Safety, housing and costs

Sending your child abroad to study can be a daunting decision and one you want to make with all the facts at hand. Safety, living costs and housing arrangements are important matters to investigate in advance. We have outlined the essentials on this page to help you put your mind at ease.


Holland is one of the safest countries in the world. Crime rates are very low and law is strictly enforced. Dutch police officers are approachable and helpful and corruption is rare: Holland is ranked the eighth least corrupt country worldwide.

VHL University of Applied Sciences (VHL) is located in Velp (Arnhem) and Leeuwarden. These are medium-sized cities with a student community in which almost everybody knows each other. This doesn’t mean that student life is less fun, on the contrary. You can ask our students, they can tell you everything about the activities and atmosphere in these cities.  

Transport in Holland is well arranged, safe and affordable. Students can use the state of the art public transport systems for longer journeys and the bike for short distance travel. Cycling is part of the Dutch DNA: the city streets are designed to maximise the safety of the cyclist with cycle lanes that are separated from car lanes, traffic lights systems only for bicycles and large scale parking spaces for bikes.


Student accommodation in Holland differs from many other countries: most universities do not offer housing on campus and students find their own accommodation on the private market.

Due to the current housing shortage in the Netherlands it can be challenging to find an accommodation. Start looking for accommodation at least 5-6 months prior to the start of your studies. We strongly advise you not to depart to the Netherlands without having arranged (temporary) accommodation.

The quality of student housing in The Netherlands is high and housing companies need to comply with strict fire safety rules. Most companies offer a range of furnished or unfurnished rooms in the city centre, generally costing between €300 – €450 a month. Students will have their own private room and often share the bathroom and kitchen with a few others. You can find more information on housing on the study in Leeuwarden and Velp pages.


In Holland the cost of living is considerably lower than in English-speaking countries. There are many discount supermarkets and transport costs are low if you use a bike. Next to that, bars, restaurants, museums and cinema’s often give student discounts. A lot of students have a part-time job to cover study and housing costs and to get some valuable work experience. Keep in mind that it might take international students a bit longer to find a job if they don’t speak any Dutch and that non-EU students require a work permit.   

You can find detailed information on living costs, tuition fees, insurance and scholarships on the study in Holland pages.