You are eligible to apply for a Netherlands Student Visa if you have been accepted into a Dutch educational institution.

Even so, depending on your nationality, you may not need a Dutch visa to study in the Netherlands at all.

Who Needs a Netherlands Student Visa?

A Netherlands student visa and residence permit to study in the Netherlands is necessary for everyone, except:

  • Citizens from the EU, EEA, or Switzerland.
  • Family member of a citizen from the EU, EEA, or Switzerland. This category does not need a residence permit for the Netherlands, but will have to apply for Verification against EU Law (certificate of lawful residence).

However, if you fall under the above categories and want to study in the Netherlands for longer than three months, you will only be required to register with local Dutch authorities.

What are the types of Netherlands Student Visas?

  • Netherlands short-stay student visa. This will be issued if your course/training will take less than three months.
  • Netherlands student visa for secondary and vocational courses. Usually granted to students from Suriname, Indonesia or South Africa but others may be eligible also. However, they must have family in the Netherlands and be able to speak and write in Dutch.
  • Netherlands long-stay student visa. Also known as a student residence permit, it allows students to complete their studies in the Netherlands for up to five years.

How Can I Apply for a Netherlands Student Visa?

You cannot apply for a Netherlands Student Visa yourself. The educational institution where you will be studying will apply on your behalf.

In order to study in the Netherlands, you will need to be issued a temporary Dutch residence permit. In some cases, you will also have to apply for an MVV (long-stay visa). This allows the holder to stay in the Netherlands while they wait for their Dutch residence permit.

If you need an MVV, your sponsor can apply for both permits at the same time through the Entry and Residence Procedure (TEV) directly to the Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND).

Your sponsor has to be recognized by the IND. In order to be recognized, they need to have signed the Code of Conduct for international students in higher education. This code ensures that the universities are offering effective and accessible education to foreign students.

What are the Requirements for a Netherlands Student Visa?

Because your sponsor will be applying on your behalf, they will also supply you with the full list of documents you need. Different universities may have different requirements and conditions. However, some of the standard requirements for a Netherlands Students visa include:

  • Standard required documents for any visa to the Netherlands.
  • Your academic transcripts.
  • An official letter from the educational institution you will be studying.
  • A complete study plan. You must explain why you want to study that particular field and how it is related to your previous studies.
  • Proof you can financially support yourself during your studies. You will need to have around €870 per month.
  • Travel and health insurance for the duration of your stay.
  • Netherlands Student visa application fee. See the current Netherlands student visa fees here.
  • Tuberculosis test. You must take it within three months of arriving in the Netherlands or your visa or residence permit will be taken away.
  • You must be registered at the university/college you wish to study in.
  • You must be registered for a full-time daytime course.
  • Proof of income.

Please note that you must have the original copies of all your documents as well as photocopies for each of them, including passport and previous visas.

Also keep in mind that all your official documents need to be legalized or authenticated by a government authority in your country. In some cases, an apostille stamp serves as sufficient authentication. Sometimes, your documents also need to be legalized by the Dutch embassy/consulate in your country.

All your documents have to be in either Dutch, English, French or German. If they are not, they have to be translated by a certified Dutch translator and submitted along with the originals.

How Long Does a Netherlands Student Visa Last?

A Netherlands Student Visa lasts only as long as your study program. It allows the holder to stay in the country for up to five years in order to finish their studies.

The student can also apply for a one-year residency before their course in order to prepare. After graduation, students can apply for an orientation permit which allows them to stay in the Netherlands for a year in order to look for work.

Keep in mind that you will need to maintain a progress of at least 50% of the required credits each academic year. If you do not, your student visa may be taken away.

Can I Work With a Dutch Student Visa?

Yes, you can work if you are in the Netherlands with a student visa. However, there are restrictions:

  • You are only allowed to work a maximum of 16 hours a week.
  • You can work full time only during the months of June, July and August (seasonal labour).
  • You will need to have a work permit. Your employer needs to acquire this on your behalf.
  • You don’t need a work permit if you’re doing an internship as part of your course. But your employer has to sign an internship agreement with you and your university.

Other things you should keep in mind if you want to work during your studies in the Netherlands:

  • In order to be paid, you must have a citizen service number (also known as a Burger Service Number.) You will receive this number after you register at the local municipality.
  • You still need to file and pay income tax. If you are living in the Netherlands and receive income, you are considered a resident and must pay taxes. Even your student fellowship/scholarship can be considered as income.

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