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International Students

Student grant and loan system

Terms and conditions


Full-time EU/EEA-students may be eligible for a student grant, which includes a student travel card (Studenten OV-chipkaart), if they meet the following requirements:

  • You must be a citizen of an EU or EEA country.
  • You must be a full-time student on a higher education course in the Netherlands which is eligible for a student grant.
  • You must have at least 54 hours of employment per month.
  • You must have an employment contract for that work.
  • You must be under the age of 30 when you apply for a student grant (you may continue to receive the grant up until you turn 34, but only if the period during which you receive the grant is uninterrupted).
  • You must hold a Dutch bank account in your own name.

More information about the employment condition.

If you do not meet these requirements there are some special cases in which a student might be entitled to the regular student grant. For more information see the nationality chart of DUO.

What exactly is a student grant?

The student grant that is referred to in this context, is a grant that you may receive from the Dutch government. It is issued by DUO. The grant is composed of several parts: a basic student grant, a possible supplementary grant and a student travel card. You may receive a student grant for a maximum of 48 months. After the student grant ends you may receive a loan for a maximum of 36 months.

A student grant is a performance-related scholarship. Students first receive the grant as an interest-bearing loan. Based on your academic record, this loan may be converted into a grant (whereby the accrued interest will be waived) if you are awarded a (master) degree within the set degree period (diplomatermijn). All higher education programmes have a degree period of 10 years, starting from when you first receive a student grant.

The exact amount of the grant changes every year. The table on the website of DUO gives more information about the amounts. The table is in Dutch and to interpret it the right way you can use this overview in which both the English and Dutch terms are mentioned.

Student Travelcard

Please note: The Dutch government has decided to reduce the right to a Student Travelcard with effect from 1 January 2013. 

In scheme:

University Bachelor + master

3+ 1 year

3 + 2 year

3+ 3 year

3 + 4 year

Basic student grant:

4 year

5 year

6 year

7 year

Supplementary grant:

4 year

5 year

6 year

7 year

Student travel card:

5 year

6 year

7 year

8 year

Loan:

7 year

8 year

9 year

10 year

What are the academic performance requirements?

The requirement is that you must obtain a final degree (i.e., a master’s degree). Students who fail to meet this requirement have to repay the student grant in full, including interest. They also have to repay the sum of 80 euro (in 2009) for every month that they held a student travel card. Students who obtain a bachelor's degree can request that DUO convert the loan of the first 36 months into a grant.

Applying for a student grant

When you apply for a Dutch student grant for the first time, you use the so-called ‘Ah-form’ of DUO. When you enrol for a new study at DUO, then you apply for a (first-time) student grant at the same time, using the 'As-form' Aanmelden en studiefinanciering. You can find the forms and more information at one of the offices of DUO. In Utrecht the address is Herman Gorterstraat 40, 3511 EW Utrecht.

For application you will need the following documents: a copy of your passport or residence permit, and a testimony of your employer giving proof of your engagement for minimal 32 hours per month.

Tuition fee loan

Students who are eligible for a student grant are not eligible for a tuition fee loan. If a student qualifies for a student grant, any tuition fee loan they have already received will be deducted from the student grant.

More information


For more information on the student grants and loan system please contact Student Services or DUO.