Using public transportation in the Netherlands

By Expat from the…, 15 December, 2021
Tram in Amsterdam

In the first week in the Netherlands I needed to take the bus to go around the city, in this blog post I will give you advise what you need to get started. Asuming you don't have a car yet, you can use the public transportation in the Netherland easily to visit many interesting places. Public transportation in the Netherlands is of good quality and many places can be easily reached with only the use of public transportation.

What do you need for public transportation?

For using public transportation in the Netherlands, you need a prove you paid for the trip. This can be an OV chipcard, recommended if you travel daily from home to your work. Also you can get a daily card at the central train stations or you can order a ticket online. you can read more about the different types of card on the website of ov-chipkaart.

Check the schedule before you leave

Always check multiple time before you make use of public transportation. The regular schedule of public transportation in the Netherlands can be checked longer before. Besides that I would recommend to you to check the schedule shortly before you make use of public transportation as well. The reason for this is that sometimes there can be a delay or other reason for a train to be delayed and sometimes it can at last minute being changed to another track. If you now this in time you can make sure your waiting at the right track. Don't be worried if you miss the train, another one will probably arrive soon. The following apps are good to check schedules:
For checking trains schedules you can install the NS app.
Another useful app for checking train and bus schedules is 9292 application.

How to charge your OV chipcard

For the first time charging your ov-card you can use the blue and yellow machines with NS logo on top. These machines you can find at each OV station. Make sure you OV chipcard is charged before you leave.

Automatic charge your OV chipcard

If your planning regularly with public transportation in the Netherlands you can set up automatic charging for your OV card. Everytime the amount on the OV card gets under a certain amount automatically 10, 20 or 50 euro will be charged from your bankaccount. You don't need to worry about your balance on the card anymore and it save time so you can sleep longer in morning. ;)

Checking in bus

In a bus you can simply enter and check in with your OV card directly after you enter the bus. Don't forget to checkout when you arrive. This can cost you more money.

Checking in train

When you enter the train station you can check in with the ports you pass to enter the train station. Be carefull to check in with the right port! If you travel with NS, you have to check in with the yellow NS port. Otherwise if your train ticket is checked in the train you will get a fine. Each public transport company has its own check in port.

Forget to check out by accident

Because forgetting to check out has regularly happened, there is a website you can use to ask your money back. You enter the correct details of your travel and you get the money you have overpaid back. You can do this at website