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Getting around

Public transport

Student with bike in front of Bungehuis

The Netherlands has a fairly good public transportation system, with trams, buses, trains, metros and ferries forming an extensive network in cities like Amsterdam. There are also regular train services between Amsterdam and various other Dutch cities.

A good way to orient yourself about how to get from A to B by public transport within the country, is to use the national door-to-door journey planner. It is also an application that you can download for free on your mobile phone and can advise you on the most efficient way to travel, taking all means of public transport into account.

9292 journey planner

OV Smart Card

The OV-chipkaart (OV Smart Card - a smart transport pass the size of a bank card) is used as the general method of payment for public transport in the Netherlands. You can either load money on your smart card, enabling you to travel anywhere within the Netherlands, or buy a travel product such as a single or season ticket. Refer to the official website of the OV Smart Card for detailed information on how to use it.

OV Smart Card information


Cycling is probably the most efficient way of getting around Amsterdam. Most Dutch people own a bike (or more than one). So, when in Rome….

The city is packed with bike shops selling new and second-hand bikes. Second-hand bikes cost anywhere between €75 and €175, the price of a new bike starts at around €200. It’s also a good idea to invest in a decent lock.


Owning a car in Amsterdam could prove to be more of a liability than an asset. Not only is it a challenge to drive around the city's narrow, crowded streets, parking is also expensive and permits hard to come by. For more information about owning a car in the Netherlands, please refer to the link below.

If you occasionally need a car, renting one might be an option. All the major international car rental companies have branches in Amsterdam. Rental prices can run anywhere from €30 a day for a small car to €100 for a luxury car.

Iamsterdam information on cars


Taxis can be useful when travelling to and from the airport, at night when the trams have stopped running or when you're running late. Depending on the traffic during peak times, public transport may even get you where you need to be quicker.

More information on taxi stands, calling a taxi and prices can be found via the link below.

Iamsterdam information on taxis