Three pillars

A. AOW: you receive this pension from the government

AOW is the government’s statutory pension. You build up this pension over a period of 50 years. It is only accrued if you reside and/or work in the Netherlands. The date on which you receive AOW depends on your date of birth. This is because the state pension age will increase over the next few years. Nor is the amount of state pension the same for everyone. AOW pensions are adjusted annually. Information about the AOW and your state pension age can be found on

N.B.: have you not always resided or worked in the Netherlands? Then your state pension may not be the full amount.

B. The pension you accrue from employment

How much pension you build up in the scheme run by your employer is explained in your Uniform Pension Statement (UPO). This is sent to you every year. Would you like to have an overview of the pensions you have accrued by other employers? Go to

C. Supplementary pension you arrange yourself

You can arrange to supplement your state pension and the pension you accrue through your employer. There are various ways to do this. For instance by bank savings or by taking out insurance – e.g. an annuity policy – or by building up extra pension in your pension scheme. Whether you feel this is appropriate in your case depends on your financial and personal circumstances. A financial advisor can help you decide. You can also read through the five pension components on Nibud’s website