Visas to the Netherlands


Citizens of some countries may require a visa to the Netherlands while others may be exempted. Find out all about visas in this article.

If you wish to travel to the Netherlands, you are advised to inquire if you will require a visa according to your nationality. You can seek all related information with the Dutch Embassy or Consulate in your home country before proceeding. Note that entry formalities for European Union citizens differ from those applied to non-European nationals. In fact, foreigners living within the Schengen area are exempted from the visa requirement to travel to the Netherlands.

Moreover, eligibility criteria depend on the purposes and duration of stay in the country.

Short stay visa

You can apply for a short stay visa if you wish to make a maximum of 90 days stay in the Netherlands. This visa applies to family or business trips, participation in a conference, sports event or in case of transit. The short stay visa also allows you to spend a maximum of 90 days over a 180 days period in any Schengen country.

In fact, the Schengen agreement has been signed by, namely, Germany, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Spain, Finland, France, Greece, Iceland, Italy, Luxembourg, Norway and the Netherlands.

Documents to be produced to apply for a short stay visa are the following:

  • a valid travel document such as a passport (valid for at least three months)
  • a return ticket confirmation (employment confirmation issued by your employer, lease documents, your school certificate if any, or any other relative document)
  • a medical insurance covering you to up to € 30,000 in the case of treatment given within the Schengen area
  • proof of accommodation (hotel booking of stamped form issued by your host's nearest municipality)
  • proof of sufficient funds to support yourself through your stay in the country (at least 34 euros per day per person - bank statements, checkbook or cash)
  • 2 passport photos.

 Good to know:

You should be able to prove that your presence in the Netherlands does not constitute a threat to the relationship between Schengen countries. You should also be financially independent as Dutch authorities will not take your responsibility in any case.


Citizens from the following countries are exempt from the short stay visa requirement:

Andorra, Argentina, Australia, Bolivia, Brazil, Brunei, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, El Salvador, Estonia, Finland, France, Greece, Guatemala, Honduras, Hong Kong, Iceland, Ireland, Israel, Japan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macau, Malaysia, Mexico, Monaco, Nicaragua, Norway, New Zealand, Panama, Paraguay, Poland, Portugal, Romania, San Marino, Seychelles, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, South Korea Sweden, Switzerland, United Kingdom, Uruguay, Vatican, USA and Venezuela.

More than three months stays

Citizens of some countries have to apply for a Machtiging tot voorlopig Verblijf (MVV) which serves as a temporary residence permit for more than three months stays in the Netherlands. This visa can be requested by the foreigner national at the nearest Dutch Embassy or Consulate to his place of residence at least two months before his scheduled date of departure. But the visa will be obtained only once he has reached the Netherlands.

The MVV has a maximum of one year validity period and is renewable on the spot. Note that you will need this visa in case you wish to apply for a residence or work permit. Documents to be produced to apply for a MVV are the following:

  • a MVV application form
  • a valid passport
  • a passport size identity photo
  • any other original document which may be requested (varying according to your nationality- more information on the Immigration and Naturalization Service website)


Citizens from the following countries are exempt from temporary residence permit requirement:

Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, Norway, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia.

This also applies to foreigners holding a valid residence permit and to Australia, Canada, Japan, Monaco, New Zealand, South Korea, United States and Vatican nationals.

Residence permit

Foreigners who are not eligible to the MVV or who have not passed through this procedure still require a residence permit to make a more than three months stay in the Netherlands. This permit can be requested either by the traveler or by his sponsor. Two categories of sponsors are recognized in the country: unofficial sponsor such as family or employer for individuals and official sponsors for students and au-pairs.

In all cases, related formalities have to be filled in at the Immigration and Naturalization Service (IND).

 Useful links:

Immigration and Naturalization Service
Immigration and Naturalization Service - Residence permit
Immigration and Naturalization Service - Costs and income requirements
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Netherlands Embassies and Consulates worldwide

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