The start of March marks the rapidly arrival of spring in the Netherlands, with the new season set to begin on March 20. The month brings with it a number of important dates, deadlines and celebrations to remember – here are five key things for expats to know about March 2024 in the Netherlands!

Tax season is upon us!

Let’s get the worst one out of the way – tax season is here, and it’s once again time to file your tax return for the previous year. As of March 1, residents of the Netherlands can file their taxes for 2023 until the deadline of May 1. For self-employed people and those who use accountants or financial advisors in the Netherlands, the deadline to submit tax returns can be extended if they apply for the extension on time. 

Easter arrives on March 31

In more positive news, March also brings about two of the largest religious periods celebrated across the world and in the Netherlands. The Christian celebration of Easter will take place on March 31 and brings with it several public holidays on March 29 (Good Friday), March 31 (Easter Sunday) and April 1 (Easter Monday). 

If this is your first Easter in the Netherlands, expect to see lots of Easter-themed goods for sale in the supermarkets such as Easter eggs, as well as banquet food for family and friends to share on the big day. While many people in the Netherlands do not celebrate Easter as a religious day, the 25 percent of the Dutch population who are affiliated with the church will partake in prayer, making and giving out palm crosses and breaking bread together.

For more information about Easter in the Netherlands, check out our quick guide!

Ramadan begins March 10 

Another religious celebration starting in March is the beginning of Ramadan, the Islamic period of fasting, prayer, reflection and spending time among the community. In the Netherlands, Muslims fast for very long hours, with the end of the festivities in April requiring those undertaking Ramadan in Amsterdam to fast from 4.50am to 8.28pm – a longer fast than in many other countries!

As those undertaking Ramadan will already know, Iftar – when Muslims break their fast at dusk – is the first opportunity to eat after a whole day of fasting, and can be a nice time to grab dinner or cook with some friends or family. If you’re not Muslim or are not partaking in Ramadan, the period can be a great opportunity to help out friends or family members while they undertake their fast, especially with preparing food for Iftar or helping with physically demanding tasks after the fasting period starts on March 10.

Daylight Saving Time starts on March 31

Speaking of dusk – that’s changing too! At the end of March, the clocks in the Netherlands will go forward one hour. This means that in the evenings, the sun will set later, but it also means losing one hour’s sleep as well! The switch to Daylight Saving Time (DST) will take place on March 31, at 2am, which will immediately become 3am. The clocks won’t go back again until October 27. 

Keukenhof opens on March 21

And last but certainly not least, is the Keukenhof. The Netherlands’ beloved tulipland is set to reopen to the public for the spring season on March 21 and will showcase some of the country’s most beautiful flowers. 

If you want to visit the gardens, you’ll have to get a wiggle on, since the park is only open for just under two months a year. This year you’ll be able to visit from March 21 until May 12.

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