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Shipping Container Costs From United Kingdom to the Netherlands

Adele MacGregor

Written by

26th Aug 2022 (Last updated on 7th Sep 2022) 4 minute read

On average, it costs £1,248 to ship a container from the UK to the Netherlands. This is based on a 40ft shipping container, which can hold the contents of a 3-bedroom house. Air freight to the Netherlands costs on average £153 per 100kg. This is based on our international removals cost research.

When shipping items to the Netherlands, you can choose from sea or air. Your option will depend on your budget and how quickly you need the items shipped.

This article will cover the following:
  1. Sea Freight
  2. Air Freight
  3. FCL VS LCL Shipping
  4. Other Costs to Consider
  5. How Long Does Shipping Take?
  6. Prohibited Items to the Netherlands
  7. Finding an International Removal Company to the Netherlands

Sea Freight

Sea freight is a cheaper and more environmentally friendly option for shipping your items abroad. However, be aware that this takes longer than air freight. It costs £768 to ship a 20ft container from the United Kingdom to the Netherlands. A 40ft container will cost £1,248 on average.


  • Cost is for the size of the shipping container rather than the weight of the items
  • Lower costs than air freight
  • Motor vehicles can be transported this way
  • Part-load services can be utilised to lower the costs
  • Better for the environment


  • This option takes longer to arrive
  • Delays are more likely
  • Sea freight is less frequent than air freight

Main Ports and Routes in the Netherlands

The Netherlands has five European seaports, with the port of Rotterdam being the biggest and busiest. This port is actually the largest in Europe according to Invest in Holland.

Other significant ports include:

  • Amsterdam
  • Antwerp
  • Zeeland Seaports
  • Groningen Seaports

Air Freight

Air freight is usually the quickest option for shipping goods. However, due to the proximity of the Netherlands to the UK, sea freight is reasonably quick too. The advantage of air freight is the regular and convenient flight times, security and effectiveness of the service.


  • Quickest shipping option
  • Regular and convenient flight times


  • More expensive than sea freight
  • Items are charged based on weight rather than size
  • Less environmentally friendly
  • Limited with what you can transport

Main Airports and Routes in the Netherlands

The Netherlands boasts five civil airports including:

  • Schiphol
  • Rotterdam The Hague Airport
  • Groningen Airport Eelde
  • Eindhoven Airport
  • Maastricht Aachen Airport

Schiphol Airport, located near Amsterdam, is the main international airport and the third largest airport in Europe. Shipping via air freight to the Netherlands can be done from major UK airports such as London Heathrow.

FCL VS LCL Shipping

When shipping your items, you can choose between paying from a container or opting for a part load. The cost will largely depend on how much you’re shipping, but there are other factors to keep in mind. These include:

  • The size of the items
  • Tracking
  • Insurance
  • Distance to destination
  • Customs and duties charges

Below are the main differences between FCL and LCL:

Full Container Load (FCL)

Full container load is the most popular shipping choice, especially for those who are moving permanently and shipping a large amount. A full container load is where you pay for the use of a whole shipping container. Only your items will be transported in the container and this method is quicker than LCL.

Less Container Load (LCL)

If the items you are shipping do not require a whole container, you can opt for Less Container Load (LCL). With this method, you are allocated a portion of a shipping container with the rest made up of other people’s belongings.

This cuts the cost of shipping, but it will mean your goods will take longer to arrive.

Other Costs to Consider

When it comes to removals to the Netherlands you may also need to consider:

Packing Services

On average, a packing service will cost around £250, based on a 3-bedroom house. Be aware that these costs will vary depending on the company you choose and the number of items being packed.

Packing professionals will use high-quality materials and ensure your goods are safe and secure during transit.

Pick-up and Delivery

Pick-up and delivery is another additional service which could save you time and effort. You can arrange to have your items collected and delivered from the port or airport to your new home. The cost of this service will depend on the country, the number of goods, and the distance the company will need to travel.


On average, insurance for goods being transported international will cost up to 4% of the cost of your goods As a result, the cost of your insurance will depend on the number of items and their value. It will also depend on the type of policy you choose and how your items are shipped.

Every one of our international removal partners is covered by Goods in Transit and Public Liability insurance. This means that your belongings will be completely protected during transit.

How Long Does Shipping Take?

On average, shipping items by airfreight from the UK to the Netherlands takes around 1-3 days by air freight. Shipping by sea, due to the close proximity of the Netherlands to Britain, is also estimated at 1-3 days.

Be aware that shipping via sea freight is likely to take longer and subject to longer delays than air freight.

Prohibited Items to the Netherlands

There are many items you’re prohibited from taking to the Netherland. Some of these include:

  • Weapons, explosives and firearms
  • Plants, seeds and cuttings
  • Flowers and bulbs from non-EU countries
  • Products from protected species (e.g. ivory)
  • Drugs and narcotics
  • Certain antiques or items of cultural significance

Check the Government of the Netherland website for a full list of prohibited items.

Finding an International Removal Company to the Netherlands

Here at Compare My Move, we have a network of trusted partners ready to assist you with your move to the Netherlands. We will connect you with up to 6 local companies who will offer competitive quotes. You can save up to 70% off your international removal costs.

Adele MacGregor

Having written for PerformanceIN, WalesOnline, Grazia Magazine and The Olive Press, Adele now writes advice articles for home movers, first-time buyers and house sellers alike.