Ever thought about becoming a Dutch citizen?

how to become Dutch

There are two routes for internationals considering how to become a Dutch citizen.

The first is naturalisation and the second is the ‘option’ procedure, a fast-track route available to some.

This time in the Here in Holland podcast host Andy Clark talks to immigration lawyer and Dutch citizenship expert Hermie de Voer.

The podcastalso zooms in on the possibilities of having dual nationality.


“The naturalisation process is in general open to anyone who has been living in the Netherlands continuously with a valid residence permit for five years,” says citizenship expert de Voer.

“After you file your naturalisation request it currently takes about a year to get a positive decision,” she adds.

You also have to attend a naturalisation ceremony at your city hall to complete the process.

And before you get here you need to have finalised your integration course.

This is known as the inburgerings diploma in Dutch.

This means you need to be able to speak and understand the Dutch.

You need to know about Dutch culture too.

And since 2015 there’s a new section about orientating yourself in the Dutch labour market.

What about the ‘option’ procedure?

There are many variations.

For example, if you have lived in the Netherlands for more than 15 years and are married to a Dutch national then this fast track is open.

With the ‘option’ procedure the local municipality makes the decision rather than the central immigration authorities.

It is quicker, about 13 weeks, and a lot cheaper, under €200 as opposed to around €800 for the ‘naturalisation’ route.

With this route there is also no requirement to do the integration course.

There are other possibilities under the option – it’s best to get personal advice to see if there is one for your particular situation.

how to become DutchDual nationality

Many people think it is very difficult to have dual nationality in the Netherlands.

In fact, if you are married or have a registered partnership with a Dutch national you can get Dutch nationality and keep your original nationality.

Another exception is if you have refugee status.

There other exceptions too which are linked to personal circumstances.

For example, if you can show you will lose a lot of money if you lose your original nationality.

This could apply to pension rights or business interests.

“It is difficult to say in general but to be honest most clients who come to me are able to have dual nationality in the end,” says de Voer.

“There are always possibilities,” she adds.

Here in Holland is the podcast in English about life with the Dutch – it’s produced by Andy Clark  – contact him via 
hereinholland@gmail.com or Facebook – website – you can subscribe to get all the podcasts in via your iPhone podcast app or your Android app of choice.  Or follow on Soundcloud

The podcast is now also available on Spotify