Additional Information About Travel to the Netherlands
TippingAt the conclusion of your tour, it is customary to offer your tour guide and driver a gratuity. Your WEST tour coordinator will collect the gratuity at any point during the tour (many travelers like to pay ahead of time to get it out of the way). Although it is not required, your driver and tour guides rely on these tips, and work hard to ensure you an unforgettable experience. We recommend tipping the equivalence of $3 USD/CAD per person per day for your driver and $6 USD/CAD to $9 USD/CAD per person per day for your tour guide. If applicable, we also recommend the equivalency of $2 USD/CAD per local guide, payable following the local tour. Tips can only be paid in cash. Please keep current local currency exchange rates in mind when tipping.
This tour travels to the Netherlands. In order to enter this country, U.S. and Canadian citizens need a valid passport. The expiration date must extend at least six months beyond the date of your return home. No visa is required for U.S. or Canadian citizens. If you are not a U.S. or Canadian citizen, you must contact the Dutch consulate for your particular entry requirements.
The flights for tours beginning or ending in The Netherlands will arrive or depart from Amsterdam. On-tour transportation is provided primarily by private motor coach, but may include planes, trains, boats, ferries, or other modes. During free time, you may wish to explore the cities by public transportation, and your tour coordinator and tour guide will have suggestions. Most locations are best accessed on foot. Amsterdam has a user friendly bus and tram system, if needed.
Airlines have varying weight restrictions on luggage. Some airlines may impose additional charges if you choose to check any baggage. Please contact your airline or refer to its website for detailed information regarding your airline’s checked baggage policies. Bear in mind that your luggage will probably weigh more on your return trip due to souvenir shopping. We allow only one suitcase per person. One carry-on bag is also permitted, provided that it does not exceed 45 inches (length + width + height). There may be times when you will have to handle your own bags, and you’ll find that lightweight luggage provides a distinct advantage. Make sure you label your baggage and carry valuables, medication and documents in your carry-on luggage.
The Netherlands use the European standard 220 volts.
There are no major health risks when traveling to Amsterdam. However, it is always advisable to check with your doctor or health-care provider for the latest updates.
In the Netherlands, the universal staples of beef, chicken and fish are prepared in a simple fashion, and substantial soups and stews are also very popular. Snack food might be less familiar, where the emphasis is on fish. You might try maatje, raw green herrings served with onions. Also popular are pancakes, french fries, doughnuts and waffles served from street stands.
The euro is the currency you will be using on your tour. Better rates of exchange are usually available overseas, although it is worth ordering some currency from your local bank to use when you first arrive. We strongly advise that you take debit/ bank cards and credit cards, which can be used to withdraw cash at local banks, as needed. You can use most debit/credit cards at ATMs on the international networks Cirrus and Plus, but make sure to check with your home bank about withdrawal fees. We suggest that you inform your bank and credit card company of your travel plans, so that they won’t confuse your international purchases for fraudulent charges and freeze your account.
The Netherlands are one hour ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) and nine hours ahead of Pacific Standard Time (PST). When it is noon in California, it’s 9 p.m. in Amsterdam.