Every non-Dutch citizen arriving in the Netherlands for work or study is required to register their presence in the Municipal Personal Records Database (BRP). Upon your registration with the municipality, you will receive a citizen service number (BSN). If you will be staying for less than 4 months, there is a special procedure for your registration: the ‘registration as a non-inhabitant’ or Registratie Niet-Ingezetenen (RNI).
Please note: Are you a diplomat, privileged person or a consular officer? Then you do not need to register with the municipality. Go to our article on registration for priviliged people for more information.
How to arrange your short stay in the Netherlands
Step 1: Check if you need a visa. Generally, a visit to The Hague region of less than 4 months will qualify as a short stay. There are 2 ways to visit the Netherlands: for leisure or for business.
- A. Are you visiting for holidays or to visit family? You will be free to stay in the Netherlands for up to 90 days. If you have the nationality of an EU/EEA country or Switzerland, you do not need a special visa. When you have a different nationality, please check the IND website to see if you need a tourist visa and how to apply for it.
- B. Are you planning to work in the Netherlands? As a EU/EEA and Swiss citizen, you do not need a visa or residence permit to work in the Netherlands. The only exemption is for Croatian nationals; you may only work in the Netherlands if your employer has a work permit for you. If you’re not an EU/EEA or Swiss citizen, you do need a visa.
If you wish to work in the Netherlands during your short stay, your employer may need to apply for a work permit. Your employer has to apply for this at the UWV. This also applies if you perform voluntary work or an unpaid assignment. Please visit the IND website for more information about working in the Netherlands:
- C. Are you visiting The Hague for a business trip? When you want to stay in the Netherlands for a maximum of 90 days for business purposes, you will generally need a visa - unless you have the nationality of an EU/EEA country or Switzerland. Please visit the IND website for more information.
- D. Do you have a stopover in the Netherlands? You may have a stopover at an airport in the Netherlands, during a journey from or to a destination outside the Schengen Area. In some cases, you need an airport transit visa (type A visa). Visit the IND website for further details.
Please note: you do not need to apply for a type A visa if you have a valid visa for an EU/EEA country, Canada, Japan or the United States.
Step 2: Registration within the Register for non-residents (RNI). After you have settled your visa, it is important that you register at one of the 19 RNI municipalities in the Netherlands. After your registration with the RNI, you will receive a citizen service number (BSN) which you will need to arrange personal and official matters.
For the cities in The Hague region, you can make an appointment with the Municipality of The Hague.
During the appointment you will be registered in the Register Niet Ingezetenen (RNI) and you will get your citizen service number (BSN) right away.
- Read more about the registration procedures for non-residents (RNI) of the Netherlands in The Hague here.
Are you staying in the Netherlands longer than 4 months?
All new residents need to register with the municipality within 5 days if they will reside in the Netherlands longer than 4 months. Read more about the registration procedure for a sponsored stay and a unsponsored stay.