Studying in the Netherlands and importing your belongings duty free

Are you moving to the Netherlands to study? And will you become a pupil or student in the Netherlands? And do you want to bring used goods for the normal equipping/furnishing of a student room, such as clothing, linen, normal inventory items and study requisites? And do you want to import those goods to the Netherlands with an exemption for import duties? If so you must make a Customs declaration. You should also state that you want to import your removal goods and study requisites for students with an exemption from import duties.

You cannot file this declaration independently. The application must be made via your removal company using Customs' declaration system. Your removal company will declare the household effects and study requisites with a special code so that you can import your goods with an exemption for import duties. This code grants you an exemption from import duties. The exemption conditions are given at the bottom of this page.

Applying for an exemption

Your removal company applies to Customs for the exemption in its import declaration. For the exemption you will need to submit the following to your removal company:

  • a signed inventory listing all of the personal goods that you want to take to the Netherlands
  • the certificate of registration in the personal records database of the municipality
    You can also send a comparable certificate demonstrating that you will be moving to in the Netherlands. Example:
    • a copy of your rental or mortgage contract for the home where you will be living
  • a certificate of enrolment at the educational institute

Do you not yet have all of the requested documents (e.g.: a registration certificate for the municipality where you will be living)? In that case under certain conditions your removal company may still be able to apply for an exemption for your removal goods for students. You will need to send the requested documents to your removal company as soon as possible. Contact your removal company for this purpose.

Please note!

You cannot under any circumstances be granted an exemption for removal goods for students for a car or motorcycle (motor vehicle). Certain goods among your removal goods are subject to special rules.

Conditions for exemption

To be granted an exemption from import duties you must meet the following conditions:

  • You have a place of residence in the Netherlands.
  • You are from a country outside of the European Union.
  • The following goods are concerned:
    • clothing
    • linen
    • used movable property that you need for the normal furnishing of a student room
    • study requisites for personal use during your period of study
  • You are registered with a public or special educational institute in the Netherlands. It is a general or vocational study programme in a daytime or full-time study programme or an evening or part-time study programme. You are following a complete learning plan. Courses with a limited duration are excluded.

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