Nov 28, 2017

The strangest Dutch habits

When you are going to the Netherlands, read this! I promise you if you are not Dutch, you are going to notice these habits of Dutch people in the Netherlands!

1) Hanging a what?? in the toilet

The toilet is the place where Dutch people hang their birthday calendars! It is considered really rude in the Netherlands to forget somebody’s birthday, so a birthday calendar helps the people keep track with these important dates.

2) “Privacy? We don’t need that”

The windows of the Dutch are almost never with closed curtains. One can pass and see the family members, the nice living room, the titles of the books on the shelf and even the food inside of the pot in the kitchen! I heard that closed curtains means the family has something to hide! 

3) The 3 kisses or how to greet (everyone) in the Netherlands!

If you see people on the street giving each other kiss after kiss (after yet another kiss!), do not lift your eyebrows. The Dutch kiss good friends and family members. The rule is that first the ladies give each other three kisses on their cheeks- first on the right, then on the left and then on the right again. Then the men shake hands with each other and kiss all women lightly on their right, left and then right cheek. Note: right, left, right! It is a rule!

4) “Fries with ketchup, please.” said NO Dutch ever!

There are no French fries with ketchup in the Netherlands. The Dutch eat their fries with mayonnaise, instead. In the restaurants, they automatically serve the portion of fries with mayonnaise (so be careful!).

5) “Chocolate for breakfast? Why not?”

The Dutch breakfast may consist of sandwich with chocolate sprinkles on top or with chocolate spread and may be accompanied by products like chocolate milk for drinking or chocolate vla (custard cream). 

6) Mash, mash, mash!

Dutch people like to mash their food! When they mash their vegetables, meat, and potatoes together they love to put gravy on it, too. Dutch recipes usually include either boiling, mashing or deep-frying. The stamppot combines boiling vegetables like potatoes and carrots and then mashing them. In addition to this dish, there may be a croquette - a deep-fried chopped meat covered in bread crumbles (so a combination of mashing and frying, see?).

7) Arrival of a baby- the Dutch way

The Dutch let the whole street know about them having a new baby by decorating their house with pink or blue coloured banners and balloons and they place a stork in the garden. The parents send special cards, where they fill in the date and time of birth, and the name, weight, and length (of course, it is a Dutch baby after all!). When people come to see the baby, they are offered tea or coffee, as well as “Beschuit met muisjes”- special crisp-bread, covered with butter and aniseed balls. Delicious- um,... 

8) The circle party...

The Dutch birthday parties are referred to as the Dutch circle party. This may sound like some sort of sect, but do not worry, this idea is far from the reality! Actually, the Dutch party used to involve sitting at home in a circle around tea, coffee, and some cake. There were usually 3 or 4 generations of family members and the main activity was socializing. It is still common for all the guests and hosts shake hands with each other and say “Gefeliciteerd!” (Congratulations!) to everyone. This the Dutch way to wish “Happy birthday!”...

I find these habits very interesting and i love to get to know the Dutch culture. If you are curious about the Netherlands, please download this infographic 10 things you should know about studying in the Netherlands

10 things you should know about studying in Holland

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