You are legally required to have health insurance to cover any medical costs you may incur during your stay. We strongly advise you to take out a health insurance policy before you arrive. There are various types of health insurance:
- Dutch public health insurance
You need Dutch public health insurance if you work alongside your studies or undertake a paid internship (if the internship pay is more than the Dutch minimum wage). Please note: if you fall into one of these categories and fail to take out Dutch public health insurance, you risk having to pay a substantial fine.
- EU health insurance card
As an EU student, you are most likely covered for a temporary stay in the Netherlands by the health insurance scheme in your home country. Please check on this before you arrive and remember to request your EU health insurance card (E111). European health insurance schemes can differ from country to country and might not always live up to expectations. Therefore we strongly advise you to top up your coverage by taking out an additional student insurance policy, see below.
- Student insurance policies
Non-EU students and EU students requiring extra coverage can apply for a student insurance policy. Various levels of cover in different price ranges are available. An added advantage is that some student insurance packages also cover personal liability, household contents insurance, theft, repatriation and legal advice. For more information, please visit this website.
- Home country insurance policy
You can also take out insurance in your home country. Always contact your insurance provider in advance to check that you are covered for any medical costs you might incur during your entire stay (for both physical and mental health issues), and be sure to bring this policy with you to the Netherlands. Be aware that many private policies do not meet the requirements laid down by the Dutch immigration department for individuals needing a residence permit! Therefore we strongly advise taking out one of the specialized student insurance policies mentioned above, rather than a private policy from home. Please note that a travel insurance alone is never sufficient.
Letter from the Dutch National Health Care Institute (Zorginstituut Nederland)
The majority of international students residing in the Netherlands do not need to take out Dutch public health insurance (see point 1. above for exceptions to this rule). However, after registering at your local Dutch municipality you may receive a letter from the Dutch National Health Care Institute (Zorginstituut Nederland – formerly known as CVZ) stating that, according to their records, you are not insured and must take out Dutch public health insurance (basisverzekering) immediately. It is important that you respond to this letter within three months, even if you think you have received it by mistake, otherwise you risk being fined.
We strongly advise you to take out third-party liability insurance to cover any accidental damage or harm you may cause to other persons or property during your stay. This is not compulsory according to Dutch law, but is standard practice in the Netherlands and highly advisable. You can purchase liability insurance at a reasonable price from one of the aforementioned providers in advance, or insurance company upon arrival.
Apart from opening a bank account, Rabobank can also offer you the recommended insurances (apart from the required health insurance) for your stay in the Netherlands at discounted rates. With your Rabobank Student account, a Liability Insurance and a (House) Contents Insurance (fire and theft) will cost you about € 8,- / month.
You can find more information on health insurance in the Netherlands on the website Study in Holland.