TU Delft’s Central International Office plays an important role in facilitating international students, employees and guests in coming to Delft. Services offered range from visa application prior to arrival to acculturation workshops and field trips once in the Netherlands.
Also amongst the services offered by the Central International Office is to arrange initial housing for incoming internationals.
Having a comfortable accommodation to come home to is considered essential in making a stay abroad a pleasant experience. Moreover, in the Netherlands having an address is actually vital for arranging your life as this is a requirement for obtaining a so-called BSN number. The BSN is, in turn, needed to purchase health care insurance and open a bank account. International employees and guests may already find arranging accommodation challenging and since Delft is inundated with new students every summer, the problem is exacerbated. Therefore TU Delft’s Central International Office has arranged for Duwo, the largest student housing agency in the Netherlands,
to reserve a number of rooms for her international students, employees and guests.
Ranging from shared facilities to independent housing and varying in price, size and location, these accommodations can only be reserved through a specific section in the online reservation system of Duwo.
The number of internationals being housed by the Central International Office grew rapidly. In 1997, rooms were assigned to just a few international students; nowadays almost 1700 accommodations are reserved with Duwo for incoming internationals of TU Delft to choose from. Even though most accommodations have a maximum rental period of one year, sometimes the number of available accommodations is very limited. Internationals who plan to stay at TU Delft longer than one year are expected to look for more permanent housing while in Duwo housing. For PhD candidates there now also is the option to move to long-stay apartments in the Hague, these are unfurnished apartments near train station Hollands Spoor.
Since TU Delft’s international population is expected to grow further and with a dual-career program in development, the housing section of TU Delft’s Central International Office is not only looking to increase the number of accommodations but also to further improve their level of service. At current they are especially looking to add couple and family accommodations.
Of course, the Central International Office will first of all try to meet these challenges together with their long-term partner Duwo. However, when the limitations of what Duwo can offer are reached, other options will be explored.
Alexander van der Wel
TU Delft/Central International Office
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