Transit Options from Amsterdam Airport to City Center
Once arriving at Amsterdam Schiphol Airport, you shouldn’t concern much about your journey to your accommodation in the city center. Verily, the travel options from Amsterdam Airport to downtown are various, allowing you to choose the preferred transit mode depending on your needs, budget, and exact destination. Thus, apart from the airport taxis, AMS passengers wishing to avoid the public transit network can opt for a lavish Amsterdam airport transfer or a handy car rental. On the other hand, when it comes to cost saving, the Amsterdam Airport Express Bus 397 and the fast trains are definitely the ideal alternatives.
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Amsterdam Airport to City Center by Taxi
Amsterdam airport taxis are conveniently lining up at the official taxi stand (Taxistandplaats), right outside the Schiphol Plaza doors. They are available around the clock. However, during peak hours, waiting in line for a while to catch your cab is always probable. Still, you should always take your taxi from the taxi rank and avoid individual drivers who are almost certainly trying to scam you. The official Amsterdam taxis don’t have a unique color. Nevertheless, they have the distinctive “Taxi” sign, the company’s logo, and the taxi number on their roofs, along with their price table on the vehicle’s exterior. What’s more, their license plates are blue. Once entering the cab, you should catch sight of the tariff list, and the license number in the vehicle’s interior.
The traveling time from Amsterdam Airport to downtown is around 18-35 minutes, depending on the traffic. Amsterdam’s traffic jams are somewhat tolerable, but the highways around the airport and the streets in the heart of the city tend to get crowded. Although Amsterdam airport taxis are metered, most taxi companies have set fixed fares, at least for the most popular routes. Verily, only the maximum rates are regulated by the Dutch government. Thus, the taxi ride from Amsterdam Airport to city center should cost 45€-55€/48$-59$. Please note that even if having agreed with the driver on a set fare, the taximeter should operate during your journey downtown. Hence, if the taximeter shows a lower price than the settled tariff, you’ll have to pay the taximeter’s indication. Payments are theoretically accepted both in cash and via bank cards. Still, you should always check with your driver before starting your ride. Tipping the driver is optional in Amsterdam. In general terms, rounding up the fare is a common practice when the provided services are pleasant.
Our Tip 1: TCA (Taxi Centre Amsterdam) is the major provider of taxi services in Amsterdam.
Our Tip 2: You can pick the taxi of your choice from the taxi rank (after comparing each company’s price table). You don’t have to take the first one in line.
Our Tip 3: Ride-sharing is another available option for journeys from Schiphol Airport.
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Amsterdam Airport to City Center by Bus
Schiphol Airport is well connected to Amsterdam via the Connexxion Amsterdam Airport Express. Verily, the Airport Bus 397 departs from the bus stop lying just outside Schiphol Plaza (between B15 and B19) with a 7-8-minute frequency, from 05:00 am to midnight. Consequently, the Niteliner Bus N97 handles transfers from Amsterdam Airport to downtown (from midnight to 05:00 am), yet with available routes every 30 minutes. The red Connexxion buses are comfortable, offering Wi-Fi and mobile charging points and having low entries to facilitate passengers with heavy luggage.
You’ll have various options to pay for your 27-minute (under normal traffic) bus ride to Leidseplein. Passengers planning on staying in Amsterdam for a long time and using the public transit modes a lot should buy an anonymous and rechargeable OV-chipkaart, costing 8.50€/9$ from the yellow machines of the Schiphol Plaza. Those cards can be used for subway, tram, bus, and train rides by multiple passengers (yet not at the same time). They must be topped up at least 20€/21.30$ and offer discount fares for the bus tickets (the personal OV-Chipkaart option mainly addresses Amsterdam residents).
On the other hand, the single ticket for Bus 397 is 6.50€/6.90$ for a one-way ride and 11.75€/12.50$ for round trips. The return trip doesn’t have to take place on the same day but within a 14-day time frame. Single tickets can be purchased from the blue-grey machines situated at the Arrivals 3 baggage claim area and -outside that zone- at the escalators to Departures 3, inside the bus, or online. Payments at the ticket vendors are allowed in cash and credit cards, whereas cash isn’t accepted when issuing the ticket onboard.
Your last option -recommended if you are going to use Amsterdam’s public transit modes a lot- is the Amsterdam Travel Ticket. It is available for 1, 2, or 3 days at 18€/19.20$, 24€/25.60$, and 30€/32$ prices respectively. Amsterdam Travel Tickets allow the unlimited use of the public transit network (including the Connexxion Amsterdam Airport Express Bus 397) for the selected period of time. Their validity starts from the first time of use until the next morning (at 04:00 am). You can purchase your Amsterdam Travel Ticket online or via the Connexxion counters at Bus Platform B9, the airport vendors, and the Holland Tourist Desk at Schiphol Plaza (close to Arrivals 2). Moreover, Amsterdam & Region Travel Tickets and Holland Travel Tickets are the ideal options for travelers wishing to explore Amsterdam’s nearby areas too, or even other Dutch cities.
Our Tip 1: Please keep in mind that you have to check in and check out once beginning your bus ride and before disembarking the bus or scan the barcode on your mobile (in case of online bookings.)
Our Tip 2: Children under 3 travel for free, whereas kids between 4 and 11 years pay only 1€/1.07$ for their bus ticket.
Our Tip 3: The GVB Bus 369 heading to Sloterdijk is another option. In fact, it is a cheaper one. Nevertheless, Sloterdijk is far from the city center. Hence, you’ll have to use the subway or the tram to reach downtown, raising the duration of your journey and making it a lot more tedious.
Our Tip 4: Connexxion offers Hotel Shuttle Services as well, connecting AMS Airport to more than 170 Amsterdam hotels.
Amsterdam Airport to City Center by Train
Amsterdam airport trains provide fast and convenient connections from Amsterdam Airport to downtown. Sprinter and Intercity direct trains leave from the Schiphol Train Station, located underneath the AMS terminal and linked to Schiphol Plaza via lifts, stairs, and escalators. Trains departing for the airport head to Amsterdam Centraal Station, centrally located in Amsterdam. Nevertheless, depending on the exact location of your accommodation, a further ride might be required to reach your hotel. Sprinter trains need 17 minutes to reach Centraal Station, whereas Intercity direct lines only take 14 minutes. Moreover, Intercity trains are considered to be more spacious, with slightly more luggage space. Overall, trains run every 4-10 minutes from 05:30 am to midnight and are somewhat scarcer from midnight to 01:00 am. On the other hand, routes from 02:00 am to 05:30 am are hourly.
Apart from the OV-chipkaart offering lower prices but being more suitable for the city residents, you can buy your ticket online (e-ticket) and print it, keep it in your phone, or load it to the NS app. Please keep in mind that those tickets are personal. Thus, you should have your ID, passport, or driver’s license with you. An e-ticket for the train ride from Amsterdam Airport to city center costs 4.90€/5.20$. Tickets for round trips are also available. However, both rides must take place on the same day.
Alternatively, you can buy a single-use OV-chipkaart from the yellow machines and the ticket counters at Schiphol Plaza (one level above the train station). Cash payments aren’t accepted at the ticket offices. The single-use OV-chipkaart is disposable and has an extra 1€/1.07$ fee, making the cost of your train ride from Amsterdam Airport to downtown 5.90€/6.30$.
Last but not least, Amsterdam Travel Tickets are also valid for train journeys from Schiphol Airport. However, they allow only second-class rail travel. Lately, contactless payments are also accepted as a payment method for the NS rail rides.
Please keep in mind that checking in and out once entering the departure station and before leaving the destination rail hub is obligatory.
Our Tip 1: Railrunner tickets are available for children between 4 and 11 years old, at a 2.50€/2.67$ price. Younger kids travel for free.
Our Tip 2: During non-peak hours (from 09:00 am to 04:00 pm and from 06:30 pm to 06:30 am, on weekends and public holidays), the NS offers special deals to its passengers. Thus, group tickets are available, while early reservations (at least 4 days before the journey date) come with a 10% discount.
Our Tip 3: Railroad maintenance works often take place during the night, raising traveling time considerably. Therefore, it is advisable to check the NS webpage before opting for a night rail ride.
Our Tip 4: You can also opt for a train ride to Amsterdam Zuid Station and hop on the Subway Line M52 to the city center. However, this option is more time-consuming and entails lots of hassle (walking to the subway stop, waiting for the M52 line passing every 7-8 minutes, etc.). On the other hand, the Subway Line M52 stops at popular locations downtown. Hence, if your hotel lies around those areas, you should take this alternative into consideration as well.
Car Rental from Amsterdam Airport to City Center
An Amsterdam airport car rental will drive you from Amsterdam Airport to downtown in just 22 minutes. What’s more, car rental in Amsterdam is an excellent way to explore the compact country. Verily, you won’t need more than 4 hours to travel from one side of the Netherlands to the other. As plenty of car rental companies operate at AMS Airport, prices are competitive, services are top-rated, and the variety of vehicle types is wide. On the other hand, if you want to fully benefit from the available deals and discounts and find the ideal car model for your needs, you should book your Amsterdam car rental as soon as possible.
The 22-minute ride from Amsterdam Airport to downtown can get longer, depending on the traffic conditions. Even though traffic jams in Amsterdam aren’t that horrendous, the roads near the airport and the city center streets often get congested. Hence, the journey’s duration can be up to 40 minutes.
As far as parking your car rental in Amsterdam is concerned, car parks are always a good yet pricey option. Free street parking in the city center is non-existing, and parking fares are considered rather pricey. Alternatively, you can benefit from Amsterdam’s P&R system (Park & Ride), leave your car rental at the affordable parking lots outside downtown, and use the public transit means to reach your destination.
Amsterdam Airport Transfers from Amsterdam Airport to City Center
Amsterdam airport transfers are the ideal way to travel from Amsterdam Airport to downtown in comfort and style. Their welcome services at the airport are one-of-a-kind, waiving the hassle of carrying your luggage by yourself at the airport and trying to find your way to the taxi rank, the bus stop, or the train station. Moreover, door-to-door drives with well-maintained vehicles and top-rated drivers are among the plus points of private transfers from Amsterdam Airport. In fact, the area-knowledgeable drivers are always on tap to give you useful advice and handy tips about your stay in Amsterdam.
How far is Amsterdam Airport to city center?
The city of Amsterdam lies 21km/13 miles from Schiphol Airport. Thus, a ride from Amsterdam Airport to downtown should take 22 minutes under normal traffic and almost 40 minutes if roads are congested.
How to get from airport to city center Amsterdam?
If your accommodation lies downtown, you’ll find plenty of options for your ride from Amsterdam Airport to city center. Thus, ordinary taxis, luxurious Amsterdam airport transfers, and autonomous car rentals are among the top travelers’ choices, whereas bus and train journeys are preferred by passengers traveling on a budget.
How much is the train from Amsterdam Airport to city center?
The fast train, connecting Amsterdam Airport to downtown in just 14-17 minutes, costs 4.90€/5.20$ if buying the ticket online. Single-use OV-chipkaart is another option, available from the ticket counters and machines at Schiphol Plaza. Nevertheless, a single ticket is priced at 5.90€/6.30$.
How much is a taxi from Amsterdam Airport to the city?
Although Amsterdam airport taxis are metered, most taxi companies have fixed rates for the ride from Amsterdam Airport to city center. Thus, the cost of your journey will be around 45€-55€/48$-59$. Still, if the taximeter shows a lower price when reaching your destination, you’ll have to pay that cheaper fare.