The Best 2019 Music Festivals In The Netherlands

For music lovers and festival fans, the Netherlands is a great place to be. The country loves music and boasts an impressive list of popular DJs such as Tiesto, Martin Garrix, Afrojack and Nicky Romero. Even better, festival ticket prices are usually far cheaper than they are in the UK, where you’ll be looking at … Read more

What Do Amsterdam’s New Eco-Driving Goals Mean For Expats?

Famed for its vast population of cyclists, Amsterdam has been at the forefront of green technology for many years. Recently, the Dutch capital’s city council decided to elevate their eco-credentials further, announcing plans to phase out petrol and diesel cars, leaving only electric vehicles in the city centre by 2030.The motivation behind the proposed ban … Read more

Moving To Amsterdam With Teenagers? Here’s What You Need To Think About

As much as relocating to another country can be an exciting adventure, it can also be a challenge. For teenagers, whose lives are already filled with uncertainty and change, moving to another country can be incredibly overwhelming. Moving means changing school, making new friends and re-establishing an identity. However, moving to a place like Amsterdam … Read more

Living In The Netherlands As A Transgender Expat

Building a life as an expat is always a challenge – and being transgender can make everything more complicated. Pulling up roots and migrating to a famously liberal place like the Netherlands is a dream for many trans people facing persecution and discrimination elsewhere. However, living that dream means grappling with the difficulties of the … Read more

Is Amsterdam Finally Growing Sick of Expats?

Amsterdam may have made it into the top five cities for expats in last year’s Expat Insider survey, but the welcome they can expect may be waning.With English fast becoming a native language, rocketing house prices, and Dutch traditions such as Sinterklaas struggling for survival, some Dutch residents are feeling pushed out – and one … Read more

A Handy Guide To Making Friends In Amsterdam

So you’ve made the choice to move to Amsterdam. Visa? Tick. Accommodation? Tick. Employment? Tick. Friends? Hmm… if you haven’t quite fallen into your crowd yet, do not despair! Amsterdam is a bustling international city attracting people from around the globe, and one of the most exciting parts of settling in here will be getting … Read more

How to Enjoy Your First Expat Christmas in Amsterdam

For expats who celebrate Christmas, being far away from friends and family can make the festivities feel somewhat muted, so it’s a good idea to create your own traditions in your new home. Here are ten ways to make the season special during your time in Amsterdam. Decorate A Christmas Tree What better way to … Read more

10 Scary Places To Get Goosebumps In The Netherlands

Fancy freaking yourself out? No need to miss out on a spook-fest while you are living in the Netherlands. Here are some creepy destinations to give you the shivers. The Prison Gate Museum, The Hague Just west of the Hofvijver, in the centre of The Hague, stands the foreboding Museum de Gevangenpoort, a thirteenth … Read more

Why Your Kids Will Love Living In Amsterdam

Amsterdam is an exciting city with a friendly, family vibe and plenty for children to do. Here are 10 reasons why kids are happy here.Community You might not expect the words ‘community’ and ‘capital city’ to go together but, surprisingly, Amsterdam still enjoys a charming village atmosphere despite its size and stature. Though the town … Read more

10 Dutch Festivals You Really Shouldn’t Miss

Want to party like the Dutch? Mark up your calendar with these ten fun festivals.New Year Known to the locals simply as Oud en Nieuw (Old and New), New Year’s Eve celebrations in the Netherlands are possibly the most exciting (and chaotic) in the world. The lifting of the ban on the sale of fireworks … Read more

10 Things To Love About The Dutch Way Of Life

Though the Netherlands may not be your homeland, it can still in time win your affections. Here are ten aspects of Dutch life which have found a warm place in the heart of many expatriates.Cycling When so many cities suffer from congested roads, and a public transport system that is caving under the strain of … Read more

An Expat Guide To Childcare Options In The Netherlands

With family far away, finding childcare can be an added expense for international parents new to the Netherlands. Below are six common forms of childcare here and what you can expect from each service. Au Pair An au pair is a young adult aged between 18 and 30 who offers childcare services in return for … Read more

An Expat Guide To Learning Dutch

One of the comforts for newcomers relocating to the Netherlands is Dutch people’s friendly enthusiasm for speaking English. The Dutch love the English language and they revel in any opportunity to use it. They have even been rated the best speakers of English in the world.That’s extremely handy and reassuring in your first few months … Read more

De Balie: A Centre For International Culture In Amsterdam

Newcomers to the Netherlands seeking culture, debate and discussion in English can find a lovingly-curated programme of events at De Balie in central Amsterdam. The former district court, with its beautiful stained glass, doubles as a wedding venue when not hosting discussions and performances. In 2016, De Balie welcomed some 99,000 visitors to enjoy its … Read more

Netherlands – Recommended Social Media Accounts

At Expat Focus, we like to be on the lookout for resources around the web that could help prospective expats adjust to their new countries. Today, we’re taking a look at the Netherlands and some of the social media accounts you should be following if you’re thinking of moving there.Netherlands Expats Facebook Group With over … Read more

Useful Tips For Expat Parents Moving To The Netherlands

When you make a list of the places that are among the best for raising children, the Netherlands is one name that is bound to feature near the top. This charming European country has become one of the most desirable expat destinations in the world for several reasons, which include its high standard of living, … Read more

10 Dutch Dishes You Must Try When Living In The Netherlands

Dutch cuisine consists of hearty fare that is warming and wholesome, something that the locals greatly appreciate on account of the cold temperatures. Today we’re taking a look at some of the dishes you should try if you’re living in the Netherlands.Erwtensoep This thick pea soup constitutes a meal in itself. Made from dried and … Read more

So Just How Friendly Are The Dutch, Exactly?

The Netherlands has for a long time been one of the more desirable expat locations in the world. The fact that so many people want to live here isn’t surprising – this small European country has among the highest per capita incomes in the world and is widely acknowledged to be one of the freest, … Read more

Ten Dutch Festivals Expats In Holland Must Not Miss

Celebrations, especially communal ones, are a very important part of any culture, and the people of Holland enjoy an abundance of lively festivals all year round. These occasions range from being colorful to fun to quirky, and some of them may also seem a bit strange, especially to an outsider. Many of the events have … Read more

Netherlands – Recommended Blogs

At Expat Focus, we like to be on the lookout for resources around the web that could help prospective expats adjust to their new countries. Today, we’re taking a look at the Netherlands and some of the blogs that might be useful for expats there. Invading Holland An incredibly funny and often pathos filled account … Read more

Thinking About Moving To The Netherlands? Read This First

The Kingdom of the Netherlands, usually known simply as the Netherlands, is one of the most popular expat destinations around the world and particularly in Europe. This small country is among the most densely populated, but it’s also one of the most stable and well-developed. The Netherlands is famous as a liberal and progressive nation, … Read more

How To Celebrate Your Birthday Like A Local In The Netherlands

Birthdays, like all other celebrations, vary greatly around the world. The western tradition of a birthday cake and candles is now popular in almost every part of the world, but there are still quite a number of local traditions that survive and thrive. In a handful of cultures, birthdays aren’t really marked as important dates, … Read more

Review – The Devil Wears Clogs

Jennifer Burge is an American expat who has lived in a variety of European countries. Her memoir, The Devil Wears Clogs, predominantly focuses on her time in the Netherlands as a new expat trying to fit in with a culture that was very different from what she’d been used to before.A lot of accounts written … Read more

A Guide To Public Holidays In The Netherlands

Some of the public holidays in the Netherlands coincide with major festivals and celebrations. These are usually non-working days that commemorate some important cultural or historical event. Here is a guide to public holidays in the Netherlands. New Year’s Day (Nieuwjaarsdag)This day can be rather quiet with most businesses, post offices and banks closed. Very … Read more

A Guide To Tipping In The Netherlands: Who, How Much, When And Where?

Tipping can be among the more confusing aspects of living in a new country – expats everywhere often find themselves wondering, “How much should I tip? How do I leave the tip? Should I tip at all?” In countries like the USA, tipping has become an almost universal requirement, and it is not uncommon to … Read more

5 Expat Clubs In The Netherlands You Should Consider Joining

It is often a challenge for expats to make connections with people in a new place. The good news is that there are ways to slowly and steadily meet new people and build fulfilling friendships and business relationships. One of these ways is to join any of many expat clubs and associations, which are present … Read more

Top Dutch Cities for Expats

With a dense population of 16.6 million, the Netherlands is widely known as the Gateway to Europe, due to its waterway access to Belgium, France and Germany. It is rich in culture, English is widely spoken, the cost of living is cheaper than in other European countries and the climate is mild. As well as … Read more

Dutch Driving Theory Test: Gehaald!

by Tiffany Jarman Jansen On July 22, 2009 at 9:55 am I took the train to Amsterdam Sloterdijk. I waited 10 minutes outside a bus waiting for the driver to finish his pause. I took the bus to the CBR building. The whole trip, I had my eyes glued to the Driving Theory Manual I … Read more

The Dutch Kitchen

by Martha Andrus The Dutch kitchen is pretty basic and mostly involves a lot of green vegetables, potatoes and sausages. A typical Dutch meal involves mashing potatoes and vegetables together and adding sausages. French fries can be found most anywhere and the favorite place to find the Dutch is at a French fry stand. If … Read more

Learning Dutch and How to Survive It

by Liz Cross, Crossover Translations Approximately 20 years ago, I was sitting on the Harwich-Hoek van Holland boat with two friends and a peculiar little guide book. We were taking turns to recite “Spher-ayhkt OO ng-gels ass-too-bleeeeft?” and other natty phases to each other. After a while, we began wondering if we were doing the … Read more

I Want to Ride My Bicycle

by Stuart Billinghurst Fiets (bicycles) are a very common sight in Holland. They are a popular mode of transport and it is estimated that there are more than 16 million of them in the country. This number may or may not include the mangled, rusting, one-wheeled, non-roadworthy bicycles found chained to lamp posts, bridges or … Read more

Amsterdam’s Red Light District

by Stuart Billinghurst I’ve already written about one of Holland’s well-known vices, the drug culture. There is of course another vice which the country is very well known for. Something that brings a particular kind of tourist to certain shady areas of the country, to indulge themselves in special ways. Yes, you’ve guessed it. I’m … Read more

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