Frequently Asked Questions

Work while you study

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Am I allowed to work or do an internship in the Netherlands as an international student?

Yes, you are allowed to work in the Netherlands next to your studies, or do an internship. If you have a non-EU/EEA nationality, certain restrictions and requirements are in place. Students with an EU/EEA nationality have free access to the Dutch labour market.

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Is it mandatory to learn Dutch if I want to work in the Netherlands?

It's not mandatory to learn Dutch, but it will greatly improve your chances of finding a job. Many employers won't hire you if you're unable to understand and/or speak the Dutch language at a fair level. Jobs where English is the main working language are in the minority.  

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If I start a job in the Netherlands, is a basic public healthcare insurance really necessary?

Yes, if you do not take out basic public healthcare insurance you can get a fine.

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Can the university help me find a side-job?

We cannot help you find a job, but we have compiled an overview of common student jobs and how to find them.

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Am I eligible for a DUO student finance loan?

If you are an EU/EEA student working alongside your studies, you might be eligible for a student finance loan from DUO. Be advised: loans will need to be paid back with interest!

Dutch language

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I don’t speak Dutch. Why are some employers reluctant to hire me?

Even though the English language is widely used in the Netherlands, it does not have an official status. This is why at most companies, even those operating internationally, Dutch is the main working language. 

Working as a non-EU/EEA student

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I am a student with a non-EU/EEA nationality. How many hours per week am I allowed to work?

If you reside in the Netherlands on a student residence permit, you are allowed to work up to a maximum of 10 hours per week throughout the year, or fulltime in the summer months (June to August).

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How do I get a work permit?

The work permit can only be applied for by your employer. The application process normally takes up to five weeks. You cannot start working until your employer has obtained the work permit.

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I am a student with a non-EU/EEA nationality. Am I allowed to do an internship in the Netherlands during my studies?

Yes, you can do an internship, as long as it is relevant for your studies. Please also check with your programme for all the options. It’s important to conclude an internship agreement before you start your internship.

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Can I do an internship after my studies?

If you want to do an internship after your studies, you are allowed to do so on an Orientation Year residence permit. 

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My (future) employer is unfamiliar with the rules and regulations for hiring a non-EU/EEA employee or intern. Where can they find information?

You can forward your employers to the employer toolkit. 

How to find a side job

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Can the university help me find a side-job?

We cannot help you find a job, but we have compiled an overview of common student jobs and how to find them.

Practical matters

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Am I eligible for healthcare benefit?

Depending on your income you might be eligible for a compensation to help you cover the costs of your Dutch public health insurance. This compensation is called ‘Zorgtoeslag’ in Dutch (healthcare allowance or benefit), and you can read more about it on the website of the Dutch tax authority

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What minimum salary should I get for my job?

The minimum wage depends on your age.

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Why is the net amount of the salary I receive so much less than my gross wage?

Your employer will withhold taxes and social insurance contributions from your gross wage. The net amount you receive will depend on how much is withheld.

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Do I have to file a tax return for my student job?

Yes, if you receive income from a job in the Netherlands you need to file a tax return every year.