In the Netherlands, everyone must be able to identify themselves when requested to do so by the police or supervisory officials. You must therefore carry valid identification at all times.

The reason for identification requirement 

The Dutch government introduced a law to improve public safety in 2005. This enables the police and supervisory officials to find out immediately whether the details a person gives about themselves are correct. Those who fail to produce valid information when asked risk being fined.

Who the identification requirement applies to

This identification requirement applies to everyone fourteen years of age or older who resides in the Netherlands.

Who may ask you to produce identification

Police and supervisory officials may ask you to produce identification. Supervisory officials are park and forest rangers, traffic wardens, Building Control Department (Bouw- en woningtoezicht) inspectors, tax inspectors, customs officials and inspectors of education.

What is valid identification in the Netherlands

What counts as valid identification depends on the country you come from.

  •  a Dutch passport or a passport or identity card of a country belonging to the EU or the EEA. (Passports of all other countries must contain a valid residence sticker);
  • a Dutch identity card;
  • a refugee travel document issued by the Dutch authorities;
  • an alien’s travel document issued by the Dutch authorities
  • a residence permit or leave to remain card (W-document);
  • a driving licence (in some cases).