A Blog by International Students at Leiden University
As the academic year is coming to an end, many international students have to start thinking about their departure. But what does leaving the Netherlands actually mean? On the one hand, there are a lot of administrative things to take care of. After all, no one wants to get a random bill because they forgot to cancel their internet subscription. What’s probably even more important is that you also have to wrap up emotionally. All of this can be pretty overwhelming and it’s easy to overlook something important, so I composed this little checklist for you.
This is one of the most important things. Remember how you had to go to city hall in your first week to let them know that you are a resident of the Netherlands? They gave you a BSN (citizen service number) and registered your address in the system. When you’re terminating your housing contract, you have to let city hall know that you’re moving (you always have to do that, even if your new address is in the Netherlands). It’s possible to do this online but you can also go to city hall yourself. Just make sure to make an appointment beforehand and bring your passport, it will take five minutes max.
This depends entirely on your housing situation. Did your landlord take care of the utilities (water, gas, electricity) or are they registered under your name? Make sure to terminate them on time, or you’ll end up paying for the next tenant’s expenses (and we neither want nor can afford that). The same goes for any internet or TV subscriptions you might have.
Did you have to take out Dutch insurance during your stay in the Netherlands? Of course, you can technically keep it no matter your current address, but it might not cover all treatments in your next country of residence. Most insurances are pretty easy to terminate, you can just give them a call or log into their online environment and they’ll fill you in on the details.
In the Netherlands, your bike is your best friend. It’s not just the cheapest mode of transport and a huge part of Dutch culture – it’s also just plain fun (ok, maybe less so when it rains). Before you leave, you’ll have to find a new home for it. The Facebook marketplace is a great option if you want to make a bit of money and make someone’s day with a great bargain deal! PS: If you rented a Swapfiets, don’t forget to bring it back to the shop and terminate your subscription.
Of course, there are more things to consider before leaving. I’ll continue the list in the next blog, so stay posted!
Is there anything you already want to add to the list? Let me know in the comments!