Expat guide to living in The Netherlands Antilles

Netherlands Antilles

Netherlands Antilles

The Netherlands Antilles dissolved into six autonomous islands: Aruba, Curacao, Bonaire, Saba, Sint Maarten and Sint Eustatius. If you’re looking into taking a trip down to these Caribbean hotspots, take a look at our handy guide.

The Netherlands Antilles

Expat Clubs

American Women's Club of Curacao

The primary goal of the organization is to provide regular monthly contact for Americans residing in Curaçao. We welcome all women who are either U.S. citizens, or whose husband or children are U.S. citizens. Canadian women are also invited to join our club. The Curaçao chapter of the American Women’s Club is also a proud member of FAWCO, the Federation of American Women Overseas.

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Website: www.awc-curacao.com

International Schools 

International School of Curacao

The International School of Curacao (ISC) educates students from diverse cultures to have the skills to think creatively, communicate effectively, reason critically, and act compassionately.

Address: Koninginnelaan z/n, Willemstad, Netherlands Antilles

Tel: +599 9 737 3633

FB: www.facebook.com/pages/International-School-of-Curacao/165841180104772


International School of Aruba

Offers an American-based curriculum preparing students for universities and colleges in the USA, Canada, the Netherlands, and elsewhere in Europe.

Curriculum: American

Address: Wayaca 238A, Oranjestad, Aruba

Tel: +297 583 5040

Website: www.isaruba.com

Local News in English

Curacao Chronicle

A local newspaper in English that serves investors, local English speaking residents, stays over tourism and generally al residents of Curacao.

Website: curacaochronicle.com


The Morning News Aruba

Delivers local news in English.

Website: themorningnewsaruba.com


Aruba Daily

Aruba Daily is the fastest growing English newspaper in Aruba.

Website: aruba-daily.com


Bonaire Reporter

Bonaire Dutch Caribbean news in English.

Website: bonairereporter.com

Country Information 

Location: South America

Capital City: Willemstad    

Currency: Netherlands Antillean gulden

Language: Dutch

Calling Code: Curracao, Bonaire +599; Aruba, +297

Internet TLD: .an

Electricity: The Netherlands Antilles runs on 127/120V 50Hz.


Emergency Numbers:

Medical: 112

Fire: 112

Police: 112


Country Information


Residents Visa and Work Permit information

Nationals from certain countries including all of North America, the EU, Australia, and most of Central America and South America may enter the country and stay for 30 to 90 days. Other countries not included must apply for a visa at a Dutch embassy or consulate in their home or host country.


For extended stays, a temporary residence permit and/or a work permit (if intending to seek employment) should be applied for at a Lieutenant Governor in the specific island the expat resides. This must be done in person. Proof of sufficient funds is necessary and the process takes about three months.


The islands of Aruba, Bonaire, and Curacao are the more populated ones in the Netherlands Antilles. Aruba’s accommodation options are mostly hotels, which are range from budget to stellar prices. Bonaire and Curacao have most rental listings. Houses are the most common type of rental accommodations in the islands.


Foreigners will find that rentals in the Netherlands Antilles, in these three islands, are expensive, with long-term rentals of houses will cost not less than $2,000+ per month.


Here are useful real estate sites:

Real Estate Curacao

Website: www.realestate-curacao.com/en


Renthouse Aruba

Website: www.renthousearuba.com

Driving License

Expats may use their domestic license or an international driving license in the Netherlands Antilles. However for extended stays, they must exchange their domestic license for an Antillan license.

This has to be done through the Local Chief of Police / Lieutenant Governor.

Documents Required, but not limited to:
  • Copy of domestic license
  • Request letter to the Lieutenant Governor / Chief of Police
  • Signed medical form
  • 2 passport pictures
  • Copy of temporary residency permit


Facilities and services in the Netherlands Antilles are good and adequate. The level of healthcare is classified by three classes, depending on insurance covers. First class assigns one patient per room; Second class two to six patients in a room; and Third class 15 to 30 patients in open dormitories. Comprehensive health insurance is advised.


Insurance Companies


United Insurance


This is one of the largest general insurers in the Caribbean, including the Netherlands Antilles.

Address (Curacao): Schottegatweg O. 60, Curacao

Tel: +5999 737-4005   

Fax: +5999 737-4006


Address (Aruba): V. Hugostraat 10 – 2, Aruba

Tel: +297 583-6014     

Fax: +297 583-8240


Website: www.united.an




St. Elisabeth's Hospital

Address: Breedestraat 193. Otrobanda, Curacao, Netherland Antilles

Tel: +599 462 4900


Centro Medico San Nicolas

Address: Bernardstraat 75, San Nicolas, Aruba

Tel: +297 848833