Understanding the needs of the international community

The primary goal of the Amsterdam International Panel is to better understand the needs of expats and internationals in the Amsterdam Area. By receiving direct feedback, the Expatcenter can highlight strengths and weaknesses and collaborate with the City of Amsterdam to improve provisions for international residents living and working in the region.

Housing, refuse and healthcare

Some of the key questions in the latest survey included: ‘What is your current housing situation and why?’; ‘What is your ideal housing situation?’; ‘Do you know how to dispose of or recycle refuse?’; ‘Are you registered with a local doctor?’ and ‘How do you feel about Amsterdam’s healthcare provisions?’

Housing experiences in Amsterdam

In terms of housing, the answers from the surveyed expats were mixed. Around three quarters of participants indicated that they were very satisfied with their home and around 80% were also very happy with their neighbourhood. However, by contrast, the majority of participants said that they had great difficulty in finding a suitable home initially, with only one third rating their experience in finding accommodation as six or more out of ten.

For the majority of internationals (8 out of 10), safety was a major consideration when choosing their present home, and typically they sought locations within the A10 ring road that loops around the city. Some 33% found the district of Zuid most desirable, with the Centre following closely at 24%. Distance from work is a definite consideration, with 74% wanting a commute time of less than 45 minutes. In terms of renting versus owning a home, the results were surprising. The assumption is often that expats and internationals are primarily interested in renting. The survey results, however, showed that only a small majority (56%) prefer to rent, while the remaining 44% would rather own a home in Amsterdam.

Welcoming more multilingual information

Of those internationals with children, around two thirds indicated that there was not sufficient information available in English about schooling. Likewise, the results clearly showed that expats would like to know more about refuse and recycling opportunities.

Healthcare provisions

Some 75% of surveyed internationals are registered with a local doctor, with around two thirds having visited their GP since moving to Amsterdam. In regards to the quality of healthcare provisions and treatment, around 35% noted that they expected more. For example, 32% were dissatisfied with the quality of care; 16% felt that information was not always clear and would prefer better English communications; 15% would like access to specialist care; 12% were not satisfied with waiting times or opening times and 10% would like more preventative care.

Join the Amsterdam International Panel

Would you like to have your say in future surveys? We value your opinion and welcome new international participants. Learn more about the Amsterdam International Panel.

For additional information, please contact:
Nathalie van Haaster
Communications Manager 
Expatcenter Amsterdam
[email protected]
T: +31 (0)6 8364 7127