Importation of Private Vehicles
All personnel assigned to HQ JFCBS (except Dutch Nationals) holding a full HQ JFCBS ID card are authorised to import their privately owned motor vehicles, caravans and/or trailers, free of duties import tax and Value Added Tax (BTW). However, be aware that when you sell an imported motor vehicle that was imported from outside the European Union to a non-entitled person you are obliged to pay the Import Tax as well as the Value Added Tax on the current market value.
Owners of privately owned motor vehicles coming from within the European Union will only have to pay the VAT (BTW). Please contact the Vehicle Registration for more info on how to act when selling a tax free or imported motor vehicle. It will prevent you from unexpected costs.
Entry to the Netherlands when being on assignment to HQ JFCBS, you bring a motor vehicle, caravan, camping trailer, a motorcycle of 50 cc or a moped, you will be granted initial entry to the Netherlands under the regulation pertinent to other visitors, but you must be in possession of:
- An international motor insurance (Green Card with Dutch address);
- A national vehicle registration document;
- A valid driving license;
Do not forget these documents, because it will be extremely difficult to import your car without them. Upon taking up your appointment at HQ JFCBS, you will become a temporary resident of the Netherlands and as such your visitor's privileges cease in respect to your vehicle. You must therefore register it at the HQ JFCBS Vehicle Registration Section as soon as possible but maximum 30 days of its arrival. Registration Requirements The Provost Marshal's Branch, Vehicle Registration Section (Building 102, Hendrik Camp) affects the registration of private vehicles belonging to HQ JFCBS personnel.
In order to register your vehicle and to obtain a HQ JFCBS Motor Vehicle Operator's License, the following requirements must be met:
- Proof of vehicle motor ownership, in the sponsor's name
- International motor insurance (Green Card), bearing either your HQ JFCBS unit address or your residence address. The Green Card must identify the vehicle by chassis number;
- National driving license;
- Valid HQ JFCBS Identification Card;
- Where applicable, undertake a written driving test, which is conducted by your National Support Unit;
- A Dutch bank account (for fuel allowance);
- A registration fee (for licence plates, etc.)
The following points may be relevant to your particular circumstances:
- In line with Netherlands law, your vehicle, if it is three years and older, must be inspected prior to registration by an official APK testing station (Technical Inspection);
- The identification number of your vehicle must be physically stamped onto the chassis of the vehicle. European and Japanese-made vehicles normally have the identification number stamped on the chassis by the manufacturer. North American-produced vehicles do not. If you own a caravan or trailer (Weight below 750 kg) you must also display the same license plate as the towing vehicle (Tax free purchased trailers or caravans must be registered prior with Vehicle Registration Office);
- Caravans/trailers above 750 kg. (Including load capacity) are registered like motor vehicles and receive their own registration;
- The loaning or borrowing of HQ JFCBS registered caravans is also not permitted.
- Vehicles can only be registered in the name of a HQ JFCBS member (The sponsor), not a family member. If relatives visit a HQ JFCBS member, it is possible to drive their HQ JFCBS registered vehicle. They need a written and stamped statement of the HQ JFCBS Provost Marshal. Relatives must be 18 years and must be in possession of a national driving license for the category needed.
Families of HQ JFCBS, except Netherlands personnel, are exempt from Netherlands Motor Vehicle Road Tax. You are entitled to register as many (tax-free) vehicles as there are driving licenses in your family. Dependants have to reside with their sponsor. Changes have to be immediately reported to the Vehicle Registration Office.
Mopeds are divided into two categories: bromfiets, 40 km., min. 16 years, helmet obligatory and snorfiets, 25 km., min. 16 years, no helmet. Both categories need a moped certificate or a national driving license. They receive a registration and license plate. Insurance is mandatory. Be aware that in the Netherlands mopeds use the same roads as cars in built-up areas. The specially designed cycle paths are not to be used by mopeds unless indicated otherwise. Those who passed the moped drivers test can pick up their category AM moped drivers license at the municipaity.
This drivers license can also be used as an indentification. If you have any doubts or questions regarding proper vehicle registration procedures, call the registrar's office at HQ JFCBS ext. 2114.
Driving in the Netherlands
As anywhere else in the world, driving in the Netherlands requires care. Some "Rules of the Road" are unique to this country, particularly those relating to bicycles, mopeds and pedestrians. Automobile drivers must be extremely cautious and be aware that in the Netherlands, cyclists, moped drivers and pedestrians enjoy special protection. When involved in a car accident, the owner of the car will always be liable for the costs incurred. Car Theft Insurance: If your car is stolen, the Netherlands Tax Authorities will decide how the import tax will be handled. Ask your insurance agency if you are covered under your present policy for this liability.
It is essential that the most important regulations concerning road traffic in the Netherlands be studied before driving on roads in Netherlands (like the tic test in the UK and the US).
Current Speed Limits:
National Motorways (Autosnelweg) - 130 km/h (80 mph);
National roads (Autoweg) - 100 km/h (60 mph);
Inside built-up areas - 50 km/h (30 mph), or 70 km/h (40 mph) and even 30 km/h as posted;
All other roads - 80 km/h (50 mph).
Motorways - 120 km/h (75 mph);
Inside built-up areas - 50 km/h (30 mph);
All other roads - 90 km/h (50 mph).
Motorways - no general speed limit, but a recommendation not to exceed 130 km/h (80 mph)*;
Inside built-up areas - 50 km/h (30 mph);
All other roads - 100 km/h (60 mph).
Motor fuel in the Netherlands is sold in three grades: Super-Unleaded (98 octane), Euro Unleaded (95 octane) and Super Lead Replacement (98 octane). In addition Diesel and LPG are available at most Netherlands petrol stations. Military personnel and non-Netherlands NATO Civilians receive a tax-free fuel allowance from the Netherlands government for travel between their residence and HQ JFCBS installations. The amount of the tax relief depends on the type of fuel used. US and Canadian personnel receive a fuel ration card and can buy fuel coupons at a discounted price.
* - unless indicated otherwise