Ban on smoking in the workplace

This information is provided by

Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVO

Employees in the Netherlands are entitled to a smoke-free workplace (in Dutch). Workplace is understood to mean the employee's entire working environment. This refers to such areas as office spaces, company cafeteria, company vehicles, stairwells and toilets. Smoking is also banned in private offices.

Smoking area prohibited

Designated smoking areas in buildings are prohibited. This applies to (semi) government buildings, public buildings, and office and other commercial buildings.

Workplace at home

The smoking ban does not apply to private spaces. Employees who work from home can decide for themselves whether they smoke or not. Employees who work at (other) people's homes (for example in catering, or home care) cannot rely on a smoke-free workplace.

Ban on smoking in the hotel and catering industry

Smoking tobacco is prohibited in catering establishments in the Netherlands. Smoking areas are also prohibited. This ban on smoking applies to owners, employees and guests/customers. Do you serve food or drinks? Then your establishment is considered a catering establishment. Examples are hotels, restaurants, cafes, sports canteens or shisha lounges.

Smoking on terraces

Smoking tobacco is allowed on terraces belonging to a catering establishment (in Dutch). The terrace must be completely open (outdoors) on at least 1 side. Smoking on terraces in for instance a shopping mall is prohibited.

Tobacco products and e-cigarettes

Electronic cigarettes and tobacco products are banned. For instance water pipes used for smoking tobacco and other smoking products that contain tobacco fall under the smoking ban. These products may not be smoked inside in any workplace, but only on terraces, or at home.

Non-tobacco products

Herb mixtures intended for smoking, gels for water pipes (without tobacco) and other non-tobacco smoking products are exempt from the smoking prohibition. These products do not contain tobacco and may be smoked inside, also in catering establishments. If you do not want this in your establishment, you may forbid this.

Fine in case of violation

The Netherlands Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority (Nederlandse Voedsel en Warenautoriteit, NVWA) performs inspections. You may not refuse inspectors access. An administrative fine (in Dutch) of at least €450 and at most € 4,500 can be imposed when violating the Tobacco Act (such as by breaching the ban on smoking and smoking areas).

This information is provided by

Netherlands Enterprise Agency, RVO