Travel.State.Gov > International Travel > Learn About Your Destination > Netherlands International Travel Information
John Adams Park 1
2244 BZ Wassenaar
Telephone: +(31) (0) 70 310 2209
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +31 (0) 70 310 2209
Fax: +(31) (0) 70 310 2207
U.S. Consulate General Amsterdam
1071 DJ Amsterdam
Telephone: +(31) (0) 20 575-5309 (Emergencies involving U.S. citizens only)
Telephone:+(31) (0) 70 310 2209 (All other calls)
Emergency After-Hours Telephone: +(31) (0) 70 310-2209
Fax: +(31) (0) 20 575 5330
Visit the Embassy of the Netherlands website for the most current visa information.
Traveling Through Europe: If you are planning to visit or travel through European countries, you should be familiar with the requirements of the Schengen Agreement.
Dutch immigration authorities do not recognize the 12-page U.S. emergency passport, issued by U.S. embassies and consulates overseas, as a valid travel document for visa-free entry into the Netherlands. If traveling on this emergency passport, please be aware that you may be refused entry by immigration officials and/or held at the airport until a return flight to the United States is available. We strongly urge U.S. citizens in possession of the 12-page U.S. emergency passport to replace it with a full-validity passport before traveling to the Netherlands by air.
The U.S. Department of State is unaware of any HIV/AIDS entry restrictions for visitors to or foreign residents of the Netherlands.
Find information on dual nationality, prevention of international child abduction and customs regulations on our websites.
Terrorism: Terrorist groups and those inspired by such organizations are intent on attacking U.S. citizens abroad. Terrorists are increasingly using less sophisticated methods of attack – including knives, firearms, and vehicles – to more effectively target crowds. Frequently, their aim is unprotected or vulnerable targets, such as:
Crime: While the rate of violent crime in the Netherlands is low, tourists are often targeted by pickpockets, bag snatchers, and other petty thieves and are active in and around train, tram, and metro stations in the city center; and aboard public transportation, especially to and from Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport. Thieves often work in pairs: one distracts you, often by asking for directions, while the other moves in on your unguarded property. Use your hotel safe, and keep baggage locked or secured when you are away. Avoid leaving valuables in automobiles, especially electronic devices, such as laptops, tablets, GPS devices, and mobile telephones. Never leave your personal items or baggage unattended.
Demonstrations occur frequently. They may take place in response to political or economic issues, on politically significant holidays, and during international events.
International Financial Scams: See the Department of State and the FBI pages for information.
Victims of Crime: Report crimes to the local police at 112 or 0900-8844 for non-emergency cases. See above for contact information for the U.S. Embassy The Hague and U.S. Consulate General in Amsterdam.
Remember that local authorities are responsible for investigating and prosecuting crimes in the Netherlands.
See our webpage on help for U.S. victims of crime overseas.
Domestic Violence: U.S. citizen victims of domestic violence are encouraged to contact the Embassy for assistance.
Tourism: The tourism industry is well-regulated and rules in regard to best practices and safety inspections are regularly enforced. Hazardous areas/activities are identified with appropriate signage and professional staff is typically on hand in support of organized activities. In the event of an injury, appropriate medical treatment is widely available throughout the country. Outside of a major metropolitan center, it may take more time for first responders and medical professionals to stabilize a patient and provide lifesaving assistance. U.S. citizens are encouraged to purchase medical evacuation insurance. See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage.
Criminal Penalties: You are subject to local laws. If you violate local laws, even unknowingly, you may be expelled, arrested, or imprisoned. Individuals establishing a business or practicing a profession that requires additional permits or licensing should seek information from the competent local authorities, prior to practicing or operating a business.
Furthermore, some laws are also prosecutable in the United States, regardless of local law. For examples, see our website on crimes against minors abroad and the Department of Justice website.
Arrest Notification: If you are arrested or detained, ask police or prison officials to notify the U.S. Embassy immediately. See our webpage for further information.
Despite common misperceptions, marijuana and hashish are controlled substances in the Netherlands, and although not enforced in defined tourist areas, possession is a crime that can result in a fine. “Coffee shops” are havens for petty criminals who prey on tourists and other individuals under the influence of drugs. Persons who visit “coffee shops” have become victims of pickpocketing, identity theft, sexual assault, and other crimes. Visitors are cautioned against using such substances, as they are often counterfeit and can cause illness or death. It is illegal to take any controlled substance, such as marijuana, into or out of the Netherlands.
Counterfeit and Pirated Goods: Although counterfeit and pirated goods are prevalent in many countries, they may still be illegal according to local laws. You may also pay fines or have to give them up if you bring them back to the United States. See the U.S. Department of Justice website for more information.
Faith-Based Travelers: See our following webpages for details:
LGBTI Travelers: There are no legal restrictions on same-sex sexual relations or the organization of LGBTI events in the Netherlands. See our LGBTI Travel Information page and section 6 of our Human Rights report for further details.
Travelers with Disabilities: Dutch law guarantees equality and the right to access for people with disabilities. Information about accessibility in the Netherlands for travelers with disabilities is available on the Netherlands main online portal for visitors.
Students: See our Students Abroad page and FBI travel tips.
Women Travelers: See our travel tips for Women Travelers.
Good medical facilities are widely available in the Netherlands. Pharmacies (“Apotheek”) are widely available and can assist with emergency prescription needs. Some common medications are not available in the Netherlands without a prescription, and some prescription drugs cannot be imported into the country.
For emergency services in the Netherlands, dial 112.
We do not pay medical bills. Be aware that U.S. Medicare/Medicaid does not apply overseas. Most hospitals and doctors overseas do not accept U.S. health insurance.
Medical Insurance: Make sure your health insurance plan provides coverage overseas. Most care providers overseas only accept cash payments. See our webpage for more information on insurance providers for overseas coverage.
We strongly recommend supplemental insurance to cover medical evacuation.
Carry an adequate supply of prescription drugs in their original container in your carry-on luggage. Carry a letter from your pharmacist or medical doctor with you, as some drugs are subject to confiscation by local customs agents. Check with the government of the Netherlands to ensure the medication is legal in the Netherlands. If you are traveling with any pre-existing medical conditions, bring a letter from your physician that describes your medical condition and any prescription medications, including the generic name of any prescribed drugs.
Vaccinations: Be up-to-date on all vaccinations recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Further health information:
Road Conditions and Safety:
Rail is often a convenient alternative to driving, particularly in the areas around Amsterdam, The Hague, and Rotterdam, where road congestion is frequent. Rail network information is available at http://www.ns.nl/en. It is relatively safe to travel by rail from city to city, compared to some other European countries but be aware of pickpockets. Taxi service in the Netherlands is safe but expensive. Trams and buses are both convenient and economical but are often frequented by pickpockets.
Please refer to our Road Safety page for more information. Also, we suggest that you visit the Netherlands Board of Tourism and Conventions.
Aviation Safety Oversight:
The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has assessed the government of the Netherlands’s Civil Aviation Authority as being in compliance with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) aviation safety standards for oversight of the Netherland’s air carrier operations. Further information may be found on the FAA’s safety assessment page.
Mariners planning travel to the Netherlands should also check for U.S. maritime advisories and alerts. Information may also be posted to the U.S. Coast Guard homeport website, and the NGA broadcast warnings.