Freshly baked in: January 12, 2020
Amsterdam's Guide to Public Transportation 1 Amsterdam, Getting around, Travel & Destinations

Your guide to Amsterdam's public transportation

You arrived Amsterdam, you are at the Schiphol airport, and now what? You are tired but feeling relieved  and ready to go to your accomodations and start the fun. Don’t stress and don’t get your brains out in finding the best and cheapest options.

Getting around in Amsterdam is quite simple actually, the transportation is “grouped” in one provider (GVB) and you can travel on the train, bus, tram and metro using the OVchipkaart or a paper card. You can also go local and experiment Amsterdam as a citizen and use a bycicle, there are many rental bycicle spots around Amsterdam.

Getting around in Amsterdam

Amsterdam's Guide to Public Transportation 2 Amsterdam, Getting around, Travel & Destinations

ticket machine at a dutch train station / source: ns.nl.

Buying your tickets

In Amsterdam, to travel you have 2 options,  buying a paper ticket in the automated machine and/or physical human selling post or you can buy a chip card ticket (plastic) known as “OV-chipkaart”. The paper card is a one time used but with the chip card, it will allow you to recharge as many times you want and the travel mode you wish (E.g. 24 hours ticket, weekly ticket). You can also just recharge with euros and use the credit in the rides.

Good to know

If you want to travel with an OV-chipkaart you need to have a certain balance; to ride the metro, the positive balance should be sufficient, but to ride the train, you should guarantee at least 20€ available.

Although most credit cards work in Netherlands public transportation (E.g. Mastercard), please be aware that most shops only accept “V-pay” and “Maestro”.

Look for these yellow machines in order to purchase your ticket or OV-chipkaart.

Click here to learn more about topping-up your card.

Which ticket to buy

There are several ticket offers depending on your needs, from one-day ticket to a monthly ticket or a regional ticket.

OV-chipkaart – This is the most recommended, the smart ticket that allows you to recharge with credits (€) and ride bus, metro and/or train.

To purchase the card itself it is one time cost of 7.50€ but you will still need to top-up for the rides.

Unlimited Travel Ticket

Unlimited travel day ticket – Gives you a whole day of unlimited travels in train.

Price: 54€

Amsterdam's Guide to Public Transportation 3 Amsterdam, Getting around, Travel & Destinations

A dutch train in Amsterdam Central station.

Amsterdam's Guide to Public Transportation 4 Amsterdam, Getting around, Travel & Destinations

You and your friends can travel cheaper in off-peak hours / Source: ns.nl.

Group off-peak hours ticket

Useful if you are going out with a group friends and if travelling outside of peak hours. Please note that this is only available as an e-ticket and your friends should always be together during the trip.

Peak-hours – weekdays before 06:30, between 09:00 and 16:00, and after 18:30. It is also valid at weekends and all day on public holidays*.

*Not valid in King’s day.

Price: From 5.21€.

Amsterdam's Guide to Public Transportation 5 Amsterdam, Getting around, Travel & Destinations

Amsterdam Central station.

Amsterdam Travel Ticket

Offers you unlimited travels across Amsterdam for 1, 2 or 3 days.

Valid in: train, tram, metro, bus, ferry.

  • 3-day Price:  €28
  • 2-day Price: €22,50
  • 1-day Price: €17

Click here for more details.

The ticket is also valid on the Amsterdam Airport Express, bus 397 and Niteliner N97 (Night bus). Both depart from bus platform B17 at Schiphol Amsterdam Airport stopping directly in  Museumplein, Rijksmuseum or Leidseplein. Check connections.nl for departure and arrival times.

Amsterdam Region Travel Ticket

This ticket is slightly different than Amsterdam Travel Ticket since it offers you unlimited travels across Amsterdam region for 1, 2 or 3 days. With this you can travel to nearby cities such as Haarlem, Zaandam, Almere, Purmerend.

Valid in: train, tram, metro, bus, ferry.

  • 3-day Price:  €36,50
  • 2-day Price: €28
  • 1-day Price: €19,50

Click here for more details.

The ticket is also valid on the Amsterdam Airport Express, bus 397 and Niteliner N97 (Night bus). Both depart from bus platform B17 at Schiphol Amsterdam Airport stopping directly in  Museumplein, Rijksmuseum or Leidseplein. Check connections.nl for departure and arrival times.

Amsterdam's Guide to Public Transportation 6 Amsterdam, Getting around, Travel & Destinations

Amsterdam train in rural area / Source: ns.nl.

How to check in and out

In order to check-in, you need to pass through the card validation gates (Similar to the picture), this cards needs to be hold agains the pink card symbol in a grey circle on the right of the gate, once validated the gates will open automatically and you will be checked in.

Hold your OV-chipkaart against the card reader to the right of the gate. This will both open the gate for you and check you in for your journey. You will hear one beep when you check in. At the end of your journey, simply check out using the same procedure. You will then hear two beeps indicating that you have checked out. You can check out up to 6 hours after you arrive at your destination, after which you cannot check out again.

Please note: you can only pass through the gates indicated by a green arrow. A red X means that the gate is closed.

Amsterdam's Guide to Public Transportation 7 Amsterdam, Getting around, Travel & Destinations
Amsterdam's Guide to Public Transportation 8 Amsterdam, Getting around, Travel & Destinations

Train and Metro check-in gates/ source: ns.nl.

Amsterdam's Guide to Public Transportation 9 Amsterdam, Getting around, Travel & Destinations

Travelling with your 4 paws friend?

Dog day ticket

If you are travelling with your best friend, you can take him with you, he does not even need check in.

Price:  €3.20 (One way)

Some useful tips

  • Small pets may be taken free of charge in a bag or basket or on your lap.
  • A guide dog that is clearly recognisable as such travels free of charge.
  • The dog ticket is valid in domestic NS and Arriva trains.
  • Only valid in combination with a normal ticket. 

Travelling with your bicycle?

Bicycle ticket

If you are travelling with your bicycle, please be aware that you can only take outside peak hours.

Price:  €7.50 (One way)

Some useful tips

  • You can take your bicycle with you from 09:00 and 16:00 and between 18:30 and 06:30.
  • Bicycle has to be place in special design. If there is no room, you cannot take your bike.
  • If the bicycle is foldable, you do not need to pay ticket and you can take it anytime.
  • Only valid in combination with a normal ticket.
  • For disabled people is also possible to take bicycle free of charge. Terms & conditions.
  • Not valid in ICE and Thalys and NS buses.
Amsterdam's Guide to Public Transportation 10 Amsterdam, Getting around, Travel & Destinations

Bicycle in train in Netherlands/ source: ns.nl.

Quick tips for public transportation

You can buy your paper ticket or OV-chipkaart in these yellow and blue machines, english language available.

 

Amsterdam's Guide to Public Transportation 11 Amsterdam, Getting around, Travel & Destinations

The anonymous OV-chipkaart to check in and out of the stations costs 7.5€, then you need to top-up credit for your trips, in addition you can buy the most common tickets if you are just staying around Amsterdam:

3-day Amsterdam ticket

Price:  €28

Click here for more details.

1-day  Amsterdam ticket

Price:  €19.50

Click here for more details.

For more tickets: Click here.


 To check in and out, use the check-in gates as shown here.

Amsterdam's Guide to Public Transportation 12 Amsterdam, Getting around, Travel & Destinations

Amsterdam's Guide to Public Transportation 13 Amsterdam, Getting around, Travel & Destinations

If you loose your ticket during your travel, you will not be able to pass the check-in/out gates. You can inform the security or ticket validators that usually are in the train or entrance of the metro stations.

Yes, during off peak hours, you can get together and buy a ticket at an affordable price.

The benefits

  • Travelling together is cheap and sociable
  • For 4 people or more, you pay just € 1,50 for each additional passenger
  • Now also available as a mobile ticket

Useful information

  • Ticket only valid for Train
  • Available for 4 – 7 people
  • The ticket is for a single journey
  • Not valid in the morning or afternoon peak periods
  • The main ticket holder must always be present

Click here for more details.

Please if your OV-chipkaart is charged with at least 20€ or if the gate is the correct one, in some stations the train and metro gates are separated.

Train

With the Amsterdam Travel Ticket, you may travel by train (2nd class) between Schiphol Amsterdam Airport and any of the following stations in Amsterdam: Amstel, Bijlmer ArenA, Central Station, Holendrecht, Lelylaan, Muiderpoort, RAI, Sciencepark, Sloterdijk, Zuid, Duivendrecht.

Tram, bus, metro, ferry

The ticket is valid on all trams, buses, night buses, metros and ferries run by the Amsterdam transport company GVB. You can recognise them by their white and blue colours. GVB operates an extensive network covering the whole of Amsterdam. NOTE: The ticket is not valid on buses operated by other transport companies such as EBS, Arriva and Connexxion (except buses 397 and N97).

Train

You can use the Amsterdam Region Travel Ticket for unlimited travel by train (2nd class) between any of the following stations in Amsterdam and the Amsterdam region: Amsterdam Amstel, Amsterdam Bijlmer ArenA, Amsterdam Central Station, Amsterdam Holendrecht, Amsterdam Lelylaan, Amsterdam Muiderpoort, Amsterdam RAI, Amsterdam Sciencepark, Amsterdam Sloterdijk, Amsterdam Zuid, Duivendrecht, Schiphol Amsterdam Airport, Halfweg-Zwanenburg, Haarlem, Haarlem Spaarnwoude, Overveen, Zandvoort aan Zee, Zaandam, Zaandam Kogerveld, Purmerend Weidevenne, Purmerend, Purmerend Overwhere, Koog aan de Zaan, Zaandijk Zaanse Schans, Hoofddorp, Diemen, Weesp, Almere Poort, Almere Centrum, Almere Muziekwijk, Almere Parkwijk, Almere Buiten, Almere Oostvaarders, Lelystad Centrum, Diemen Zuid, Naarden-Bussum, Bussum Zuid, Hilversum, Hilversum Media Park and Hilversum Sportpark, Bloemendaal, Santpoort Zuid, Santpoort Noord, Driehuis, Uitgeest en Beverwijk.

Tram, bus, metro, ferry

The ticket is valid on all trams, buses, night buses, metros and ferries run by the Amsterdam transport company GVB, EBS, Keolis and Connexxion in Amsterdam and the Amsterdam region.

Source: ns.nl

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