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Travelling on balance

You can top up your OV-chipkaart at any machine. You can also pre-order balance. When you check in with NS, the balance is immediately loaded onto your card. Do you want to be sure that you always have enough balance? Then activate automatic reloading. Here you will read how much credit you need to be able to travel.

Boarding fare

When you travel on credit, a boarding fare will be debited from your card when you check in. When you check out, the boarding fare will be refunded and you will be charged for the number of kilometres you travelled. If you do not check out, you will pay the full boarding fare.

The current boarding fares are listed below. You will not be able to travel if you have negative credit on your card.

Boarding fares

Anonymous card

Personal card

Personal card with NS subscription

Bus, tram and metro

€ 4*

€ 4*

€ 4*

Train (NS)

€ 20

€ 20

€ 10

Train (Arriva/Syntus) and bus (Qliner Arriva)

€ 10

€ 10

€ 10

Good to know: There are exceptions. For example, the boarding rate on some Connexxion lines is € 6, € 10 or € 15 and € 8 on a number of Bravo lines in Brabant. Check the website of your carrier for all current boarding rates.

Basic fare

The basic fare is the fare you pay when using public transport, also referred to as the boarding fare or fixed fare. With NS and a number of other rail operators, the basic fare is included in the minimum fare. 

The national basic fare is € 1,08. The age discount (4 to 11 and 65+) offers 34% off the basic fare. This automatic discount does not apply to travel by train.


Children up to and including 3 years old travel for free on all carriers. Children aged 4 to 11 travel with a 34% age discount if they travel with a personal OV-chipkaart. This discount does not apply to NS. However, children up to the age of 11 can travel for free with the Kids Vrij subscription. This subscription can be placed on a personal OV-chipkaart.

Tip: Check the conditions for travelling with children with your carrier. With some carriers, children do not need their own OV-chipkaart and can travel for free.


Travelers aged 65 and up travel with a 34% age discount. The age discount does not apply to NS. Visit www.ns.nl for discount subscriptions. At Arriva, the age discount applies to the bus, but not to the train. Visit www.arriva.nl for discount train subscriptions.