"Invitation to a Dutch home." Top 5 Page for this destination Netherlands Tourist Trap Tip by ATLC

Netherlands Tourist Traps: 76 reviews and 53 photos

Congratulations! You are invited to a Dutch home. So what should you expect?

Unique Suggestions: Depending on the type of invitation:
for morning coffee: arrive at 10-10.30 at the latest and leave at 12:30 at the latest. You will probably not be invited to lunch. Take coffee literally: usually 2 cups of coffee and some cake or biscuits (only because you are there as a visitor, usually the cake will be left out).
for afternoon tea: arrive at around 15.00 hrs and leave at 17 hrs at the latest because you will probably not be invited for dinner. Tea will consist of just that: a few cups of tea and some biscuits. Don't expect a lavish meal!
for dinner: make sure you know which time to arrive. Normal family dinner time is around 18.00 hrs but for a small dinner party 19-19:30 hrs is usual. Make sure you bring a small gift like flowers or chocolates or a bottle of wine.
You don't need to bring anything if you're invited for coffee or tea unless there is a celebratory reason to do so.

Why should you not stay too long? The Dutch usually cook dinner with the exact amount of food they expect to need. Five members in a family? Then 5 meatballs or pork chops. Get the drift?

Fun Alternatives: The Dutch are not unhospitable. In fact, the customs I describe above are changing slowly, thank heavens. It just doesn't enter their minds to make a visit into a lavish occassion.

For example, I often invited friends for tea and would insist they stay for dinner too. But often this was rejected because my visitors were so afraid they'd overstay their welcome.
The fact that I usually have a lot of food in the house (just in case) is more a peculiarity than usual.

Review Helpfulness: 3.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Jun 25, 2003
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