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Guide to Cheap Transport in Amsterdam

By Lek Boonlert Subscribe to RSS | November 28th 2011 | Views:

Spending time in Amsterdam, therefore, can burn a hole in your pocket and with so many must-see attractions to shell out for the last thing you want to do is waste your money on transport. Check out this guide to the cheapest ways to get around Amsterdam:

By foot

If you really are travelling on a shoe-string then getting around Amsterdam by foot is obviously the cheapest option. Luckily for those on a budget, however, walking around Amsterdam is a doddle, as the streets are all completely flat and laid out in an easy-to-navigate grid system.

In fact, you could spend a week in Amsterdam without ever setting a foot on public transport as nearly all of the city’s main attractions are within walking distance from each other. If you have never been to the city before, this is also the best way to get a real feel and understanding for the place.

Those staying in Amsterdam hotels in the centre of town will be able to reach the main shopping district, the stunning architecture, the canals and Dam Square in the ‘New Side’, while also being able to duck into the notorious Red Light District, the Jewish Quarter and Chinatown in the ‘Old Side’.


Since 2007, Amsterdam has been taking a leaf out of Thailand’s book and providing a three-wheeled taxi service for tourists. The covered tuk-tuks are a nippy way to get around the city and they come in a lot cheaper than taxis for those looking for private transport.

Public transport in Amsterdam, such as trams, buses and the metro, generally stop around midnight so tuk-tuks really come into their own for those who are a little worse for wear. As they are pretty small, you can also beat the traffic jams much easier in a tuk-tuk than you can in a taxi.

The pricing for tuk-tuks is based on a zone system with any journey within one zone normally costing around €3.50 for one person, €5.00 for two and €6.50 for three. An extra zone will cost another €3.50 regardless of how many passengers there are. Tuk-tuks run 24 hours a day and can be booked in advance.


Trams are one of the best and cheapest modes of transport for those looking to get around Amsterdam city centre. The routes are fool-proof and comprehensive maps of the entire system are located at all stops. Trams are popular with both tourists and locals as they are cheap and quick.

There are a few different ways to pay for your tram journey at the moment in Amsterdam but none of them are extortionate. Strippenkaarts are normally the cheapest option if you plan to stay in the city centre, but day passes can be better for those with an Amsterdam hotel on the outskirts.

Most of Amsterdam’s top tourist attractions can be reached on the tram system and there is normally a conductor on board who you can pester if you manage to get lost. Bear in mind that trams stop at midnight so don’t get stranded too far from your hotel.


Cycling around Amsterdam is another cheap transport option, especially if you want to cover plenty of ground. The flat roads and dedicated lanes make life easy for cyclists and it is the transport mode of choice for many locals.

Bikes can be hired for as little as €9 a day from rental agencies located at most train stations and at various points throughout the city. Make sure you get a good helmet with the bike and also a study lock, as bike theft is rife in Amsterdam.

Lek Boonlert - About Author:
Lek Boonlert is an editor and content reviewer at DirectRooms and is responsible for all Amsterdam Hotels content.

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