Overview of the frequently asked COVID-19-related questions for U.S. Citizens. Please review before contacting us.
- The Department of State has issued a Global Level 4 Health Advisory advising U.S. citizens to reconsider travel abroad due to the global impact of COVID-19.
- As of March 19, 2020, the Netherlands has confirmed more than two thousand cases of COVID-19 within its borders.
- Flight restrictions to the Netherlands are currently in place for flights from China, Hong Kong, South-Korea, Italy, Iran, Spain and Austria. U.S. citizens seeking to board flights from these countries will not be able to transit Schiphol airport to board a flight to the U.S.
- The Municipal Health Service (GGD) of the Netherlands and the Dutch National Institute for Public Health (RIVM) are investigating whether the patients were in contact with others during the infectious period. Those found to be in contact with the infected individuals during the infectious period must monitor their health, check their temperature twice a day, and report to the GGD. These measures reduce the chance of the virus spreading in the Netherlands.
- The following protocol is put into action when new COVID-19 infections are identified: isolation, contact investigation, and monitoring of the patient.
- RIVM is monitoring the situation with international partners, including the World Health Organization (WHO) and the European Center for Disease Protection and Control (ECDC). In the Netherlands, general practitioners, infectious disease specialists, Municipal Health Services (GGD), and microbiological laboratories all work together to test for and combat infectious diseases, including COVID-19.
- On March 15, the Dutch government announced the decision to implement far-reaching measures to combat COVID-19. All schools and preschools are closed through April 6, but will remain open for children whose parents work in vital sectors (i.e. healthcare, emergency services).
- All cafés, bars, and clubs will also remain closed through April 6. Restaurants are closed for dine-in services, but have been allowed to reopen for delivery and take-away orders only.
- The Dutch Government has called upon all citizens to:
– Stay home if one has a cold, sneezes, or does not feel well.
– Cancel events with more than 100 people.
– Work as much as possible at home and avoid larger meetings at work.
– Restrict visits to people with underlying health conditions
– Avoid public transportation if one has underlying health conditions.
– Utilize online learning within universities.
– Maintain 1.5 m distance from others when doing necessary tasks such as grocery shopping.
– Avoid hoarding groceries, and purchase food and supplies as you would normally.
- The Dutch government has banned all commercial passenger flights to and from China, Hong Kong, Italy, Iran, and South Korea. Commercial flights to the U.S. are still available but have been significantly reduced.
- The schedule of flights out of Schiphol Airport remains fluid. These flights may not be daily, please check directly with the airlines for further details. As of Tuesday, March 24:
– KLM maintains direct service to New York-JFK, Atlanta – ATL, Chicago- ORD, Los Angeles – LAX.
– Delta maintains direct service only to Detroit and Atlanta.
– American, TUI Nederland, and Norwegian have cancelled all U.S.-bound flights.
Entry and Exit Requirements:
- The Dutch government is enforcing the EU travel restrictions banning all non-essential travel from outside the EU. The ban went into effect on March 19, 2020 for a period of 30 days.
- U.S. passengers transiting Schiphol airport are being permitted to remain airside and continue onward to the United States.
- The travel restrictions do not apply to the following categories:
– EU citizens (including UK nationals) and members of their families;
– Nationals of Norway, Iceland, Switzerland, Liechtenstein and their family members;
– Third-country nationals holding a residence card or a residence permit in accordance with Directive 2003/109/EC (LTR Directive);
– Third-country nationals who derive their right of residence from other European Directives or from the national law of a Member State;
– Holders of a long-stay visa, including persons with a temporary residence permit (MVV);
– Other persons with an essential function or need, including:health care workers, border workers, persons employed in the transportation of goods (where necessary), diplomats, military personnel, personnel of international and humanitarian organizations, persons who have compelling reasons to visit their families, transit passengers who wish to travel via the Netherlands to another third country, persons in need of international protection, and persons who are admitted for humanitarian reasons.
- The Dutch government provides a briefing at Schiphol Airport to all travelers arriving from areas with a widespread outbreak of COVID-19 and possible risks.
- The Netherlands has classified COVID-19 as a “Category A” Infectious disease. Category A classification allows for measures such as isolation and quarantine.
- A total of 23 individuals (19 Dutch citizens and 4 of their Chinese family members) were evacuated from Hubei province to the Netherlands. While none of the 23 showed symptoms, all were sent home after medical checks at a military base in Eindhoven to complete a 14-day quarantine period.
- RIVM advises those who have travelled to mainland China, (including Macau and Hong Kong), Singapore, South Korea, Iran, and Italy (and who have symptoms (such as a fever, cough, shortness of breath, or pneumonia) to remain at home and contact their general practitioner by phone mentioning recent travel and symptoms.
Dutch National Institute for Public Health (RIVM) on COVID-19
Municipal Health Services Centers in the Netherlands (GGD GHOR)
Dutch Travel Ban Information Page
Dutch Travel Advice Page for China
Dutch Travel Advice Page for Italy