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Need Help for Transportation in Amsterdam

We arrived in Amsterdam yesterday and had signed up for TripKey which we thought would simplify transportation. However, even though already registered for it, actually getting the TripKey here has been problematic so looking for other options to make getting around simpler and more affordable. We are staying near Bujlmer Arena. We have 4 days to do things in the city, see the tulip fields, and maybe do a couple of day trips. We think maybe we will go to Haarlem on Tuesday to see the Corrie ten Boom house and then on to Delft. Not sure we have time for any other day trips since we leave early Wed AM. Welcome suggestions for best transportation options and best ideas for timing our visit to see Amsterdam and surrounding areas. Thank you!

Posted by
6876 posts

I always use the heavy rail system to get into from Scniphol into Amsterdam and the light rail/team system to get around town.

Posted by
958 posts

Your best transportation options are the tram while in city and trains to other cities. What was the problem with the tripkeys? Did they just not have them available? If not you would need to resort to buying train tickets from the machines or from the counter and getting some short term passes, unless at this point you want to purchase an ov-chipkaart which is probably not worth your while. Timing your visits? Start early morning. You may want to go online and make a reservation for the Corrie Ten Boom Huis.

Posted by
2487 posts

It's a pity you have problems with getting the TripKey card. The concept is perfect for foreign visitors.
With your plans it's probably best to get the Amsterdam & Region Travel Ticket. It's valid on all public transport (train, metro, tram and bus) in the region, which extends to Haarlem and Schiphol airport. On the GVB site you'll find information on options, validity and points of sale. The public transport planner 9292 gives you all the schedules you want.
If you plan to visit the Keukenhof, go to Schiphol airport (with the ARTT card), where you'll find the Keukenhof Express bus (buy tickets there or in advance on the Keukenhof website in combination with the entry ticket to the gardens).
If you plan to go to Delft after visiting Haarlem, buy a return ticket Haarlem-Delft at the window or the machine at Haarlem station. The train goes every 15 mins, alternatingly direct and with a change at Leiden (consult 9292.nl). The trip takes 45 mins.

Posted by
109 posts

No Trip Key cards in stock at the airport and no guess about when they will have them. Hotel concierge called the phone # provided at the airport so that we would not waste going to the location in the city if not available there either. The person answering the phone did not have any information but promised an email response to my personal email by 10 AM this morning. The concierge also left her phone #. There has been no follow up communication. Very frustrating lack of customer service when traveling and thinking you have done your homework and made the appropriate arrangements.

Posted by
967 posts

That must have been frustrating, Mary. You are making me rethink getting the TripKey, although I will probably wait till closer to the time I leave in May.

Posted by
27752 posts

That is such a shame.

I've been saying for some time how amateur they seem at Tripkey - and you would think with a couple of years under their belts they would be able to pull themselves together.

I'm so sorry you got them when they weren't at the top of their game.

It is a great concept - such a shame they are shambolic.

I really hope that you got a way of solving your problems.

A few days on now - I'm guessing you've continued your travels? Could you let us know how you made out please?

Posted by
1005 posts

I agree with Nigel. It's a good concept but they are having a lot of trouble meeting demand. I'd call them the day before I arrive and tell them I am coming tomorrow to pick up the card at Schiphol. Ask them to set one aside for you (it can't hurt).

Posted by
128 posts

That is a shame.....every time I've picked up a tripkey at the airport Hertz counter, they've had plenty of them. Supposedly the Doubletree hotel car rental desk has them too.....not that it does you any good when you're sitting at the airport.

I do agree with Nigel....it's kind of a weird system. Strange pickup locations, almost like they're running a threadbare operation. Last trip it took nearly a month to get my trip record too. Sorry that you're experiencing this situation. I'm going to be in AMS in a few weeks on business, and I shoot back and forth to Schipol every day. Might need to send them an email.

EDIT: just saw in another post that the DoubleTree location no longer has Tripkey. Also, it seems that this is becoming a problem as a number of people have experienced your issue. MIght need to go to the OV card...

Posted by
109 posts

We were unable to use TripKey. We ended up just buying tickets as needed which was not the most efficient or cost effecrive option but we did the best we could under the circumstances. We know that things do not always go perfectly when you travel esoecially when dealing with language differences and systems that are unfamiliar. We enjoy our time away even when there are issues.

I want to share the i information I received when I emailed TripKey to ask for help/complain. Too late to help me but hopefully will prove useful to others:

From TripKey: “We had hoped to release our new system in March and be ready before Easter. Our new system will have an efficient stock management. When you'll book your TripKey, you will be able to select the pickup date and locations and only the pick-up locations that will have available cards on the selected pick-up date will appear . When the new system will be released, we will also significantly increase our stock. Unfortunately, we were informed that the new system will not be ready and released before June, but we already started to increase our stock. We are really really sorry for the delay and the actual stock/availability issues.”

Posted by
3304 posts

If one were only going to spend under a day in Amsterdam (arrive by train in the late afternoon and leave from Schiphol the next morning), does one need this Tripkey to use trams and trains? Is there another option for such a short visit?

Posted by
2487 posts

No need of a card. Buy the train tickets from and to Schiphol airport at the station (window or machine), and tickets for transport within Amsterdam at one of the GVB service points (consult their website for more information).

Posted by
5 posts

I have an additional question re: TripKey, that I am hoping someone can help me with (sorry for hijacking this post).
We will be travelling to Amsterdam next week. I am considering taking a chance with the TripKey card (having enough in stock when we arrive). However, I am wondering if I will be charged the 3,50 eu administration fee even if they don't have any in stock when we arrive? I did not see the answer to my question on their website.
Thank you!

Posted by
3304 posts

No need of a card. Buy the train tickets from and to Schiphol airport
at the station (window or machine), and tickets for transport within
Amsterdam at one of the GVB service points (consult their website for
more information).

Thank you.