There's a lot to consider before you move. These checklists may help.
Arrangements for removals:
- Arrange for a removal company and insurance.
- Check if an exemption of duties form is necessary (normally supplied by removals company).
- Arrange disconnection of household utilities.
- Arrange storage for any items you are not bringing with you.
- Contact your local post office to arrange redirection of mail.
What to bring:
- Transformers. Mains electricity is 220V and 50 Hz AC. Most US (and some other non-European) electrical appliances will not work without a transformer (North American electrical supply for example is 60 Hz and 110V).
- Adaptor plugs. These are helpful while you settle in as it takes time to change all the plugs. All Dutch electrical sockets use plugs with two circular pins – standard throughout much of Northern Europe (except the UK and Ireland).
- Lamps. If you move into unfurnished accommodation it is likely that all the light fittings and bulbs will have been removed, so bring a number of lamps with you to provide light until you have installed new fittings. In Dutch houses ceiling lighting is often limited. A flashlight may also prove useful.
- Light Bulbs. If you bring lamps with bayonet fittings, also bring a good supply of light bulbs as you can only buy screw-in bulbs in the Netherlands.
- Office equipment. If you want to use US format stationary, bring stocks with you.
- Measuring. Dutch measurement tools are metric.
What not to bring:
- Appliances more than 60 cm wide - this is the standard space in modern European kitchens.
- Non-European appliances – spare parts may not be available if they break down.
- American electric stoves - they will require rewiring.
- Electrical appliances designed to run on a 60 Hz cycle which include a clock, e.g. microwave, clock radio, etc. - the 50 Hz frequency means they will not keep correct time.
- Non-European VCRs and televisions - Dutch standards are PAL.
- Washing machines requiring hot water intake - Dutch homes only provide connection to the cold water supply.
- Clothes dryers - may exceed wattage limits.
- Mobile phones that don’t work at 900 MHz or 1800 MHz. Dutch SIM cards can usually be fitted in non-Dutch phones.
- King-size beds that cannot be dismantled – Dutch staircases are often narrow and steep.
- New furniture and equipment from outside the EU – it must be more than six months old to avoid import duty.
- Large oven pans or storage containers - Dutch kitchens are often small.
- Cars owned and/or used for less then 6 months
Bringing your pets
Relocating pets can be just as complicated as relocating people. Animals may normally enter the Netherlands if they have had the required inoculations within the correct timeframe, and you have the correct documentation.
Before you move:
- Contact your vet for pet registration, vaccination and export papers.
- Contact the transport company to arrange shipment.
- Arrange collection and transport in the Netherlands.
List of international movers and storage (NEVIM members)