Questions and anwers
About The Netherlands
- Dutch Weather
- Typical Dutch Food
- Cycling in Netherlands
- Cost of Living
- Learning the Dutch Language
In general, the climate in the Netherlands is slightly warmer with drier summers, and colder with slightly drier winters than we experience in the south east of England. The winter season can be fairly cold and temperatures often fall below zero. Rainfall is always a possibility in this region, so it is advisable to go equipped with waterproofs when visiting the country. More information about The Hague, The Netherlands and the Dutch weather, can be found on the following websites:
Typical Dutch Food
There's much more to Dutch food than raw herring and smashed potatoes, like “Pannekoek” and “Appeltaart”. Learn more about Dutch food here.
Cycling in Netherlands
The Hague is one of the best cities for cycling. Almost every main street has dedicated cycle paths. There are numerous bicycle lock-ups, plenty of bicycles for hire, and a good repair shop is never far away. Click here for more information about cycling in The Hague
Den Haag (The Hague) is the third most populated Dutch city, and has a lively expat population due to a lot of international organisations, schools and embassies. Den Haag is a mixture of modern skylines with a historic city centre, and the scenery and activities are as diverse as its mix of residents. Den Haag is the capital of South Holland, the seat of government, and home to the Dutch royal family.
• HAAGSE HOUT
The area defined by the Archipel, Statenkwartier and Duinoord areas is an extremely desirable and central place to live. Embassies, luxury villas, apartments and mansions are nestled amongst shops, restaurants and cafes, resulting in an exciting urban atmosphere:
• The Archipel neighbourhood in the Centrum district is close to the town centre, museums and parks. The beautifully renovated, old style houses found here are full of character and historic atmosphere. It’s an embassy land and a top location where prices are premium and parking space problematic.
• Statenkwartier: Located in the city centre, the Statenkwartier neighbourhood in the Scheveningen district is filled with beautiful homes built in the early 1900s. The area’s plentiful Art Nouveau architecture, specialty shops and cafes make it a popular destination.
• Homes in the Scheveningen district’s Duinoord neighbourhood are typically smaller than those found in the Statenkwartier, but are charming and full of character. Much of the architecture dates from the late 19th century and today the area is known for its somewhat bohemian atmosphere. Those looking for a less urban environment can find larger living spaces and more ‘green’ within the Haagse Hout district. This area is typically popular amongst families with children, as it provides easy access to downtown amenities while offering a quieter, more natural setting.
• Benoordenhout: The Benoordenhout neighbourhood in the Haagse Hout district is a quiet mixture between urbanity and nature. It’s woodland setting on the north and east sides belie its close proximity to the city centre and easy access to the motorways. Parking is plentiful. The houses are spacious and comfortable and include numerous large villas as well as single-family dwellings and apartments. Considering the space and environs, it is a good option for young families with children.
• The Mariahoeve neighbourhood is also located in the Haagse Hout district and offers a similar set of 1930s architecture, green surroundings and easy parking. The railway station is nearby.
Other neighbourhoods popular with expats include Bezuidenhout (Haagse Hout), Marlot (Haagse Hout), Vogelwijk (Segbroek), the beach resort areas of Kijkduin and Scheveningen Van Stolkpark (Scheveningen), Westbroekpark/Duttendel(Scheveningen), Belgisch Park (Scheveningen) and Zeeheldenkwartier (Centrum).
PREFERRED REAL ESTATE AGENT
Infinitas Real Estate is known as the expat brokerage in the The Hague area. Providing guidance from A to Z for you (and your family). Let Infinitas take away the hassle in your relocation.
Infinitas Real Estate offers guidance on housing and relocation with the following customised packages;
1. HOUSING ( either long term or short stay)
2. HOME SEARCH TOUR (Infinitas tour)
3. ORIENTATION TOUR AREA
4. SETTLING IN SERVICE
5. TENANCY MANAGEMENT
New in town? Give Infinitas Real Estate a call!
Let our preferred estate agents know how to assist you in your search for your home in The Hague.
If you wish to make use of their special offers, please indicate that you are a (future) employee of The Rijnlands Lyceum Foundation.
Tel: +31(0)70 711 38 11
In most parts of The Hague, you have to pay for on-street parking. Read more about parking rules, park-and-ride facilities, parking permits and parking fines
Cost of Living
As with many other European countries, the cost of living in the Netherlands has gone up with the introduction of the euro, and many residents still enjoy talking about how expensive everything has become and how they miss guilders. Wages in the Netherlands are average compared to the rest of Europe. They're certainly higher than in Spain and Italy, but lower than England and Germany.
The house prices vary per city and area. Click here for more information on cost of living in The Netherlands.
Learning the Dutch Language
Below you will find more information about learning Dutch for expats:
Dutch for special occasions
Like any language, Dutch has a range of set phrases people use to mark life events and celebrations. Here’s a list of the most common ones, including some of the specifically Dutch customs and vocabulary surrounding these events. Learn more about Dutch for special occasions.
Certificate of Good Conduct (VOG)
Your appointment with the Rijnlands Lyceum Foundation takes place on condition that you obtain a Dutch Certificate of Good Conduct; a Verklaring Omtrent Gedrag (“VOG”). The Ministry of Justice will issue this certificate if it is clear that the applicant has not committed any criminal offence which might be relevant in the context of the job to which the “VOG” relates (working with children). Please note, the Dutch authorities do check the authorities in the country of nationality before a Dutch VOG is issued.
HR will arrange an appointment at the Municipality desk for your Dutch VOG application. For further information please consult the recruitment package.
Your first contract of employment at the Rijnlands Lyceum Foundation will always be a temporary contract for one year, starting 1st of August till 31st of July next year. This is according to the CLA Primary and Secondary.
After a positive appraisal and after your Dutch teaching certificate has been granted by DUO, your temporary contract will be changed into a contract for an indefinite period of time.
If your appraisal is not positive enough or DUO does not award you a Dutch Teaching Certificate (yet), you will be given a second temporary contract.
Legalisation of Documents
A document that is legally valid and official in one country is not always automatically recognised in another. If you want to use a document like a birth certificate or diploma in another country, you will probably have to have it legalised first. To legalise a document, the competent authorities sign and stamp it. Several different steps may be needed to complete the process. Most countries have agreements for this.
Before coming to the Netherlands: original document such as a birth, marriage or divorce certificates must be legalised or bear a special stamp, an apostille (not older than 6 months!!), in the country of origin. Here you will find a link of government bodies and their addresses that are able to provide the legalisation.
Birth certificates important for the registration of children at the Dutch school: All certificates must be legalised as well and be with full parent’s details (more info, 2.1 relocation information package).
The Dutch government will only accept documents in Dutch, English, German or French. You may also need to collect some extra stamps or signatures to legalise your documents. You can read more on legalising documents on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs website. The municipality where you live can also advise you on this.
- Travel Allowance
- Relocation Allowance
- Reimbursement of Reloacation Allowance
- Cafetaria Scheme
Within Rijnlands every member of staff is entitled to an allowance for commuting costs, are location expense allowance and an allowance for travel and accommodation expenses incurred on behalf of the employer. It will be automatically calculated for all employees and paid out with your monthly salary. More information about these allowances can be found in the primary and secondary education collective labour agreements.
COMMUTING ALLOWANCE (Primary)
If the distance between your home and the school is at least 7.1 kilometers with a maximum of 21.5 kilometers and more, single way, you are entitled to a fixed allowance for the costs of travel between the home and the workplace in compliance with the CLA Primary education. The commuting allowance for different commuting distances and number of working days per week.
COMMUTING ALLOWANCE (Secondary)
If the distance between your home and the school is at least 8 kilometers single way with a maximum of 25 kilometers in the second year of employment, you are entitled to a fixed allowance for the costs of travel between the home and the workplace in compliance with the CLA Secondary education. The commuting allowance for different commuting distances and number of working days per week.
- What is the definition of business travel?
Travel for work related purposes to a location other than the school
- How much is the business travel allowance?
€ 0,28 per driven kilometer
Flights will be reimbursed according to receipt at economy class rates.
- How do I get reimbursed for business travel?
You need to complete a declaration form and to the principal/director.
According to the CLA, Employee is entitled to the reimbursement of relocation costs, when
• the move is related to the employee’s job at or working relationship with Rijnlands Lyceum Foundation and
• the agreement was discussed and approved by the employer in advance of the move.
Reimbursement Relocation costs
All new staff moving to the Netherlands is entitled to a relocation compensation consisting of:
• a compensation (tax free) for expenses incurred for the transportation of luggage and household effects of the employee and the members of his family to the new house with a maximum of € 2.500,- for secondary (based on receipts);
• an agreed amount for all remaining expenses that ensue directly from the relocation, set at 12% of the annual salary with a minimum of € 1.820 and a maximum of € 5.445 (tax free);
A descending repayment obligation is applicable for the compensation as described in bullets 1 and 2 for three years after reimbursement.
Reimbursement of Reloacation Allowance
Stichting Het Rijnlands Lyceum staff may participate in the “cafeteria scheme”. The scheme offers staff a tax benefit (within tax legislation) since part of gross earnings can be used as a tax-free allowance. This means that when participating in this scheme, taxed salary is converted into a tax-free allowance. The allowance is paid net to the staff.
The cafeteria scheme consists of four possibilities. It is possible to participate in all possibilities.
1. Tax benefit scheme (for commuting expenses)
2. Trade Union benefit(dues for one trade union membership)
3. Bicycle scheme(costs for purchase of a bicycle for commuting)
4. Sports scheme(costs of one sports/ fitness membership)
It is not permitted to store household goods at the school (unless it is one box). You can arrange storage yourself, for instance at: https://www.shurgard.nl/en/self-storage-in-the-netherlands/den-haag
Salary pay day
Salary slips, AFAS
AFAS is our digital personnel and salary system. As a new employee yyou’ll receive a registration link for the AFAS portal. You will be able to view your salary slips in AFAS InSite. If you have not received a link after the first salary payment in August, you can request one via: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Visa, Taxes and 30% Ruling
How much tax do i pay in the Netherlands?
The Netherlands has a progressive tax rate. Furthermore, there is taxation on substantial interest, savings and investments. Do not forget that there are also many tax credits and benefits for certain groups of people, including: (single) parents, house owners, workers, non-working spouses, etc. When you have the 30% tax facility, you will pay significantly less tax because part of your remuneration will be paid as a tax-free expense allowance.
For more information, please click here.
Tax advantage: 30% ruling
Under the 30% ruling, international staff can receive tax exemption for a maximum of 30% of their annual gross salary.
The 30% ruling is meant as a compensation for the extraterritorial costs that expats incur while living abroad. The 30% ruling applies to staff that have been recruited from abroad. The rule can only be applied if income tax is paid in the Netherlands. The 30% ruling can be received for a maximum period of 5 years.
You are eligible for this allowance if you meet a number of conditions:
- Specific expertise; the applicant must possess specific expertise which is not or hardly available on the Dutch Labour market.
- Salary criteria; your annual gross salary has to be at least € 37,743.- (fiscal wage 2019) or,
- if you are aged below 30 and you are awarded a Dutch Master’s qualification in university education or an equivalent foreign qualification, and your annual gross salary wage exceeds € 28,690.- (fiscal wage 2019) and
- 150 km distance; In the 24 months prior to your 1st day of work in the Netherlands you live at more than 150 kilometers in a straight line from the Dutch border.
If you are not a European Union National then you will require a work permit. The requirements for this often differ depending on your Nationality. For the latest up to date information for entry please visit The Government of the Netherlands website.
Health Insurance in the Netherlands
The Dutch health system is a private health insurance and operated by private health insurance companies. The insurers are obliged to accept every resident in their area of activity. It is compulsory to buy medical insurance. The costs are approximately € 100 to 150,- per month depending on your personal situation. For children younger than 18 years old this insurance is free of charge. Additional insurance (i.e. dentist) can be purchased according to individual needs and requirements.
Health insurance comprises a standard package of essential health care. As of 1 January 2018 the compulsory own-risk amount is € 385,-. Since insurers may alter their individual supplementary cover conditions, it is advisable to study these conditions carefully.
More information can be found in the relocation package and the Access Guide. This guide answers most of the questions on health care in the Netherlands.
Rijnlands Collective health care insurance
The Rijnlands Lyceum Foundation has a collective contract with ‘Zorg en Zekerheid’ (Z&Z) and “Zilveren Kruis Achmea”. As a member of staff you will receive discounts on your health insurance.
Zorg en Zekerheid (Z&Z)
Employees receive 5% discount on the basic insurance and 10% on the supplementary insurance and a further 2% internet discount if you arrange your insurance online via MijnZZ.
This discount also applies to your family members! Please ask you HR advisor for the collective insurance code for international employees. Website (English):
There are also other different health insurance companies available in the Netherlands who all offer their own packages. The costs differ per company as do the options for extra packages (such as physio therapy, dental etc.). In order to get a good overview of these differences, we recommend two websites which give extensive information about health insurances.
When logging into these websites with Chrome, we get an English translation: