Work visa

Different kind of Visas

Visas for Expats in the Netherlands explained

Congratulations! You've taken the exciting step of moving to the Netherlands. Whether drawn to its world-renowned windmills, innovative spirit, or rich cultural tapestry, the Netherlands offers a unique and rewarding expat experience. But before you pack your bags, securing the right visa is crucial.

This comprehensive guide explores the different visa options available for expats in the Netherlands, helping you navigate this vital first step in your Dutch adventure.

Understanding Your Visa Needs

The Netherlands operates under the Schengen Area visa system. This means a single visa can grant you entry to various European countries. However, the specific visa you require depends on several factors, including:

  1. Your purpose of stay: Are you coming to work, study, or join family?
  2. Your nationality: Visa requirements vary depending on your home country.
  3. The duration of your stay: Short-term visits require different visas than long-term residencies.

    Visa for Schengen

Common Visa Types for Expats

Here's an overview of the most common visa types for expats in the Netherlands:

  • Highly Skilled Migrant Permit (Kennismigrant): Ideal for skilled professionals with a job offer from a Dutch employer. Offers a fast-track application process and a path to permanent residency.
  • Work Permit (TWV): Required for most expats employed by Dutch companies. The employer typically initiates the application on your behalf.
  • Orientation Year Permit (ZOZ): Designed for entrepreneurs or freelancers seeking to establish a business in the Netherlands.
  • Study Permit (MVV): Necessary for international students enrolled in a recognized Dutch educational program.
  • Family Member Permit (MVV): Enables spouses and children of Dutch citizens or residence permit holders to join them in the Netherlands.

Additional Considerations 

Beyond the specific visa type, some additional factors might come into play, such as:

  • The Dutch Basic Security Check (VOG): Certain professions require a VOG, a certificate demonstrating your clean criminal record.
  • The 30% Ruling: Highly skilled expats may qualify for this tax benefit, offering a significant reduction on income taxes.

Taking the Next Step 

For the most up-to-date information and guidance on your specific visa needs, we recommend consulting the official Dutch Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND) website.

The IND website offers detailed information on each visa type, eligibility requirements, and the application process. Additionally, consulting with an immigration lawyer specializing in expat visas can provide valuable personalized advice.

With the right visa secured, you're well on your way to embarking on a successful and enriching expat experience in the Netherlands.