Transportation Netherlands

How does the OV-chipkaart work?

The OV-chipkaart (chip card used to pay for public transport) must be purchased before you travel. To find a point of sale nearby visit the following website:

This address finder is very useful to find out where all specific OV-chipkaart services are located because services differ from location to location. Additional credit can be loaded onto your OV-chipkaart at vending and add value machines or at OV-chipkaart service points.

Cards must be validated at both the beginning and the end of a journey, by holding the card up to an OV-chipkaart reader. These are located in various parts of the buses and trams. The card readers for trains are located on the platforms or at the entrance of the station. At the start of your journey, hold your OV-chipkaart up to the screen. The sound and light signal indicates your card has been read. When disembarking, check out by holding your card up to the screen. Checking in and out is also required when you transfer from one form of transport to another, except when you transfer from train to train.

When using trains, you always need to have at least a certain minimum credit on your card to be able to check in. This boarding fee is €10 for holders of a personalised OV-chipkaart with certain season tickets.The boarding fee for holders of a personalised OV-chipkaart without a season ticket or an anonymous OV-chipkaart is €20. For Train (Syntus) and bus (Qliner Arriva) the boarding fee is always €10 and for trams, metros and buses is €4. The latest information can be found on the link provided at the beginning of this text.

When you check out, the boarding fee will be refunded and you will be charged for the number of kilometres you travelled. If you do not check out, you will pay the full boarding fee. If you fail to check in or buy a valid ticket, you face a fine plus the fare for your journey.

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