Insurance is very important in The Netherlands. Residents here tend to be very well insured, often with policies that might not be considered in other countries. Insurance can be arranged quickly and easily, and is often one of the first things which new arrivals set up after receiving their BSN.
Health insurance is obligatory and all residents are required to have some form of cover. Very good information about health insurance and other medical matters can be found on the website of Access . There are comparison sites showing the differences and similarity between the different companies’ basic cover.
Aside from health insurance most people in The Netherlands also take out one or more of the following policies. There are many more types of policy but the ones below are popular.
Home Contents Insurance. This insures everything in your house against fire, theft, damage etc. Some rental Landlords insist on you taking this insurance out and a clause may be included in your tenancy agreement stating that you are obliged to have contents insurance.
Travel Insurance. This protects you against loss or damage when you travel.
Liability / Accident Insurance. Liability covers the costs if you accidentally cause damage to someone else’s property. For instance if your plants fall off the balcony and break your neighbour’s window. Or you cause accidental damage to someone else’s car. Accident insurance covers you in case you have an accident and then incur high expenses as a result.
Legal Aid. This covers you for legal costs. A very common use of this is if you have a dispute with your employer, or if you come into disagreement with your rental Landlord or a builder / plumber in your own property.
Car and Passenger Insurance. Car drivers in The Netherlands take out car insurance, but it is also possible to take out an additional policy which also covers your passengers. Passenger insurance is not usually covered by the basic cover for drivers.
A lot of internationals in the Netherlands arrange much their insurance through their bank at the same time they open their account. This is easy and fast, and often the bank offers a discount when you take out several policies. Information and costs can be found on the website of the ABN Amro bank in English.
If you don’t choose your insurance through the bank then there are several comparison websites to give you an idea of the price differences and what is covered. The largest of these is Independer.