Daylight saving time: clock advances one hour on Sunday
Daylight saving time starts again. In the night from Saturday to Sunday, the clock advances one hour at 02:00 a.m. Due to daylight saving time in the summer, the night from Saturday to Sunday will be one hour shorter. From then on, it will be darker in the mornings, but it will remain light for a longer period of time in the evening.
As a result of the latter, more people will still want to be outside late at night. For that reason, the curfew will also be pushed back by an hour, although that change will not take effect until next week. From next Wednesday, everyone needs to be back indoors by 10 p.m., unless you have an exemption, for example, because of work or walking the dog.
Bi-yearly change meant to save electricity
Daylight saving time was conceived to allow people to make more use of the available daylight. That could save on electric lighting. Opponents doubt that this actually works, and many people say that they suffer physically from the shifting of time, as it disrupts the biological clock.
Daylight saving time has been in effect in the Netherlands since 1916, although different rules were applied since then. In fact, there was no daylight saving time at all from 1946 to 1976. Since 1996, DST starts on the last weekend in March and reverts to standard time on the last weekend in October. The winter time is actually the 'normal time'.
European Parliament's plan on hold
A few years ago, it still seemed that the six-monthly resetting of the clock would eventually come to an end. A majority of the European Parliament wanted to stop this year.
The EU member states should be able to decide for themselves whether to switch permanently to summer or winter time afterward, but the parliament has adopted a postponement clause to avoid a jumble of different times. The Member States have not yet taken any decisions on this matter.