The world’s biggest exporter of tulips, the Netherlands is a country located mainly in Northwestern Europe, with three island territories in the Caribbean. Its capital Amsterdam is home to 907,976 inhabitants of more than 176 nationalities.
The Netherlands is known for its low land and flat geography, the numerous windmills all across the country, and of course tulips. Some of the favorite tourist attractions for travelers are the Amsterdam Canals, the spectacular Rijksmuseum, the museum of Anne Frank, the Van Gogh Museum, the Kasteel De Haar, etc.
It is a founding member of the EU, Eurozone, G10, NATO, OECD, WTO, and the Schengen Area. All those who wish to visit the country can apply for the Netherlands Schengen Visa since 1995 when the Schengen members abolished internal borders.
Fun fact: There are over 1,000 windmills in the Netherlands, still standing from 1850!
The Netherlands Entry Requirements
Because of the common travel area of the Schengen Zone, the member states which have abolished borders for their citizens, the EU nationals only need an identification document, to enter the Netherlands. Therefore, if you are an EU national you only need to carry an ID/passport to enter the Netherlands.
On the other hand, if you are a non-EU traveler wishing to visit the Netherlands will need to present the following, when you show up at the Dutch port of entry:
- A valid passport or travel document. Valid for at least three more months beyond their planned date of Exit from Schengen, and issued within the last 10 years.
- A visa – if they are subject to the Dutch visa regime.
- Return airline ticket. A ticket that shows you will be returning to your home country, or an onward trip ticket that shows you will leave the Schengen area to another country.
- Travel insurance that covers medical expenses. Your insurance must be valid for the entire Schengen Area, with a minimum coverage of €30,000 for medical emergencies.
- Sufficient funds. The Dutch embassy/consulate in your country of residence wants you to attest to the possession of at least €34 per day you plan to spend in the Netherlands.
Additionally, the Dutch border officer may ask you a few questions about your trip to the Netherlands:
- What is your purpose for visiting the Netherlands?
- How long do you intend to stay in the Netherlands?
- Where are you going to stay in the Netherlands? Etc.
Keep in mind that the border police hold the final decision if you shall be permitted to enter the Netherlands or not. If the Dutch border officer concludes that you are at no risk for the Netherlands, upon checking your documents, you will be permitted to enter the Netherlands, and thus the Schengen territory.
Make sure that the Dutch border officer stamps your passport when you enter the Netherlands. Without a stamp, you could be fined or detained in the Netherlands.
Who Needs a Schengen Visa to Enter The Netherlands?
Before you head to the Netherlands, you need to check whether you need a short-stay visa according to your purpose of entry or not. You will need a visa to enter the Netherlands and any other member country of the Schengen zone if you belong to one of the following categories:
- You are a passport holder of a third-world country that has not reached a visa liberalization agreement with the Schengen states
- You are a passport holder of a third-world country that has signed a visa liberalization agreement with the Schengen states, but you were previously rejected from entering the Netherlands or any other Schengen country.
Please note that these visas permit you to stay in the Netherlands for up to 90 days within 180 days. If you need a visa to stay in the Netherlands for a longer period, apply for a Dutch National Visa instead.
What Documents Are Required for a Dutch Schengen Visa Application?
According to the Netherlands visa requirements, you will need to submit some statuary documents as part of your short-term Dutch Visa application at the Dutch embassy/consulate in your country of residence. The statutory Dutch visa requirements are as follows:
- Dutch visa application form. Fill it completely and with sincerity. Do not forget to sign it at the end after you print it.
- Two passport photos. The photographs should be no older than three months and taken according to the photograph requirements for the Dutch Schengen visa application.
- Your valid passport. Make sure your passport is not older than 10 years, and that it has a validity of at least three more months beyond the date you plan to leave the Netherlands and the whole territory of Schengen.
- Copies of your previous visas (if applicable).
- Netherlands Travel Health Insurance. A confirmation that you hold travel health insurance valid, for the territory of the Netherlands and the whole Schengen Zone. Your insurance must cover medical emergencies in this zone with a minimum coverage of 30,000€.
- Round-trip Flight Itinerary. A document that shows you have a booked flight, to enter and leave the Netherlands. This document should specify flight numbers, dates, and your details.
- Proof of accommodation. Evidence that shows where you will be staying throughout your time in the Netherlands I.e. a hotel reservation.
- Proof of civil status. This could be a marriage certificate, birth certificate of children, death certificate of spouse, etc.
- Proof of sufficient financial means for the period of stay in the Netherlands. The embassy/consulate of the Netherland in your country of residence wants you to attest to the possession of at least 34€ per each day you plan on spending in the Netherlands.
- A cover letter. A personal letter in which you explain why you are applying to visit the Netherlands, how long you plan to stay, when will you leave, and other details.
Additional Dutch Visa Requirements Based on Your Employment Status
The additional Netherlands visa requirements depending on your occupational status are as follows:
- Employment contract
- Current bank statement of the latest 6 months
- Leave permission from the employer
- Income Tax Return (ITR) form or
- A copy of your business license
- Company bank statement of the latest 6 months
- Income Tax Return (ITR)
If a student:
- Proof of enrollment
- No-objection certificate from school or university
- Pension statement of the latest 6 months
Additional Dutch Visa Requirements for Minors
Minors applying to get a short-stay visa to the Netherlands, or parents applying for their minor child to get a visa, will need to complete the following additional Dutch Visa Requirements in their application file:
- An extract of the minor’s birth certificate, who is traveling to the Netherlands.
- The Netherlands application form signed by both parents.
- An identity document, bearing the parents’ signature, (1 document for each parent)
- A declaration of consent from both parents, stating that the minor can travel.
- A court judgement stating which parent has been allocated parental responsibility for the minor (if applicable).
- A declaration from the minor’s school consenting to his/her absence (if applicable).
*Note: When applying at the Dutch embassy/consulate in home country, the guardian or parent should accompany their under-age children.
Additional Requirements Based on the Purpose of Entry to the Netherlands
According to your purpose of entry to the Netherlands, you will need to provide some additional documents. Following find the additional Dutch visa requirements based on your purpose of traveling to the Netherlands.
Netherlands Airport Transit Visa Requirements
A Dutch Airport Transit Visa permits you to land at an airport in the Netherlands, remain in the international zone of the airport for a maximum of 24h, and take another flight to your destination country outside of the Schengen.
Required Documents for an Airport Transit Schengen Visa to The Netherlands
When applying to obtain a Netherlands Airport Transit visa, you must provide the following additional documents:
- A valid visa (if needed) for the final country one is travelling to.
- The flight ticket for the final country you are travelling to.
Netherlands Transit Visa Requirements
A Netherlands Transit Visa has been established for those reaching the Netherlands from a non-Schengen country through the sea, in particular for seamen.
Required Documents for a Transit Schengen Visa to the Netherlands
When applying to obtain a Netherlands Transit visa, you must provide the following additional documents:
- A valid visa (if required) for the final country you are travelling to.
- The ticket for the final country you are travelling to.
- Original and photocopy of Seaman’s book (required only for seafarers).
- Letter from the inviting Shipping Company. Issued by the inviting Shipping Company in the Schengen country in which the seafarer will disembark (required only for seafarers).
- Employment contract. Contract with the navigation company / ship in order to board the ship (required only for seafarers).
Netherlands Business Visa Requirements
If you wish to travel to the Netherlands to perform business related activities, as to sign a contract, participate in business meetings etc., you should apply for a Dutch Business Visa.
Required Documents for a Business Schengen Visa to the Netherlands
When applying to obtain a Dutch Business visa, you must provide the following additional documents:
- Invitation letter from the Dutch company you will be visiting and their detailed address accompanied with the dates of your visit.
- A dispatch letter from your employer. In this letter should be stated why you will be traveling to the Netherlands.
- Business bank statement. Preferably for the last 6 months.
- Memorandum and Article of Association. It should be submitted in original certified copy (registered with joint stock companies).
- Trade License (first issued and present renewal).
- Proof of trip financing. Regarding the applicant’s expenses during their stay in the Netherlands, either the employer or the partner company must state coverage of expenses on the letter or invitation.
Netherlands Study Visa Requirements
If you plan on traveling to the Netherlands to remain there for up to 90 days within a six-month period then you have to obtain a Dutch Study Visa prior to your trip to the Netherlands.
Required Documents for a Student Schengen Visa to the Netherlands
When applying to get a Dutch Student visa, you must provide the following additional documents:
- No objection letter from the educational institution where you are currently enrolled (if applicable).
- Internship agreement. Signed between the company in the Netherlands, the establishment of origin and the trainee.
Netherlands Medical Visa Requirements
In the event of traveling to the Netherlands to undergo a surgery, receive medical therapies or other health treatments, you will need to apply for a Dutch Medical Visa.
Required Documents for a Medical Schengen Visa to the Netherlands
When applying to get a visa to receive medical care in the Netherlands, you must provide the following additional documents:
- A local medical report. Issued from a doctor / clinic / hospital in your home country, confirming that you need medical treatment in the Netherlands.
- A medical attestation from the hospital or doctor in the Netherlands, confirming the date of your appointment as well as your medical situation. It should also confirm that the hospital can perform the specific medical treatment and that you will be accepted accordingly.
- Proof of financial arrangement made.
- Official confirmation of the treatment/appointment by the receiving medical institution (hospital/clinic) in the Netherlands.
Netherlands Cultural/Sports/Film Crew/Religious Events Visa Requirements
When wishing to travel to the Netherlands under the purpose of attending a cultural, sports or religious event, or as a part of a film crew, then you will need to apply for a Dutch Visa for Cultural/Sports/Film Crew/Religious Events.
Required Documents for a Schengen Visa to the Netherlands for Cultural, Sports, Film Crew or Religious Purposes
When applying to get a Dutch visa under the purpose of attending a Cultural / Sports / Religious Event in the Netherlands, you must provide the following additional documents:
- Event Information. As:
- Invitation letter from the relevant body in the Netherlands with details upon the nature of events or activities that are to be held in the Netherlands.
- Entry tickets to the event.
- Enrollment conditions.
- Detailed program of the event in the Netherlands.
- Other documents that present Names of the applicants (crew members) and other relevant information about the event.
- Proof of previous performances. Participation in previous festivals and ceremonies (cultural, religious), sports competitions, winners certificates, proof of world/international ranking (sports).
Netherlands Spouse of Dutch National Visa Requirements
If you are married to a Dutch national, and you wish to travel to the Netherlands for a short-stay visit, then you will need to apply for a Netherlands visa for the spouse of a Dutch citizen.
Required Documents for a Dutch Schengen Visa for the Wife/Husband of a Dutch Citizen
When applying to get a Dutch visa as the spouse of a Dutch national/citizen, you must provide the following additional documents:
- Proof of Dutch citizenship (ID card or consular card or certification of Dutch nationality or naturalization order).
- Dutch marriage certificate.
- Dutch family record book.
Netherlands Visa for Official Visit requirements
When traveling to the Netherlands as a part of an official delegation representing the government, an institution or organization, you will need to apply for a Dutch Official Visit Visa.
Dutch Schengen Visa for Members of Official Delegations
When applying to get a Dutch visa as a member of an official delegation, you must provide the following additional documents:
- The official invitation copy.
- Evidence about the purpose of journey (negotiations, meetings, event by intergovernmental organizations, consultations).
How to Apply for a Dutch Short-Stay Visa?
In order to complete the application process to obtain a short-stay visa to the Netherlands, you must follow these steps:
- Check what type of Dutch visa you need.
- Figure out where you need to apply.
- Collect the Dutch visa requirements.
- Schedule a visa interview.
- Attend the interview at the appropriate Netherlands Embassy/Consulate/VAC.
Where to Apply for a Dutch Short-Stay Visa?
The Dutch authorities around the world have regulated visa submission differently. According to that, you may have to submit your application file at one of the following Dutch diplomatic bodies in your home country:
- The Dutch Embassy
- A Dutch consulate
- A Visa Application Center to which the Netherlands has outsourced visa submission
- The Embassy / Consulate of another Schengen country to which the Netherlands has outsourced visa submission
Who Can Apply for a Schengen Visa at the Dutch Embassy / Consulate / VAC?
If the Netherlands is the only country in the Schengen area that you plan on visiting, then lodge your short-stay visa application at the Netherlands embassy/consulate in your country of residence.
On the other hand, if you plan to visit other countries as well, the Dutch Embassy / Consulate will process your application only if one of the following statements must correspond to your situation:
- You will be spending more days in the Netherlands, than in the other countries.
- You will be spending an equal amount of days in each country, but you will enter the Schengen Zone through the Netherlands.
In addition, the Dutch Embassy / Consulate / VAC will accept your application only if you also fulfill one of the following criteria:
- You are a citizen of the country from where you are applying.
- You are a foreign citizen on a permanent / temporary residence permit in the country from where you are applying.
You cannot apply for a short-stay Dutch visa from a country in which you are currently on a visa.
How Long Does It Take to Get a Dutch Visa?
The processing time for a Netherlands short-stay visa may take up to 15 days. According to your specific situation this period may be extended up to 30 days. Exceptional cases may take up to 60 days, since the Dutch embassies may have to consult with other Schengen consulates.
To avoid any delay in the issuance of your Dutch short-stay visa, you should submit your application as soon as possible, though not earlier than three months before you travel to the Netherlands.
How Much Does It Cost to Apply for a Dutch Visa?
Dutch Short Term Visa Fees are as follows:
- Dutch visas for adult travelers €80
- Dutch visas for children (6 – 12 years) €40
- Dutch visas for children (under 6 years) FREE
Moreover, there are some categories of applicants exempt from paying the fee, and others that need to pay a lower amount as well.
Check the list of the Dutch Schengen Visa fees, to see if you belong to any of these categories!
How Long Can We Stay in The Netherlands Without a Visa?
If you are the national of a visa-exempt country, you can enter and remain in the Netherlands for up to 90 days within a period of 180 days. If you wish to stay longer than 90 days, again depending on your nationality you will need to take the following actions:
- EU/EEA national – register at the relevant Dutch authorities within 3 months of arrival.
- Australia, Israel, Japan, Canada, New Zealand, Republic of South Korea, the United States of America national – apply or a residence permit within three months of arrival.
- A national of any of the rest of visa exempt countries – apply for a long stay visa from your country of residence.
If you are the national of a country that has not signed a visa-free agreement with the Netherlands and the other Schengen members, you must obtain a visa before heading to the Netherlands, or any other Schengen member country, even for short-term visits.
IMPORTANT: Make sure you understand the 90/180 Schengen Visa Rule. Overstaying has its consequences, so make sure to check Visa Calculator to count your remaining legal days in Schengen Area.
Can I Extend My Schengen Visa in The Netherlands?
Yes, you can extend your Dutch Schengen visa, but only in exceptional cases where new facts and special reasons arise after entry in the Netherlands, as i.e. humanitarian reasons or force majeure. You can apply for an extension at:
- Offices of Immigration and Naturalizations Service, or
- Seaport police Rotterdam-Rijnmond
Please read How to Extend a Schengen Visa in the Netherlands to understand in what circumstances and under what conditions you can extend your Dutch Schengen Visa.
Can My Dutch Schengen Visa Be Revoked?
Yes, your Netherlands visa can be revoked, in case the competent Dutch authorities conclude that the conditions for issuing the visa are no longer met.
If you are in the Netherlands when the decision on the revocation of your visa happens, you will be given a deadline to leave the Netherlands. If you do not leave the Netherlands or the territory of Schengen within this period, you will then be considered an illegal resident in The Netherlands.
Please note that failure of the visa holder to provide the border officer, with the entry requirements, may also lead to a decision to annul or revoke the visa, though not automatically.
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