Government support for entrepreneurs

Guide for starting a Bed & Breakfast

This information is provided by: Netherlands Enterprise Agency

If you intend to start a bed & breakfast (B&B) in the Netherlands, you must contend with various government rules and regulations. In the Netherlands, B&Bs are not (yet) subject to national legislation and regulations. Every municipal authority pursues its own policy with respect to B&Bs.

You can use this guide to quickly determine which obligations you generally must fulfil. The plan serves merely as a guideline. Consult your local municipality regarding the order of the steps. It is possible that you will need to fulfil other obligations as well.

1. Check whether you fulfil the conditions for staying in the Netherlands

Entrepreneurs who intend to stay in the Netherlands must fulfil a number of conditions. You will sometimes also require a residence permit.

2. Inspect the zoning plan and choose your company site

The establishment of your B&B must be in line with your municipality's zoning plan. If this is not the case, you can apply for a permit to carry out your plans. You can also ask the municipality to change the zoning plan.

3. Apply for a building permit

If you want to build, make alterations to or renovate a building, you will normally need an All-in-one Permit for Physical Aspects (omgevingsvergunning). This used to be called a building permit.

4. Submit a notification of occupancy or apply for a permit regarding fire safety

In order to ensure fire safety in your B&B, you must submit a notification of occupancy to your local municipality. If you offer overnight accommodation for more than 10 people, you will need an All-in-one Permit for Physical Aspects.

5. Submit a notification of environmental management

When you establish a B&B, you must contend with various environmental requirements. In most cases, you need to submit a notification of environmental management to your municipal authority.

6. Draw up an HACCP plan or comply with a hygiene code

If you prepare food and drink, you must have an HACCP plan in place or comply with a certified hygiene code.

7. Maintain a visitor register

Every business that offers overnight accommodation must maintain a running visitor register. Based on this record, the local municipality levies tourist tax. Tourist tax applies to visitors from outside the municipality.

8. Take measures to prevent legionella

If your premises have a function as lodgings or as residential accommodation and you provide overnight accommodation for more than 5 people, you are obliged to take measures to prevent legionella.

9. Register with the Dutch Business Register and Dutch Tax Administration

New businesses must be registered with the Dutch Business Register. They will pass on your details to the Dutch Tax and Customs Administration. You therefore do not need to register separately with them.

Other possible steps:

1. Apply for a licence under the Licencing and Catering Act

If alcoholic beverages are provided for payment and consumed at your B&B, you must possess a licence under the Licensing and Catering Act from your local municipality.

2. Apply for a gaming machine permit

You need a gaming machine permit from your local municipality to install a game-of-chance machine in a B&B.

3. Apply for music performance licences

You need permission to play music in a public place. Buma and Sena regulate this permission by issuing licences.

4. Pay reproduction rights

In order to be allowed to make copies of copyrighted works, your company needs to pay a fixed annual fee to the Reprographic Reproduction Rights Foundation.

This information is provided by:

Netherlands Enterprise Agency

Any further questions?

Netherlands Enterprise Agency +31 (0)88 602 44 44