Dentistry in the Netherlands – FAQ

Over the past four years, we have worked with over a hundred dentists in their decision to come to Holland for their careers. During that time, we have answered hundreds, if not thousands of questions about dentistry in the Netherlands. Here are some of the most recurring questions and our answers.

Do you have another question? Don’t hesitate to ask us at

Seefeld View

Q: Why does the language course take place in Austria?
A: The CEO of DPA has a hotel in Seefeld, Austria, a serene location where you can fully focus on your Dutch classes. Food, accommodation and activities are all provided. Here you will have the room and time you need to learn the Dutch language without distractions.

Another reason is that, by living abroad before you find work in the Netherlands, you are eligible for the 30% ruling, a tax advantage for foreign professionals working in Holland.

Q: Can I go home during the language course?
A: While of course we won’t force you to stay, we strongly recommend you don’t return home during the course, except in the case of an emergency. This will allow you to focus fully on learning Dutch and preparing yourself for work and life in the Netherlands.

Q: Do I have to register myself as a dentist in Holland?
A: We will handle the registration with the BIG (the Dutch register for healthcare professionals) for you. However, we will give you a list of documents which you will need to provide for us so that we can handle the registration properly. Examples of such documents are your original diploma (or a certified copy) and a letter of good standing.

Q: Should I find a house or apartment myself or will DPA do that for me?
A: It depends on what you prefer. We can assist in finding you a good place to live, or you can find one by yourself. We can also provide you with a list of websites you can use to find apartments.

Q: Am I going to work in a public or a private clinic?
A: In the Netherlands, we have no public clinics, so the clinic you will be working in will be private.

Q: What is my work schedule going to be like? Will I work full-time?
A: Your work schedule will depend on which clinic you will work at. The same applies to whether you will work full-time or not, although it is always our priority to find you a full-time vacancy, and the vast majority of the DPA dentists works on full-time basis. Of course, we will do our best to find you a clinic that best suits your desired work schedule.

Q: Where in the Netherlands am I going to work?
A: DPA works with clinics spread across the entire country. Your work location will depend on the vacancies that are available when you come to the Netherlands. We will of course try to find you a job in your preferred region, but we cannot guarantee that we have a vacancy there.

Q: I don’t want to live and work in a small village. Can I work in a big city?
A: As mentioned in the previous answer, we cannot guarantee beforehand exactly where you will be working. Our dentists work both in big cities and in small villages. However, with Holland being such a small, densely populated country, the city is never far away. So even when you work in a small town, you can simply live in the most nearby city.

Q: Do I need health insurance in the Netherlands, and how much does it cost?
A: Over here, it is obligatory to have health insurance. The monthly cost of health insurance can be anywhere between 90 and 150 euros, depending on how much coverage you want. The average cost of a basic health insurance package is around 100 euros per month. In addition to this monthly fee, every insurance package has an annual ‘own risk’ (eigen risico), which means that you will have to cover the first €375 in medical expenses yourself (save for certain treatments).

Q: What will my salary be?
A: There are three possibilities:

1. Fixed monthly salary: it will depend on your experience and age, and it can vary between €3250 gross and €5250 gross, Below you will find the different scenarios.

For dentists under 30 years old, fixed salary of €3250 gross will receive €1543,17 net.
€3500 gross will be €1746,08 net.

For dentists under 30 years old, €3750 gross will be €1916 net and €1693,17 for dentists above 30 years old.
€4000 gross will be €2082,58 net and €1943,17 above 30 years old.

€5000 gross will be €2739,58 net for dentists under or above 30 years old.

€5250 gross will be €2903,25 net for dentists under or above 30 years old.

2. Paid employment with 32%-35% of your turnover and a minimum salary of €3500 under 30 years old and €4500 above 30 years old .

3. You work with two or more clinics and you work as an independent. You will earn around 32%-35% of your turnover.

When you develop yourself as a dentist, your salary will become higher.

Q: Will I work in paid employment with a fixed salary, or earn money based on turnouver percentage?
A: This ultimately depends on the clinic’s manager, but our aim is to make sure that you get 32% of your turnover with a base salary of €3500.

Q: Is it expensive to live in the Netherlands?
A: As in any country, your monthly expenses will depend on your lifestyle. However, with a normal lifestyle, a dentist’s wage is more than enough to cover for monthly expenses, participate in hobbies and other leisure activities, and still keep some money to put into saving.

Here is a schedule with the average costs of living per month:

  • Residence: €1000-1200, including gas, water, electricity and television.
  • Health insurance: between €90 and €150.
  • Telephone: between €20 and €50.
  • Groceries: around €400.

Q: Can I follow extra courses in dentistry and/or keep studying while I work in the Netherlands?
A: As we think it’s very important that you hone your skills as a dentist as much as possible, we actively encourage you to keep learning while you are working. We have a cooperation with the ACTA (University of Amsterdam) that allows you to follow courses and attend presentations on a wide variety of dentistry-related subjects.

Q: Will I receive guidance and extra training in the clinic itself?
A: After you’ve learned the Dutch language and have come to the Netherlands, you will first have a 4-week training period — usually in the clinic where you will be working. During this internship, you will get hands-on experience with Dutch dental protocols and adjust yourself to the clinic’s style. This will allow you to get used to the new work environment before you start working full shifts by yourself.

Q: Will I work together with an assistant?
A: In most cases, yes, but this will ultimately depend on the clinic.

Q: How much vacation days do I have?
A: You usually have between 22 and 25 paid vacation days per year.

Last update: May 2, 2017