1) Choose your course
Browse the extensive list of universities and vocational institutions in Amsterdam. Read up on courses that interest you and check the entry requirements. Many institutes hold open days where you can get a feel for student life on campus. Arrange to attend one if this is an option.
2) Apply and accept
Once you’ve found your path, send in your application well before the closing date. Generally you will receive a letter of offer, which you then to need to accept to be officially enrolled. Check the enrolment process at your university, as procedures may vary.
3) Organise your visa and residence permit
In most cases, the university will help you with organising a visa and residence permit (if required) once you have been enrolled in a programme. You will need to ensure you have the correct paperwork and proof of identity for this to take place. Learn more about what’s required.
4) Get to know the Amsterdam Area and look for housing
Finding your new home in the Amsterdam Area can take some time, so it’s best to start early. Demand for student housing typically outstrips supply and it is inadvisable to arrive in the Amsterdam area witout first arranging accommodation. Read up on how to find student housing and get to know Amsterdam’s iconic neighbourhoods.
5) Book your flight
Can’t wait to book a one-way ticket to Amsterdam? We hear you. As usual, it pays to organise travel insurance in case your bag goes missing or anything changes.
6) Pack essential documents
Your passport is a given, but you’ll also need an original copy your birth certificate for registration. If you’re planning to drive a car in the Netherlands, you can find out about driving licences.
7) Get familiar with official processes
Once you arrive in the Netherlands, you will need to register with the municipality. At this appointment you will receive a BSN number which is required for working or opening a bank account in the Netherlands. You will also need to arrange mandatory health insurance.
8) Organise fee payment and open a Dutch bank account
Read up on tuition fees and organise payment with the university. You’ll need to open a Dutch bank account while you’re here, as many shops and restaurants only accept payment by cash or debit card (pinpas).
9) Learn some Dutch
Although almost everyone in Amsterdam speaks a high level of English, learning the local language will help to make your time in Amsterdam even better. 'goedemorgen' (good morning), 'goedemiddag' (good afternoon), 'bedankt' (thank you), 'lekker' (tasty) and 'gezellig' (a word that doesn’t translate easily, similar to ‘cosy’ but more of a feeling) will start you off.
10) Count down the days
Have the time of your life as a student in Amsterdam.