Corona & studying in the Netherlands

Are you going to live and study, do an internship or work in the Netherlands? Or perhaps you are already living in the Netherlands and got confronted with the COVID-19 measures. The coronavirus and all measures taken throughout the whole country probably arise many questions. Therefore, this page will offer information for all (future) international students and expats living in the Netherlands.

Latest COVID-19 updates

As corona measures are frequently updated you can read the latest information on the website of the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) or the Dutch government website. If you need information on travel restrictions and current travel advice you can check out the website, initiative of the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Important information regarding Corona for international students

Although the Netherlands under normal circumstances receives international students from all over the world, the covid-19 outbreak has caused numerous restrictions. Below we will explain all measures taken by the Dutch government for international students in the Netherlands.

Travel restrictions

First of all, you’ll have to check if, according to the current travel advice and restrictions, you can come to or leave the Netherlands. Due to the fast-changing situation, this information can change very quickly. Also, it is very important to contact your home country university and the host institution in the Netherlands to discuss the possibilities.

Exempt from travel bans

Different categories of students are exempt from possible travel bans:

  • If you have an entry visa (MVV or long-stay visa) or;
  • In case you have a valid study residence permit and you are able and willing to come back to the Netherlands.

Keep a close eye on the website of your home country consulate or embassy in the Netherlands. They can provide all necessary assistance.

The Dutch health care system and health insurance

When you study, do your internship or work in the Netherlands, you have access to high-quality health care. If you suffer COVID-19 symptoms, you can be tested for free at a local GGD (Public health service). Make sure you are sufficiently insured before travelling to the Netherlands. You might need to take out Dutch health insurance.

To check if you need to take out Dutch health insurance, please visit our page on Dutch basic healthcare insurance

Coronavirus and Dutch higher education institutions

The start of the next academic year will greatly depend on the development of the COVID-19 pandemic, governmental measures and educational institution policies.

Opening of campuses and online education

Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, Dutch higher education institutions successfully switched to high-quality online education. As of the next academic year, more educational activities on campus can take place. RIVM (the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment) regulations have to be followed at all time. A social distance of 1,5m must always be maintained between students and teachers. The start and end times of educational activities will be spread over the week, day and hour. This will lead to students visiting campus more spread out to avoid high traffic.

Dutch higher education institutions are looking into different possible scenarios to combine education on campus as well as online. Other institutions have already decided on their policy for the next academic year. For more specific information you can contact your host educational institution or have a look at the website Study in NL.

College tuition fees

For graduating international students there is a special single compensation in the first three months of 2021. It only applies to international students obtaining a bachelor’s or master degree at a University of applied sciences or research university between September this year and January 2021. You can receive a maximum of €535, – per month for 3 months before the 31st of march 2021. Check out the website of DUO for more information.

Language tests

From the 15th of April 2020 it is possible to submit your English language test online, necessary for your admission and visa. All the institutions of higher education in the Netherlands have endorsed the Code of Conduct International Student in Dutch Higher Education. If you need more specific information on your enrolment, please contact your host institution.

Dutch residence permit

The corona crisis has caused delays for some international students staying in the Netherlands. These students might need to submit for an extension of their residence permit. Although processing new student’s residence permits have priority, you can contact your host institution for help. They are a recognised sponsor and can apply, on your behalf, for (an extension of) your residence permit.

Student and expat accommodation

Unfortunately there are no financial compensation possibilities for students having trouble paying their rent as a result of COVID-19 measures. However, after consultation, your landlord must try to find a solution. Are you unsure of your obligations and rights? You can contact the Housing Hotline of the Dutch Student Union.