Purchasing a public transport chip card
- Non-personalised (rechargeable) cards: Available at GVB ticket vending machines, GVB Tickets & Info locations, and select newsstands and supermarkets.
- Personalised (rechargeable) cards: Available online. Please note that public transport cards provided by Dutch Railways (NS) can also be used on other parts of public transport. These passes require a passport-style photo.
Using your public transport chip card
The most important tip for using your public transport chip card is to always remember to check in and check out! At the start of your journey, hold your card up to the card reader until you see a green light and hear a beep. Do the same every time you leave the tram/bus/metro (also required if changing to another bus or tram). In buses and trams, card readers are located inside the vehicle next to each door. If travelling by metro or train, you need to check in and check out at the card readers located on free-standing poles near the entrance/exit of each station.
On all forms of transport, look for the OV-Chipkaart logo (pictured above right). If you forget to check out, your card may no longer be valid for the subsequent part of your journey, and if you forget to check in you risk being fined by the transport operator.
Please note: if travelling on local public transport with a rechargeable card, the card must contain enough credit to complete a single journey. And for train travel, it is necessary to have a minimum of €10 credit on the card before checking in.
For those new to travelling with a public transport chip card, the official OV-Chipkaart website offers helpful, in-depth advice in English, from checking in and out and transfers to public transport companies and detailed explanations about how to recharge your card with credit. To see the public transport chip card in action, as well as a demonstration of pre-loading credit, watch this handy (unofficial) video tutorial.