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The cost of living in the Netherlands. Is the Netherlands expensive?

What is the cost of living in the Netherlands? Is the Netherlands expensive?

27 September, 2022

The cost of living in the Netherlands, as in other countries, varies from region to region and city to city. However, whether you live in the capital or a small town, the prices may seem outrageous, especially when converted into Polish zloty. So how do you prepare to work in the Netherlands and where can you cut costs?

Housing and accommodation costs

The cost of renting a flat in the Netherlands depends on the location and the size of the flat. A private room in Rotterdam will cost between 350 and 700 EUR. The closer to the central station, the higher the prices. Utrecht is slightly more expensive – here, you have to add another 100 EUR to a room of a similar standard. The highest rental prices are in Amsterdam, where the cost of a monthly room rental can be as high as 850 EUR. A studio apartment will cost you between 600 and 1300 EUR. In the capital, renting a flat for several people costs from 1600 to over 2000 EUR. It all depends on the standard.

It’s worth knowing that in many cases the rent doesn’t include the utility charges, which can be up to 180 EUR for a single person. You should also be aware that landlords often require a one-off deposit, which is two or three times the rent. Sometimes tenants also have to pay several months’ rent in advance.

A cheaper alternative is to have work with accommodation in the Netherlands arranged as part of the same package. Either the agency or the employer can be responsible for the accommodation. The price for accommodation in a room through the Carrière agency is 106 EUR including all additional costs except insurance.

Prices in grocery shops

How much you spend on food largely depends on your lifestyle and preferences, but it can be assumed that the average monthly cost is in the region of 200 EUR. It can vary from city to city, as some agglomerations are more expensive than others. And so, in Eindhoven, you can buy twice as much as in Amsterdam for the same amount.

Average prices of popular food products in the Netherlands as of January 2022:

  • milk (1 l) – 1.05 EUR;
  • cheese (1 kg) – 10 EUR;
  • bread (0.8 kg) – 1.50 EUR;
  • tomatoes (1 kg) – 2.65 EUR;
  • eggs (10 pack) – 3 EUR;
  • chicken breast (1 kg) – 7.50 EUR.

There are many hypermarkets in the Netherlands, where you can often find significant discounts and special offers on various products. As in Poland, you will find here shops such as Aldi and Lidl. Popular discounters also include Albert Heijn, Jumbo, Dirk, Vomar, Hoogvliet and DekaMarkt. The most expensive shopping is at Coop and Spar.

How to economise on groceries in the Netherlands?

It’s worth keeping an eye on discount brochures as well as having loyalty cards or apps for your phone. In this way, you can save up to EUR10 on a single purchase.

In the Netherlands, special offers of 1+1 product free are very popular. When you want to save money, it’s also a good idea to look for products that are discounted due to their expiry date. When grocery shopping, also look out for the 35% Korting sticker which indicates a discount. At some hypermarkets, you can also buy cheaper bread in the evening.

What’s more, it’s advisable to stock up on fruit and vegetables at local vegetable shops or markets. A bag of groceries at the De Koopman greengrocer’s will cost you around 20 EUR.

All of this means that even if you live in one of the more expensive cities, it is still possible to reduce your food costs.

You can hear about ways to shop cheaply on our YouTube channel.

Transport costs in the Netherlands

Fuel in the Netherlands is among the most expensive in the world. In mid-March 2022, the average price of 95 petrol in the Netherlands was 2.222 EUR per litre, the price of a litre of diesel fuel was 1.953 EUR, and LPG was 1.025 EUR per litre. Public transport isn’t cheap either. On average, you have to pay 3.20 EUR for one trip using public transport. A monthly ticket costs around 90 EUR.

The cheapest way to get around in the Netherlands is by bicycle. Even if you don’t have your own bike, you can always rent one, with the rental cost at around 6 EUR per day. The Netherlands is renowned for its excellent cycling infrastructure, so it would be a sin not to take advantage of it to save money.

Leisure time in the Netherlands

Work alone is not enough – this statement could be the main motto of the Dutch. In this country, it’s important for companies that their employees’ leisure time is quality time. There are several options to choose from, which are worth looking into as they are not that expensive.

Gym and fitness club passes are worth mentioning. You can buy them for as little as 20 EUR, and if you browse discount websites, you may find some available for up to half that price. Please note that most gyms in the Netherlands charge you for six months upfront, but it is still an attractive offer. A cinema ticket costs 11.5 EUR, and a multi-course dinner at a good restaurant can be had for a reasonably affordable price, i.e. 50 EUR. A pint of beer in a pub usually costs 5 EUR, while a club or disco ticket will set you back from 15 to as much as 100 EUR.

What is the cost of living in the Netherlands?

The cost of living in the Netherlands is higher than in Poland. More than half the income of an average household in the country of tulips and windmills is devoured by fixed costs – around 1500 EUR a month.

Leaving for the Netherlands to work there with a partner is certainly a good way to save money. It’s an opportunity to earn twice as much and have the cost of living spread over two people. It should be emphasised that working in the Netherlands gives you enough funds to enjoy your stay without economising.

To find out more about living in the Netherlands, look here.