Shopping in Netherlands

By | July 24, 2021



The following items can be imported duty-free into the Netherlands (when entering from non-EU countries):

200 cigarettes or 50 cigars or 100 cigarillos or 250 g tobacco (people aged 17 and over);

1 liter of spirits or 2 liters of sparkling wine or 2 liters of sweet wine (e.g. sherry, port wine) (people aged 17 and over);

4 l wine (people 17+);

16 l of beer;

Gifts / other goods up to a total value of € 430 (air and sea travel) or € 300 (travel by train / car); Children under 15 years of age generally € 175.
Alcohol and tobacco products can only be imported by people over 17 years of age. Further information on customs regulations can be found in a brochure from the Dutch embassy. Inquiries about import regulations should be directed to the Dutch Embassy or the Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

Import regulations

Travelers who bring meat and milk products into the EU from outside the European Union must register them. The regulation does not apply to the import of animal products from the EU countries as well as from Andorra, Liechtenstein, Norway, San Marino and Switzerland. Anyone who does not register these products can expect fines or criminal penalties.

Prohibited imports

There is a general import ban on live poultry, meat and meat products from third countries (with the exception of the Faroe Islands, Greenland, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Switzerland).

Import / export to the EU

The movement of goods within the EU is unrestricted for travelers, provided that the goods are intended for personal use and not for resale. In addition, the goods must not have been bought in duty-free shops. Proof of personal personal needs can be requested from travelers. Member States have the right to impose excise duties on spirits or tobacco products when these products are not intended for personal use.

The following maximum quantities apply to personal requirements:
800 cigarettes (people 17 and over);
400 cigarillos (17+);
200 cigars (people 17+);
1 kg tobacco (people aged 17+);
10 liters of high-proof alcoholic beverages (people aged 17 and over);
20 liters of fortified wine (e.g. port or sherry) (people aged 17 and over);
90 liters of wine (including a maximum of 60 liters of sparkling wine) (people aged 17 and over);
110 liters of beer (people 17+);
Perfumes and eau de toilette: No restrictions if it can be demonstrated that the amount is for personal consumption.
Medicines: Amount appropriate to personal needs during the trip.
Other goods: The movement of goods within the EU is unrestricted for travelers. However, gold alloys and gold plating in the unprocessed state or as a semi-finished product and fuel are excluded from this. Fuel may only be imported from an EC member state exempt from mineral oil tax if it is in the vehicle’s tank or in a reserve container carried with it. A fuel quantity of up to 10 liters in the reserve tank will not be rejected.

If additional quantities of these goods are carried, z. B. a wedding an event with which a bulk purchase could be justified.
Note: There are, however, certain exceptions to the regulation of the unrestricted movement of goods. They particularly concern the purchase of new vehicles and purchases for commercial purposes. (For more information on taxes on motor vehicles, see the European Commission’s guide “Buying goods and services in the internal market”).


Duty-free sales at airports and shipping ports have been abolished for travel within the EU. Only travelers who leave the EU can shop cheaply in the duty-free shop. When importing goods into an EU country that were bought in duty-free shops in another EU country, the same travel allowances and the same travel allowance apply as when entering from non-EU countries.



As a country located in Europe according to naturegnosis, the Netherlands is great for shopping. Many cities have an attractive pedestrian zone with cozy cafés and small boutiques, and internationally known fashion brands are also widespread. In the big cities you can find more and more modern shopping centers, which are often located in commercial areas on the outskirts.

Popular souvenirs are Klompen (wooden shoes), cheese, costume dolls and silver items from Schoonhoven, glass and crystal from Leerdam and diamonds from Amsterdam. When buying Delftware, you should insist on a certificate of authenticity, as the name is not protected.

The markets, which take place regularly in all larger towns, mostly on Saturdays, offer a special shopping experience. Especially in the border region, the markets attract numerous visitors from abroad. In addition to fresh fruit and vegetables of excellent quality and handmade cheese, you can also buy fish, flowers and plants here. With the Markthal (Internet: Rotterdam has a huge covered market place that is open daily until 8 p.m.

Theme markets take place again and again, such as flower, fish, cheese or fabric markets. The famous flower markets in Amsterdam, Delft and Utrecht as well as the flower auctions in Aalsmeer, The Hague and Rotterdam are particularly worth a visit. In Alkmaar, the traditional cheese market takes place on Fridays from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. from mid-April to mid-September. On the fabric market in Venlo you can find a large selection of beautiful and high quality fabrics at reasonable prices.

The Netherlands is also known for its many good antique shops and the numerous flea markets, where you can always find one or the other piece of jewelry.

Opening hours

Mo-Fr 08.30 / 09.00-17.30 / 18.00, Sa 08.30 / 09.00-17.00. In Amsterdam, Rotterdam and other larger cities, supermarkets are open Mon-Sat 8 am-8pm / 10pm. In the city centers, some shops open on Sundays from 12 noon to 5 p.m., but are closed on Monday mornings.

Shopping in Netherlands