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Looking to move to the Netherlands

Hi guys,

I currently live in South Africa and it has been my dream forever to move overseas.
I have officially started the process and have got my cv and everything together.
The next step is figuring out how to get overseas. I have been looking for jobs in the UK for a few months, but I am not getting anywhere with that, so I am expanding my search to Germany and the Netherlands.

I currently work as a Graphic Designer, Web-Designer, Photographer, and Animator.

I was hoping you guys could please advise me on how on earth I can get myself to the Netherlands?
I have basically saved up enough money, I am fluent in English, and average in Afrikaans, but the languages are rather similar. I do have multiple friends online that live in the Netherlands, who I have met all through an online gaming community.

But I have no idea where to even begin this process? Do I need to find a job first, and if so where can I look for one? Are there recruiters in South Africa or the Netherlands that could assist with finding a job?

Should I look at coming to the Netherlands first and then looking for a job? Is that even an option?

Basically, any information on what the best route to go would be greatly appreciated.
I am ready to start my new adventure, grab my things together and jump into a new crazy adventure. But I just have no idea where to start, and I am sure the process is meant to be so much easier than it seems.

Thanks in advance for any advice and help you can offer :)

Hi Siiren,

I suspect the first hurdle you need to overcome is getting into the country; you have 2 ways, either by sponsorship (i.e. you apply for a job, the company decide they wish to employ you, they then sponsor your application), my opinion is that unless you are really special with some unique quality, that Holland already has lots of Graphic Designers and you'll struggle, but who knows; this link may help you, lots of people start their working life finding work via Uitzendbureaus - they are like staffing agencies.

The other way is by applying yourself; I've posted this link previously; not sure if it helped the guy who was asking, but it takes you to the Dutch Government Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND) website, it's in English.  There are a few drop-down menu questions to answer; based on what you select, it gives you links to answers to many questions you may have.

Afrikaans has many similarities to Dutch, but Mrs C tells me it's an old fashioned version of the language (with lots of German words thrown into the mix) that nobody speaks any more, I think it will help you (if only because I find that I can understand a lot of Afrikaans that I hear/see on TV).

Not sure if I've helped you much, but best of luck. :)

Goeiemore Siiren,

Before anything else, you have to validate your credentials by following the procedure set up on the following websites:
- http://www.eu-bluecard.com/
- http://www.enic-naric.net/netherlands.aspx

The Afrikaans is not a language but a dialect composed of old Dutch, German and English. So if you find someone who understands the tier of what you say, you'll be lucky ...

To find a job, you can already start going through the cabinets of headhunters. With a well-done research on the internet, you should manage to find many addresses.

And do not forget to also watch the expatriate guides found on this site. And get closer to the Dutch embassy to know the administrative route.

Tot ziens

Hi guys,

Thank you so much for your responses, and sorry for taking so long to respond.
I have just been doing a lot of research and reading around what would be the best way to get to the Netherlands.

So from what I can see, basically to get into the Netherlands you need to be a highly skilled worker that they need or they won't really consider you since they have people locally who can fulfill those roles. I am not considered a highly skilled worker because of the field that I am in.

So my next game plan is to save enough money and literally go to the Netherlands and live with a friend and have a safety net of minimum 3 months until I can find a job on my own and support myself.

What I wanted to know if this is a viable option? Is it possible to go to the Netherlands without a job and then look for one while there, find one and be able to start working?

I am sure there are people out there that go overseas without having a job offer, or a spouse that is moving there? I want to know what is the most viable option for me to do this. The process is the same for any country in Europe, and I am sure there is a way I can find my way over.

Any help from you guys is greatly appreciated! Thanks guys :)

I'm from the US (Florida to be exact). I came over here on a 3-month tourist visa to see if I liked living here. I decided to stay and since I owned my own company back in Florida (internet marketing so similar to your trade), I opened a business here in the Netherlands. It was a simple process with an immigration lawyer (the attorney fees cost around 800). Depending on how much you saved, the governments only requirement was that you have 4,000 is your business checking account. This route gave me a 2 year visa. I moved here to be with my boyfriend and although I could have applied for cohabitation visa, I wanted to do it on my own. My 2 year business visa was up and I decided to extend my stay with my boyfriend as my sponsor. I now have a 5 year visa.

So yeah, if you've saved up enough money, you can just open your business here and find your clients as a feeelancer. Hope this helps. :)

Hi there,

Thank you so much for your response, it really helps a lot to hear from someone else who has made the big leap and moved over there without a job offer before. Sounds like you really took a leap of faith and it worked out really well in the end.

I am currently investigating companies in Netherlands that could assist me with the entire process from end-to-end to help make the move easier. There is one company, tulipexpatsservices.com that seems to be able to assist with maybe finding a job, but it seems almost near impossible no matter where I look to be able to find a job in Amsterdam from overseas. So that is why I think it would be better if I could go there and then search for a job when I am finally there. I think this will make a huge difference.

This company also assist with the visa and moving process, so I am more looking into that at the moment. I am looking for companies that can assist me with telling me about all the things I need to plan for, all the information and documents I need, picking which is the correct visa to go on, getting visas, and how much money I would need to save or have to survive there for at least 3 months.

I don't know if I would be able to start my own company in the Netherlands, I don't know if it is something that I want to do, and I am not entirely sure how I would even get started doing freelance work. But I am hoping if I can at least get myself to the Netherlands and sign up to be able to work, that then something hopefully should come my way.

I do have a few friends that live in Netherlands and I am hoping that I would be able to live with one of them when I first arrive, until I can get my own job and up on my feet.

Thanks for all the advice guys, please keep it rolling in. Nothing is a waste and everything is useful :)

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