Even before the occupation, a system had been developed in the Netherlands to make sure that scarce foodstuffs were fairly distributed. The standard of living dropped during the occupation. Import from overseas was impossible and many goods were transported to Germany. Soon only surrogate versions of coffee, tea and tobacco were available. More and more products were rationed. The allowance became ever smaller and the distribution system more complicated.
[Album with ration coupons]
Even rationed products were sometimes difficult to obtain. There were often long queues at the shops. The shortage of petrol meant there were hardly any cars left on the roads.
Bicycles appeared with wooden tyres and wheels from scooters. Busses used alternative forms of fuel. Trams and trains ran less frequently and became more and more crowded.