Change language Verschillende werkplekken in de prostitutieWork locations

Work location

In The Netherlands workplaces for sex workers can be: their home, a window brothel, sex club or private sex house, escort service and on the street (street prostitution zones). Your choice should depend on your own preference.

At home

When you work from home you will receive clients there. Prostitution from your own home is not allowed in most towns. Town councils can decide on their own policy for prostitution. You can ask at the town council if prostitution from home is allowed. By phone and anonymously if you wish.

In Amsterdam the rules are that prostitution from home is not allowed when it can be seen as a business activity. Your work can be seen as a business activity when:

  • You live and work together with other sex workers on the premises;
  • Other people are involved (a partner for instance);
  • You do not rent the property and you are not the owner;
  • You are not registered at the address you are working from;
  • It is visible from outside that it is a sex house, e.g. there is a red lamp at the front;
  • There are noticeable visitors;
  • The activities cause nuisance for neighbours;
  • You have advertised, for instance on Kinky.nl;
  • You have registered with the Trade Register.

Window prostitution

Window prostitution means you rent a window and a room from the owner of the property for a definite period. For the rest you are independent. So you draw your own clients and you do the negotiation about price and services yourself. There is window prostitution in Amsterdam, Alkmaar, Leeuwarden, The Hague, Haarlem, Deventer, Doetinchem, Nijmegen, Groningen and Eindhoven.

As a window sex worker you are self-employed. You are the owner of the business. For this to be official there are a number of things you should do. First you should register with the Chamber of Commerce (Dutch: Kamer van Koophandel) and with the tax collectors office (Dutch: Belastingdienst). You should also keep records of your earnings and expenses, to register for tax return and pay taxes. More information: ‘1.2 Tax payment for sex workers’. For information about licenses for window sex workers, click here'.

Positive aspects could be:

  • You are independent. You choose your own working hours. You are your own boss, no one has any power over you.
  • You have direct client contact; you choose your clients yourself and you can also refuse them.
  • It is relatively safe. There is CCTV in many window prostitution areas, so they are watched over and there are alarm buttons in most rooms.

Negative aspects could be:

  • You are visible to everybody, including family, friends and acquaintances.
  • The reactions of passers-by are not always favourable.
  • You are accountable for your income tax return.


There is one licensed club in The Netherlands. In a club clients are received in the bar and the ladies are there too. You are to make small talk with the client and sometimes you then go to your room together, but the client may choose somebody else.

For information about tax return in a club, click here. If you want to know if you need a license for work in a club, more information click here.

Positive aspects could be:

  • The client pays for the time spent with you in your room and often extra for sexual services. So it is clever to have him stay longer, because you will earn more.
  • Public Health officials will check regularly if your work place is clean and safe.
  • A club may give you a feeling of safety as your fellow workers are close by. Moreover your work is not out in the open for everybody to see, so there is less chance of meeting acquaintances.
  • You should pay income tax, but the owner of the club is responsible for it, so you need not save money for it yourself.

Negative aspects could be:

  • They sell alcohol in a club. You will receive a percentage, so the more you drink the more you earn. Are you up to it? Drinking too much is not healthy and can make work more difficult for you.
  • If you are not very good at having a conversation with a complete stranger, you should wonder if working at a club is your thing.

Escort service

As an escort you have no fixed work place. There are three ways of working as an escort. You can be a completely independent escort, but almost everywhere in The Netherlands you need a license to be able to work. Check this with your town council to avoid getting into (financial) difficulties. Secondly you can work through an escort agency. Finally you can work in a club which is also licensed to provide escort services. So in that case you can be an escort to your client as well.

You must pay income tax. For more information: click here. For information on licenses see here.

Positive aspects could be:

  • Eventful work: you are not in one place all the time. Your clients could claim you for an hour or as long as several days at a time.

Negative aspects could be:

  • You should be able to keep up a lively conversation all the time. Your client expects you to be a nice companion.
  • You need to keep a watch over your safety. You are alone with a client, without fellow sex workers close by.

On the street

You solicit clients on the street. In The Netherlands this is prohibited, unless you do this in special street prostitution zones. In these areas street prostitution is allowed. The facilities have been realized by the town council. It is a drive-in enclosure, where clients in cars drive a fixed route. The service is provided in the client’s car, which is parked between two partitions to ensure some privacy. Street prostitution zones are to be found in: Groningen, Arnhem, Nijmegen, Heerlen and Utrecht.

You must pay income tax. For more information: click here. Information about licenses, check here.

Positive aspects could be:

  • You can decide your own working hours
  • Working on the street is free, no rent.

Negative aspects could be:

  • You will earn less than at other work places.
  • An id-card or pass is required at most street prostitution zones. There might be a waiting list to obtain one.
  • You are accountable for your tax return.

Health and Social Support Services for Sex Workers in Europe

www.services4sexworkers.eu is a website that presents a directory of services available for sex workers in 25 European countries, and legal information regarding sex work, migration and access to health.

An European network of 26 organisations in 25 EU countries, which works with and for sex workers since 1993, and advocates for sex workers' rights.

www.services4sexworkers.eu informs sex workers, health and social workers about respectful and non-discriminatory support available across Europe.


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