Isanya Köhne


Ah, the Dutch. What exactly are they like? How would one describe them? Are they friendly? Do they make good friends? Well, that’s what you’re here to find out. Some of us do a little research before heading to another country, some try to find out as much as possible before they arrive. But whether the people are nice, is always something to discover for yourself. As someone who’s lived and travelled in many different countries, I believe the Netherlands is by far one of the most friendly places to go to. Of course there’ll be people who you won’t get along with as well as with others, but you will find that bunch wherever you go. The Netherlands is one of the most developed countries you can find. It is therefore continuously growing in various different sectors, including socially and culturally. Amsterdam alone has become incredibly international and you can easily say that when you walk through the city, you will encounter just as many Dutch as international people. And this is not just in Amsterdam, this counts for the entire country. The Netherlands is therefore considered a very welcoming place by many international students and visitors. Here’s what you can expect from a Dutch friend.

As the Dutch are known for their tolerant attitudes, there’s no reason not to be yourself. Many of them care more about your personality and whether you’re friendly than what you’re interested in or how you like to express yourself. The majority feels that everyone has the right to be themselves. That said, the Dutch are not afraid to open their mouths. If they disagree with something or have an opinion, many will not hold it back and share that with you. Yes, they can be blunt, but don’t see that as something negative, as it is rarely ever intended as such. This goes hand in hand with a form of humour you will encounter often, which is sarcasm. One of the most favoured ways of joking in the Netherlands is by making sarcastic comments and jokes. This again, is not meant in a harmful way, it’s just how they like to get to know you. A great way of making friends with the Dutchie is by simply cracking a joke. 

Other than that, the Dutch are considered rather independent but they’re also very social. Many of them like to hang out with friends or family. You will encounter groups of friends of all ages hang out together at bars, the city, restaurants, cafés, cinemas, and so on. If you befriend a Dutchie, you know they’ll always be down to go out and do something together. Now, you’ll hear plenty of Dutch being spoken around you once you arrive but don’t let that stop you from making Dutch friends. They are aware how international their environments are getting and they’re used to hearing different languages around them all the time. If you make the initiative to talk to one of them, many will respond and once there’s an international amongst the group, they will speak in English. 

So, even though you will encounter people from various different places in this small country, I encourage you to seek out the Dutch as well, and befriend them. Not only will they make great friends, but they can always help you out with any questions regarding the Netherlands. They will give you a better understanding of the country, the culture, and they’re simply also very fun to hang out with.