Car lease in the Netherlands

Car lease in the Netherlands

Despite being a small country, the Netherlands has many modes of transportation you can make use of, from cycling to public transport to, of course, driving your car. You can always choose to import your car from abroad, but buying a car or leasing a car are also popular options for expats living here.

How to find the best car lease deals in the Netherlands

There are various car leasing companies in the Netherlands that offer great car lease deals:

Car subscription in the Netherlands

If you need a car temporarily or for a short time, a car subscription might be the option for you. A subscription is more flexible than a lease, and allows you to switch cars. Here are a few reliable car subscription services in the Netherlands:

Car lease Amsterdam

Are you staying in Amsterdam for a while and looking for a nice way to explore the capital and the rest of the Netherlands? There are various car lease companies in Amsterdam you can contact (see above). Be sure to compare them to get the best deal possible!

Tip: Important things to consider when comparing deals are the monthly premium and what’s included, the length of your contract, available vehicles, and the level of customer service. 

What is car leasing?

Leasing a car gives you the opportunity to drive a new (or used) car for a fixed term, for a fixed monthly amount, without it being yours.

The benefits of leasing a car

There are quite a few benefits when it comes to leasing a car in the Netherlands:

You don’t need to break the bank

Leasing is a way of having a car in exchange for a manageable monthly payment, rather than having to save up thousands of euros to be able to buy your own car. Generally, you don’t need to pay a deposit either, and there are no insurance costs to worry about.

No unexpected costs

When you lease a car, you pay a fixed amount per month, so you won’t have to deal with unexpected costs for things like repairs and maintenance.

No stress about reselling your car

Has the lease period come to an end? You won’t have to worry about the trade-in value or not being able to sell it, as you can simply return it without hassle.

Often cheaper than other modes of transport

For commuters, leasing a car is generally cheaper than using public transport to get to and from work. Plus, it’s also cheaper than long-term car rental.

The cons of leasing a car

There are, of course, also some cons to leasing your own car:

Financial obligation

It's important to remember that when leasing a car you are entering into a financial obligation that may last several years. Depending on the company you lease from, it may be expensive or even impossible to end your contract early, as most companies ask for a large penalty fee in this circumstance.

No-claim discount may lapse

Depending on your insurer, your no-claim discount may lapse after your lease period.


Since you don't own the car you are leasing, you won't build up any equity in the vehicle. 

Kilometre allowance

Your car lease contract will likely include a kilometre allowance; driving over this allowance may be costly.

Leasing vs buying a car

Are you having trouble deciding whether you want to buy or lease a car? What the right choice will be for you depends entirely on your personal situation. If you have the money or if you don’t care about having to take out a loan, buying a car is a good way to go.

However, if you don’t care about owning the car and you have a smaller budget, you may want to consider leasing as it’s generally cheaper, overall. This is because lease companies are able to buy cars on a large scale, which means that they get a discount on the purchase price and maintenance costs. Plus, the car insurance costs are also lower, as lease companies cover the all-risk part themselves.

How to lease a car in the Netherlands

Tired of cycling or taking public transport and is importing your car not an option? Decided you want to lease a car in the Netherlands? First, it’s a good idea to compare lease car companies to get the best deal for your personal situation. Once you have found the lease car for you, you will need to make sure you meet the below requirements.

What are the requirements for leasing a car in the Netherlands?

If you want to lease a car in the Netherlands, you will need to adhere to the following requirements:

If you have a driving licence from a non-EU country, you will either need to exchange your foreign licence or take theory and practical exams to get a Dutch driving licence.

How much does it cost to lease a car in the Netherlands?

How much you have to pay to lease a car in the Netherlands depends on where you lease it, and how long you lease it for, among other things. On average, costs usually vary from around 200 euros to 400 euros per month.

Dutch car lease: What’s included?

The amount you have to pay per month likely includes the following:

  • Repair and maintenance (tyre replacement, damage repair etc.)
  • All risk car insurance
  • Motor vehicle tax
  • Breakdown assistance

Dutch car lease: What’s excluded?

Refuelling your car, traffic fines, parking costs and car wash visits are generally not included in the price. Also, as stated above, your lease contract will likely stipulate the distance you are allowed to drive during the lease, and if you go over this amount, you will be charged a fee for excess mileage.

Car lease: Typical contract length

Typically, when it comes to a new car, the standard length of a car lease contract in the Netherlands is four to five years (48 or 60 months). If you lease a second-hand car, also called an occasion, the contract length is shorter, normally two to three years (24 or 36 months).

Private car lease vs business car lease

The main types of car lease in the Netherlands are business lease and private lease. If you are self-employed or own a business, you may want to look into a business lease, as you may be able to make use of some convenient tax benefits.

Short-term car lease for expats in the Netherlands

As an expat, you may be hesitant to opt for a car lease with a standard contract length of four to five years. If you are not quite sure if you want to stay in the country this long, investing in a long-term financial commitment like this may give you doubts. In this case, you might want to consider short-term car lease. There are various companies in the Netherlands that offer car lease terms of 24 months or less, perfect for expats.

Long-term rental car in the Netherlands

Another option when you are in the Netherlands short-term is long-term rental. This is car rental of one month or longer. It’s more flexible, but the monthly fee will be higher.

Electric car lease in the Netherlands

While electric cars are becoming more and more popular amidst climate concerns, there are still people who find buying an electric car a big step. After all, electric cars are generally significantly more expensive. You might also have other concerns about its long-term battery life and future re-sell value. In this case, it might be beneficial to lease an electric car. 

Plus, there is another advantage to leasing an electric car in the Netherlands: Since July 1, 2020, it has been possible to get a purchase subsidy for new (2.950 euros in 2023) and second-hand (2.000 euros in 2023) electric cars. This subsidy only applies to the private lease of an electric car with a range of at least 120 kilometres, a catalogue value of 12.000 to 45.000 euros and a lease term of at least four years.

Used car lease

It’s not just new cars you can lease; it is also possible to lease used cars in the Netherlands. This is called an occasion lease.

Pros of leasing a used car

There are some pros to leasing a second-hand car over a brand new one:

  • Availability: Often, you will receive your “new” car within three weeks.
  • Flexibility: It’s generally possible to get a shorter lease contract (from 12 months).
  • Budget: Second-hand cars are generally cheaper to lease than new ones.

Cons of leasing a used car

Here are some cons when it comes to leasing a used car in the Netherlands:

  • Age: A used car may be older than you would like, especially if you are someone who prefers to drive newer models.
  • Higher monthly premium: If you do decide on a shorter lease contract, you will often pay a bit more per month.
  • Signs of use: While the second-hand car will be thoroughly prepped before it’s offered again, small signs of use may still be present.

Car leasing trustmark: Keurmerk Private Lease

Since 2016, there has been a official car leasing trustmark, called Keurmerk Private Lease, set up by the leasing industry. This trustmark protects the integrity of the business, as well as the consumer, as it was drawn up in collaboration with the Dutch consumer’s association (Consumentenbond). One of the requirements of the Keurmerk Private Lease is that the consumer’s credit is tested (BKR-test) before they can enter into a lease contract.


Read also