Consulate General of the Netherlands in Istanbul, Turkey

When things go wrong abroad

If you are in trouble abroad and can't sort things out for yourself, ask the local Dutch Embassy or Consulate for help. But be aware that consular assistance can cost money.

If your child has been abducted to a foreign country by their other parent, you should immediately report the abduction to the police. You should also report it to the Dutch Central Authority on International Children’s Issues (Centrale autoriteit Internationale Kinderaangelegenheden (Ca IKA)). The Central Authority can help recover your child if they are under 16 and if you, the parent in the Netherlands, have parental responsibility for the child.

If you are a victim of theft abroad, always report the theft to the local police. The local Dutch embassy or consulate can help you apply for an emergency passport and may be able to advise you on how friends or family can transfer money to you.

If a friend or family member goes missing abroad, report their disappearance to the local police.

More than 2,500 Dutch nationals are in prison abroad, mostly for smuggling drugs. The embassy and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs can help them, for instance by informing them how to get legal assistance from a lawyer.

If you are caught with drugs abroad, you will be subject to the justice system of the country where you are caught. In most countries, possession of drugs is punished more harshly than in the Netherlands. The conditions in many foreign prisons are very poor.

If your travel documents are lost or stolen abroad, you can apply for an emergency passport or laissez-passer from the Dutch embassy or consulate. You will need to provide a number of documents.

If someone close to you dies abroad, there is a lot to arrange. Staff at the embassy, consulate, or Ministry of Foreign Affairs can assist you. If there is no Dutch embassy or consulate in the country in question, you can contact the embassy or consulate of another EU country. Many countries list their embassies or consulates on their foreign ministry's website.

If you – or a travelling companion – are unexpectedly admitted to hospital abroad, the Dutch embassy or consulate can assist you, for instance by informing relatives at home.