Working while studying
All you need to know about working in Holland
If you are from the EU/EEA (but not from Bulgaria, Romania or Croatia) or from Switzerland, you are free to work without restrictions.
If you are from Bulgaria, Romania or Croatia, or from a country outside the EU/EEA or Switzerland, there are some restrictions if you want to take a job next to your studies. You need a permit and you can only work for a maximum of ten hours a week or, instead, you can work full-time during the summer months of June, July and August.
Work permit application
Your employer needs to apply for your work permit. The organisation that issues work permits is called UWV.
Exception for internships
If you are studying at a Dutch host institution and you need to do an internship as part of your study programme, you do not need a work permit. Your host institution and your employer do need to sign an internship agreement.
Health insurance and jobs
You need to be aware that as soon as you pick up a job, you are obliged to take out the Dutch basic healthcare insurance. If you do not meet this requirement you risk a huge fine.
Social security number
BSN is short for Burger Service Nummer, which translates as ‘citizen service number’. The BSN is equivalent to a social security number: a unique registration number for every citizen, used in contacts with any government service.
Various people may ask for your BSN. If you have a job, your employer will need to know your BSN. Insurance companies may also ask for your BSN-number.
When registering with your local municipality, you are automatically issued a BSN. Your local town hall will most likely send you a letter to confirm all your personal details listed in their administration. This letter will also mention your BSN.
You are required to pay tax over your total Dutch income for the year. Scholarships may also be counted as income and added to the total. For more information on income tax, you can check with your employer or directly with the Dutch Tax Office.