Living in Netherland
Netherlands is made up of 12 provinces - Groningen, Drenthe, Flevoland, Utrecht, North-Holland, South-Holland, North Brabant, Friesland, Overijssel, Gelderland, Zealand and Limburg.
Out of the 12 provinces, North-Holland and South-Holland are referred to as Holland.
Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Hague fall in these two provinces.
Netherland earned its name 'Gateway to Europe' from its waterway network.
The network connects Belgium, France and Germany making it easy to transverse across these countries.
With a population of 16.6 million, it is one of the most crowded places in Europe. It has inherited its rich culture and has been home to some of the most famous artists such as Rembrandt, Vermeer, Van Gogh and Mondrian.
The Dutch themselves are welcoming and cordial, albeit rather reserved.
They shake hands when they meet or when leaving.
Netherland has embraced the cycling culture. A lot of people cycle to work, too. If employees use public transport, the companies reimburse 100% of their travel expenses.
They are outdoorsy people who love to bask in the sun.
For shopping, most people carry their own vinyl bags or stuff their purchases in a large purse or in a backpack. The locals avoid using plastic bags as much as possible.
On an average, the working hours in Netherland are 36 hours per week. An astounding number of people prefer to work 4 days a week.
Netherland provides 30 % tax-free allowances to expats who move to Netherlands for work. However, this allowance is only for people with specific skills which are rare within the local labour market.
Netherland ranks first among 125 countries in an Oxfam report which ran a survey for the best and worst place to eat in the world
The Health Insurance Act of Netherland makes its compulsory for its people to have health insurance. The annual fixed premium for health insurance is 1,200 EUR approximately.
Their insurance package will provide them with the standard-essential healthcare services.
Expats usually feel secure except in some areas during night hours.
The crime statistics of Netherlands can be relatable to that of UK and USA.
Why is Netherland known as the nation of travellers?
Netherlands host one of the busiest European airports named as Schiphol International. It also has the world's biggest ports named Rotterdam.
Netherland has made travelling across the Europe much easier through its road, train, boat and fights connectivity.
Politics in Netherland
Since 1848, Netherland's administration and political issues are governed by both constitutional monarchy and parliamentary democracy. That is why it is described as a consociation state.
In such a scenario the monarch has no political power. He serves as a symbolic person representing the head of state with a role of uniting the divided parliamentary politics.
Economy in Netherland
Netherlands economy has stable industrial relations, low unemployment and inflation, sizable current account surplus and an important role as a European transportation hub.
Foreign trade contributes greatly to the economy of Netherland.
Other major industries include food processing, petroleum refining, chemicals, high tech, creative sector, financial services and electrical machinery.
The discovery of natural gas resources helped Netherlands to add hundreds of billions of euro to its government budget. However, the benefits from this sector impacted the competitiveness of other sectors of the economy which led to the theory of 'Dutch Disease.'
What is the Dutch Disease?
It erupted during the 1960's when the high revenue generated by its natural gas discovery overshadowed its other trade sectors such as manufacturing and agriculture.
Buying and renting property in Netherland
If you are staying for a short period of time in Netherlands, then renting an apartment would be a smart choice.
The open-market is the only source available to expats for house-hunting. The nationals can contact building co-operative for available housing.
This discrepancy makes expats pay higher rents. Because of this heavy rent, the expats move to the suburbs.
How is rent charged on a rental apartment?
Apartments are usually sold through real estate agent. For their services, they charge you one month's rent with applicable taxes.
In addition, you have to pay to landlord deposit which may be the sum of one to two month's rent.
Want to own a property in Netherland?
Buying property in Netherland is an attractive option provided you are planning to spend the rest of your life there. There are no special restrictions on expats for buying property. You can either hire an agent for your property search or can check the classified sections of a local newspaper for the available ones.
Here are some of the places where you can search for the property:
1. The Dutch Association of Real Estate Agents - Nederlandse Vereniging van Makelaars
2. The Dutch Homeowner Association - Vereniging Eigen Huis — VEH
Draft a sales contract which states the basic right and responsibility of both buyer and seller. Attest the transfer of property documents from the notary living in the Netherlands.
Visa and Immigration
Writer Relocations provides visa and immigration services for Netherlands https://www.schengenvisainfo.com/netherlands-visa/ and many other countries across the globe. You can get in touch with our executives for further assistance.
Schools in Netherland
Schooling in Netherlands is obligatory for all children from the age of 4 to 16. Education is government funded and therefore usually free.
The Dutch school system is divided into Basisonderwijs which is referred to primary education and Voortgezet Onderwijs which is related to secondary education.
After completing 8 years of primary education, in the last year, students are advised as to which type of secondary education they should pursue.
There are 3 types of secondary schools which are VMBO, HAVO and VWO.
What are the types of international schools you will find in Netherlands?
You have a choice among the following options...
1. Nationality-based international school:
You can choose an international school based on nationality which ranges from German, French, English, American, Iranian, Japanese, Indonesian and Korean.
2. International school:
These schools open the door for IB-diploma programme.
3. School with an "international stream"
This is an interesting option for your children as it allows them to become part of both the international and the local community.
Many of these schools also offer an IB-diploma upon graduation.
4. A dual-language school
In these school, some of the courses are offered in dutch and others in English. Therefore this school can be your option only if your child speaks Dutch.
IB-diploma on graduation is offered by many of these schools.
Weather in Netherlands
Every season brings its own magic to the Netherlands. During winter, the frozen canals are filled up with the skaters who zig-zag on and across it to celebrate those cold days.
Spring brings with it an iconic sight of blooming tulips spread across the field. Summers when arrive light up the surrounding until late night.
Among all the seasons autumn is best which makes parks and forests into a golden blaze of colour because of trees shedding its leaves all around.
The climate in Netherlands is unpredictable, especially in summer when you can experience humid heat and thunderstorms several times a day.
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