Study in the Netherlands

students in the Netherlands

Studying in the Netherlands offers a dynamic blend of personal growth, academic excellence, and cultural enrichment. With its renowned universities offering many English-taught programs, you’ll immerse yourself in a stimulating educational environment where innovative teaching methods and practical learning experiences abound. The Netherlands fosters a vibrant international community, delivering opportunities to communicate with people from various backgrounds and expand your global network. Beyond the classroom, you’ll discover a country brimming with charm, from picturesque canals to bustling cities, offering a high quality of life and many cultural activities to explore. As a student in the Netherlands, you’ll gain a top-notch education and develop valuable skills, broaden your perspectives, and lay the foundation for a successful and fulfilling future, both academically and personally.



Quality of Edu

in the world

Study Cost

About $10,000 CAD
Per semester

Living Cost

About $1,150 CAD

Table of Contents

Benefits of Studying in Netherlands

  1. High-Quality Education: The Netherlands is known for its excellent education system, with many universities consistently ranked among the top in the world.
  2. English-Taught Programs: Most Bachelor’s and Master’s programs are offered in English, making it accessible to international students.
  3. International Environment: The Netherlands is a multicultural society with a large expat community, providing students with a rich and diverse environment.
  4. Innovative Teaching Methods: Dutch universities often employ innovative teaching methods, emphasizing practical, hands-on learning and fostering critical thinking skills.
  5. Affordable Tuition Fees: Compared with other English-speaking nations like the US or UK, tuition fees in the Netherlands are relatively inexpensive, especially for EU/EEA students.
  6. Scholarship Opportunities: Various scholarships are available for international students, allowing them to relieve the financial limitations of studying abroad.
  7. Career Opportunities: The Netherlands is home to many international organizations and has a successful job market, particularly in sectors like technology, engineering, finance, and agriculture.
  8. Quality of Life: With its high standard of living, excellent healthcare system, and well-developed infrastructure, the Netherlands offers an exceptional quality of life for students and residents alike.
  9. Gateway to Europe: Placed in the heart of Europe, the Netherlands has easy access to other European countries, allowing students to explore diverse cultures and travel during their studies.
  10. Global Perspective: Studying in the Netherlands exposes students to different perspectives and cultures, preparing them for success in an increasingly globalized world.

Cost of living in the Netherlands

International students’ cost of living in the Netherlands can change depending on the city, lifestyle, and personal spending habits. However, here’s a rough breakdown of the typical expenses:

  1. Accommodation: This is usually the most significant expense. Rent for a shared flat or student housing can vary from €300 to €800 per month, depending on the city and the accommodation type.
  2. Food: Monthly grocery expenses can average between €150 to €250, depending on dietary preferences and eating habits. Eating out occasionally or grabbing meals on campus will add to this cost.
  3. Transportation: The Netherlands maintains an efficient public transportation system, with options like trains, trams, buses, and bicycles. A monthly transportation pass can cost around €50 to €100, depending on the city and the distance traveled.
  4. Health Insurance: All international students in the Netherlands must have health insurance. The cost varies but typically ranges from €80 to €100 monthly.
  5. Books and Supplies: You may need to budget for textbooks, stationery, and other academic materials. This can amount to around €50 to €100 per month.
  6. Miscellaneous Expenses: This includes personal expenses such as clothing, entertainment, mobile phone bills, and other miscellaneous items. Budgeting around €100 to €200 per month should suffice.
Cost of living in the Netherlands for international students, pie chart

Overall, international students in the Netherlands should budget between €800 to €1,200 per month to cover all living expenses comfortably. Planning and budgeting wisely are essential to ensure a smooth and enjoyable study experience. In addition, part-time job opportunities are available for international students to supplement their income. Still, checking visa regulations and ensuring that work does not interfere with academic commitments is necessary.

Netherlands Student visa requirement

To study in the Netherlands as an international student, you'll typically need to obtain a student visa or residence permit. Here are the general requirements:

  1. Acceptance at a Dutch Institution: You must be accepted into a recognized educational university or college before applying for a student visa.
  2. Sufficient Funds: You’ll need to show that you have enough funds to cover your living expenses for your studies. For students under 30, this is usually around €10,800 per year.
  3. Health Insurance: International students should have valid health insurance coverage during their stay in the Netherlands. You can purchase Dutch health insurance or show proof of adequate coverage from your home country.
  4. Clean Criminal Record: You may need to provide a police clearance certification from your home country.
  5. Tuberculosis Test: Depending on your residence country, you may need to undergo a tuberculosis test and provide a certificate proving you are free from the disease.
  6. Valid Passport: It must be valid for at least three months before your study in the Netherlands.
  7. Visa Application Form: You’ll need to complete a visa application form, usually obtained from the Dutch embassy or consulate in your home country.
  8. Additional Requirements: Depending on your specific situation, you may be required to provide additional documents such as academic transcripts, proof of language proficiency (usually English), and a motivation letter.
a 25-year-old person in a university office

Once your documents are ready, you are able to submit your student visa application to the Netherlands embassy in your home country. Processing duration may change, so it is advisable to apply well before your course start date. If your application is approved, you’ll obtain a residence permit that allows you to study in the Netherlands for the duration of your program.

Social life in Netherlands

As an international student in the Netherlands, you’ll find a vibrant and inclusive social scene that offers plenty of opportunities for making friends, exploring Dutch culture, and enjoying various activities. Here’s what you can expect from the social life:

  1. Student Associations and Clubs: Dutch universities have many student associations and clubs catering to different interests, from arts and sports to academic and cultural pursuits. Entering these groups is a fantastic way to meet like-minded people and immerse yourself in various activities.
  2. International Student Organizations: Many universities have dedicated organizations or buddy programs for international students. These groups organize social events, excursions, and workshops to help you connect with fellow international students and integrate into Dutch society.
  3. Diverse Cultural Scene: The Netherlands is known for its rich cultural heritage, and cities like Amsterdam, Rotterdam, and Utrecht offer many cultural events, festivals, concerts, and exhibitions throughout the year. Whether you’re into art, music, theater, or film, you’ll find something to suit your interests.
  4. Nightlife: Dutch cities have a vibrant nightlife with numerous bars, clubs, and pubs catering to all tastes and preferences. Whether you enjoy dancing until dawn or prefer cozy cafes for a casual hangout, you’ll find plenty of options to socialize and unwind after classes.
  5. Outdoor Activities: The Netherlands is famous for its picturesque landscapes, cycling routes, and outdoor recreational opportunities. Joining outdoor clubs or simply exploring the countryside with friends is a great way to enjoy nature and stay active while socializing.
  6. Cultural Exchange: Being an international student in the Netherlands provides a unique opportunity for cultural exchange and cross-cultural learning. Engage in conversations with Dutch locals, participate in language exchange programs, and embrace new experiences to deepen your understanding of different cultures.

Overall, the social life in the Netherlands as an international student offers a perfect balance of academic pursuits, cultural experiences, and social interactions, ensuring that your time abroad is both enriching and memorable.


The economy of the Netherlands is known for its stability, innovation, and openness. Here are some key points about the Dutch economy:

  1. Highly Developed: The Netherlands has a highly developed and diversified economy, with strengths in various sectors, including agriculture, manufacturing, services, and technology.
  2. Open Economy: The Netherlands is a significant player in global trade and investment, with Rotterdam being one of the largest ports in the world and Amsterdam serving as a prominent financial hub. The country benefits from its strategic location in Europe, facilitating trade with neighboring countries and beyond.
  3. Innovation and Technology: The Dutch economy is characterized by a strong emphasis on innovation and technology. The Netherlands ranks consistently high in global innovation indices. It is home to numerous high-tech companies, research institutions, and startups.
  4. Agriculture: Despite its relatively small size, the Netherlands is one of the world’s largest exporters of agricultural products. The country is known for its advanced agricultural practices, including greenhouse farming and dairy production.
  5. Services Sector: The services sector is the most significant contributor to the Dutch economy, encompassing various industries such as finance, insurance, transportation, logistics, and tourism.
  6. Stable Macroeconomic Policies: The Dutch government is known for its prudent fiscal management and stable macroeconomic policies. Sound economic governance and a strong social welfare system stabilize the economy.
  7. Challenges: Like many other countries, the Netherlands faces challenges such as an aging population, labor market reforms, and environmental sustainability. However, proactive government policies and ongoing investments in education, infrastructure, and innovation aim to address these challenges and ensure long-term economic prosperity.


Overall, the Netherlands boasts a resilient and dynamic economy that continues to adapt and thrive in an increasingly globalized world.


The culture of the Netherlands is rich, diverse, and deeply rooted in its history, geography, and values. Here are some key aspects of Dutch culture:

  1. Tolerance and Openness: The Netherlands is known for its tradition of tolerance and openness. Dutch society values individual freedom, equality, and acceptance of diversity. This attitude is reflected in policies such as legalizing same-sex marriage, decriminalizing soft drugs, and embracing multiculturalism.
  2. Cycling Culture: Cycling is a pattern in the Netherlands. Dutch cities are designed to be bike-friendly, with extensive networks of cycle paths and dedicated infrastructure. Cycling is not just a way of transportation but also a famous recreational activity that symbolizes Dutch sustainability and health consciousness.
  3. Art and Design: The Netherlands has a rich artistic heritage, with renowned painters such as Rembrandt, Vermeer, and Van Gogh. Dutch design is characterized by simplicity, functionality, and innovation, with influences from modernism and minimalism.
  4. Festivals and Celebrations: The Dutch love celebrating, and the country hosts numerous festivals and events yearly. King’s Day (Koningsdag), celebrated on April 27th, is one of the biggest national celebrations, marked by orange-themed street parties, concerts, and flea markets. Other notable festivals include Carnival, Liberation Day (Bevrijdingsdag), and Sinterklaas.
  5. Cuisine: Dutch cuisine is hearty and comforting, with dishes like stamppot (mashed potatoes with vegetables), erwtensoep (split pea soup), and bitterballen (deep-fried meatballs). Cheese, particularly Gouda and Edam, is a staple of Dutch cuisine, and the Netherlands is also famous for its stroopwafels (thin waffle cookies filled with caramel syrup) and herring.
  6. Directness and Informality: Dutch people are known for their direct communication style and informality. They value honesty and straightforwardness in interactions and prefer practical solutions over formalities.
  7. Water Management: Given its low-lying geography, water management has been a crucial aspect of Dutch culture for centuries. The Dutch have a deep connection to water, with canals, rivers, and dykes shaping the landscape and influencing daily life.
  8. Language: Dutch (Nederlands) is the official language in the Netherlands, but most Dutch people are fluent in English, making it easy for international visitors and residents to communicate.


Dutch culture is characterized by a unique blend of tradition and modernity, pragmatism and creativity, making it a fascinating and welcoming place to explore and experience.


Transportation in the Netherlands is well-developed, efficient, and integrated, offering various options for getting around cities and exploring the country. Here’s an overview of the main modes of transportation and their typical ticket prices and student discounts:



  • Trains in the Netherlands are fast, reliable, and efficient, connecting major cities and towns nationwide.
  • They offer comfortable seating, onboard amenities like Wi-Fi and food service, and frequent daily departures.
  • Train travel allows passengers to avoid traffic congestion and enjoy scenic views of the Dutch countryside.


  • Train tickets can be relatively expensive, especially for long-distance or peak-hour travel.
  • While trains provide excellent connectivity between cities, access to more rural areas may be limited or require additional transfers.
  • Additionally, delays or disruptions in train services may occur due to maintenance work or unexpected incidents.

Bus, Tram, and Metro


  • Buses, trams, and metro lines offer extensive coverage within cities and regions, providing convenient and accessible transportation methods for residents and visitors.
  • They are often more affordable than trains and provide frequent service, especially during peak hours.
  • Public transportation in the Netherlands is known for its cleanliness, punctuality, and accessibility for passengers with disabilities.


  • Public transportation fares can vary depending on the distance traveled and the type of service used.
  • While buses, trams, and metros are generally reliable, delays or overcrowding may occur during rush hours or due to unexpected events.
  • Some areas may need more or less frequent service, particularly in rural or remote locations.



  • Cycling is a popular and environmentally friendly mode of transportation in the Netherlands, with extensive networks of bike lanes and reliable infrastructure in cities and towns.
  • Cycling offers flexibility, affordability, and health benefits, allowing riders to avoid traffic congestion, stay active, and enjoy the scenic beauty of the Dutch landscape.


  • While cycling is convenient for short to moderate distances, it may not be suitable for longer trips or rough weather conditions.
  • Bicycle theft and vandalism can be a problem, especially in urban areas, so proper locking mechanisms and protection are necessary.
  • Additionally, cycling may require physical exertion and careful traffic navigation, particularly in busy city centers.



  • Private car provides flexibility and convenience for traveling to destinations inaccessible by public transportation, such as remote areas or off-the-beaten-path attractions.
  • Cars offer privacy, comfort, and the ability to control travel plans and routes, making them suitable for long-distance travel or transporting large groups or heavy bags.


  • Owning and operating a car in the Netherlands can be costly due to prices such as fuel, insurance, parking fees, and vehicle maintenance.
  • Traffic congestion and limited parking space in urban zones can lead to delays, frustration, and extra costs. Moreover, concerns about air pollution, carbon emissions, and sustainability may discourage car use in favor of more eco-friendly alternatives.

Transportation in the Netherlands depends on travel distance, budget, convenience, and personal preferences. While each mode of transportation has benefits and drawbacks, the Netherlands offers a well-integrated and convenient transportation method that caters to the various needs of people.


The weather in the Netherlands is characterized by mild temperatures, moderate rainfall, and changeable conditions throughout the year. Here’s a general overview of the Dutch weather:

Spring (March to May):

  • Spring in the Netherlands brings milder temperatures, with average highs ranging from 8°C to 15°C (46°F to 59°F).
  • Days gradually become more prolonged, and flowers like tulips and daffodils bloom, creating vibrant landscapes.
  • However, spring weather can be unpredictable, with occasional rain showers and calm winds.

Summer (June to August):

  • Summer is typically the warmest season in the Netherlands, with average highs ranging from about 17°C to 22°C (63°F to 72°F).
  • Days are long, and daylight hours extend well into the evening, allowing for outdoor activities and festivals.
  • While summers are generally pleasant, they can also be characterized by occasional heatwaves, thunderstorms, and humidity.

Autumn (September to November):

  • Autumn has cooler temperatures and shorter days, with average highs ranging from 13°C to 17°C (55°F to 63°F).
  • The landscape transforms as leaves change color, creating picturesque scenes in forests and parks.
  • Rainfall increases during autumn, and windy conditions become more common.

Winter (December to February): 

  • Winter in the Netherlands is relatively mild compared to other northern European countries, with average highs from approximately 2°C to 6°C (36°F to 43°F).
  • While snowfall is possible, it is less frequent and heavy than in some neighboring countries.
  • Rain and overcast skies are more common during winter, though periods of sunshine do occur.
  • Dutch cities are often decorated with festive lights and decorations during the holiday season.

The Netherlands has a marine climate influenced by the North Sea, resulting in relatively mild and temperate weather year-round. However, the weather can be changeable, so it’s advisable to be prepared for various conditions, especially if you’re planning outdoor activities or travel.

Working simultaneously with studying

Working simultaneously while studying in the Netherlands is possible and common among international students. Here are some key points to consider:

  1. Work Regulations: International students from non-EU/EEA countries can work part-time while studying in the Netherlands. However, there are restrictions on the number of hours you can work per week, usually up to 16 hours per week during the academic year and full-time during official holidays.
  2. Student Visa: Check the regulations regarding work rights on your student visa. Some visas may allow you to work without additional permits. In contrast, others may require you to obtain a work permit or notify the immigration authorities before starting a job.
  3. Language Skills: While many international companies and multinational organizations in the Netherlands operate in English, having proficiency in Dutch can enhance your job prospects, especially for part-time positions in local businesses or institutions.
  4. Job Opportunities: The Netherlands offers various job opportunities for students, including part-time work in retail, hospitality, tutoring, research assistance, and internships related to your field of study. University career centers and online job portals are valuable resources for finding employment opportunities.
  5. Balancing Work and Studies: It’s essential to balance work and studies to ensure academic success while earning an income. Time management is crucial for effectively managing your workload.
  6. Financial Considerations: Working part-time can help offset living expenses and improve economic well-being. However, it’s essential to consider how working may impact your academic performance and well-being, especially during busy days such as exams or project deadlines.
  7. Internships and Career Development: Many universities in the Netherlands encourage students to pursue internships and gain practical work experience relevant to their field of study. Internship participation can enhance your skills, build your professional network, and improve your employability after graduation.


Overall, working simultaneously with studying in the Netherlands can be a rewarding experience, providing valuable insights, skills, and financial independence. However, it’s essential to understand the regulations, balance your commitments effectively, and prioritize your academic goals while pursuing employment opportunities.

Work after education

Finding a job as an international student after graduation in the Netherlands can be a manageable process, especially if you take proactive steps and utilize available resources effectively. Here are some factors to consider and tips for finding employment:

  1. Job Market: The Netherlands has a high job demand with opportunities in various sectors, including technology, finance, engineering, healthcare, and research. Many multinational companies and startups are in the Netherlands, offering employment opportunities for skilled professionals.
  2. Networking: Networking is crucial for finding job opportunities in the Netherlands. Attend career fairs, industry events, and networking sessions to connect with professionals in your field, including alums from your university. Join professional organizations, LinkedIn groups, and online forums to extend your network and find out about job opportunities.
  3. Internships and Work Experience: Gain practical work experience through internships, part-time jobs, or research projects during your studies. Internships can help you develop relevant skills, build professional relationships, and increase your possibilities of securing full-time employment after graduation.
  4. Career Services: Take advantage of employment services offered by your university, including job boards, career counseling, resume workshops, and interview preparation sessions. Many universities have dedicated career centers or departments that provide support and resources for students seeking employment.
  5. Language Skills: While many international companies and organizations in the Netherlands operate in English, having proficiency in Dutch can enhance your job prospects, especially for positions that require interaction with Dutch clients or colleagues. Consider taking Dutch language courses or practicing language skills to improve your employability.
  6. Job Search Platforms: Use online job portals, recruitment agents, and websites to find job openings in your field. Websites such as LinkedIn, Indeed, Glassdoor, and Monster are popular platforms for job seekers in the Netherlands. improve your resume and cover letter for each application to match the job’s specific requirements.
  7. Work Permit and Visa: Ensure you have the required work permit or visa to work in the Netherlands after graduation legally. If you’re eligible for the Orientation Year visa or Highly Skilled Migrant Program, apply for the appropriate residence permit to facilitate your job search and employment.


By being proactive, networking, gaining relevant experience, and influencing available resources, you can increase your chances of finding employment as an international student after graduation in the Netherlands. Keep an open mind, stay constant, and don’t hesitate to seek suggestions from employment advisers.

Residence after education

After completing your education in the Netherlands, you may have several options for residence depending on your circumstances and goals:

  1. Orientation Year (Zoekjaar) Visa: The Orientation Year visa allows international graduates from Dutch universities to stay in the Netherlands for up to one year to search for employment or start a business. During this period, you can find a job that meets the requirements for a work permit or to start your own business. You can transition to a work or residence permit if you secure employment.
  2. Highly Skilled Migrant Program (HSM): If you find employment in the Netherlands with a salary above a certain threshold, you may be eligible to apply for a HSM. This program is created to attract experts to work in the Netherlands. 
  3. Family Reunification: If you have family members who are Dutch citizens or residents, you may be qualified to apply for a residence permit through your family. This option allows you to join your family in the Netherlands and receive a residence permit based on your relationship with a Dutch citizen or resident.
  4. Further Study: Some graduates may pursue further education in the Netherlands, such as a master’s degree or Ph.D. program. Suppose you are admitted to a recognized educational institution and have the financial means to support yourself. In that case, you can apply for a student visa or residence permit to continue your studies.
  5. Startup Visa: If you have an innovative business idea and plan to start your own company in the Netherlands, you may be eligible for a Startup Visa. This visa allows entrepreneurs to establish and grow their startups in the Netherlands, with the possibility of transitioning to a residence permit for self-employment or entrepreneurship.
  6. Permanent Residence and Citizenship: After residing in the Netherlands for a certain period and meeting specific requirements, such as continuous legal residence, integration, and sufficient income, you may be eligible to apply for permanent residence or citizenship. Permanent residence allows you to live and work in the Netherlands indefinitely. At the same time, citizenship grants you additional rights, such as voting and access to social benefits.


It’s advised to carefully consider your options to determine the best course of action based on your circumstances and long-term goals.