Working as an International Student in the Netherlands: Essential Tips and Info!

Publicatiedatum 1 november 2023
Wijzigingsdatum 8 december 2023

So, you're an international student dreaming about working in the Netherlands, but let's be real, Dutch bureaucracy can feel like a puzzle. Don't worry; we've got you covered. Here's a straightforward guide to help you navigate the path of working legally in the Netherlands:

1. Find Out If You Need a Work Permit

Before you start plotting your Dutch job adventure, you need to know if you'll need a work permit, or as the Dutch call it, a "TWV." The rules on work permits vary depending on where you're from.

2. How to Get a Work Permit

If you're from the EU, Liechtenstein, Norway, Iceland, or Switzerland, you're in luck – you don't need a work permit in the Netherlands. However, you have two options:

  • Work full-time during the months of June, July, and August.
  • Work part-time in the Netherlands throughout the year, but keep it under 16 hours per week.

Now, here's the deal for international students in the Netherlands: you can't apply for a work permit yourself. It's your prospective employer who has to take care of it, and this needs to be done before you sign that employment contract. This whole process usually takes around 5 to 6 weeks.

3. Get Dutch health Insurance 

In the Netherlands, every international student with a part-time job is required to have Dutch health insurance. It doesn't matter if you're working 2 hours a week or a full 40; you've got to get Dutch health insurance within the first three months of starting your job.

Now, don't break a sweat about the cost – Dutch health insurance typically ranges between €100 and €175 per month. The exact amount depends on your choice of insurance company and the coverage you pick. Plus, here's a cool tidbit: if you're a student in the Netherlands, the government chips in to help cover part of your insurance costs. 

Our tip? Apply for Dutch health insurance as soon as you've inked that employment contract. You'll have to pay for it from the contract's start date anyway. If you miss the three-month window, you'll get a gentle nudge from the government in the form of a warning letter, and nobody wants that, right? So, stay on top of it!

While health insurance might seem like an extra expense for students, don't worry – there are special offers just for you, with discounts and coverage tailored to your needs. If you find yourself in need of further assistance regarding Dutch health insurance, don't hesitate to give the Dutch Ministry of Health's helpline a call; it's free and available in English at 0800 6464644.

4. Apply for a Healthcare Allowance

Here's some good news! The Dutch government looks out for folks with lower incomes, and that includes most students, including international ones. They offer a handy allowance that can make life easier. This government assistance chips in around €111 per month towards your Dutch health insurance.

For example, let's say your health insurance costs you €115 per month. Thanks to this allowance, you'd only be paying €4 each month. Pretty sweet, right? Even if your yearly income goes beyond €22,000, you can still apply for this healthcare allowance, but the monthly help will be a bit less than €111.

Feeling a bit lost or need more info about this healthcare allowance? No worries! You can call the helpline set up by the Dutch tax authorities for assistance. They're there to help you out.

5. Tackle Income Taxes Like a Pro

Just like every other citizen in the Netherlands, you've got to do your part and pay income taxes. Here's the deal: once a year, you can file an income tax declaration. For example, you can do your tax declaration in March 2024 for the income you earned in 2023.

We recommend always completing your tax return. You might be pleasantly surprised – there's a chance you've paid more in taxes than you needed to, and you could get a tax refund. And if you find yourself scratching your head or needing extra help with taxes, don't sweat it. You can call the helpline organized by the Dutch tax authorities, and it's the same number you'd use for inquiries about the healthcare allowance. 

We hope this blog has helped you with your journey navigating in the Netherlands. If you have any questions feel free to DM us on Instagram or email us

If you are still looking for a well-paid and flexible side job? Look on our vacancies page for the best jobs in your area.


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