Transport in Amsterdam


The main mode of transport in Amsterdam is the bicycle. Do not make the mistake to think you could get through town without one. Cycling is the cheapest, most spontaneous and fun way to get around as an Amsterdam student. Your first action upon arrival should be the purchase of your bike. There are several possibilities to do so:

Be aware that the average person in Amsterdam has to get a new bike every 6 months, simply because they tend to get stolen or thrown in canals like nowhere else. When parking your bike before a night out remember to mark the location on your phone, it may otherwise get tricky to find it later.

Public Transport

In Amsterdam the public transport is comprised of trains (NS), trams, the metro, and buses (GVB). Buying paper tickets is possible with train tickets charging an extra €1 for these. For trams, metros and buses you can buy a ticket for all of these by time period (i.e. an hour, 24 hours, etc).

Instead of this you should get an OV Chipkaart, which allows you to top up with credit and avoid paying extra charges or using time limited tickets. There are two options here, using a temporary “anonymous” card or a personalised card (both for €7,50). The personal card allows you to add other travel products e.g. train discounts to the card, and it is possible to block the card if lost or stolen. In order to purchase a personalised card an iDeal account (see banking) is required. The anonymous card can be purchased from customer services at most stations without an iDeal account.