quality of education, lots of choices for internationals, the benefits of relocating to the Netherlands cannot be overemphasized. As an American, moving to the Netherlands and living there for four years was rewarding. Let me quickly walk you through the tips of living here.
12 Essential Travel Tips to the Netherlands
But before you understand the pros and cons of relocating to the Netherlands, it’s essential to understand the tips. These travel tips that we have bought for you may help you to plan a successful trip. Also, from winding canals to fields of blooming color, this tiny country holds a significant amount of tradition.
Therefore, before heading off on your trip to the lowlands, certain things are to keep in mind. While many things may have changed, the Netherlands is still as beautiful and diverse as ever. Now, visit the Netherlands and relax in peace. But before that, take a look at the essential tips we have.
1. Carry Enough Cash
With the advent of digitalization in today’s 21st century, we are now more dependents on our cards, whether it is a debit card or credit card. But during your first visitation to the Netherlands, do not simply rely on your cards for any transactions. This is just an essential travel tip in the Netherlands that you should always carry cash with you. The truth is that the Netherlands does love cards, but they prefer Maestro.
2. Time Management is Crucial
As an expat moving to the Netherlands for the first time, you must be an expert in time management. Also, if you need to go shopping or do any chore, you’re advised to try it between 10 am and 5-6 pm. Though few business shops are open till midnight, most businesses are shut down by 6 pm, while museums and shops remain closed on Mondays.
3. Public Urinals are Free (Man Only)
Surprisingly, you’ll have to keep cash with you if you’re a woman and need to go to the urinal. This is because; many public urinals in the Netherlands are free for men only. However, women can get free urinals in restaurants, bars, and cafes in some areas. So, it’s better to keep a minor change to pay for the toilets.
4. Tipping is Nice in the Netherlands
While you’re moving to the Netherlands for the first time, expats often get confused on the issue of whether to tip or not. Meanwhile, always know that you’re not bout to pay as you have already spent a lot of money on the things you ordered. However, tipping is not regarded as ill behavior. But in case you’re not satisfied with the service, you can offer a tip to anybody that provides the service.
5. Get a Raincoat
It’s pretty essential to keep yourself ready with a raincoat. This is because the weather is unpredictable in the Netherlands. Also, for all around the trip, a light raincoat and travel umbrella are valuable as rain, sun, cold can all happen on the same day. Again, a raincoat doesn’t make much space in your luggage, so you can bring one along instead of buying one in the country.
6. Keep a Hand Sanitizer and Tissues
Since nearly all countries are affected by the COVID-19 global pandemic, it is a common sight in winter that people should always wash their hands with hand sanitizer. In fact, most Dutch public bathrooms don’t offer you hot water taps, so it would be better to carry a hand sterilizer with you in the Netherlands.
7. There’s More to Explore
As a foreigner moving to expat for the first time, I always know that Amsterdam is not the whole Netherlands. This is one of the most ultimate tips to keep in mind. By visiting only Chicago, you cannot say you have seen America, same as by just visiting Amsterdam you cannot say you have seen the Netherlands. So, Amsterdam has got crowded because of a large number of tourists travelers there.
8. Don’t Miss the Delightful street Food
Are you planning to visit the Netherlands for the first time? It’s pretty essential not to miss the country’s food. This is because; street food is still growing in Amsterdam, and there are food festivals. Not only that but Sunday market can invite locals to prepare and offer the food of all tastes of the world. While entering the country, be rest assured that you’ll find food from every place of the world, from Indian cuisines to Spanish to Italian and Chinese.
9. Forget about Language Barrier
English speakers traveling to the country for the first time need not worry about the language barrier in the Netherlands because English is widely spoken. While the Dutch have won bragging rights to speak the best English in Europe, you don’t have to worry. Moreover, don’t be afraid to ask questions, recommendations, or just chat in English.
10. Keep Your Bike Safe
If you’re hiring a bike during your stay as the best way to explore the city, ensure you leave the rental shop with a sturdy lock. Usually, bikes will come with a fixed lock that wraps around the wheel and a separate lock to secure the frame. On that note, you can make the bike twice as hard to steal.
11. Don’t Take Pictures of Ladies
Consider this as a warning while relocating to the Netherlands. It’s not that you can’t take pictures of ladies but avoid taking pictures of the Ladies at the Red Light District. This is because; if any of the girls catch you trying to take a sneaky snap, there’s a good chance that they’ll come out from behind, grab your phone and drown it in the nearby canal to teach you a lesson.
12. The Dutch Can Be Direct In Some Ways
Don’t interpret this fact as being rude. The Dutch families aren’t rude, but they’re just direct in their ways. From being brutally honest to extending a simple no without explanation, you will always know where you stand while chatting with a Dutchie. So, we advise you to be calm whenever you’re talking to anyone to understand their language better.
Pros and Cons of Moving to the Netherlands
A wonderland full of museums, quirky hotels, a buzzing food scene, photogenic spots at every corner, and historical sites, the Netherlands is a country full of gems of all kinds. While its most well-known city is Amsterdam, there are plenty of other beautiful cities. Now, let’s walk you through the pros and cons.
Freedom in the Netherlands
There’s a lot of freedom in the Netherlands for an expat. Freedom of speech is one of the rights that especially the politicians love to exercise. Then there’s the right to protest; as soon as any large group is dissatisfied with something, they exercise their right to protest. Fortunately, most of the protests don’t get too out of hand. Unfortunately, there are some cases of senseless violence, but the country has its own way for citizens to express themselves.
Public Transportation and Infrastructure
There’s public transportation everywhere in the Netherlands. So, granted, the trains are delayed every other day, and the prices on public transportation are pretty low. However, this transportation system gives everybody the chance to go where you’d like to go in the Netherlands without disturbance.
Health Insurance/Child Benefits
Since health insurance here in the Netherlands is mandatory, many subsidies are available for those with lower incomes in the country. When you live in the Netherlands, you’re obligated to have health insurance. Aside from that, many people are dissatisfied with the monthly payment because they are pretty high, and with this, the foreigners will always receive medical help without having to pay.
Culture and People
There are larger expat communities in the Netherlands. In my opinion, it’s among the best place for Americans to live in the Netherlands. So, the cultures and people are fantastic for foreigners aside from the language. Aside from that, the Dutch generally have a good sense of style, and you won’t regret traveling to this country.
Poland is no doubt a beautiful landscape. For sure, you’ll not be bored with unique towns and villages with tons of historic structures. Aside from this fact, the climate in the Netherlands is warm and mild. So, I must admit that temperatures below zero Celsius degrees are not so typical. But even if it gets really cold, expat can get used to it and like the diversity of the Polish climate with cold winters and warm summers.
Affordable Accommodation in the Country
Compared to West European cities, food, clothes, or renting a flat in the Netherlands is relatively cheaper. For example, you can get a good apartment in Warsaw at a low price. So, if you’re looking to try a new place as an expat, the Netherlands is one of the best places to visit.
Great Polish Food and Colorful Buildings
You’ll undoubtedly enjoy the incredible polish food. This is because; there is so many traditional dishes cuisine that you should definitely give a try. Moreover, the most famous cruises are pierogi, golabki, bigos, zurek, and many others, to mention a few. So, as an expat, you should know that the culture is very diverse, and you can find many museums, and monuments in the country.
High Taxes in the Netherlands
High taxes in the Netherlands can be frustrating. The Netherlands is known for its notoriously high tax rates on basically everything in the country. Aside from this fact, income tax is exceptionally high in comparison to other countries in Europe. Also, the prices of rent are generally relatively high around the whole country, and this is due to supply and demand.
Expensive to Own a Car
We can tell you that having a car in the Netherlands is quite expensive. This is because it’s definitely an investment, so fueling and insuring it can be expensive. However, this is mainly to put people off actually having a car, but it has not worked too well. Moreover, there are rules to prevent people from buying a car in Germany or other neighboring countries.
Housing Shortage for Expats
On a regular basis, we speak about the DutchReview, and you’ll see questions about it on different expat platforms. So, finding a place to live in the Netherlands can be quite challenging at first. But, it could be somewhat more accessible if you have families and friends living in the country. If you’re looking to stay in the capital, always know that it isn’t cheap and easy.
Learning the Dutch language can be challenging for an expat. You can get away with not speaking Dutch since English is widely spoken, but the most standard advice is to try and learn the language. On the other hand, if you’re planning on staying here for the long term, you can start by learning the language.
Finding Work Opportunity
If you’re not a native Dutch speaker, finding the right job in the Netherlands can be challenging. This is because; the job market in the country has changed significantly in the past years and companies are less likely to hire candidates that don’t speak Dutch. With that being said, we would not suggest relocating to the Netherlands without a job.
Furthermore, several international companies are doing business in the country that is willing to hire more foreigners. So expats worldwide are advised to migrate via these companies or take care of sponsorship, visas, and relocation packages.
5 Reasons Why Netherlands Will Change your Life
As aforementioned, traveling to the Netherlands is a beautiful journey for every expats. While you’ve understood the pros and cons, there is more to learn. This way, we have highlighted the five reasons why living in the Netherlands will change your life. Without further ado, let’s take a look at the reasons.
1. Stunning Great Outdoors
The Netherlands is a very picturesque country that has a lot of outdoor activities to explore. Whether walking along the canals of cities like Amsterdam or biking through various towns, you’ll enjoy this European country. In general, the Netherlands and its capital city is just the right place for an expat.
2. Easy to Explore
The Netherlands is a small country, meaning that it is so easy to travel from one place to another. You can say whatever you like about train cost, but the ticket cost is the same whether you buy it two months away or 20 minutes away, which means that you can travel where you want and not get caught out with excessive prices in the Netherlands.
3. Dutch Directness is Welcoming
We mentioned earlier in this article that Dutch is quite direct with their conversations. And this is just their usual way of life. However, part of the Dutch lifestyle means saying what you mean and then doing what you say. So, understand this by not being polite in action or words. This is because; the Dutch people are extremely accommodating, honest, and straightforward.
4. You Can Speak English Everywhere
Of course, this is among the reasons why the Netherlands will change your life. This is because almost everyone in the Netherlands can speak the English language. In fact, you’ll hear it on the streets, on the bus, and even in the grocery store. Typically, if you’re attempting to have a conversation with someone speaking the Dutch language, they might sense that you’re struggling, thereby switch over seamlessly to English.
5. Cycling Is a Dutch Tradition
If you’ve wanted to travel to a country that loves cycling, look no further as the Netherlands is one of the best destinations. Aside from that, you’ll even see residents cycling in the rain, some with a seat on the back and a child in tow. Also, the Dutch people don’t necessarily keep cycling to getting back and forth from short distances because it’s pretty normal to cycle 20 miles roundtrip.
Frequently Asked Questions about the Netherlands
On this platform, we have compiled as much information as possible about the Netherlands. Additionally, we provide information about cities, attractions, regions, activities, and accommodation. You might not have been able to find what you’re looking for. However, in these frequently asked questions, you’ll get to know more about the country. Without further ado, check it out below.
Do I need a visa to travel to the Netherlands?
Interesting! If you’re from a country in groups II, III, or IV, as stated by the country’s government, you will need an MVV visa to study in the Netherlands. Meanwhile, if you’re not from the exempted countries, you’ll definitely need a visa. Also, be aware that the application for a visa can take several weeks.
Can I take my pets to the Netherlands?
If you’re traveling by your own means of transport, there’s no need to bring your pet to the country. However, if you’d love to travel by plane, you can contact your airline company for more information. Besides, a pet is allowed in the Netherlands, but it’s better to understand the COVID-19 restrictions or rules.
Do the Netherlands have a Drug Policy?
Always know that there’s a drug policy in the Netherlands. And all drugs are banned, so whenever you’re caught as a foreigner, you may face life imprisonment, or any charges lay by the uniform men in the country. On the other hand, smoking cannabis is tolerated under strict conditions in the country.
What’s the official language in the country?
Just like some countries in West Africa, Dutch is spoken in the country, but the language has several dialects. For example, in Friesland, locals also speak Frisian next to the Dutch language. So, we can tell you that Frisian is the only indeed recognized second language in the Netherlands.
Are Holland and the Netherlands the same?
This question has literally grabbed the attention of many foreigners that want to travel abroad, especially to the Netherlands. Now, we would love to tell you that Holland is part of the Netherlands, and it’s also used as a synonym for the Netherlands.
What’s there to do in the country?
From the pros and interesting facts mentioned earlier, there are more to explore in the Netherlands. So, what’s your preference, if we may ask? Well, no matter what you’ve suggested, the Netherlands got a lot of things to offer you. So, feel free to do research and check our platform to know more about Holland.
The Netherlands is in a pretty good location for everything natural. Out of the biggest pros and cons, you’ll still find something lovely to do. Nonetheless, life in the Netherlands isn’t exactly cheap, but you don’t have to break the bank to enjoy yourself as an expat. For relevant updates about this country, always check on this platform.