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Welcome service and travel plans

When should you plan to arrive in the Netherlands? Before making your travel plans, find out about the welcome service offered on certain dates by Leiden University. There are also a number of other practical matters to take into consideration.

Warm welcome service

On certain dates before each semester, Leiden University offers a warm welcome service for newly-arriving international students. This consists of:

  • A warm welcome at Amsterdam Schiphol airport: advance registration required
  • Warm welcome helpdesks where you can take care of last-minute formalities

Dates of the next Warm Welcome Service:

  • Airport welcome service: 12 and 19 August 2020
  • Warm welcome helpdesks: during introduction weeks and at start of semester - see details below.  

Register for the airport welcome service and enthusiastic Leiden University representatives will meet you at Amsterdam Schiphol airport and assist you with your onwards journey to Leiden or The Hague.

Will you be staying in accommodation arranged via Leiden University Housing Office? If so, you can also request transport from Leiden or The Hague train station to your student room – subject to availability.  


Airport welcome service:

  • 12 and 19 August 2020

Transport from train station to Leiden University housing*:

  • students living in The Hague area: 12 August
  • students living in Leiden area: 19 August

* subject to availability


Airport welcome service:

  • 07:00 – 22:00

Transport from train station to Leiden University housing*:

  • 09:00 – 17:00

* subject to availability

How to register

Register at least one week before arrival via this online form.

At the warm welcome helpdesks you can take care of the following last-minute formalities:

  • LU card collection/activation
    Request your LU card in advance, then collect and activate it at the LU card desk. Note that you only collect your LU card after receiving email confirmation that it is ready. It generally takes around 1o days from the date of request till your card is ready.
  • Housing contract formalities
    If you were unable to complete Leiden University housing contract formalities online before arrival, you can do so at the Housing Office desk.
  • Final admission formalities
    At the Admissions Office desk you can take care of any last-minute admission formalities, such as handing in admission documents. 

The helpdesks will be open on specific dates during the introduction weeks and at the start of the semester. See details below. You will also find the helpdesk opening times in your OWL or HOP week app.

LU card desk


  • Dates: 20 August till 2 October, weekdays from 08:30 till 18:00
  • Location: P.N. van Eyckhof 4

The Hague:

  • Dates: 17 August till 2 October, weekdays from 11:00 till 16:00
  • Location: Wijnhaven (ground floor behind brasserie)

Bring with you: 

  • (Digital) copy of email confirming that your LU card is ready
  • Valid ID
Housing  Office desk


 The Hague: 

  • Date: 20 August 13:00 - 16:00
  • Location: Wijnhaven
Admissions Office desk


The Hague: 

  • Date: 20 August 10:00 - 13:00
  • Location: Wijnhaven

Further information

If you have any questions about the Warm Welcome Service, please send a mail to: arrival@leidenuniv.nl

Other travel plan considerations

Before planning your journey, you should also take the following into consider:

Travel information

If you are unable to arrive during the warm welcome service, you can use the following websites and services to help you find your way from the airport and around Leiden and The Hague:

Travel pass

To use public transport in the Netherlands you will need a travel pass, known as an OV-chipkaart. For information on the types of card available and how to purchase them, visit the OV-chipkaart site. Note that you can buy a single-use OV-chipkaart from ticket machines at Dutch train stations.

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