A Conversation for Amsterdam, The Netherlands

Moving to Amsterdam- Any Advice?

Post 1


I am an American interested in living in Europe and Amsterdam seems to be one of the best places to get started. I understand it is difficult to find employment because of visas, ect.. and that as an American it may be easiest to find employment in Amsterdam (or anywhere in the Netherlands) than anywhere else. Any truth to this, or other advice? I appreciate it...


Moving to Amsterdam- Any Advice?

Post 2

Little Behemoth (sulking)

Ok. The first thing I would mention to anyone wanting to move here is to be organised. Every little bit of paper must be filled in and returned effectively and efficiently or it won't be processed. Don't take this the wrong way. The Dutch bureaucrats are not hostile to outsiders. If you have any questions, you can call the authorities (Town Hall, Immigration, etc) and they will be happy to help you. It is precisely because it is so easy to fill out the papers, etc, that they will not be prone to cutting you some slack because you didn't manage to fill them in on time. So, be prepared for a lot of form filling (especially if you are a non EU citizen).

Secondly, if you're going to live in Amsterdam, try and organise somewhere to live before you move over. The rental market is cut-throat there. People are desperate for accommodation and you pay seriously high rent for flats in the centre of town. Unless you earn an executive wage, you'll have to be prepared to share or live out of the Centre or squat I suppose. And waiting lists at some agencies are up to 2 years long. The rental market is definately the worse part of moving to the Netherlands. Lol. Flats appear on the market and are gone within hours, so be prepared to run about at a minutes notice to see somewhere, and if you like it you should take it immediately. If you don't someone else will before you call back...

Moving to Amsterdam- Any Advice?

Post 3


As a non-EU national, the first thing you will need to do is ensure that you will be legal upon entering the country. Get this sorted out with the Dutch embassy in your country first, before you even contemplate flying over to Europe. Everything goes from there, and that is only the beginning of a lot of red tape. Next, do you want to work or study? Presuming that you wish to work, you will need to gain a temporary (three months initially, I think) residence permit from the Vreemdelingenpolitie (Aliens' Police), who are based in the West of Amsterdam on Johan Huizinglaan. Go in the morning, before it gets too busy with all the Moroccans, Latvians, Turks and other assorted types who want their own little slice of Western culture. Social security comes next, and you too can have your own SoFi-nummer by visiting the Belastingdienst (tax office) on Kingsfordweg, just next to Station Sloterdijk. Assuming you can find work (try taking your CV to uitzendbureaus, such as Randstad, Manpower or Kelly, dotted around the city), you'll need a bank account, but you'll be making a mistake if you go to one of the bigger banks. They'll want a copy of your job contract, SoFi-nummer, police permission to stay in the country, inside leg measurement, DNA sample, and your family tree for the last five generations (um, I lied about the last three...). Much better to go for an account with either PostBank or FortisBank, both of whom have more laidback requirements for opening an account. Lastly, and assuming you haven't done so already, you'll need a place to stay. That's a completely different ball game, and to tell too much here would spoil the surprise...

Moving to Amsterdam- Any Advice?

Post 4

Researcher 139168 aka Ursus Minor 8-)

So, Keith,
is there any progress in you coming to Mokum (aka Amsterdam)?
I am a native of Mokum; so for general advice on what to do you when you come to live in Amsterdam, you can better listen to others; but if you have specific questions i would be happy to answer.


Moving to Amsterdam- Any Advice?

Post 5


Getting clear on what you want to do there (work or live) will help a lot. Actually, many US-Companies have branches in Amsterdam, and if you are interested in IT, or skilled in it, this would help you find a job. Maybe you could start looking for a job while still in the US and then, if you get one, have the respective company help you with all the paperwork. Good Luck!

Moving to Amsterdam- Any Advice?

Post 6

Researcher 183384

Hello Keith,

Amsterdam is the friendliest city in the world, completely free from racism - unless you are American. You can move there with no problem, but be prepared to pretend that you are Canadian (unless you are a comedian, then you can go to Boom Chicago on the Leidseplein(or the American ghetto - as Amsterdammers like to call it).

You must have lots of money and a job before you come to Amsterdam. (That's not the rules, I just don't want to be approached by another backpacker scrounging for money).
Alternatively just bring several nice American guitars and you can stay in Amsterdam as long as you like.

Because you are American you must learn Dutch - everyone does speak English but you must still learn Dutch - because you are American (non-EU)

There are no jobs for cannabis quality control left.

If you are a musician, it is easy to find a job, just dont expect it to either feed you, clothe you or pay the rent. That's what girlfriends are for.

Of course you can have a boyfriend, you will not suffer any discrimination for being gay - only for being American.

Alternatively you could wait until George Bush is out of office.

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