How to apply for the Dutch tuition fee loan?

How long did it take for your Dutch tuition fee loan to come through? Did you have to pay your fees before you got the loan?

Students' advice

"Since I was in the Netherlands from the middle of August, to settle in and go to the various fresher-type events available, I had plenty of time to go to the head office of the financial services DUO/IB Groep. They were very helpful in what I needed to fill out the form. I went to them twice since I had forgotten something they needed, but as long as it was done by the deadline of the 31st of August* it was never an issue. Paying my tuition fees in instalments works out slightly more expensive than paying up front, with more administrative fees; also, at my university fees are paid in five instalments every two months but the loan that covers these costs is distributed over the 12 months, so I always had to save some of my own money to pay for them. However, for the last 3 months I have around EUR 142 coming in each month with nothing to spend it on, so it's going towards my summer of travelling!"

"I did not apply for the tuition fee loan because I didn't need it."

"I am receiving the tuition fees loan, applying for it is relatively straight forward. You can go to the DUO/IB-Groep office and fill in the application there. You will need passport plus confirmation of your registration at a University etc. The time can vary as to how long the money can start to come through but as soon as you apply for it you are effectively receiving the money, so for example if you apply in October but don't get the money in October you will receive two months worth in November."

*You can apply for the tuition fee loan until 31st January during the year for which you are claiming but you must be registered at a Dutch address by the absolute latest of 1st October in order to be eligible for EU fees. If not, you may have to pay full international tuition fees.

Our advice

Unless you already have your A level results there is no way that you will receive final confirmation of your place at university until mid August. At that time you can apply for the tuition fee loan by submitting the relevant documentation to DUO/IB Groep. You can find the current form here.

As the Dutch university term usually starts around the first week in September it is quite likely that you will have to pay the first instalment of the fees before you receive the loan. You could even pay all the fees up front if you wish. In contrast to British student finance, tuition fee loans are disbursed directly to the student’s bank account and it is your responsibility to pay the university. The loan is divided into monthly instalments meaning that it is quite possible you will have to pay out money before you have received it but at the end of the year the loan should equal the amount you have spent on fees.

For universities that charge higher fees (private universities, university colleges) you should be able to get a loan to cover the full cost of your education.

For more information about Dutch tuition fee loans, please refer to the loans and grants page of this website.

About Study In Holland is an information service designed to assist British and Irish students in pursuing their university education in the Netherlands.

We have extensive knowledge of English-taught degrees in Holland and we also work with careers advisory services. is owned by A Star Future Ltd and is not affiliated with the Dutch government.