While the Netherlands may be welcoming its residents with proof of vaccination back to the dance floors, bars, restaurants, and theatre, not all are granted entry to these establishments — namely international students from outside the EU.
Many internationals who have arrived in the Netherlands this year to study were vaccinated abroad — and were likely looking forward to enjoying some lukewarm Heineken and bitterballen in a bar or two.
However, they are now struggling to enter bars, clubs, theatres, and restaurants with foreign proof of vaccination. As a result, many international students in the Netherlands are experiencing exclusion in place of a bop on the floor.
Ama Boahene, chair of the National Student Union (LSVb), tells NU.nl that “if students also cannot easily participate in social activities, exclusion and loneliness threatens.”
A quick recap
As of September 25, entertainment and catering establishments in the Netherlands may open their doors to patrons as long as they provide a ‘corona pass.’
This is a QR-code that is generated through the CoronaCheck app and proves that a person has either been fully vaccinated, tested negative, or recently recovered from coronavirus.
While it is possible to register a foreign vaccination certificate in this app or scan an international QR-code, this is only the case for those who come from countries that use a vaccine certificate that meets the Digital Corona Certificate (DCC) standard.
Non-EU internationals struggle the most
All countries within the EU use certificates and QR-codes that meet the DCC standard. However, there are many non-EU countries — such as the US and UK — who do not use codes that align with the DCC standard.
As a result, the Americans, the Brits and many more are either left outside the club doors or must PCR test before each boogie — no casual popping into the pub.
Boaheme and her colleagues want to see this issue fixed — and soon. “it is important that vaccination certificates from outside the EU are also approved. That has to happen really quickly.”
A spokesperson for the Ministry of Health, Welfare and Sport has indicated to NU.nl that the ministry is aware of this issue and is working to provide a solution to the problem.
Have you experienced this problem in the Netherlands? Tell us about your experience in the comments below!
Feature Image: vverve/Depositphotos