Q&A's Travel restrictions for the Netherlands ( EU travel ban)

From 19 March 2020, the conditions for entry by persons wishing to travel to the Netherlands have been tightened. The EU proposal of an entry ban for non-essential travel is extended until 15 June 2020. The Dutch Cabinet has decided to adopt this EU-proposal. It concerns a restriction for all non-essential travel of persons from third countries to Europe (all EU member states, all Schengen members and the UK) with the aim to prevent the spread of the COVID19 virus. 

As a national from the US, Australia, Canada I do not need a long-stay visa. Could I travel to the Netherlands?

If the travel is non-essential, you can be refused at the border. In case of doubt, please contact the IND.

What do the travel restrictions within the EU as well as to the Netherlands mean for me as a traveler?

The Dutch government has adopted the decision of the EU to tighten the entry conditions of persons wishing to travel to the Netherlands from third countries, until 15 June 2020.   

This is a restriction on all non-essential travel of persons from third countries to Europe (all EU Member States, all Schengen members and the UK) in order to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus. This means that persons not covered by the following exceptions cannot enter the Netherlands. They will be refused entry.  

I am a foreigner and I have a tourist visa for the Netherlands, can I enter?

No. This is a restriction on all non-essential travel of persons from third countries to Europe (all EU member states, all Schengen members and the UK) in order to prevent the spread of the COVID19 virus.

In view of the above, you will be refused entry based on Article 6 of the Schengen Code paragraph 1(e).

I am a foreigner but do not need a tourist visa to travel to the Netherlands, can I enter?

No. This is a restriction on all non-essential travel of persons from third countries to Europe (all EU member states, all Schengen members and the UK) in order to prevent the spread of the COVID19 virus.

In view of the above, you will be refused entry based on Article 6 of the Schengen Code paragraph 1(e).

Are there exceptions, those who are allowed to enter?

The travel restriction does not apply to the following categories of persons:

  • EU citizens (including UK nationals) and members of their families*;
  • Nationals of Norway, Iceland, Switzerland, Liechtenstein and their family members*;
  • Third-country nationals holding a residence card or a residence permit in accordance with Directive 2003/109/EC (LTR Directive);
  • Third-country nationals who derive their right of residence from other European Directives or from the national law of a Member State;
  • Holders of a long-stay visa, including persons with a temporary residence permit (MVV);
  • Other persons with an essential function or need, including:
    • Personnel working in Health Care;
    • Border workers;
    • Persons employed in the transportation of goods, where necessary;
    • Diplomats;
    • Military personnel;
    • Personnel of international and humanitarian organizations;
    • Persons who have compelling reasons to visit their families;
    • Transit passengers who wish to travel via the Netherlands to another third country;
    • Persons in need of international protection; the border procedure applies in full;
    • Persons who are admitted for humanitarian reasons.

* i.e. married or with a registered partnership or with proof of cohabitation of at least 6 months so that there is proof of a durable and exclusive relationship. The latter must be demonstrable by means of a notarial deed or a lease or purchase agreement.

I fall under the categorie of exceptions, but need a visa, can I apply?

Only under certain circumstances you can apply for a short stay visa, check the website for short stay visas for the requirements and conditions

Until when does this restriction for travelling to the Netherlands apply?

This temporary restriction applies in principle until 15 June 2020.

I may fall under the category of exceptions; I have compelling reasons to visit my family members in the Netherlands?

As far as the category of persons travelling for necessary family circumstances, this concerns travel in exceptional cases. An exceptional case is visiting a terminally ill family member or attending a funeral. It is intended for 1st degree and 2nd degree family members. This includes the partner and children being 1st degree and grandchildren being 2nd degree.

I still have a valid Schengen visa, may I enter the Netherlands?

No, if it concerns a non-essential journey and you are not covered by the exceptions, you will be refused entry on the basis of Article 6 of the Schengen Code paragraph 1(e).

I have a transit visa. Can I travel via Schiphol?

Yes, this is part of the exception category and if you are in possession of a travel ticket to a third country, you may transit via Schiphol directly to a third country.

I am in possession of an MVV. Can I travel to the Netherlands?

Yes, this is part of the exceptional category, you can - if possible - travel to the Netherlands, and you will be granted entry.

Could I have an assurance in advance if in doubt for the exceptional category?

No, this is not possible. Border control will determine whether the exception applies to you. We therefore advise you to travel well informed and in a well-documented way.

If you have any questions, please contact the IND.