Quarantine and families with children (family quarantine)

You should always stay at home if you have symptoms of coronavirus or you have had contact with someone who has coronavirus. This also applies to children.

Rules for children under 4

  • Your child may go to daycare if they have mild cold symptoms, such as occasional coughing, or if they have asthma or hay fever. They should not go anywhere else
  • If your child has cold symptoms, you can arrange for them to get tested, but you must then keep the child at home until you get the results.
  • Keep your child at home if your child has a fever, is short of breath or coughs frequently. Always arrange to get your child tested if their symptoms are more severe.
  • Keep your child at home if someone in your household has a fever or is suffering from shortness of breath.
  • Keep your child at home and arrange to get your child tested if someone in your child’s immediate family has coronavirus.
  • Keep your child at home and arrange to get your child tested if your child has been in close contact with someone who has coronavirus.
  • Keep your child at home and arrange to get your child tested if your child has been in contact with someone who has coronavirus at daycare.
  • If your child is very sick, call your family doctor.

Rules for children aged 4 and over

The rules on coronavirus testing for children in primary school are the same as for children in secondary school:

  • Your child must stay at home and get tested if they have coronavirus symptoms, even in the case of mild, cold-like symptoms.
  • Your child must stay at home if someone they live with has a fever or is short of breath.
  • Your child must stay at home and get tested if someone in their immediate family has coronavirus.
  • Your child must stay at home and get tested if they have been in close contact with someone who has coronavirus.
  • Your child must stay at home and get tested if they have been in contact with someone who has coronavirus at school.
  • If your child is very sick, call your family doctor.
  • The municipal health service (GGD) may advise you to get your child tested as part of an outbreak investigation.

Impact on family members if a child has coronavirus symptoms

If your child only has cold-like symptoms, such as sneezing or occasional coughing, others who live at the same address do not have to stay at home.

But if your child has a fever or shortness of breath, everyone in the household must also stay at home. 

If your child has coronavirus, everyone in the household must stay at home and get tested. The GGD will explain the rules to you. You can also read the letter for housemates of someone with coronavirus on the website of the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM).

Another member of the household has coronavirus symptoms

The person who has symptoms of coronavirus must stay at home and get tested.

If this person also has a fever or is short of breath, everyone who lives at the same address, including children, must stay at home until the test results come back.

Someone in the household has coronavirus

The municipal health service (GGD) will give you instructions.

  • The person who has tested positive for coronavirus must self-isolate. This means they must stay in a separate room at home and keep their distance from others in the household. You can also read the letter to someone who has tested positive for coronavirus on RIVM’s website.
  • The other members of the household must self-quarantine and arrange to get tested as soon as possible, even if they do not have any symptoms of COVID-19. They must self-quarantine for 10 days, starting from the last time they were in close contact with the person who has coronavirus. If they want, they can get tested again on day 5 of the self-quarantine. If this test is negative and they have no symptoms, they may end their self-quarantine.

Someone at school or daycare has coronavirus

If someone in your child’s class or your child’s daycare group has coronavirus, the municipal health service (GGD) will tell you who should self-quarantine. Often, this is everyone in the class or group. In that case, your child must self-quarantine for 10 days. But you can get them tested after 5 days. If this test comes back negative, your child can go back to school or daycare. You can also arrange for your child to be tested immediately. But if the test is negative your child still has to self-quarantine and be tested again after 5 days. The GGD can tell you how you can make an appointment to get your child tested, and what the test procedure is.

Self-quarantining after travelling from abroad

You are required by law to self-quarantine for 10 days if you travel to the Netherlands after staying in a very high-risk area. Some travellers are exempt from the mandatory quarantine requirement, for example children aged 12 and under. They are still urgently advised to self-quarantine and they must have a quarantine declaration form when travelling.

You can get tested on day 5 after your arrival. If the result is negative and you have no other symptoms, you may stop self-quarantining.

If you develop symptoms during self-quarantine, you must get tested right away. If this test comes back negative and it was taken less than 5 days after your arrival in the Netherlands, continue self-quarantining because you could still develop COVID-19. You can get tested again on day 5. If that test result is negative too, you can end self-quarantine but do follow the basic coronavirus rules at all times.

Quarantine Check for Travellers

Consult the Quarantine Check for Travellers to find out if you need to self-quarantine and when to get tested.