Driving in the Netherlands

When arriving in a new country, it might occur that not only the environment changes, but also the road rules. The Netherlands is a very hectic and full country with lots of traffic. Bikes, cars, busses, taxis, and lorries will all use the same streets and lanes. Please always check the rules before getting in to your car.

Drivers license
If you are moving to the Netherlands and you have a foreign driving licence, you can continue to use this driving licence for a certain period. The length of this period depends on the country where you obtained your driving licence. After this period ends, you will need to have a Dutch driving licence. Some internationals are able to exchange their driver’s license for a Dutch one easily including but not limited to EU and EEA citizens, and expats who have the 30% tax facility status. To exchange your drivers license for a Dutch one, please make an appointment at your municipality and bring valid identity papers, your foreign driver’s license and a passport photo. Click here to make an appointment in the city of Utrecht. This is only possible if you are registered as a resident of the Netherlands and have a valid residence permit. You may also be asked to provide a certificate of fitness.

Learn more

Don’t own a car, but want to drive? No problem! There are several peer-to-peer and carshare options available. Peer-to-peer means you can rent a quality vetted, fully insured car from a private individual, via such services as SnappCar or MyWheels. Carsharing means you have on-demand access to a fleet of vehicles parked throughout the region, available 24 hours. In this case Greenwheels or Connectcar are two options.

Parking permits
Do you live in the Utrecht Region? Then you might be eligible for a resident and visitor parking permit (parkeervergunning). Contact the municipality you live in for more information.