Public Transportation in the Netherlands

The Dutch public transport system is good, and many people use it every day. The country is small, and with the exception of the major rivers that cross the landscape, has few significant barriers to land transport systems. For a door-to-door journey planner for busses and trains, check the 9292 website.


How to buy tickets

To decide the length of your journey, the Netherlands is divided into zones. The fare you pay depends on the number of zones you travel through. Most journeys within cities cover one or two zones. 


To travel by train you can use your OV-chipkaart or you can use a single-use OV-chipkaart for the train.



You can credit your card with a balance in euros, or with a travel product such as a season ticket. Your OV-chipkaart has to be activated for travelling by train, before the first time it is used. One of the reasons is that you have to indicate whether you are travelling first class or second class. This can be done at the self-service ticket machine.


Single-use OV-chipkaart:

You can also buy a single-use OV-chipkaart for the train at the self-service ticket machine.If you travel up and down the same route on the same day, you have to purchase a return ticket. If you will not return the same day, you need to buy a one-way ticket product. If you visit several places on the same day, you should buy a ticket stating via which destination(s) you will be travelling.


To travel by bus/tram you can use your OV-chipkaart or you can use a single-use OV-chipkaart for the bus/tram.

If you don't want to travel by bus/tram on credit, and you want to buy a single ticket or season ticket, you can buy the disposable OV-chipkaart from the public transport companies and Ticket Vending and Add Value machines. You can also buy single tickets in the bus/tram.


Children, students and persons over 65 years receive discounts on public transport. Call 0900-9292 for more information or visit the train station.



Trains are run by the national Nederlandse Spoorwegen (NS-Dutch Railways), and run between all major Dutch cities. Purchase an OV-Chipkaart before boarding the train; a conductor may ask to see your OV-chipkaart during your trip. When buying a ticket, you can choose between 1st and 2nd class, date of travel, and a single or a return ticket. Sneltrein/intercity (fast trains) travel between cities, from there you may need to transfer to a stoptrein/sprinter (slow train, which will take you to the smaller towns on that track.

Travellers who cannot present a valid ticket, will be fined. Tickets are not available on the train itself! You will have to pay a huge fine, when travelling without a valid ticket.


The region has extensive urban bus networks that connect outlying districts and nearby villages with their city centres. Buses on most routes run once or several times per hour. The bus terminal is usually located at the train station and connects the city centres with nearby villages. You can use an OV-chipkaart or purchase a ticket on the bus.  


The Phileas bus connecting Eindhoven station with Airport Eindhoven is a futuristic bus concept that combines the capacity of a tramway and the flexibility of a bus. It is also a nice example of high-tech innovation developed and deployed in the Eindhoven region! 



Taxis can be recognized by the lit 'taxi' sign on their roof, and their blue license plates (most Dutch vehicles have yellow plates). They cannot be hailed on the street, but there are taxi stands at most train and bus stations, and by hotels. To have a taxi pick you up from your home or office, phone a local company.





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