Expat Netherlands Antilles

There are many great Caribbean Islands for an expat to call home and the Netherlands Antilles is one of them. The Netherlands Antilles is made up of two islands; Curacao and Bonaire. Both islands have a great reputation for being tropical paradises and the many expats that live on these islands would definitely agree. If you are looking for a great tropical island to spend a short or long period of time on, the Netherlands Antilles does not disappoint.


The Netherlands Antilles are made up of two islands, Curacao and Bonaire. The islands are East of Aruba, off of the Northern coast of Venezuela. The climate of the Netherlands Antilles is considered to be tropical maritime. The islands get little rain during the year and plenty of sunshine. Temperatures range from about 76 degrees to 90 degrees Fahrenheit.

The water temperature is quite warm as well and the sea is blue and clear. The Netherlands Antilles offer great diving spots and prime fishing locations around the island.


The Netherlands Antilles is part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, however it is autonomous and self governed. Their top industries are tourism and petroleum and these two islands are not considered a tax haven.

For Americans, you can visit the islands fairly easily with just a passport and stay up to 2 week. Your stay can easily be extended to 90 days with a quick request at the head office of immigration. For more information, you can contact the United States Consulate General Curacao.

Tax System

The Netherlands Antilles is not considered a tax haven and does require individuals and corporations to pay taxes. Each island may have varying tax structures so it is necessary to contact an account on the island to figure out your tax liability.

Medical Care

Medical care in the Netherlands Antilles is usually quite good, however there may be remote places where medical facilities are hard to find. It is also important to mention that the islands have a class system when it comes to medical care. For instance, if you have a good insurance policy or paying top dollar out of pocket, you will get the best accommodations at the hospital, if not, you can find yourself without air conditioning and sharing a room with many other ill patients.

For those working on the islands, you can usually find private medical insurance or purchase a travel insurance plan. Make sure that any insurance plan you purchase includes a medical evacuation component in case you need to be taken to the United States or another island for proper care.

Real Estate

Real estate in the Netherlands Antilles can be confusing due to the fact that each island may have different restrictions. Depending on the island that you are interested in purchasing property on will usually determine the restrictions and the possible taxes. For the most part, real estate on the Netherlands Antilles is moderately prices with many homes being extremely expensive, especially if they are located on or near the beach.

For those looking to rent an apartment, condo or house, there are many properties available. Prices are comparable to other Caribbean Islands and can cost from about $1500 for a one bedroom condo or apartment to several thousand dollars for a three bedroom beach house.


Finding the necessities on the islands is fairly easy; however there are many items that you won’t be able to attain, unless you ship them in yourself. Because the islands do have a large tourist industry, you can always find luxury goods and crafts, however household goods are usually always difficult to find.

Regarding entertainment, since tourism is a huge industry for the island, there are always plenty of restaurants, night clubs, bars and activities to do on the island. For those that love the sea, you can easily fish, boat, snorkel and scuba dive. There are also plenty of beaches to sunbathe on.

Cost of Living

The cost of living on the Netherlands Antilles is usually rated as moderate. While not as expensive as many other Caribbean Islands, it is usually more expensive than living in the United States or the UK, usually due to the high real estate prices and the cost of goods. However for those expats that are looking to get away from city life and live on a beautiful tropical paradise, the Netherlands Antilles can help satisfy any expats desire.

Map of Netherlands Antilles