Previously I spoke about how thrifty the Dutch are in buying things. In getting rid of their old stuff, they are the exact opposite. I have never met a more generous culture than the Dutch.

When the Dutch want to throw out old furniture or other goods, they normally leave it out on the pavement on a particular day of the week. This day can be variable depending where you live. This stuff is then freely available for anyone who would like to take it, to take it away – free of charge.

Sometimes, they will also advertise on sites such as Marktplaats that they have free stuff to give away to anyone willing to come and collect it.

The reasons for this are still very unclear to me. Noone can give me a definite answer. I can understand for people without cars who would find it tricky to dispose of unwanted goods, but this phenomenon permeates through all levels of society.

This is the single most effective way to build up badly needed furniture for a newly settled immigrant family. Quite a few items in my own house have been free cast-offs from other people.

This habit of the Dutch is a major plus point to living in the Netherlands.