The stage and type of asylum procedure applicable to the asylum seeker is relevant relating to the type of accommodation he or she is entitled to. Every asylum seeker not subject to the border procedure starts in the COL (Central Reception Centre) and is transferred to the POL (Process Reception Centre). After this, the asylum seeker is transferred to an AZC (Centre for Asylum Seekers) if he or she is still entitled to reception conditions. That is the case if he or she (i) is granted a permit, (ii) is referred to the extended asylum procedure, (iii) lodges an appeal with suspensive effect, or (iv) is entitled to a four-week departure period (see Criteria and Restrictions).
Moreover, asylum seekers can be moved to another AZC due to the closure of the centre they are currently staying at or because this serves the execution of the asylum procedure, e.g. in order to avoid that the AZC is so full this would create tension amongst the residents. It may also happen that the applicant has to relocate from one reception centre to another if their case changes “tracks” during the procedure, for example if they are moved from the accelerated procedure (“Track 2”) to the regular procedure (“Track 4”).
There is no appeal available against ‘procedural’ transfers (movements) from COL/POL to AZC. Indirectly there is an appeal available against a transfer to another AZC but in practice, this does not happen often.
Defence for Children, Kerk in Actie, UNICEF, the Dutch Council for Refugees and War Child wrote a report on transfer of families with children and unaccompanied minors. The report makes several recommendations to improve the situation of children in reception centres, for example not to move children from one place to another. The Secretary of State has acknowledged the need to minimise the movements these children make during the asylum procedure. However, similar recommendations are made in a more in a recent general report on the living conditions of children in reception centres. Children are still on average moving at least once a year.
AZC are so-called open centres in which the freedom of movement of asylum seekers is not restricted. This entails that asylum seekers are free to go outside if they please. However, there is a weekly duty to report (meldplicht).
Rejected asylum seekers, whose claims are rejected without any legal remedies, are not entitled to reception and may be placed in locations where their freedom of movement is restricted (Vrijheidsbeperkende locatie, VBL). That applies also to a facility for families, the Family Location (Gezinslocatie, GL). An applicant is transferred to a VBL if he or she is willing to cooperate in establishing departure and there is a possibility to depart. In case of a family with minor children, cooperation is not required for the transfer to a GL. In these centres, people are not detained but their freedom is restricted to a certain municipality. Although this is not actually controlled by the authorities, asylum seekers have to report six days a week (daily except on Sundays). It is therefore difficult to leave the municipality in practice. The penalty for not reporting can be a fine or even criminal detention or an indication that the asylum seeker is not willing to cooperate on his or her return. It can further lead to pre-removal detention.
 Regional Court Roermond, Decision No 09/29454, 2 March 2010. When analysing this ruling, it should be noted that there is formally no distinction anymore between a return and an integration AZC.
 Defence for Children, Kerk in Actie, UNICEF the Netherlands, the Dutch Council for Refugees and War Child, Zo kan het ook! Aanbevelingen voor een betere situatie van kinderen in asielzoekerscentra, 18 November 2016, available in Dutch at www.kind-in-azc.nl.
 Defence for Children, Kerk in Actie, UNICEF the Netherlands, the Dutch Council for Refugees, Stichting de Vrolijkheid and War Child, Werkgroep Kind in AZC, Leefomstandigheden van kinderen in asielzoekerscentra en gezinslocaties, 6 June 2016, available in Dutch at www.kind-in-azc.nl.
 Ministry of Justice and Security, State of Migration 2021, 7 July 2021, p. 90, available in Dutch at: https://bit.ly/3r2SiYD.
 Articles 19(1)(e) and 10(1)(b) RVA.
 These failed asylum seekers who are placed in a VBL or a GL are subject to the freedom restriction measures based on Article 56 in conjunction with Article 54 Aliens Act.
 Article 108 Aliens Act.