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Mobility & Transport


Driving licence
Holders of an EU/EFTA driving licence can drive in the Netherlands for a period of 15 years or until the expiration date, whichever is sooner. When due to expire, the EU/EFTA licence can be exchanged for a Dutch licence at the municipality.

Driving licences issued by non-EU/EFTA need to be exchanged within 6 months of registering in the Netherlands, if they are valid for the categories listed.

If the applicant is benefiting from the 30% Tax Facility, then the applicant and family members can exchange their driving licence(s) for a Dutch driving licence regardless of the licence’s country of issue under the condition that the applicant or their partner has been registered at the municipality for at least 185 days, and the non-EU drivers licence has not expired within that 185-days period.

In some cases a driving licence from a non EU/EFTA country can be exchanged, check if your licence is suitable at Exchanging a foreign driving licence | RDW

All other licence holders will need to apply for a Dutch licence. This involves taking a theory test and a practical driving exam. In the Netherlands this process is facilitated by accredited driving instructors. 

Exchanging a driving licence
  • Fill in a gezondheidsverklaring (Certificate of Fitness Statement) form at the Centraal Bureau Rijvaardigheidsbewijzen – CBR website. A DigiD is required to do so. The form is only in Dutch. There is a fee for the form (digitally). This form is also available from the municipality.
  • Take this form to the municipality, along with the following documents:
    • Current driving licence, which will not be returned;
    • Passport or identity card;
    • Passport-sized photo taken according to Dutch regulations;
    • If eligible: proof of qualification for the 30% tax facility;
    • Cash or debit/credit card to pay the exchange fee.

When the licence is ready for collection the applicant will be notified. A passport or identity card is required for proof of identity when collecting the new licence.

Driving test

The Dutch driving test is in 2 parts – first a multiple-choice theory test and then a practical test. It is possible to take the standard test in English. It is also possible to take the test in other languages, however an accredited interpreter must be engaged to do so.

Theory tests can be arranged by the applicant themselves, but the practical test has to be applied for by a driving school instructor.

Driving school

Foreign licences holders who need to pass the Dutch test, can arrange a test drive with an accredited driving instructor and ask for an assessment of how many lessons are required. Some driving schools offer advanced or refresher driving courses for driving licence holders who want to improve their driving skills, and/or would like to get experience driving in the Netherlands. Contact Veilig Verkeer Nederland – VVN (Netherlands Traffic Safety Association) for advice about driving safely in the Netherlands.


There are a number of car-sharing and rental schemes in the Maastricht Region, including:

Car-sharing companies have a fleet of shared cars parked in accessible locations throughout the Netherlands. Members can pick up and return a car to the same location whenever it suits, paying per hour and kilometre. The cars are maintained and re-fueled by the organisation and organisations such as Greenwheels offer an option to be an individual member or link the membership to an NS-Business Card (business) account.

Importing a car

When importing a car to the Netherlands there are 3 main organisations involved:

  • The Rijksdienst voor het Wegverkeer – RDW (Netherlands Vehicle Authority) is responsible for the registration of cars in the Dutch system, issuing vehicle registration numbers, and issuing certificates of vehicle roadworthiness;
  • The Belastingdienst (Tax and Customs Administration) and
  • Douane (Customs) who are both responsible for the paperwork to do with importation, including exemption from import duties, and collecting road tax.

Foreign-registered vehicles may be driven in the Netherlands for up to 3 months from the date of arrival. After this time, the car needs to be registered with the Dutch authorities, and usually requires a Dutch number plate.

When registering a car or motorcycle from abroad in the Dutch vehicle registration system a Belasting van Personenauto’s en Motorrijtuigen – BPM (motor vehicle tax) declaration must be filed. Before a BPM declaration can be filed, the passenger car, van or motorcycle must be identified or inspected at an RDW inspection station.

In a number of situations applicants can be granted an exemption. In that case BPM does not have to be paid. The summary set out on the Belastingdienst website details the main exemptions, with information about how to apply for them.

Electric charging

Locations in Maastricht to charge your electric car can be found at

Environmental zones

The City of Aachen  introduced an "Umweltzone" (Environmental Zone or Low-Emission Zone) in 2016. Only vehicles with a Green Sticker or a special permit are allowed to enter the Environmental Zone in the city centre. For the most part, the boundary of the Environmental Zone follows Aachen's outer ring road and includes all the streets and roads within the designated area. 

Many other cities in Germany, and some in the Nethlerlands also have environmental zones. Rules for access vary.

Mopeds and scooters

A driving licence for a car (B) or a motor bike (A) is required to ride mopeds (engine under 50cc, helmet not mandatory and a blue licence plate) and scooters (engine over 50cc, mandatory helmet and yellow licence plate). If not in possession of either of these licences, a special moped licence, 'the AM category' is required. Driving a moped is allowed from 16 years and up.