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Any DUTCH Mumsnetters?

(6 Posts)
Doozie Mon 29-Jun-09 20:42:25

Hi Mumsnetters living in Holland,

There is a high chance we could be moving to Amsterdam. Very excited, but have so many questions! Here are a few I hope somebody can help me answer...

Firstly, I don't speak a word of Dutch, is that a problem?! Especially when it comes to job hunting.

Also I have one child and thinking of having a second - what's it like (services/care etc.) having a baby in Holland? I'm currently living in Paris where I had my first child, so can't compare to the UK.

Where is the best place to live in Amsterdam? I love living in the centre of a city as I do now, but have been thinking recently a house with a garden could be more practical with kids. Please tell me moving to suburbia is not the end of life as I know it!

Also will I ever understand the difference between Holland and the Netherlands?!


mananny Sat 04-Jul-09 22:01:29

Hi Doozie, I'm a nanny and am moving to Amsterdam in August to start a new position there. I did quite a bit of research before deciding and came to the conclusion that despite it being VERY expensive to live in the centre of the city, the quality of life is very high and everyone seems to be very family oriented and child friendly. Sorry I can't be much help, but please do let me know if you do decide to move as it would mean I am not the only MNer there

Doozie Mon 06-Jul-09 14:39:04

Thanks Mananny for your message! It all sounds positive! Except for the expensive part of course, but we live in central Paris now so it can't be any worse (I hope!). We won't know for a little while if we are moving, but I'll keep you posted if we do. Doesn't sound like there are many MNers based there. Good luck with the new job in August!

frAKKINPannikin Mon 06-Jul-09 21:50:49

It can be worse than central Paris. The Netherlands are incredibly expensive! Even basic stuff is crazily priced, but it is very child friendly. Not sure what Amsterdam is like but The Hague is extremely hard on the wallet.

Are you limited to Amsterdam? Dutch suburbia is very nice and transport is good so you could live elsewhere. What do you plan to do about schooling? That may be a fairly key consideration if you speak no Dutch and it's a fairly beastly language to learn, hampered by the fact everyone speaks almost perfect English.

Holland is a province of The Netherlands btw grin

OllieWollieWoo Thu 09-Jul-09 21:24:08

Just seen your message and hope some of the following helps!
No experience of Amsterdam but.....
Re jobs - several of my non Dutch speaking friends have got jobs in international organisations which they like and seem happy in so the language thing has not hampered them at all.

I had DS2 in Holland - all fine apart from the reluctance to give pain relief in labour! The Kramzorg system when you get a maternity nurse for a week aftwards is a godsend - I was v sceptical but after the first day with mine I was beggging her not to leave! CHildcare seems v expensive compared to UK but my two have been happy at a Dutch creche.

I like living here tho still have the odd bad Dutch day - but guess that would apply anywhere! Agree with Frakkinpannkkin re the cost of living here and my pet hate is their supermarkets (how I miss Tescos and their cleaning products aisle) but I love the outdoor lifestyle they have here. This organisation can be v useful: Access and there is a really good book recently published about living here - but cannot think what its called so will post again when I can find out if that helps???!!!

skihorse Sun 12-Jul-09 10:10:42

I'm in The Netherlands and have been since 2000.

The job market is quite dire right now - as is everywhere of course - so unless you have a specific skill, you're unlikely to get work having only English. Of course if you're fluent in French as well there might be call-centre work. We live in the south of the country and right now my OH can't even get work in McDonalds.

I'm not a mum yet (am TTC) but from what the girls at work have told me and my own research:

i) you pick a hospital or a group of midwives to take you to term. First vaginal scan as standard at 7 weeks (I was impressed by this)
ii) You can get a dietician specialised in weight control as a result of pregnancy (this is paid for by your health insurance)
iii) mental health help here is extraordinarily good - so feel free to go mental with pnd wink
iv) kramerzorg - following birth someone will come to your house cook, clean, do the shopping so that you can bond with your child.
v) child care is tax deductable
vi) child "allowance" is VERY low and has just been capped for 2 years. (600 euros a year I think)
vii) home births are the norm here as pregnancy is not viewed as an illness

Rents are expensive, if you plan on hanging around a few years then get your name down for social housing. There are social housing lists for "normal" people here - just normal houses in regular streets - not sink estates. If you want to buy then you can claim your mortgage interest back on your taxes - but house prices are going down right now.

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