Moving to the Leiden region during lockdown

11 February 2021

Moving to a new country can be difficult, but doing so during a lockdown can be even more challenging. Here is some important information regarding self-quarantine upon arrival, what services are open, and more.

Where to find information about COVID-19 in the Netherlands

There are several resources to find out more about COVID-19 and the measures taken in the Netherlands. The National Intitute for Public Health and the Environment (RIVM) provides you with detailed information on the coronavirus. 
The government's website provides more information on the measures that are currently in place. 
For more information on travelling, such as test requirements, click here
For a general overview on COVID-19, see here
More general information on healtcare in the Netherlands can be found on this page.

Upon your arrival

You must go into self-quarantine for 10 days upon your arrival in the Netherlands. Even if you don't have any symptoms, you can get testes on the 5th day after your arrival. When the test is negative, you can end your self-quarantine. You can schedule a test by calling the municipal health service (GGD) on 0800-1202 (or +31 850 659 063 if you're calling from a foreign phone) or make an appointment online. The latter is only possible when you have a DigiD. For more information on testing, visit the government's website.

You should arrange all practical matters (registration, opening a bank acount, etc.) after you have ended your quarantine. 

Open services during lockdown

Non-essential shops are closed until at least 2 March, however they are allowed to deliver or create a pick-up point to collect your ordered products. Supermarkets, drugstores, banks and post offices are open, as are open-air markets and other essential shops such as the butcher or bakery. 

Keep in mind that you have to stay at home as much as possible and make purchases online if you are able to do so. 

Online shopping

There are many options to shop online to get everything that you need. Below you can find a list of online shops for all essentials. 


Many supermarkets offer online shopping by either delivering or the possibility to pick it up at a store. The minimum amount, delivery rates and payment methods differ per supermarket. 
Below is a list of th largest supermarkets in the Netherlands. 

Keep in mind that there might be a waiting list for deliveries or that it will take some days before you can schedule the delivery as there is an increase in demand for online grocery shopping due to corona. 

There is also the possibility to order meal kits when you prefer to have your meals planned out for the week. Below you can find a list with meal kit services in the Netherlands.

Food delivery

Even though restaurants and cafes are closed, many offer take-away or delivery. Here are the most used online services.

Other necessities

Here is a list of mainstream shops to get all your necessities.


Hardware stores

Department store

Do not forget to check this list of local restaurants and shops to support during the lockdown. 


Banks are open during lockdown, however, they mostly work on appointment. Always check the website of your local bank to see their opening hours and corona measures. Keep in mind that you have to have a valid identification, citizen service number (BSN) and proof of address to open an account. 

Click here for more info on banking. 



Especially during corona times, PIN is the most preferred method of payment in the Netherlands. If you have opened a Dutch bank account you must have received a debit card which you can use. Smaller shops and supermarkets do not always accept a credit card, so keep in mind to always have some amount of cash with you if you have not yet received a Dutch debit card. 


iDeal is the most used method to make online payments. Most Dutch banks work with this system, so you can use your mobile banking app or online banking portal to make payments for your online purchases. A list of banks who work with iDeal can be found here.