Sixt has provided this guide to provide our customers with a bit of information about travelling in Holland. The guide is split into 4 parts and will give you some important tips to know before you start your trip.
Take extra care when in Central Amsterdam and Central Station as there are many thieves and pick pockets about. Many thieves operates in gangs and try to distract you why the other will pick pocket you or steal your bag. Take extra car when you are travelling on the trains to and from Schiphol airport and Central Station as well as on the trams. Be alert at all times and make sure that you don’t leave your luggage or any other items unattended.
Beware of thieves who operate by entering restaurants and pretending to sell you something or looking for someone. Make sure that all your belongings are safe at all times as they have been known to steal bags and valuables whilst you are distracted.
If you are the victim of theft or any other crime you should contact the nearest possible police station and get a police report.
Police in Amsterdam have warned of criminals pretending to be police officers and tricking tourists into handing over cash and credit cards by claiming to be investigated counterfeit money and false credit cards. Be cautious of any such approaches as genuine police officers would never act in this way.
If you are approached by police officers make sure you ask for identification and check it properly. Genuine Dutch police don’t have shiny badges, which the fake police sometimes present as ID. Call 0900-8844 to get in touch with the nearest police station if you need to contact them.
Avoid people who try to sell you drugs and stay away from alleys particularly late at night.
Be aware of drinks being spiked particularly young women and people not in groups. Whenever you are out don’t leave your drink unattended. If you have been the victim of a spiked drink seek medical attention immediately and inform the police.
If you are planning on driving in Holland make sure that you have your full UK driver’s licence with you at all times.
In Holland in 2012 there was 3.9 road deaths per 100,000 population compared to the UK average of 2.8 per 100,000.
You can be issued with heavy on the spot fines for any traffic offences committed. If you are fined you should ask for a receipt.
Use of mobile phones is illegal whilst driving unless you use a hands free set.
In general when driving in Holland you give way to cars on your right unless stated otherwise. Be careful when driving on roundabouts as on some you have right of way when you are already on them but on others cars entering the roundabout have right of way.
Trams have priority of traffic over other vehicles and they will use that right. If a tram stops in the middle of a road to let passengers on and off, you have to stop.
Speed cameras, speed traps and unmarked vehicles are widely used in Holland. Be careful not to exceed the speed limit and take extra care on the motorways as speed limits vary.
Pedestrians should take extra care when crossing roads as Mopeds and cyclists have right of way over other vehicles and they don’t always follow the road rules and they can sometimes ignore red lights. Crossing the road without a green signal will be classed as jaywalking and police can issue you with fines for this offence.
Deaths have been known to occur through people falling into canals, particularly under the influence of alcohol and drugs, so take extra care when you are near to canals.
If you are aged 14 and over you must carry ID on you at all times in case Police officers request to see proof of your identity. If you are British tourist you can use your passport as ID. If you have dual nationality you can use your Dutch passport, driver’s licence or identity card. Police officers will accept photocopies as a temporary measure but they will still request to see original documentation.
Although Holland has a reputation for being tolerant of soft drugs they are only to be used in designated premises in major cities. Possession of illegal substances or buying them outside of these designated premises can result in a prison sentence. Smoking cannabis in public is an offence in Holland as there are specific designated cafés where you can use it. The sale of both dry and fresh psychoactive mushrooms is forbidden by law.
You should contact your GP 8 weeks before you are planning to travel to Holland in case you need any vaccinations or other preventive measures.
Ensure that you have comprehensive travel and medical insurance before you travel.
You can find out more information about healthcare abroad and in Holland by going to the National Travel Health Network and Centre website or NHS choices.
If you are visiting Holland you should make sure you get a free European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) before you travel. Although the EHIC is not a substitute for medical and travel insurance it will ensure that you get state provided medical treatment during your visit if required.
If you don’t have your EHIC or you’ve lost it you can call the Department of Health Overseas Healthcare Team on (+44 191 218 1999) and they can provide you with a provisional replacement certificate. Your EHIC does not cover the cost of medical repatriation, ongoing medical treatment or non-urgent treatment. Make sure you have the correct insurance and available funds in case you have to cover the costs of any medical treatment or repatriation.
Call 122 in case of emergency to ask for medical assistance. You will need to contact your insurance or medical company if you are referred to a medical facility for treatment.
Your passport is valid for a visit of up to 3 months but make sure it covers the period that you are travelling.
Any holder of a British passport who is a British citizen does not need a visa to travel to Holland. If you hold a different type of British passport then you should contact the Netherlands Embassy in London.
* Please note: All content was correct at the time of publication.