Managing Money as a Migrant in The Netherlands

Do The Netherlands appeal to you as a foreign worker? There are a lot of migrants that choose to come to The Netherlands to work and earn money to send back home. However, before you decide to pack up and leave, it’s important to get a good understanding of what to expect financially in a new country, especially if you need to manage your money in more than one place. 

Average Cost of Living in The Netherlands

It’s no surprise that if you choose to live in a city like Amsterdam, the cost of living will be more expensive than in other cities in The Netherlands. On average, it costs around €2,200 per month to live in The Netherlands as a single person, however, the cost can go up or down depending on where you live. 

While The Netherlands might not be as expensive as some other European countries, like Switzerland, for example, since the country is relatively small, property costs are typically higher. You can expect to pay up to half of your paycheck just in rent, but this can vary widely depending on whether you live in a major city or outside of a city center. 

Cost of Expenses in The Netherlands

We like to compare the cost of some everyday essentials in different countries so that you can get a good idea of what to expect to pay. Here are some average costs for things you might normally buy in The Netherlands:

  • Rent: between €550 – €1,100 depending on the area and apartment size
  • Meal at an inexpensive restaurant: €15
  • Beer: €4.50
  • Bus ticket: €1.50
  • Milk: €0.99
  • Eggs: €3.36
  • Gas (1L): €1.68
  • Monthly utilities: €115 – €166 depending on apartment size (heating, electricity, gas, etc.)

Most Expensive Cities in The Netherlands

Like many European destinations, the major cities in The Netherlands are often the most expensive. Here are the priciest cities in The Netherlands:

  1. Amsterdam
  2. Rotterdam
  3. Groningen
  4. Haarlem
  5. Utrecht

Even though these cities are expensive, they often come with better work opportunities. Again, it’s important that you keep the size of The Netherlands in mind, since even though these cities are expensive to live in, they offer the best value and the most work opportunities for migrants, making them popular choices for foreign workers. Additionally, if you’re a foreign student in The Netherlands, you might find more affordable housing options such as dorms that bring down your cost of living in these cities.

Tips for Managing Your Money in The Netherlands

It can be tricky to manage your money both at home and in a new country, but with these tips, you’ll find it easier to get by and save more of your paycheck to send home.

  • Set a budget that takes all your expenses into account and helps you set savings goals. Creating a budget isn’t difficult, and will help you organize your money every month.
  • Be frugal with your spending, especially when you’ve just arrived so that you can get used to managing your expenses. Take public transit, shop for groceries instead of eating out, and shop at second-hand clothes and furniture stores when you need something.
  • Cut down on fees related to banking and remittances by relying on a low-cost international money transfer service. This way, your hard-earned cash doesn’t go to waste and you have more money at the end of the month to send home.

To Wrap Up

While The Netherlands can be expensive, there are still plenty of migrants who have gone there successfully and gotten jobs that allow them to send money home each month. Still, it’s good to know how to prepare yourself financially before landing in a new country so that you’re aware of how much you can save while working abroad.