We will be arriving at Schipol and then heading directly to the Arhnem area where we are staying for several days in a home rental (Airbnb). We are going to see the national park, Kroller-Muller, Open Air museum and WWII sites. My question is this, would you suggest renting the car at the airport and driving to Arhnem or taking the train to Arhnem and then renting the car when we get there? In Arnhem it seems to me we might need to take a taxi from the train station to a car rental place. Based on google maps, the drive time seems comparable to the train time and as we are a family of 4, car rentals can often be more relaxing than trains. However, if the traffic is always dreadful, the train + taxi might be the more reasonable approach. Thanks for any thoughts!
Do you have experience traveling in the Netherlands?
Public transit, bicycles and taxis would be my recommendation. Use 9292.nl to plan your trips with transit.
If you find you want a car once you're there, you can always rent one then.
Sorry I wasn't clear about a point, we will need a car to get to and from our rental as it is in a more rural location. It is just a question of when we get it. But your point is well taken, if we haven't driven in the Netherlands before, it might be better to start out in Arnhem rather than Around Shipol!
Not having driven from Schipol I will guess there are several advantages for a family of four to get the car at the airport. You will have a much better chance of getting the car you want. You won't have to take multiple forms of transportation. It is probably less expensive. I have found driving in Europe with a GPS pretty easy.
Not disagreeing with any point above, but regarding proximity, I do see a Hertz office about a block from Arnhem central station.
Thank you for your thoughts. Laura, thank you for the link and Richard I appreciate the vote of confidence in driving in the Netherlands. I can definitely make a better informed decision now.
as long as you don't mind heavy traffic.
My memory of the A4 around the airport (I hope I remembered the right number) is that at points it is up to 8 or 10 lanes wide, and often busy.
Dutch traffic is often busy.
Remember that the Dutch invented the speed camera.
If you are arriving after a long flight you may be tired and or jet lagged. Driving then is like driving drunk.
My first time renting a car in Europe was from the airport in Amsterdam. No problem in or out. Just followed the signs. We did however get lost as we ventured into the city for breakfast (pre GPS, and our map was not great) However, we finally found our way and did enjoy driving around the countryside at our leisure.
It is a 6 hour flight for me and I did sleep on the plane, so I was plenty capable of driving.
I do not like having to go to another location via train just to get me car. I also needed an automatic that trip as I had my right arm in a cast and did not want to deal with shifting, so I think that was probably more available at the airport.
If you have special requests like an automatic transmission, by all means do rent at Schiphol.
So to end the suspense (drumroll please) we decided to rent our car in Arnhem. Husband loves to drive manual, so no concern there, and getting out of a more congested area before picking up the car was seen as the ultimate decider for us even if it was a slightly more expensive option. Thank you for all of your help! This forum has been a wonderful resource in planning our trip.