1) Travel advice
Effective March 17, 2020 and for the duration of at least three weeks (until April 6th) the Ministry advises against all non-essential travel worldwide. The Ministry has changed its travel advice for all countries across the globe to an ‘orange’ risk classification and color-coding (or higher, e.g. ‘red’). The decision to advise against all non-essential travel worldwide is based on a number of factors. First of all, the implementation of preventive measures (including travel restrictions) in a range of countries, increasingly impedes free travel for travellers around the world. Travellers can no longer be certain whether they will be able to travel freely, or if they will be quarantined upon entry or encounter difficulties returning to the Netherlands. Additionally, a reduction in worldwide travel will help to curb the expansion of the virus.
2) Visa and consular services abroad
The Dutch representations worldwide will focus its consular and visa activities on matters related to the pandemic. As a result, people will temporarily not be able to apply for a Schengen visa, and visa will temporarily no longer be issued. Only in humanitarian and other exceptional cases, visa issuance can be considered. Also consular services like legalisations and civic integration exams will be temporarily reduced.
3) Travellers in the Netherlands
Foreign visitors to the Netherlands may be confronted with difficulties returning home or continuing their travel to a next destination as a result of international travel restrictions or cancelled flights. Insofar this involuntarily extended stay results in an overstay in the Netherlands, the travellers must apply for an extension with the IND through the regular channels.
Please note that all of the above measures are in effect for a period starting March 17th, 2020 until at least April 6th.