Moving to Wageningen & the Netherlands

Coming from abroad the Dutch culture can be both inspiring and surprising. This page is for first orientation, but also offers helpful information while you are here.

A brief introduction to the Netherlands and Wageningen

The Netherlands

Coming from abroad the Dutch culture can be both inspiring and surprising. A lot of practical information about the Netherlands can be found on the webpage of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.

Wageningen City

Wageningen is situated centrally in the Netherlands. It takes 25 minutes by train from Utrecht Central Station to Ede-Wageningen and from there the Campus is a 12 minute bus ride away. 

There are historic and modern buildings, high-rise student flats, works of art and botanical gardens, adding to the diversity of Wageningen. About 10.000 students study at Wageningen University & Research, accounting for 20% of the population. The many international students, professors and researchers contribute to the vibrant atmosphere. 

Wageningen has a thriving cultural and social life. Bars, restaurants, a cinema and a theatre create the elegance of a small city, in a beautiful rural setting. The nearby floodplains of the river Rhine and national park ‘de Veluwe’ are ideal for those who enjoy nature or like hiking, running or cycling.

Wageningen Campus

Our campus is a centre where expertise and talent come together. Research, studying and business unite here and the iconic building in the middle of it all is called Forum. The main library is located here and is open 14 hours per day. 

There are several places on the campus where one can relax and have a drink with friends and colleagues. For example, 'the Spot' in Orion offers drinks, dinners and different forms of indoor recreation (table tennis, pool, table soccer), whereas lunch and dinner can be enjoyed at one of the restaurants of Campus Plaza

Nearby sports centre ‘De Bongerd’ offers over 60 different sports ranging from tennis, squash and indoor biking to football, rugby and athletics. A membership of the sports centre costs only EUR20 per month.

Find out more

Visas and residence permits for PhD candidates

At least 3 months prior to the intended date of arrival in Wageningen a candidate should be registered in the Wageningen PhD Programme via the Graduate School. See the timetable for all the steps of the PhD Programme.

Accordingly, Wageningen University & Research (WUR) assists Non-EU PhD candidates to obtain a visa and residence permit. Welcome Center Food Valley assists PhD candidates that are employed by Wageningen University & Research, or those that bring family members with the visa application procedure. Should a PhD candidate wish to come to the Netherlands with a spouse or partner and/or children, this needs to be discussed beforehand with the supervisor from the WUR.

For other PhD candidates a WUR contact person/supervisor can request Doctoral Service Centre to assist.

Long-stay visa (MVV)

PhD candidates from outside the European Union and European Free Trade Area who are planning to stay in the Netherlands for more than three months will need an MVV visa (authorisation for temporary stay) to enter the Netherlands.

Some nationalities are exempted from this requirement; but they do need to apply for a residence permit. Check on the website Long-stay visa from the Dutch government whether you need an MVV and/or a residence permit. Also, check Visas for the Netherlands for more information.

Short stay visa (VKV)

A visa for a stay of up to three months can be obtained at the Dutch embassy in your country. A Short-stay visa is not required for all nationalities, please check the Visa Advisor of the Dutch government to see what applies for you.

You can find more information about Short-stay visa on the website of the Dutch government about Short-stay Schengen visa.

Please be aware that it is not possible to change a short stay visa (VKV) into a residence permit while in the Netherlands. Therefore, it is strongly recommended to immediately apply for a long-stay visa instead.

The Dutch healthcare system and health insurance

In the Netherlands the healthcare system is well organised. By Dutch law one is obliged to have a health insurance. Please follow this link to find out more on how the Dutch healthcare system is organised and to get an insurance.

Coming to Wageningen with a family

Coming to Wageningen with a family takes a bit more organisation than coming on your own. Please follow the link for more information on what needs to be organised.

Costs of living

The costs of living in the Netherlands are very dependent on your way of living. Renting a student room costs can range between EUR300 and EUR500 per month. The costs of renting an apartment or small house can be EUR600 to EUR1000 per month or higher, depending on the size and state of the apartment or house.

On average, further monthly expenditure is about EUR400 which include:

  • Health insurance and legal liability insurance: approximately EUR75 per month or higher.
  • Groceries: approximately EUR300 per month

    Note that costs of travel to and from the Netherlands and visa costs (EUR650 for a stay of more than three months) must also be considered.

    Services to help international students and staff

    Wageningen University & Research staff and PhD candidates can approach HR advisers with matters concerning legal status, problems regarding supervision or other personnel issues. For other PhD candidates, supervisors can request Doctoral Service Centre to assist non-Dutch PhD candidates with obtaining:

    1. Visa and residence permits,
    2. Health and third party liability insurances (for more information, consult the insurance page)
    3. Plane tickets (only for sandwich PhD candidates with a Wageningen University & Research scholarship).

    More ways to find help can be found here.