All international students are required by law to have appropriate health insurance for the duration of their stay in the Netherlands. Please check before you come to the Netherlands whether your insurance will cover the complete period of your stay abroad, and what type of coverage it consists of.
You are advised to take out appropriate general third-party insurance (liability insurance) too. Please note that, if you are a non-EEA/EU student requesting a residence permit through the UvA, a liability insurance is required.
Types of health insurances
If you are in the Netherlands for study purposes only, you can take out Private health insurance or European Health Insurance (EHIC). If you start a (part-time) job or if you start an internship that pays at least the Dutch minimum wage, you are required to take out a Dutch basic health insurance.
1. Private health insurance
If you are not employed, Private health insurance for international students will most likely suffice for you.
2. European Health Insurance (EHIC)
If you are not employed, and you are a citizen from the European Union, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland, you can apply for a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). You can obtain the European Health Insurance Card free of charge by contacting your local health authority. EHIC will cover the most basic and emergency healthcare costs.
3. Dutch basic health insurance is required with a job or paid internship
You are required to take out a Dutch basic health insurance if you start a (part-time) job or if you start an internship that pays at least the Dutch minimum wage. However, you are not allowed to take out a Dutch basic health insurance if you are in the Netherlands for study purposes only.
Uninsured? You risk a financial penalty
If you do not take out health insurance, you risk having to pay a penalty of around 130% of the nominal premium for each month that you are uninsured, plus a fine of around €400 if you do not pay on time.
You might receive a letter from the CAK about your insurance obligation. You need to take action within 3 months or you will receive a fine of approximately €425. Even if you incorrectly received the letter from the CAK. In that case, it is important to contact the Sociale Verzekeringsbank (SVB) to ask for an investigation of your insurance situation under the Wlz scheme (free of charge) and send a copy of the decision from the SVB about your insurance situation to the CAK.
(If you do not take action within 3 months after receiving the CAK letter, CAK will impose a fine of approximately €425 on you. If you do not take action within 9 months after receiving the first CAK letter, CAK will ultimately arrange Basic Healthcare Insurance on your behalf (more expensive) and at your expense.)
More information about being uninsured is available on the Questions and answers page of CAK.
For questions about the various health insurance packages, contact the relevant insurance company.