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Basic health insurance

As an international student, you are obliged to take out the basic health care insurance:

  • from the moment you start a (part-time) job (even if you are covered elsewhere), or
  • from the moment you start an internship that pays you more than €150 per month or €1,500 per calendar year. 


Dutch basic health care insurance is more expensive than private insurance, costing around €1,100 a year. This might be more expensive than your current insurance. Keep this in mind if you want to seek employment in the Netherlands in addition to studying. The cost of basic health care insurance may make working less worthwhile as you would merely be working to pay your insurance.


The Dutch basic health insurance gives limited coverage for medical expenses.

It will cover the most basic health care costs and medical emergency expenses. For example:

  • General Practitioner (huisarts)
  • Maternity care
  • Hospital care

Dental costs

Do realize that the basic health insurance does not cover dental costs if you are over 18. Make sure your insurance company at home covers dental care costs abroad, or take out a supplemental medical insurance including dental care.

Taking out basic health insurance

To learn more about Dutch insurance companies, policy excess and how to obtain your Citizen service number, go to Taking out basic health insurance.

Financial penalty

If you are required to take out basic health care insurance but fail to do so in time, you risk having to pay a penalty of around 130% of the nominal premium for each month that you are uninsured.

Read more about the financial penalty