Health Alert: Update Regarding COVID-19, U.S. Consulate General Amsterdam, Netherlands

May 29, 2020 –

Location: The Netherlands

U.S. Consulate Operations: Effective March 17, 2020, the U.S. Consulate General Amsterdam has suspended routine consular services. Check out our COVID-19 FAQs for U.S. citizens for answers to the most common COVID-19 related questions. For emergency American Citizens Services, including emergency passports, please visit our website for additional information or contact us via email at AmsterdamUSC@state.gov or call  +(31) (0) 70 310 2209.

Status of Passport Services:  To prevent the spread of COVID-19, staffing has been reduced at passport agencies and printing facilities in the United States. If you have previously applied for a passport or citizenship service, you should expect significant delays receiving your passport and your citizenship evidence documents.  Please consider waiting to apply until we resume normal operations.

For those with urgent travel needs, the U.S. Consulate General in Amsterdam can assist with an emergency passport for an adult or a minor.  To request an emergency passport appointment in Amsterdam, please send an email to AmsterdamUSC@state.gov with “EMERGENCY PASSPORT RENEWAL” in the subject line and details regarding the urgent need to travel.

U.S. Travel Restrictions: On Thursday, March 11, President Trump signed a Presidential Proclamation suspending entry into the United States of aliens who were physically present in any of the 26 countries that make up the Schengen Area (including the Netherlands) within the 14 days preceding their entry or attempted entry into the United States.

Please note that U.S. citizens are not subject to the proclamation and the proclamation provides exceptions to the restrictions for lawful permanent residents of the United States.  Exceptions also exist for certain family members of U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents including; spouses, children (under the age of 21), parents (provided that his/her U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident child is unmarried and under the age of 21), and siblings (provided that both the sibling and the U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident are unmarried and under the age of 21).  For the full list of current Presidential Proclamations and the exceptions please visit https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/traveladvisories/ea/covid-19-visa-services-and-restrictions.html

Non-U.S. citizens who are the spouses or minor children of U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents may still be able to travel to the United States IF they meet the criteria for an exception from the Presidential Proclamations outlined above.  An eligible family member of a U.S. citizen or LPR who possesses a valid ESTA or valid visa do not need to reapply for a new ESTA or visa. They may travel to the U.S. for a temporary visit with their existing ESTA or visa and be prepared to demonstrate evidence of the qualifying relationship to airline and immigration personnel.  This may include traveling with the original passports, birth certificates, and marriage certificates belonging to the U.S. citizen or LPR. Travelers should reach out to their airline in advance to ensure the documentation will be sufficient to be allowed to board the aircraft.

Eligible family members who believe they meet the criteria for urgent travel and require a non-immigrant U.S. visa should email us at AmsterdamCOVID19@state.gov.

For further information about the exceptions and the most current information regarding COVID-19, the Presidential Proclamations, and its impact on travel to the United States, visit www.coronavirus.govwww.dhs.gov/coronavirus and www.whitehouse.gov/.

For questions about pending immigrant visa cases, please contact us at AmsterdamIV@state.gov

EU Travel Restrictions: The Dutch government is strictly enforcing the EU travel restrictions banning all non-essential travel from outside the EU. The ban has been extended through June 15, 2020. U.S. citizens (and other non-EU citizens and non-residents) are prohibited from entering the Netherlands except for those in certain categories of travelers including passengers transiting Amsterdam Schiphol airport. U.S. citizens are permitted to transit Schiphol airport, remain airside, and continue onward to the United States. Passengers will not be permitted to exit the transit area and should have a confirmed onward flight to the U.S. prior to commencing travel. Exemptions to entry restrictions only exist for a very small group of travelers, and most U.S. citizens that do not hold Dutch citizenship and/or residency will not be allowed to enter the Netherlands.  Although there exists an exemption for “compelling reasons to visit family,” the Dutch are strictly interpreting this as cases involving life or death, such as visiting a terminally ill family member or attendance at a funeral. A fact sheet outlining the Netherlands’ enforcement of EU travel restrictions and applicable exemptions to the ban is available at: https://www.netherlandsandyou.nl/travel-and-residence/visas-for-the-netherlands/qas-travel-restrictions-for-the-netherlands

Face Masks Mandatory on Public Transport Beginning June 1: The Dutch government has begun easing certain restrictions including re-opening schools, salons, restaurants and bars. However, many restrictions are still in place and effective June 1, the use of non-surgical face masks will become mandatory on public transport. The Dutch government continues to ask everyone to maintain 1.5 meters distance, wash hands often, avoid crowds, work from home as much as possible, and stay home if experiencing fever or other symptoms. Groups of more than two people who do not maintain 1.5-meter (5 feet) separation and who are not from the same family will face fines up to 400 euros. Those who do not have a face masks on buses, trams, and trains will also face fines of 95 euros. Visit the Dutch government’s COVID-19 website for more information on the measures. The English language translation of the Dutch government’s latest announcement regarding the social distancing measures is available at https://www.government.nl/latest/news/2020/05/06/avoid-busy-places-and-stay-1.5-metres-away-from-others.

The Dutch government has also outlined the next steps in the process of easing restrictions and provided this information at https://www.government.nl/latest/news/2020/05/19/tackling-coronavirus-the-next-step

Commercial Flights Available: International commercial flight options currently exist in the Netherlands. U.S. citizens who wish to return to the United States should make commercial arrangements as soon as possible unless they are prepared to remain abroad for an indefinite period. The U.S. government does not anticipate arranging repatriation flights in the Netherlands at this time. The schedule of available flights out of Schiphol airport remains fluid. Flights may not be daily, please check directly with the airlines for details.  As of today, KLM maintains direct service to New York, Atlanta, Chicago, and Los Angeles. Delta maintains direct service to Detroit and Atlanta. United maintains service to Newark.

KLM and Delta provide step-by-step instructions on rebooking a flight or requesting a voucher for passengers whose travel plans have been impacted by the coronavirus:
https://www.klm.com/travel/us_en/prepare_for_travel/up_to_date/flight_update/index.htm
https://www.delta.com/us/en/travel-update-center/how-to-cancel-or-change-your-flight

Face Coverings on Commercial Flights: Multiple airlines have implemented facial covering policies at airports and on their flights. Please check with your airline directly regarding the requirements prior to commencing travel.

Dutch Residency Permit Extensions:  If your stay in the Netherlands will exceed the period authorized, contact the Dutch immigration service (IND) immediately for assistance.  The Dutch government is aware that it may be more difficult to return to your home during this period and will work with you to extend your visa or residency permit if necessary.  If your residency permit is expiring and you cannot leave the country, you should request an extension and IND will let you know if it is possible to extend your stay.  If you are staying in the Netherlands on a short-stay visa and cannot leave the country, you can also apply for an extension. Please call the IND information line at 088 04 30430 and have your visa or residency number available during the call.

If you are in the Netherlands visa free, but your 90 days have expired, you cannot apply for an extension of that period. While the Dutch government will be less strict in enforcing penalties and removals at this time, they do expect you to try to return home as soon as possible.  Please visit the IND Coronavirus FAQ page for more information: https://ind.nl/en/Pages/Coronavirus.aspx.

Actions to Take:

Assistance:

U.S. Consulate General Amsterdam
Museumplein 19
1071 DJ Amsterdam
+(31) (0) 70 310 2209
AmsterdamUSC@state.gov
https://nl.usembassy.gov/  

Department of State – Consular Affairs
888-407-4747 or 202-501-4444
Netherlands Country Information
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