Moving to Netherlands from the USA


After living in the USA for more than a decade, last year me and my wife, we decided to move to the Netherlands. It was a sentimental decision since I spent more than a decade in the country and had to move away. But it was also a practical decision for both of us and our future.

Is the USA the Best Country?

The USA, although touted as the Best country in the world by some, it's far from the fact. Yes, it does pay you handsomely, but its immigration system is completely broken.

Despite paying thousands of dollars in taxes over the years, our path to citizenship was never available, nor we could avail all the benefits that we deserved to rip off after paying a handsome sum to Uncle Sam.

After much deliberation, we decided it was not the right place for us, and we decided to look elsewhere.

The Netherlands was one of our numerous choices to relocate

We didn't think we would move to the Netherlands in the beginning. We wanted to get out of the USA and move somewhere where both primary applicants and their dependents could live and work with dignity, would not have restrictions on their jobs, people are open to migrants - especially those of color, are liberal, would be a great place to raise family and path to citizenship is feasible and well-defined.

Given this criteria, we shortlisted a few candidates that included U.K., Germany, Ireland, France, Canada, and if nothing else works, our home country - India.

Applying for Jobs

We had 3 months to apply to these countries and finalize offer letters. Each country had its own rules for job application and immigration, so we had to take it into consideration as well. Since we were in the US EST time zone, there were times when we either had to wake up at midnight or early morning to appear for interviews.

We didn't polish our resumes for each job we were applying. We created one standard format, had cover letters if mandatory, and a list of things we expected from our next jobs.

Given the pay scale in the USA, there was no country that was offering as much as they paid in States, but European countries also offered benefits in terms of tax discounts (e.g. Netherlands), better lifestyle, free public transportation, pension benefit, and child education. So the low salary level was equally or more than compensated by better life in Europe and we were happy to accept it.

We both received offers from Norway, Germany, Netherlands, and Ireland, so it was time to make a final decision.

Finalizing Offers

Fortunately, my wife first received her official and most favorable offer from a Netherlands-based company. It was a great pay, benefits, and working culture. Since it checked everything from our list, we decided to accept it. After that, I solely focused on Netherlands-based companies. In the meantime, I got an offer from a German-based firm, but since they didn't allow remote work, I had to decline it.

After continuing the process for a few more weeks, finally I also had an offer from a Netherlands-based company, called TripActions (Now Navan).

Immigration and Relocation Assistance

My wife's employer offered immigration support and a generous relocation package. My firm offered a lump sum relocation payment and optionally immigration support. Thanks to this, we were able to live in a furnished apartment for 2 months when the Amsterdam house market was tight and getting expensive every day.

Dutch Work Culture

Coming from the work culture of the USA, the Dutch work culture was a pleasant shock. Your job is protected by the government, you get a generous pension in case of unemployment, your work-life balance is more than enough to do justice to your career and family, and you are not expected to respond to messages after official work hours.

If you're someone who wants to live life and not just "exist", I strongly recommend the European work culture. However, each person has a different priority, so you can prefer to earn a boatload of money, but still possibly lose your mental health and precious time with your family.

I also offer a Job Search and Relocation Consultation

Do you need Advice on making a move and job search in USA or Europe? Are you confused about which country would be suitable for your situation? Do you need help gathering documents for relocation and immigration? Do you want to hear from the person who has moved to USA and Europe and secured multiple job offers in these countries? I am available on TopMate for consultation services. Feel free to book your first free session by visiting this link.

Support and Feedback

If you have any comments or questions, please feel free to reach out to me on LinkedIn.

If you like my blog content and wish to keep me going, please consider donating on Buy Me a Coffee or Patreon. Help, in any form or amount, is highly appreciated and it's a big motivation to keep me writing more articles like this.