Moving step by step towards more freedom in public life

Whenever people gather in groups, coronavirus can spread quickly. That’s why measures are in place to prevent people gathering in large groups. It is also important that people themselves take responsibility. Avoid busy places. Leave if you notice it is becoming difficult to keep a distance of 1.5 metres. If people gather in groups and this poses a safety or public health risk, enforcement officers can take action.

Groups and gatherings

Gathering in groups is not permitted until 1 June. This includes in theatres, at bars and cafés (including outdoor seating areas), at fairs and at parties.

  • There are a few exceptions:
    • funerals and marriage ceremonies may be held but must not exceed 30 people. Participants must stay at least 1.5 metres away from one another. (It may be possible to raise the maximum number of people to 100 as of 1 July);
    • religious or ideological gatherings should be held online if possible. Physical gatherings are permitted but must not exceed 30 people. Participants must stay at least 1.5 metres away from one another. (It may be possible to raise the maximum number of people to 100 as of 1 July);
    • gatherings required by law, such as parliamentary and municipal council meetings and some shareholders’ meetings, can be held online. Physical gatherings are permitted but must not exceed 100 people. Participants must stay at least 1.5 metres away from one another;
    • gatherings necessary to ensure the continued daily operation of institutions, businesses and other organisations are permitted but must not exceed 100 people. Participants must stay at least 1.5 metres away from one another;
  • The head of a safety region determines whether zoos or amusement parks may reopen. That is why some parks and zoos are open and others are still closed. See the park websites for more information.
    • The same requirements that apply to restaurants, bars and cafés also apply to outdoor seating areas and establishments serving food and drinks in zoos and amusement parks.
    • Toilets are open. Any shared washing facilities and shower blocks will remain closed until 1 July.
  • In principle, all events which require a permit are banned until 1 September.

Groups and gatherings as of 1 June

The general rule as of 1 June is that people who don’t live together must always stay 1.5 metres apart. For indoor gatherings, the maximum number of people is 30.

  • People may also meet outside, but must still stay 1.5 metres apart. Enforcement action will be taken if 3 or more people are not keeping a distance of 1.5 metres.
  • Buildings and other covered areas that are open to the public can admit up to 30 people at a time, not counting staff. Here, too, people must stay 1.5 metres apart. The possible health risks will be assessed beforehand together with the visitor. Stay at home if you have cold-like symptoms.
  • Indoor gatherings with more than 30 people are permitted in these 2 cases only:
    • gatherings required by law, such as parliamentary and municipal council meetings and some shareholders’ meetings, can be held online. Physical gatherings are permitted but must not exceed 100 people. Participants must stay at least 1.5 metres away from one another;

gatherings necessary to ensure the continued daily operation of institutions, businesses and other organisations are permitted but must not exceed 100 people. Participants must stay at least 1.5 metres away from one another.

Restaurants, cafés, bars and hotels

  • From 12.00 on 1 June, outdoor seating areas can be reopened. There is no maximum number of people for outdoor seating areas, but all guests must sit at tables and people who do not live together must stay 1.5 metres apart.
  • From 12.00 on 1 June restaurants, cafés and bars may also have up to 30 guests inside. Guests must make a reservation and possible health risks must be assessed beforehand together with the guest. All guests must sit at tables and people who do not live together must stay 1.5 metres apart.
    • Until 1 June, restaurants, cafés and bars can only offer delivery and takeaway services.
    • If the situation allows, the maximum number of people could be raised to 100 as of 1 July.
    • Hotels may serve food and drink to overnight guests, even if this means serving more than 30 people. Here, too, people must stay 1.5 metres apart unless they are members of the same household.
      • If there are fewer than 30 overnight guests, hotels can serve other guests up to a total of 30 people.
    • Until 1 September, cannabis cafés may only provide a takeaway service.
    • Nightclubs and similar venues will remain closed until 1 September.

Culture

  • Libraries are open and have taken measures to ensure that library users can keep a distance of 1.5 metres.
  • From 12.00 on 1 June, cinemas, theatres and concert halls can admit up to 30 people per auditorium (not counting staff). Visitors must make reservations and possible health risks must be assessed beforehand together with the visitor. Everyone must maintain a distance of 1.5 metres from others.
  • Museums and heritage sites that are normally open to the public may reopen from 12.00 on 1 June. Visitors must make reservations and the health risks must be assessed beforehand together with the visitor. The maximum number of visitors depends on the size of the building.
  • Music schools and arts centres can admit up to 30 people to their buildings. People must stay 1.5 metres apart.
    • Professional dancers, actors, musicians and other performers (except singers and wind instrument players who perform together with others) may practise or rehearse in groups of up to 30, keeping a distance of 1.5 metres away from each other.
    • Choirs and wind instrument ensembles are advised to await the additional advice from medical experts and not to start rehearsing together yet.

Contact-based roles

Most people in contact-based roles are able to perform their jobs again. This includes driving instructors, health-related professionals (dieticians, masseurs, occupational therapists, prosthodontists, etc.), hair and beauty professionals (beauticians, hairdressers, pedicurists, etc.) and alternative medicine practitioners (acupuncturists and homeopaths, etc.).

  • People with contact-based jobs are making every effort to keep a 1.5-metre distance when doing their work.

Sport and recreation

  • Indoor and outdoor swimming pools can open. Changing rooms and toilets may be used, but washrooms and showers may not. People must stay 1.5 metres away from others.
  • Children aged 12 and under are allowed to play sports and do other activities together outdoors under supervision. This includes activities organised by scout groups or other clubs. Young people aged 13 to 18 are also allowed to play sports and do other activities together outdoors under supervision, but must stay 1.5 metres away from each other.
  • From 1 June, scout groups, art and culture clubs and other youth groups may also organise activities indoors with up to 30 people.
  • Group sports activities outdoors for all ages are permitted, as long as people can stay 1.5 metres apart. The authorities will monitor compliance with the 1.5 metre rule and enforce it where necessary. If it becomes too busy at certain locations, the authorities can take action. 
  • For all age groups: matches and competitions are not permitted. No one is allowed to stay and watch. Communal changing rooms and showers may not be used.
  • Competitive sports events may be held as of 1 September, but without spectators.
  • Indoors sports are not permitted until 1 September.

Public transport

Use public transport for essential travel only. Travel outside peak hours and stay 1.5 metres away from others if possible. Avoid busy places.

  • On public transport, available seats and standing places will be indicated. Initially around half the number of regular seats will be available.
  • From 1 June all passengers aged 13 and over will be required to wear a non-medical face mask on buses, metros, trams, ferries, waterbuses and trains. This requirement does not apply in stations, on platforms and at stops.
    • The fine for not wearing a mask is €95.
    • You are advised to wear a non-medical face mask on public transport before 1 June too.
  • Avoid peak hours.
    • Schools and universities will take measures to prevent public transport becoming too busy during peak hours. For example by adjusting school hours.

Employers will also take measures to prevent public transport becoming too busy during peak hours. For example by encouraging staff to work from home and by adjusting working hours if travel is necessary.

Education

  • Primary schools are currently open for half of pupils at a time. From 8 June, primary schools will provide the regular number of teaching hours to all children, unless the research currently being carried out shows that this is not safe. In the weeks ahead agreements will be made with the education sector on the arrangements for fully reopening schools.
    • Out-of-school care (BSO) will also reopen fully on 8 June and children will be able to attend on their regular days.
    • From 8 June emergency childcare will only be available for the children of healthcare professionals working evening, night or weekend shifts (until 1 July).
    • Teachers and childcare staff who have health issues or who fall into one of the at-risk groups identified by the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) (aged over 70 or with underlying health conditions) should stay at home.
    • Children and parents should not come to school if they have cold-like symptoms.
  • Secondary schools, including special secondary schools, will reopen on 2 June. Schools will take measures to ensure that everyone can keep 1.5 metres apart.
    • Pupils should walk or cycle to school if possible, especially if they live less than 8 kilometres away. Pupils should not travel to and from school by public transport.
    • Schools will arrange special transport for children who live a long way from school.
    • In the weeks ahead the practical details will be worked out by secondary schools in accordance with the hygiene and physical distancing instructions. Different schools may opt for different measures. Schools will inform parents about the arrangements at their child’s school.
  • Schools for secondary vocational education (MBO) can open for tests and practical training from 15 June. MBO students could already do their final exams at school. 
  • As of 15 June, institutions for higher professional education (HBO) and universities will be allowed to reopen for exams, practical training and to provide support to vulnerable students.

Educational activities at MBO schools, HBO institutions and universities will be planned in such a way that students do not have to use public transport during peak hours.

Shops and markets

  • Shops have taken measures to ensure that people can observe physical distancing, for instance by limiting the number of shoppers.
  • The head of a safety region determines where markets may be held and what conditions apply.

Sanitary facilities

Shared toilets, shower blocks and washing facilities at holiday parks, campsites and marinas will remain closed until 1 July.

Closed locations

Gyms, fitness centres, clubhouses, saunas, spas, casinos, amusement arcades and sex establishments will remain closed until 1 September.

Travelling abroad

  • Do not travel abroad, unless it is absolutely essential. Holiday travel is not regarded as essential.
  • The Schengen area (which the Netherlands is part of) and the United Kingdom have closed their external borders to people from outside the EU whose journey is not essential. This travel ban applies up to and including 15 June 2020.
  • Everyone flying to the Netherlands from a high-risk area must present a health screening form. Only passengers who have completed the form will be allowed to board.
    • The list of high-risk areas is kept up-to-date by the European Union Aviation Safety Authority (EASA) on the basis of the latest information.
  • Everyone arriving in the Netherlands from a high-risk area is also strongly advised to self-quarantine for 14 days.
  • There is still a ban on flights from affected areas to the Caribbean part of the Netherlands (Bonaire, St Eustatius and Saba).
  • All travellers arriving in the Netherlands are informed of the measures and rules that apply here.
  • The Dutch-Belgian border is closed until 8 June, except for essential travel.