How does public transport in Amsterdam work? In this guide you'll find out! Public transport in Amsterdam is really good and during a citytrip it is one the most convenient ways to travel through Amsterdam!
First, I will tell about all public transport types in Amsterdam and how they work. Then, you'll read how you can buy tickets and after that I'll tell you how you can plan your journey with public transport in Amsterdam and get the fastest route!
1. What types of public transport does Amsterdam have?
In Amsterdam, there are many types of public transport. Amsterdam has metros, trams, buses, night buses, trains and even a ferry! In Amsterdam, it's most convenient to combine the different types of public transport with each other. For example, sometimes it's really fast to first take a tram, and then continue your journey by metro. In chapter 3 you'll read how you can plan your journey with public transport in Amsterdam and how you can find the fastest route.
Below, I will explain how all the public transport types in Amsterdam work.
1.1 How does the metro in Amsterdam work?
Amsterdam has a really great metro network. In total, Amsterdam has 5 metro lines. The metro in Amsterdam is very comfortable and fast. Especially when your accommodation isn't in the city center of Amsterdam, the metro can be really convenient.
In Amsterdam, to get inside the metro you have to go through entrance gates. To be able to go through an entrance gate, you need a valid ticket. You also need this ticket to leave the metro station once you arrived at your destination.
1.1.2 How to get tickets for the metro in Amsterdam?
In Amsterdam, there are many options to get tickets for the metro. There is a public transport card (‘ov chipkaart’), a Amsterdam Travel Ticket, and a GVB Multi-day ticket. In chapter 2 I’ll explain how those options work and where you can buy them. Besides those options, you can also travel by metro with single tickets. I’ll tell more about that below.
If you want to buy a single ticket for the metro, you need to buy a GVB one-hour ticket. That ticket gives you access to metros, trams and buses in Amsterdam for one hour. You can buy those tickets at multiple locations. However, when you travel by metro it's most convenient to buy a ticket at a GVB Ticket Vending machine. Those machines are at all metro stations.
1.1.2 What are the departure times of the metro in Amsterdam?
If you want to know the exact departure times of the metro, you can use this website. At 'Extra options', you can choose that you only want to see the departure times of the metro, if you don't want to see other public transport possibilities.
1.1.3 Which lines and which stops does the metro in Amsterdam have?
Here, you'll find the metro map of Amsterdam. In Amsterdam, there's line 50, 51, 52, 53 and 54. You can find the stops of the metro on this map.
1.1.4 Which metro stop is near me?
If you want to know which stop is near you, you can use this website. Fill in your location and the place you want to go to, and the website will tell you which metro stop is most convenient for you to go to right now.
If the website gives you another public transport option, but you want to know specifically for the nearest metro stop, you can click on 'Extra options'. Then, you can choose the metro as the only transportation type.
1.2 How does the tram in Amsterdam work?
The tram is a very convenient and fun way to travel through Amsterdam. I prefer the tram before the metro, because you get to see way more of the city!
1.2.1 How to get tickets for the tram in Amsterdam?
If you want to travel through Amsterdam, you can buy a public transport card (‘ov-chipkaart’), a GVB Multi-day ticket and a Amsterdam Travel Ticket. You can read about how these tickets work and where they can be bought in chapter two. Moreover, you can also buy single tickets for the tram in Amsterdam.
If you want to use a single ticket for the tram, you can buy a GVB one-hour ticket. With this ticket, you can use the metros, buses and trams in the city for an hour. This ticket can also be bought in the tram. Keep in mind you can’t pay with cash in the tram, so you need to pay by debit card. You can also buy the GVB one-hour tickets at other locations, such as at every metro station.
1.2.2 What are the departure times of the tram in Amsterdam?
The current departure times can be found here. Just fill in your current location and where you want to go, and the website will tell you at what times the trams (and other public transport types) departure. On this webiste, at 'Extra options', you can choose that you only want to see the departure times of the trams, if you don't want to see other public transport.
1.2.3 Which lines and which stops does the tram in Amsterdam have?
Here is the tram map of Amsterdam. However, it is easier to just use a website such as 9292.nl/en to see which lines are convenient for you.
1.2.4 Which tram stop is near me?
To find the nearest tram stop, you can use this website. Fill in your current location and where you want to go. If you only want to see the tram and no other public transport options, you can choose that at 'Extra options'.
1.3 How does the bus in Amsterdam work?
There are also buses in Amsterdam. It can be a very good way to travel between different parts of the city.
1.3.1 How to get tickets for the bus in Amsterdam?
In Amsterdam people usually use a public transport card, the Amsterdam Travel Ticket or a GVB Multi-day ticket. I'll explain all those options in chapter 2.
Besides that, you can also buy a single ticket for the bus. Most buses are from GVB. In that case, you need a GVB one-hour ticket. You can use a GVB one-hour ticket unlimited in buses, trams and metros in Amsterdam for an hour. These tickets can be bought in the bus.
There are more places to buy a GVB one-hour ticket. For example, you can also buy these tickets at GVB Vending machines, which are in every metro station and at some tram stops.
If the bus isn't from GVB, most of the times you can also just buy your ticket in the bus.
1.3.2 What are the departure times of the bus in Amsterdam?
The best way to find the current departure times, is via this website. If you only want to see the departure time of the buses, you can make sure the other types of public transport won't show up. To do that, just click on 'extra options'.
1.3.3 Which lines and stops does the bus have in Amsterdam, and which one is near me?
There are many buses lines and stops in Amsterdam. The best way to find the bus you need is via 9292.nl/en. The website combines all buses and other public transport options with each other, so you will find the fastest route.
On that website, you can also find the nearest bus stop. Just fill in your current location and choose where you want to go. The website will advice you to which stop you should go.
By clicking on 'extra options', you can make sure the website will only look at buses if you don't want to use the other public transport types.
1.3.1 How does the night bus in Amsterdam work?
Between 00.30 am and 07.00 am you can travel in Amsterdam by night bus.
184.108.40.206 What are the exact departure times of the night bus?
220.127.116.11 How to get tickets for the night bus?
There are multiple ways to get tickets for the night bus. You can use a public transport card ('ov chipkaart'), a Amsterdam Travel Ticket(checken of dat kan) and a GVB Multi-day ticket. Later on in this article I will explain all of these options, you can click on the options above and the article will scroll down to the right section. Furthermore, you can buy single tickets for the night bus. I will explain more about that here.
You can buy a single ticket for the night bus in the bus and at a GVB selling and recharge machine. Furthermore, you can buy a night bus ticket at a GVB Servicepoint, Service & Ticket-counter and yellow collection and chargin machine.
Keep in mind that you cannot pay by cash in the bus, you need to pay by debit card.
If you don't want to buy your ticket in the bus, and you want to know where the nearest selling point is, you can use this website to find the nearest point. However, the selling and recharge machines are at all metro stations.
1.4 How does the train in Amsterdam work?
Amsterdam has nine train stations, so it can be really great to travel by train in Amsterdam. If you visit Amsterdam, you can consider to also visit some other cities in the Netherlands by train.
1.4.1 How to get tickets for the train in Amsterdam?
The most convenient way to travel by train in Amsterdam is with a public transport card. Also, in some cases you can use the Amsterdam Travel Ticket. I'll explain everything about these options and how to buy them at chapter two.
You can also buy a single ticket for the train. There are two options for that:
- At the train station
At every train station, you will find yellow machines. You can buy tickets for the train at these machines. However, buying your single tickets online is €1,- cheaper.
First, choose where you want to go and what station you want to departure from. After that, click on 'plan'.
Then, you will see all options and you can buy tickets. After you choose a journey and bought your tickets, you don't have to travel on the specific time that you selected, but you need to travel on the day you selected.
1.4.2 What are the departure times of the train in Amsterdam?
1.4.3 Which trains and which train stations are there in Amsterdam?
Amsterdam has many train stations. The train stations in Amsterdam are:
- Amsterdam Centraal (Amsterdam Central Station)
- Amsterdam Zuid
- Amsterdam Amstel
- Amsterdam Bijlmer ArenA
- Amsterdam Holendrecht
- Amsterdam RAI
- Amsterdam Science Park
- Amsterdam Sloterdijk
- Amsterdam Lelylaan
- Amsterdam Muiderpoort
- Amsterdam Duivendrecht
There are many trains between the train stations in Amsterdam. You can find the train that's most convenient for you on this website.
1.4.4 Which train station is near me?
You can find the nearest train station at ns.nl/en. If you fill in where you are and where you want to go, the website will tell to which train station you should go.
1.5 How does the ferry in Amsterdam work?
Amsterdam has ferries that are very convenient. The departure of the ferries is always behind Amsterdam Central Station and they go across the water to multiple destinations in Amsterdam Noord. You can just go into the ferry and wait till you're at your destination, because it is free.
1.5.1 What are the departure times of the ferries in Amsterdam?
If you are behind Amsterdam Central Station, you will find boards that tell when the next ferry will leave. Furthermore, you can use 9292.nl/en to see the departure times. If you click on more options, you can make sure that you only select the ferry and no other public transport option.
1.5.2 Which lines and which stops does the ferry in Amsterdam have?
Here is the ferry map of Amsterdam in which you can see the lines and the stops of the ferry.
1.5.3 Where do the ferries leave?
The ferries always leave behind Amsterdam Central Station and at they also go back to Amsterdam Central station from the place they arrived.
2. How to buy a ticket for the public transport in Amsterdam?
There are multiple ways to get a ticket for the public transport in Amsterdam. You can travel with a public transport card ('ov-schipkaart'), with an Amsterdam Travel Ticket, with a GVB-Multi day ticket and you can buy single tickets. Below, I am going to explain all of the options.
2.1 How does the public transport card ('ov-chipkaart') in Amsterdam work?
In the Netherlands, alsmost everyone who travels by public transport uses a public transport card/ov chipcard ('ov-chipkaart'). This is a rechargeable card which gives you access to trains, metros, trams, buses and night buses. To travel with a public travel card, you have to have at least €4,- credit for the tram, metro and some buses. Furthermore, for some other buses you need to have at least €10,- credit and for the train you have to have at least €20,- credit.
2.1.1 How to get a public transport card in Amsterdam?
You can buy a public transport card at many places. The easiest way is to buy one from a yellow NS ticket machine. Those machines can be found at every train station.
If you want to find another point, you can find the neariest point to buy a public transport card here. At 'You want', you should click on 'Buy anonymous card' to find the right location to buy one.
2.1.2 How to recharge a public transport card/ov-chipcard ('ov-chipkaart') in Amsterdam?
At every train station and metro station, there are machines where you can recharge your public transport card. You can also recharge it at some tram stops, in some buses and in some supermarkets.
2.2 How does the Amsterdam Travel Ticket in Amsterdam work?
With the Amsterdam Travel Ticket you can use the buses, night buses, metros and trams in Amsterdam with no limit. Furtermore, you can travel between Schiphol and Amsterdam by train, bus (line 397) and night bus (line N97). You can buy the ticket for one, two or three days.
I will give you information about the Amsterdam Travel Ticket below. Furthermore, I also wrote an article about the Amsterdam Travel Ticket, which provides you with even more information. You can read it here.
2.2.1 Where to get an Amsterdam Travel Ticket?
You can buy it online, in Amsterdam and at Schiphol Airport. Below I'll give more information about the exact locations.
18.104.22.168 In Amsterdam
The ticket can be bought at the vending machines of GVB, at the GVB Servicepoints and at the Service & Ticket-counters of GVB.
Every metro station has a GVB vending machine, so the easiest way to get one is to go to a metro station.
22.214.171.124 At Schiphol
It's also possible to buy the ticket at Schiphol Airport. You can buy it at the AKO's, the Amsterdam visitor Centre, NS Tickets & Service and at the Holland Tourist Information Schiphol.
2.2.2 What's the price of the Amsterdam Travel Ticket?
A ticket for one day costs €17,-, a ticket for two days costs €22,50 and a ticket for three days costs €28,-.
2.3 How does the GVB Multi-day ticket in Amsterdam work?
The GVB Multi-day ticket gives you unlimited access to all GVB trams, (night)buses and metros in Amsterdam, Diemen, Duivendrecht, Amstelveen, Schiphol and Weesp.
You can buy the ticket for 2, 4, 5, 6 or 7 days. It's also possibe to buy a ticket for one day.
2.3.1 What is the price of the GVB Multi-day ticket?
A 24-hours ticket costs €8,-. A ticket for two days costs €13,50, a ticket for three days costs €19,- and a ticket for four days costs €24,50. A ticket for five days costs €29,50, a ticket for six days costs €34,- and a ticket for seven days costs €37,- .
2.3.2 Where to get the GVB Multi-day ticket?
You can buy the Multi-day ticket online, in Amsterdam and at Schiphol Airport.
In Amsterdam, there are multiple places where you can buy the GVB Multi-day ticket. You can buy it at the GVB Ticket Vending machines, GVB Service & Tickets-desks, GVB Service points, and GVB Yellow add value machine.
The GVB Ticket Vending machines are at every metro station, so you can always buy the tickets there. Sometimes those machines can be found at tram stations, so if you are near a tram station, you can check if there is a machine.
126.96.36.199 Schiphol Airport
You can buy the GVB Multi-day ticket at the AKO's in Schiphol.
2.4 Single Tickets
You can also buy single tickets. However, most of the time the other options are more affordable.
2.4.1 How to get single tickets for the tram, metro and bus?
If you want to use a single ticket for the tram, bus or metro, you'll need a one-hour GVB ticket. With this ticket, you have unlimited access to the tram, metro and bus in Amsterdam.
You can buy the tickets in the tram, in the bus and at the Ticket Vending machines that are in every metro station.
Furthermore, you can also buy the tickets at the GVB Service & Tickets-desks and at the GVB Service points.
Keep in mind:
- This ticket is not valid for the night bus
- Alsmost all buses are from GVB in Amsterdam. However, some buses aren't. This ticket won't give access to buses that aren't from GVB. Most of the time you can just buy a ticket in the other buses too.
2.4.2 How to get single tickets for the train?
You can buy your single tickets for the train online or at the train station. I will explain both options below.
You can buy single tickets for the train on this website. Just fill in from which station you want to leave and where you can go, choose a journey and click on 'buy tickets'.
You don't have to travel on the specific time that you choose, but you do have to travel on the day that you choose, otherwise your ticket isn't valid.
188.8.131.52 At the train station
You can buy single tickets for the train at the yellow machines that are at any train station in the Netherlands.
2.4.3 How to get single tickets for the night bus?
The easiest way to get a ticket for the night bus , is to buy it in the bus. Keep in mind, you cannot pay by cash, so you need to pay by debit card in the night bus.
Besides that, you can also buy the tickets at a GVB Vending machine, which can be found at every metro station and at some tram stations.
Furthermore, you can go to a GVB Service & Ticket-counter, a yellow collection and chargin machine or a GVB Servicepoint and get your tickets there.
3. How to plan your journey with public transport in Amsterdam?
There are multiple websites/apps which combine all types of public transport and make it easy for you to plan your journey in Amsterdam.
3.1.1 What is 9292?
- 9292.nl is a website that combines all types of public transport with each other, so that you find the fastest route!
- You can see the exact price of the journey you choose if you travel with a public transport card
- I would advice to download the app when you're traveling through Amsterdam
- When using the app, you can choose your current location as departure location, so that the app tells you which public transport stop you should go to
3.1.2 How to use 9292 as route planner in Amsterdam?
This is what the app of 9292 looks like. If you turn on the location of your phone, you can choose 'current location'. I would advice to do that, because then you will be able to get the fastest journey and the app will tell you to which public transport stop you should go.
After filling in where you want to go and from where you want to leave, you'll see the journeys that are possible. Also, you can see the fee of the journey if you travel with a public transport card ('ov-chipkaart').
Sometimes, you still need to walk a few minutes to reach your destination. The app also gives the route for this. Just press 'route' in the journey you choose and you'll see the exact route (example below).
3.2.1 What is NS?
NS stands for 'Nederlandse Spoorwegen', which means Dutch Railways. Even though NS is a company that mainly focuses on trains, they also have a very convenient app and website in which you can plan your journey. This app and website combine all different types of public transport, just as 9292.
- NS.nl combines all types of public transport with each other, so that you can reach your destination as fast as possible.
- You can also see on their website and in there app what your journey costs if you travel with a public transport card.
- You can buy single train tickets on there website and via their app
- I'd recommend downloading this app when you're traveling through Amsterdam.
- In the app, you can choose 'current location', which makes it more easy to find the best journey if you don't know the nearest the public transport.
3.2.2 How to use NS as route planner in Amsterdam?
Below you can see what the app looks like.
If you want the app to use your current location, you should first click on 'station, address and location'. After that, you can tap on 'Tap to grant location permission'. After you allow NS to access your location, you can use current location.
After you choose your departure address and destination, you will see all possible journeys and how long they take. You can also so how many times you need to transfer.
When you choose a particular journey, you can see the price of a single journey if you use a public transport card. Also, sometimes you need to walk a little after arriving at the public transport stop. If you click on 'Walk', Google Maps will open and show you the exact route.
184.108.40.206 How to buy single train tickets in the NS app?
After searching for a journey and choosing one (see the screenshots above), you can press buy tickets (see screenshot). Keep in mind, you can only buy train tickets via the NS app. If you want to know how to buy other tickets, I explained that here, at chapter 2.
3.3 Google Maps
3.3.1 What is Google Maps?
Besides NS and 9292, you can also use Google Maps to plan your journey. This may be very convenient, if you have used it before, because then it is familiar to you. Google Maps works perfectly in Amsterdam.
Besides combining all different public transport types, Google Maps also provides you with walking routes, which if you're not familiar in Amsterdam.
3.3.2 How to use Google Maps as route planner?
First, you should fill in your destination, for example Leidseplein 27. After that, you can press 'Directions'.
After you clicked on 'Directions', Google Maps automatically uses your current location. If you want to choose another departure address than your current location, you need to click on 'your location'. Then, you can choose another location.
After that, you'll see the options for your journey. Besides a route with public transport, Google Maps also shows how long it will take to walk. I'd highly recommend walking a lot in Amsterdam!
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