Looking to transport your goods from the UK to the Netherlands?
You’re not alone. In fact, some of our most popular routes go directly between the UK and the Netherlands. There is a good reason for this.
Transporting your goods directly between countries via ferry can save money, as this will reduce wear & tear on vehicles and give drivers a much needed rest.
However, this approach might not work for every business. For some, transporting goods from the UK to France on a shorter ferry or Eurotunnel crossing, and then taking them the rest of the way by road transport, might be a more useful option.
Both direct freight ferry transport and indirect freight ferry transport come with advantages and disadvantages. To help you choose which is right for your business, here’s how each one works.
There are a number of direct ferry routes to get to the Netherlands, but the most popular way to travel there is via France on the Dover to Dunkirk route.
With Dover to Dunkirk crossings running every two hours and taking just 1 hour 45 minutes, and with open tickets available, this is a great option for vans to travel to Holland quickly.
Furthermore, by travelling via Dunkirk (also referred to as “Dunkerque”) instead of Calais, this puts your goods 27km closer when travelling north to the Netherlands via Belgium.
Because of this, transporting via Dunkerque is the ideal solution for couriers with express deliveries into the Netherlands.
There are a number of direct ferry routes to the Netherlands which are great options for vans, rigids and artics.
For example, Stena Line offers services from Killingholme (near Grimsby) and Harwich to Hoek van Holland, near Rotterdam.
The Killingholme service sails once a day and is dedicated to freight vehicles allowing for a relaxing journey on board. Catching a ferry from Killingholme is also a popular option for those based in the North West of England, Yorkshire and Lincolnshire.
The ferry from Harwich also has great facilities including cabins and restaurants and sails twice a day.
For those based in the North East and Scotland, the DFDS ferry from Newcastle to Ijmuiden (Amsterdam) is a popular direct ferry to the Netherlands. The ferry from Newcastle sails daily and has top-class on board facilities.
For artics and trailers that wish to get directly into the Netherlands, the no-frills freight services are very popular and often the cheapest way.
Other useful routes include:
Dedicated freight ferries are often the most cost-effective way for artics to travel to Holland.
Designed to only take 12 drivers, these ferries offer only a basic on-board service but are popular with artic drivers. They are also specially designed for unaccompanied trailers.
At time of writing, businesses who are exporting their goods from GB and importing into the Netherlands (or vice versa) will need:
However, customs legislations can and often do change frequently.
For up-to-date information, as well as one-on-one customs support from the people who do it best, get in touch with the incredible customs experts at CustomsLink (our sister company).