Exemptions to the entry ban in the interests of the Dutch economy and society

If you are travelling from a country to which an entry ban applies, and your purpose of travel will have demonstrable value for the Dutch economy and Dutch society, you may come to the Netherlands provided certain conditions are met. From 23 March 2022 people travelling to the Netherlands no longer need to show a negative test result.

People with valid proof of vaccination or valid proof of recovery are exempt from the EU entry ban.

Conditions for business trips to the Netherlands

  • The trip is urgent and cannot be postponed until the entry ban has been lifted.
  • Your physical presence is required and there is no feasible digital alternative, or the digital alternative does not offer the required level of confidentiality.
  • The trip is of vital importance for the Dutch economy.
  • You must hold an invitation from a Dutch private or public sector party and your travel dates must be confirmed. The invitation must show that the following conditions have been met:
    • The trip relates to significant confirmed or potential direct foreign investment in the Netherlands which, within three years, will lead to:
      • the creation of at least five new jobs, or
      • investment of at least €500,000 in the Netherlands.
  • The trip relates to potential direct foreign investment in the Netherlands that will contribute to:
    • strengthening Dutch innovation capacity, or
    • making the Dutch economy more sustainable, or
    • further digitalisation of the Dutch economy.
  • The trip is of major importance to a specific organisation based in the Netherlands:
  • The organisation must have at least 10 FTEs and/or an annual turnover of at least €2 million. Exceptions can be made for smaller organisations on the basis of their involvement in socially relevant ground-breaking contributions to research, innovation, sustainability or public health.
  • A trip is of major importance if, for example, it is essential to the organisation’s day-to-day operations, the creation or retention of jobs, or the stability or growth of turnover.

Documents required for entry into the Netherlands

If you meet the conditions for admission to the Netherlands for business purposes, you must present the following documents at border control:

  • a diplomatic note issued by a Dutch embassy stating that you fall under an exemption to the entry ban
  • proof that you have a return ticket and a hotel booking
  • a visa, if required.

Please note: the above applies only to business travellers from outside the EU or the Schengen area who are entering the Netherlands either directly or who are travelling to the Netherlands via another EU member state or another Schengen member state. Business travellers from within the EU or the Schengen area can travel to the Netherlands freely

Crew members travelling with business travellers on private aircraft

Crew members of private aircraft are considered to be members of the business delegation. 

Diplomatic note for business travellers transiting through another Schengen country

The following phrase must be added to the diplomatic note if a business traveller is travelling to the Netherlands via another Schengen country:

 ‘The Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in [country] would like to request the immigration authorities of other Schengen states to authorise the person mentioned above to enter the Schengen area and board the transfer flight to the Netherlands.’ 

Dutch business travellers

This new policy means foreign business travellers can travel to the Netherlands more easily. Some countries may reciprocate for Dutch business travellers. This means that, if a certain number of business travellers from a given country are allowed to enter the Netherlands, the same number of Dutch business travellers can enter that country. However, this depends on the policy of individual countries. The Dutch government has no influence over this.

Monthly number of business travellers

A total of 1500 business travellers per month can enter the Netherlands. Once this quota has been reached, any further trips must be postponed until the following month.

Registration of business travellers

Business travellers are registered on the basis of their proposed date of entry to the Netherlands, on a first-come, first-served basis. 

Applying for a diplomatic note

If you meet the criteria and the monthly quota has not yet been reached, you can submit an application for a diplomatic note to a Dutch embassy or consulate in your country. You can find the contact details and addresses of Dutch embassies and consulates on Netherlandsworldwide.nl.  

Applying for a visa

If you are a business traveller and a national of a country subject to a visa requirement then the usual visa procedure applies.

Please note: do not apply for a visa unless you can submit your application to an embassy or External Service Provider and you are actually able to travel to the Netherlands. Also check the International Air Transport Association (IATA) conditions for international travel.