Living allowance for Ukrainian refugees

Refugees from Ukraine who are living in the Netherlands may be entitled to a living allowance. This is a sum of money you can use to pay for your daily needs, like food and clothing. Read here whether you have the right to a living allowance and how you can apply for it.

Questions about the living allowance

    • You have fled Ukraine. 
    • You are currently living in The Hague with a host family, or you have your own living space or place to sleep, or you are staying in a long-term municipal shelter location. 
    • You are registered in the Personal Records Database (BRP) as a resident of The Hague. You will then get a citizen service number (BSN). Read more about registering at the municipality for Ukrainians. If this is not possible due to the long waiting times, you can already apply for a living allowance before you register.
    • You have an identity document.
    • Are you staying in the initial municipal shelter location? Then you are not yet allowed to apply for the living allowance. You can apply only once you have moved to a long-term shelter location. Until then you will receive food, drinks and personal care items in your shelter.
  • If you start doing paid work, you will no longer have the right to a living allowance. You should let the municipality know that you are going to do paid work. You can do this by calling the Ukraine telephone line on (070) 353 80 24. The living allowance will stop as of the first day of the following month. Other family members and children who are living with you will still receive the living allowance.

    If you do not report a change in your situation to the municipality, you will be receiving the living allowance illegally. This can result in you having to refund the excess living allowance you received.

  • 1. - I am registered at the municipality

    If you are registered in The Hague, you can apply for a living allowance in The Hague City Hall, Spui 70. You do not need to make an appointment to do this. Take the following documents with you when you apply:

    • your proof of registration, showing your citizen service number (BSN)
    • your identity document
    • bank card for your Dutch bank account (if you have one).

    2. - I am not yet registered at the municipality

    You can apply for a living allowance once you are registered as a resident of The Hague or you have made an appointment to register.

    • Make an appointment to register in the Personal Records Database (BRP) by calling the Ukraine telephone line on (070) 353 80 24.  Read which documents you have to take to the appointment to register at the municipality.
    • When you make the telephone call, you can indicate that you also want a living allowance. The municipal employee will then make an appointment straight away for you to submit the application.
    • Take the following documents with you to your appointment to apply for a living allowance:

      • your proof of registration (if you are already registered)
      • your identity document
      • bank card for your Dutch bank account (if you have one).
    • The appointments are held at The Hague City Hall, Spui 70
  • It is important that you are registered as a resident of The Hague. You have not yet done this? Make an appointment by calling the Ukraine telephone line on (070) 353 80 24.  Read about the conditions for registering at the municipality.

    Are you already registered in The Hague? Then you can apply for a living allowance in The Hague City Hall, Spui 70. You do not need to make an appointment to do this. You can just come by.

    Take the following documents with you to your appointment to apply for a living allowance:

    • your proof of registration (if you are already registered)
    • your identity document
    • bank card for your Dutch bank account (if you have one).

    Until the living allowance is paid, you will receive food, drink and personal care items in your shelter.

  • You will fill in an application for a living allowance with help from a municipal employee, during an appointment in City Hall or in your shelter. The municipality will then see whether you have the right to a living allowance. This means you will not hear whether you will get an allowance during the appointment. You will be informed by email, approximately 5 days after the appointment.

    Email granting the living allowance

    The balance on your prepaid debit card is limited to € 2,000. Will you get an extra payment from the municipality? Please make sure there is sufficient space on your prepaid card for this payment. You will receive the extra payment 2 weeks after your living allowance has been deposited.

    Your prepaid debit card will only be valid temporarily and can only be used to receive the living allowance. This is why the municipality advises you not to wait too long to open a bank account in the Netherlands. You will need a bank account if you want to work in the Netherlands. More information can be found on the page Work for refugees from Ukraine.

  • The amount of living allowance you receive depends on your personal situation. Adults and children under the age of 18 years have the right to a living allowance.

    If you are staying in the municipal shelter, you will receive an allowance as it has been determined by the Dutch government:

    • for clothing and personal items: € 55 per month
    • for food (if you are not getting full meals): € 205 per month

    If you are living with a host family, then you have the right to an additional allowance. You can use this money, for example, to pay for public transport, visiting relatives or sports. You can also use the money to contribute to the costs of your host family, but this is not mandatory.

    The extra allowance is:

    • for an adult: € 215 per month
    • for each child: € 55 per month

    If you start doing paid work, the living allowance will stop. You should report this to the municipality by calling the Ukraine telephone line on (070) 353 80 24. The living allowance will stop as of the first day of the following month.

    Stay in municipal shelter with full meals Stay in municipal shelter without full meals Stay with host family > 18 years Stay with host family 0 to 17 years
    Food Included € 205 € 205 € 205
    Personal items € 55 € 55 € 55 € 55
    Living costs Included Included € 215 € 55
    Total € 55 € 260 € 475 € 315

    The amounts are per person per month.

  • Changes in your personal situation can affect your right to a living allowance. Report any changes on time. If you do not report changes (on time), you might have to pay back any extra living allowance you received. You can report the changes to the municipality by calling the Ukraine telephone line on (070) 353 80 24.

    Here are examples of situations when you need to report a change to the municipality:

    • You are going to start working. If you are going to work, the living allowance will stop for you as of the following month. Other family members and children who are living with you will still receive the living allowance.
    • You are going to live somewhere else. The municipality want to stay in contact with you. The amount of the living allowance depends on your living situation. This is why the municipality wants your new home address.
    • You have (opened) a bank account at a Dutch bank. We need a copy of your bank card with your account number and the name of the account holder (if the name is different, we cannot make the payment). We will then make the payment to your account and your prepaid debit card will no longer work.
  • Do you have a personal bank account in the Netherlands? Take the bank card with you to the application interview. The living allowance will be transferred to your bank account once your application is approved.

    Do you not yet have a personal bank account in the Netherlands? Then you can use a prepaid debit card from the municipality until you have your own bank account. You will get one during the application interview for the living allowance. You can use this debit card in the same way as a bank card. When you get the card, it will not have any money on it. Once your application is approved, the living allowance will be credited to your bank card. You will receive an email from the municipality when the living allowance has been transferred to your bank card. As of that moment you can use the bank card.

    Did you open a personal bank account in the Netherlands at a later moment? Call the Ukraine telephone line on (070) 353 80 24 so that the municipality can transfer the living allowance to your own account.

    Please note: the balance on your card is limited to € 2,000.

    Will you get an extra payment from the municipality? Make sure there is sufficient space on your prepaid card for this payment? You will receive the extra payment 2 weeks after your living allowance has been deposited.

  • Once the municipality determines that you have the right to a living allowance, it will transfer the money to your personal Dutch bank account. If you do not yet have a bank account, it will transfer the money to your prepaid debit card. You will not have to wait until the end of the month for your living allowance. 
  • 7 Dutch banks are now opening bank accounts for refugees from Ukraine. Every bank has different conditions and fees.

    You need a local bank account if you are going to work or if you are going to take out health insurance policy.

    The living allowance can be transferred to your own account. You will then no longer need the temporary debit card. You can inform the municipality by calling the Ukraine telephone line on (070) 353 80 24.

    You can usually open a bank account once you have registered at the municipality and you have gotten a BSN. You also need a valid ID so that you can prove your identity at the bank.

    You will get your debit card, PIN code and a scanner (for certain banks) at the address you gave to the bank a few days after you opened the account. Remember this if you are going to move to another address.

    1. Apply at a bank office

    ING
    • information in English and Ukrainian

    • open account: at a bank office (see website)

    • offices in The Hague: Yes

    • needed: citizen service number (BSN), Ukrainian passport

    • fees: € 2.35 per month (€ 1.90 for only online service without using a cash machine)

    SNS

    2. Apply online

    ABN AMRO
    • information in English

    • open account: online using the ABN AMRO app (see website)

    • needed: citizen service number (BSN), Ukrainian passport or identity card

    • fees: € 2.95 per month

    Bitsafe
    Bunq
    Rabobank
    • Information in English and Ukrainian

    • open account: online via the RABO app (see website)

    • needed: citizen service number (BSN), Ukrainian passport or identity card

    • fees: free until 1 March 2023, then € 2.25 per month

    3. Apply via form

    Triodos
  • No, host families do not receive any money from the government. You can decide for yourself whether you want to use the living allowance to contribute to the costs of your host family, but this is not mandatory.
  • The information about living, work and living allowance can be different depending on the municipality you live in. You do not live in The Hague, but in one of the other municipalities in the region? Check the following pages:

  • It could happen that you have to temporarily leave your shelter location. For example in order to arrange your affairs in your home country or because you want to pick up family in order to bring them to safety. You are allowed to stay at a different location (also outside of the Netherlands), but there is a limit on the number of days you can stay away. If you exceed this maximum number of days, it will have consequences for your right to a living allowance. You can read more below.  

    Municipal shelter

    The right to a living allowance will be cancelled if you are staying abroad (outside the Netherlands) longer than 28 days per year. You are required to report your absence to the location manager. The shelter will keep track of your absence. If you exceed the amount of days you are allowed to be absent, then you will lose your right to shelter. You will also lose your right to a living allowance. If you have found a new shelter location, you can apply again to be eligible for a living allowance. The municipality will assess your right to a living allowance again.

    Private shelter

    If you are staying abroad (outside the Netherlands) longer than 28 days per year, your right to a living allowance will be cancelled. You are required to report your absence to the municipality. You also need to inform the municipality when you return. Call tel. 070 353 80 24. This number is available on weekdays from 9.00 to 17.00 hrs.

    The municipality will cancel your living allowance if you are abroad longer than 28 days. You can apply again if you return to the Netherlands afterwards. The municipality will assess your right to a living allowance again.

Also see Ukraine

Published: 30 May 2022Modified: 23 September 2022