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Practical information

Considering studying abroad as an exchange student for a couple of months? Here’s what you need to know about housing, residence permits, and insurance.

Studenten lopen op een centraal punt in Hogeschool Leiden die de sfeer van de school geeft
The common room for exchange students at Leiden University of Applied Sciences
DUWO Housing


We advise you to start as soon as possible when looking for housing. Because there is a shortage of affordable accommodation in the Leiden area, finding a room can be very difficult and time-consuming!

DUWO University Housing

DUWO Housing Leiden UAS facilitates a limited number of rooms of DUWO Housing, one of the largest student housing providers in The Netherlands. During your application, you will be asked If you are interested in making use of this offer.

Hospi Housing

Living with a host or host family is a unique and cozy way of living. You have your own room but share facilities such as the kitchen or bathroom. It's an ideal solution if you're just starting out on your own or if you're temporarily looking for accommodation. Hospi Housing has a large network of verified hosts and host families and ensures the perfect match. With the 'No room, No pay' model, you can sign up for free and get in touch with hosts immediately.

Leiden UAS is a partner of, the international student-to-student housing platform. Students who are coming from abroad to Leiden can find & book a student room on Housing Anywhere. The rooms on this platform are offered by our students that go abroad for an exchange period or internship. Using the platform itself is completely free for you as a student. When you make a concrete booking, an administrative fee will be charged as a part of Housing Anywhere’s secure booking system.

Finding housing through Facebook

 If you are looking for housing in Leiden or The Hague (12 minutes by train to Leiden), do check out at least these Facebook groups:

Rental contract

In the Netherlands it is common to sign a rental contract if you rent a room or apartment. You will always sign a contract for a specific period of time (for example six months, a year, etc.). Leiden UAS advises you not to rent a room or apartment without signing a contract. You should always read the conditions in the rental contract carefully and never sign a rental contract without making sure you understand what it says.

ROOM offers student housing in Amsterdam, Delft, The Hague, Deventer, Leiden, Haarlem, Wageningen and Groningen. ROOM is a cooperation of the non-profit student housing corporations Lefier, Idealis, Ymere and DUWO. See also the DUWO page with more information on the difference between DUWO University Housing and  Direct Offer/ International students - Stichting DUWO.


Leiden UAS is a partner of, the international student-to-student housing platform. Students who are coming from abroad to Leiden can find & book a student room on Housing Anywhere. The rooms on this platform are offered by our students that go abroad for an exchange period or internship. Using the platform itself is completely free for you as a student. When you make a concrete booking, an administrative fee will be charged as a part of Housing Anywhere’s secure booking system.

Last but not least, be cautious!

Where there is high demand and low supply, there are opportunists. Therefore, we highly recommend you to be very careful when a really good deal is offered to you or you feel like something is off. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

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International Office

Selfie van studenten in de stad Leiden

Identification and residence permits

Please make sure you have a valid passport or identity card before you travel to the Netherlands. Make sure this is valid 3 months after your exchange period is over. 

Students from EU/EEA countries are not required to apply for a residence permit, nor are they required to register with the Dutch Immigration Office (IND).

If you have any questions about (applying for) a residence permit or MVV, you can contact our Student Registration Office ([email protected]).

Provisional residence permit (MVV)

Students from non-EU/EEA countries who intend to stay in the Netherlands for more than 90 days might need a provisional residence permit for the purpose of study, or MVV. You can check here to find out if you need an MVV. If you need an MVV, Leiden UAS will help you to arrange it, as you cannot arrange this yourself. You will need to prove that you have been admitted to the Leiden UAS exchange programme and that you have sufficient financial means to live in the Netherlands. 

For our incoming exchange students, this means we will let our Student Registration Office know which of you will need a MVV and they will contact you directly with further information and instructions.

Legal fees

For the application of your immigration (entry visa and/or residence permit), the legal fee is €228,-*. Please note this only applicable for students with a non-EU/EEA nationality and these fees are non-refundable.

* Subject to change

Sufficient academic progress

In order to retain your residence permit, your academic progress must be adequate. As a student, you must attain at least half of the total possible credits each academic year. Leiden UAS will check this at the end of every academic year. If your progress is inadequate, Leiden UAS is obliged to report this to the Dutch immigration Services (IND), in which case there is a chance that the IND will revoke your residence permit. You can find more information about this in the brochure 'Coming to Study in The Netherlands', available on the website of the Dutch Immigration Office (IND).

Studenten lopen door Leiden centrum

Better safe than sorry: all about insurance

Zorgmedewerker met collega in gesprek
Healthcare insurance

When preparing for your stay in Leiden, it is very important to ensure that you will have sufficient healthcare insurance during your stay. Leiden UAS highly recommends that you contact your own health insurance company before travelling to the Netherlands, and find out exactly what you need to do to be properly insured against medical expenses in the Netherlands.

Third-party liability insurance

It is also advisable to take out third-party liability insurance. In the Netherlands you are responsible for paying the costs of damages resulting from any accident you cause. As these costs can be extremely high, we strongly urge foreign students coming to the Netherlands to take out third-party liability insurance (wettelijke aansprakelijkheidsverzekering), which will cover all expenses in many cases. Here, too, is the advice to contact your own insurance company to see their options.


When you start your studies at Leiden UAS and don’t receive any income in the Netherlands, you (and your family members) can only apply for a private insurance. InsureToStudy provides this.


ITS offers the students of the Leiden UAS (and their family members) a special insurance, the Masterplan+. This student insurance is known for its excellent price-quality ratio. This insurance meets both the IND requirements if you need a residence permit and the Leiden UAS requirements of having sufficient medical and liability insurance. Have a look at the extent of cover

€56,10 per month (€1,87 per day) for a full package insurance Including pre-existing conditions medical costs. 

Apply for Masterplan+

European plan: for students who have the EHIC

Do you come from an EU-country and do you have an EHIC  (European Health Insurance Card) card? We can top you up with a special package; the ITS EuropeanPlan. This is an additional coverage on the EHIC card from your home country. €25,00 per month or €0,83 per day for additional coverage on the EHIC card as well as all other (non-medical) coverages equal to Masterplan+ Have a look at the extent of cover

Be aware: plannable medical care in the Netherlands is not part of the coverage! 

Apply for European plan

The Dutch Basic Health insurance Hollandzorg

If you start working this might have consequences for your healthcare insurance. Contact ITS when you start working ITS can offer you the Dutch Basic Health Insurance without an own risk of €385,- including €200,- dentist cover and repatriation with in Europe for free. 

You can also take the BasicPlan for all other covers, so you will be insured for everything. 

Apply for Dutch Basic Health Insurance Hollandzorg

You can always contact InsureToStudy for personal advice at phone number 0031 70 2051860 or send an email to [email protected].

Practical information

In the Netherlands
Public transport

You can choose a personal or an anonymous so-called OV-chipkaart. Both cards cost €7,50. You can buy an anonymous card at the 'Tickets & Service' desk at Leiden Centraal train station or from an OV-chipkaart machine. 

For a personal OV-chipkaart, you will need to apply online or via regular post and submit a photo. Furthermore, you will need a Dutch bank account if you want a personal OV-chipkaart. The benefit of a personal OV-chipkaart is that you can have discounts for certain time slots and routes (such as 40% discount in the non-rush hours with the train). You need to take out a subscription for this. 

Your card can be charged at one of the OV-chipkaart machines strategically placed at train and metro stations. If you have a personal card, you can arrange for it to be charged automatically from your Dutch bank account. 

You pay for your journey by swiping the card or your phone (if it supports NFC payment such as Apple Pay or Google Pay) on entering and leaving the station or vehicle. 

You can find all relevant information about the OV-chipkaart on this website.

Registration at the municipality

If you are planning on staying in the Netherlands for four months or longer, you will need to have yourself registered as a non-resident (RNI). For this registration process you will have to go to the local town hall. If you are staying in Leiden, you have to call the local town hall (14071) to make an appointment to register. Please check the website of the municipality.

Citizen Service Number

After you have completed your registration at the local town hall, you will receive a citizen service number (burgerservicenummer, BSN). You need to have this number if you take a job alongside your studies or if you are planning on doing an internship in the Netherlands, open a Dutch bank account, get a local SIM card, et cetera.

Dutch bank account

In our university building you can pay with bank cards that have the Maestro logo. If you do not have a bank card with the Maestro logo, you can open a bank account at a Dutch bank, which will issue you a Dutch bank card with the Maestro logo. To open a Dutch bank account, you will need to present to following documents:

  • A valid passport / ID card
  • Copy of your rental contract
  • Social security number (which you get once you register at the municipality)
  • Proof that you are registered as a student at our university (such as a Letter of Acceptance)
Medical care & emergencies

In case of illness, you should contact a general practitioner (huisarts) first. They are your first point of contact to any specialist or hospital. Most GP's speak English, but it is important to check if they participate in your health care system. The Leiden International Centre can assist you in finding a general practitioner. The website contains a wealth of useful information on health, and their staff speak various foreign languages. We recommend you find a GP as soon as you have arrived.

Medical emergencies

For life threatening situations call: 112 (ambulance, fire department or police department) or visit the emergency room at the nearest hospital. If you are not feeling well and your symptoms are not life threatening, you can contact your general practitioner and make an appointment. 


Make sure to bring proof of your health insurance to the appointment, otherwise you will have to pay for the consultation directly after you have visited the doctor. A regular consultation costs around €30 - €70. Blood tests, psychological support, etc. cost more. Do not forget to ask for a receipt, as after your visit you can declare these costs to your insurance company. 


In the Netherlands, you will need a prescription for most medication. With a prescription you can go to a pharmacy (apotheek) to collect your medication. You pay for it when it is ready, and if you have medical insurance, you can usually claim the expenses from the insurance company. Certain medicines are available over the counter, either in a pharmacy or at a chemist (drogist) such as Etos and Kruidvat. Pharmacies and chemists usually have the same opening hours as shops. There is always a pharmacy open, even on weekends.

Working while studying in The Netherlands

It is possible to work alongside your studies in the Netherlands, although much depends on your nationality. For example, you may be permitted to work just a limited number of hours a week or your employer may have to apply for a work permit on your behalf. Internships are also seen as work and certain rules apply. Read more about work alongside your studies.

Practical information at Leiden UAS

Restaurants, cafés, service desk, media centre; you'll find all practical information on Leiden University of Applied Sciences on this page

Code of Conduct and Legal Protection
International Students in Dutch Higher Education Code of Conduct

The purpose of this code is to serve as a quality tool in facilitating the ambitions of the Dutch government and the Dutch education institutions to establish the Netherlands as an attractive education and development destination for international students. Leiden UAS has signed this code. On the website of the Code of Conduct you will find two videos, the first is an introduction to the code and the second describes the complaint procedure.

House Rules

To promote and maintain a suitable study, work, and living environment, the university has established certain regulations for the use of its buildings, premises, facilities, and resources. These regulations are known as the house rules. Students, staff, and third parties are required to comply with these house rules and are expected to follow the instructions and directives given by the authorized personnel of Leiden UAS based on this regulation.

Student Charter

The Student Charter informs students about Leiden UAS and what they can expect from the university. The charter provides an overview of all the rights and obligations of students and also indicates the available facilities for them. The Student Charter consists of a general part that applies to anyone studying at the university and a specific part that applies to students of a particular program or group of programs. The specific part of the Student Charter includes the Education and Examination Regulations (EER) and a description of the study structure and support facilities provided by the university. The content may vary, in some aspects, depending on the program or group of programs.

Regulation on the Use of ICT Facilities and (Personal) Data

The Regulation on the Use of ICT Facilities and (Personal) Data describes how students and staff are expected to handle the university's ICT facilities and (personal) data. Additionally, the regulation informs users about how the university collects data, monitors compliance, and may conduct targeted investigations. Since the information regarding the processing of personal data and the use of ICT facilities may vary depending on the relationship with the university, two regulations have been created. A concise summary of the code of conduct has also been prepared.