Amsterdam Travel Tips


Some of the information on this page is from the very extensive Internet Guide to Amsterdam, written by local residents.


Dutch electricity is the European standard 230 volts. The plugs are the fairly standard European two-pin model. If you don't have them already, You can buy voltage and plug converters at Aurora, on the Vijzelstraat at the end of the Flower Market, near the Munt Tower.

Most laptops and electronic equipment contain switching power supplies so you only need a plug converter. Make sure the equipment says 110-220 volts before you plug it in.


Euros are divided into 100 cents. There are coins of 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50 cents, and 1 and 2 euros. There are notes of 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 200 and 500 euros (note the pattern 1, 2, 5). Some shops do not accept large denomination notes, and most don't accept the 1 and 2 cent coins, and so round cash amounts to the nearest 5 cents.

If you have an ATM card, it will most likely work in the Netherlands so you don't need to take traveller's cheques. Check with your bank before leaving to find out its network and foreign ATM charges (if any).


You need a phone that uses the European 900 and 1800 MHz bands (US triband or quadband phones). If you have a suitable phone, you can buy a pre-paid SIM card from telephone shops. Hema stores (there's one on the Nieuwendijk near the Dam, and one on the Kalverstraat near the Munt Tower) have one for €€10, which includes €€3 worth of calls on it.

Note – In Europe, you only pay for mobile calls you make and not calls you receive.


All prices in the Netherlands by law include tax and tips: the price you see is the price you pay. Normal Dutch practice in restaurants is to round up to some whole number of euros, so that the tip is about 5%. Don't feel obliged to leave a tip. You don't need to tip in taxis either beyond rounding up.


The OV-chipcard is an electronic card with a built-in chip for use on all public transport in Amsterdam including buses, trams and metros. Disposable cards cost €€2.50 (~$4) for one ride and €€4.80 (~$7.70) for two rides. Electronic readers on Metro and train station platforms and on board trams and buses deduct the correct fare; just hold your card up against the reader at both the start and the end of the ride. Purchase cards from the GVB Tickets & Info office, GVB and Netherlands Railways ticket booths in Metro and train stations, automats at Metro and train stations, and automats on board some trams.

Public transport online journey planner (and mobile version).