Motor vehicle – Driver’s license

You may be thinking in rent and/or buy a car at some point. For that reason, it is important to understand the rules that apply to the driving licenses.

In order to drive a car in the Netherlands you must own a valid driving license and you must be 18 or over. It is also compulsory to have a third party insurance and the vehicle you are driving must be registered. If you are a resident of the Netherlands, it is prohibited for you to drive a car which is registered in another country.

More information can be found on https://www.rdw.nl/englishinformation/Paginas/default.aspx

Driving license issued in EU/EFTA

If you have a driver’s license that was issued before January 19, 2013 in one of the countries of the EU or the EFTA, you are entitled to drive in the Netherlands on your foreign license for 10 years after it has been issued, unless it expires, in which case you can use it until that date (and you need to exchange for a Dutch license).

If it was issued after January, 19, 2013, you can use it for 15 years, provided it is still valid. After this period, you will need to exchange it for a Dutch license straight away.

Driving license issued outside EU/EFTA

If you have a driver’s license that has been issued in any other country, you may drive in the Netherlands on your foreign license for a period of six months (185 days) after registered as a Dutch resident.

After this period, you may only drive in the Netherlands with a Dutch driving license. In some cases you can exchange the foreign driving license. In all other cases you must do new theory and practical exams with the Central Office for Vehicle Drivers Testing (CBR).