Should you visit the Netherlands and Europe right now – updated July 13th, 2021

Corona Virus image.

Photo: Vektor Kunst.

Current to the best of our knowledge on July 13th, 2021
Important: Always base your decision on your governments official health and travel advice.

We're are now way past one year Corona, but the pandemic still holds us in its grip worldwide. We're also well into the vaccination campaign in most western countries, including the Netherlands. So, where does this all put us? Is it wise to travel again?

We are not medically trained and don't want to advise for that matter in any way, shape or form. However, we also understand people might come to this website to find out more information about their (upcoming) trip to Holland and learn more about what is, and what isn't possible right now.

It felt weird just to promote the beautiful side of Holland, while all this is going on in the world, and not addressing limitations that the Corona virus brings with it. That's why we created this page. We want to inform you about the current status from a tourists perspective.

Official government travel advice is leading and changing almost by the minute

Your countries' official travel and health advice is always leading, also now with the Coronavirus. If you're already in the Netherlands, the RIVM advice is leading. See the links below.

Would we advise people to visit the Netherlands right now?

Yes, but... 

Hospitalisations numbers are rapidly decreasing at the moment. That is applicable for most countries that are vaccinating, which is great news, but infections are also on the rise again due to the delta variant in the unvaccinated population which is still significant in numbers. Be prepared for rapidly changing rules and restrictions this summer. 

If you don't mind some extra paperwork, and you're ok adapting to changing rules, then you can at the moment have a really nice holiday, maybe still a bit different as normal, but it certainly is possible again. 

What is the current situation in the Netherlands from a tourist perspective?

  • Most Corona measures are now lifted. Some basic rules still apply, see below
  • The government still demands social distancing: 1.5m (5ft). If you don't comply you face a fine up to €95. The advise is also to wash your hand regularly, don't shake hands, and stay home if you experience Corona related symptoms like a cough, have a temperature and/or a loss of smell/taste.
  • Cultural venues like concert halls, theaters, cinemas et cetera are open but when it's not possible to keep the required distance from other visitors, a (free) Covid test is required before being allowed admission. You can book a free test here. You can upload proof of testing (or proof of vaccination - only when you received your jabs in The Netherlands) in this app here.
  • Bars and restaurants are open, as long as there is 1.5m distance between visitors and a place to sit is guaranteed. They close at midnight.
  • Clubs and dancings are closed.
  • Amusements parks are open as normal, but social distancing is required.
  • Supermarkets, and all other stores are open as normal, but social distancing is required. Mask wearing is not required, but we personally still do it. The pandemic is not over yet.
  • Public transport runs as normal, but mask wearing is required on public transit.
  • Flights are returning back to normal, but airports around the world are still understaffed. Keep that mind, and allow for longer lines and waiting times. Masks are required at Schiphol Amsterdam Airport.
  • Hospitals in the Netherlands have low numbers of Covid patients. The Netherlands has a well developed and modern health care system. There is enough capacity to give people the care they need, both on the ICU as for regular care. Note that English is well spoken, you don't have to worry about a language barrier. 

Do you personally feel safe in the Netherlands at this moment?

We do, kind of. Infections are worse elsewhere. But also not as good as they can be,  and, most people are starting to lose a sense of urgency and become more relaxed. Personally we feel people are getting impatient too soon, and it might be a perfect breeding ground for another wave of infections. Hopefully we're wrong. 

It's also a blessing we have a good social system, taking care of people when income or revenue dries up. Our health care system is one of the best in the world and is accessible for all, which gives some sense of relieve. I feel we're in a much better place than many other countries around the world, but that doesn't mean we shouldn't be careful.

When is the (next) best time to travel to Holland?

Holland is beautiful to visit year-round. And for many people the Netherlands is open. If you're from high risk countries like Great Britain, or you when you're not comfortable yet to hop on a plane you can always visit Holland virtually (we created a perfect post for you here) for now, and come in person when things improve just a bit more. We'll all still be here once you do. If you're looking for more information about special dates to choose when to visit read our post: Important Dates when visiting The Netherlands.

Did this post help you?

We hope this post helped with making a decision. Once more, please check with your local (health) authorities as well.

Join the conversation at the bottom of this post and lets us know how Corona affected your travel plans. Are you now planning for 2022 instead, or 2021 in the cards for you?

If you're already here or you are still coming soon, and you need practical help from a locals perspective, please ask us below. We'll try to help as best as we can.

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