Looking to make your Amsterdam trip an unforgettable one, well let’s help you!
We are here to help you plan the best itinerary, for a memorable time in Amsterdam!
So, here is Amsterdam travel tips that will help make your vacation the best that it can be.
Clearly, there are a lot of things you will need to consider before that getaway to Amsterdam, this is especially true for first-timers!
This article offers Amsterdam travel tips on accommodations, things to do, places to see, and how best to explore this fascinating country.
So, let’s delve right in…
For first-time backpackers, here are useful Amsterdam travel tips.
Indeed most first time backpackers are elated about their first trips, but sometimes are unclear about a lot of things from visa information, to the language, hotel, hostel options, shopping, transportation, and a lot of other useful Amsterdam travel tips.
Are you traveling to the Netherlands for the first time?
Let’s help you with useful Amsterdam Travel Tips.
10 Amsterdam Travel Tips for First-timers
1: Book Accommodation In Advance
We all know that Amsterdam is a gorgeous city which is why you’re visiting there in the first place.
It is a small country, which is why it is the safest destinations to travel to in Europe.
There are few cities that can handily deal with large tourism numbers in the peak season, but many of the best natural landmarks are located in smaller centers with a limited number of hotel rooms.
So, it’s important you book early if you want to get the best offer at cheaper rates too!
You can use the help of travel experts to get the best accommodation offers there is for that Amsterdam trip.
Conduct a personal search for the best places at the best prices through online sources.
2: Bring Debit/Credit cards
For your Amsterdam travel tips, you’d need international credit and debit cards for paying for things and services while on your vacation.
You’ll find ATMs all around the country, even in shops, coffee shops, restaurants, etc.
Also, remember to bring some cash, it can be very frustrating to be in a foreign country with no cash or a means to access cash.
Also, do not forget to inform your local bank branch of your travel plans, so that they do not deactivate your account.
3: Bring Important Travel Documents
This advice is the same for all travels, but particularly useful to first-time backpackers.
You don’t want to arrive at the airport, to discover moments later that you had forgotten your important grave documents.
For all your travels, ensure to bring all the original copies of your passport, flight tickets, and the contact of your travel agent.
For visa documentation at the airport, upon your arrival, don’t forget to bring two passport photographs, with clear pictures.
Make sure that your passport is valid for at least six months with blank pages for signature and stamps.
4: Shop Smart
Once you are in Amsterdam, you will surely find things and places to shop.
Don’t forget the country offers a variety of goods and shopping places.
Many department stores here have price tags visibly pasted on items, which means they have fixed prices and the attendants cannot give a discount.
On the flip side, if you don’t find price tags visibly pasted on items, you can haggle a little for the best price.
5: Get Your Amsterdam/OV Chipcard
Amsterdam has one of the highly advanced transport networks in the world both public and private transport.
So, visitors have plenty of options to get around.
For better travel options around the city get your Amsterdam OV chipcard.
The OV chip card is a maximum handy manner to pay for all your travel expenses in Amsterdam.
6: Explore The Food
Amsterdam is home to tons of restaurants and canteens, specialized in wonderful cuisines.
While there may be several other dining options for you, here you will find some little differences that make the place seem a little foreign to you.
It’s all part of the Dutch thrill!
Eat and drink to your heart’s feelings, here!
7: Keep Your ID’s Safe
While Amsterdam is one of the safest places countries in the world, visitors should exercise caution and keep their personal stuff safe.
Be aware of your environment while walking the streets of Amsterdam.
Be at alert and keep an eye out for con artists and scammers.
Foreigners and by extension tourists are most likely to be conned during vacation trips.
When carrying a wallet, ensure to keep your IDs separately so that you don’t lose them.
8: Use Car Rental Services
If you are in Amsterdam and you want to get around with ease, then you should use rented cars.
Car rental services are an efficient way to tour Amsterdam.
The good thing is that you can go on solo tours and tour the off-beaten-paths!
9: Do not Patronize Bike Crackers
While in Amsterdam, beware of crackers willing to sell stolen bikes to you.
Do not patronize them, as doing so means you’re encouraging stealing.
Plus, you could get caught by the police and prosecuted accordingly.
10: Smoking Weed Is Illegal Here
While smoking weed in Amsterdam is no big deal, it is illegal.
You will find drug peddlers around the Red Light District of the city, trying to sell you drugs.
Truth is, many tourists have died from complications if using those drugs.
And if you have to smoke, there are designated areas in coffee shops where you can do that without upsetting others in public places.
What Do I Need To Know Before Going To Amsterdam?
￼#1: Carry Your ID Everywhere
This is actually a law in Amsterdam. So its seen as one of the core Amsterdam travel tips you should know.
Whether you are an EU or a non-EU citizen traveling to Amsterdam, keep in mind that you’d need to carry your passport on you everywhere you go.
Failure to adhere to this rule could get you fined in Amsterdam.
Generally, you won’t need to pull out your identification for much, however, you might need to show it if you intend to enter a coffee shop.
Most bars in the country do not ID customers unless they appear younger than 18, which is the official drinking age for alcohol in the Netherlands.
#2: Bring Comfortable Shoes
Amsterdam is a small city, small enough for anyone to easily walk or bike across it.
There are lots of walking itineraries for Amsterdam that covers tons of historic centers, so ensure to wear comfortable shoes.
You may come across cobblestones in a few places, so better to wear something comfy and sleek too.
You can also pack boots, as they are a favorite of Dutchies, they find it highly as comfortable and fashionable!
#3: Tone Down Your Customer Service Expectations
This is particularly true when it comes to restaurants and cafés in Amsterdam.
In Amsterdam, you might fight to your chagrin that waiters here at often leave people alone for long periods of time without really checking on them, especially at mid-range cafés.
We do not want to generalize here, as you might have a very different experience at a nicer restaurant/high-end café.
It’s a common complaint from travelers that they were frustrated with the customer service in Amsterdam.
However, the general rule implies, if you want something at a café, you’ll need to call the attention of the waiter or go up to the counter(if they’re not responding).
Remember what they say… The customer is always right!
#4: Book Lodging Beforehand
This is particularly true if you’re planning to visit Amsterdam in the peak season-April onwards.
As the peak season for Amsterdam begins in April, it is important that you book your accommodation as early as possible if you want it at good rates.
Most travelers choose to stay outside of Amsterdam to save up to 40% on accommodation, however you’ll also need to factor in the cost of traveling to/from Amsterdam daily per person.
#5: Restaurants Here Serve Yummy Dishes
Restaurants in Amsterdam are great tourist traps where you can eat good authentic.
Try the Amsterdam roti or bara filled with delicious fillings (such as tofu).
A lot of tourists obsess about rijsttafel, and Indonesian food, served by restaurants in Amsterdam.
You’ll often find shops called tokos, which are take-out centers for Surinamese and Indonesian food.
These are great places to buy some delicious items and enjoy them along the canals of Amsterdam.
#6: Get The Heineken or Craft Beer Experience
In Amsterdam, you can buy 8 Heinekens at a bar for the price of entry to the Heineken Experience.
You may also purchase four craft beers and excursion a microbrewery for an equal price.
Amsterdam is full of amazing microbreweries with delicious beer and lovely old cafés dating back to the 1600s.
Try scrumptious beers from Oedipus, Jopen, Gebrouwen door Vrouwen, Brouwerij ‘T Ij, Butcher’s Tears, and De Prael at cafés just like the Arendsnest or the breweries themselves.
It’s all part of the Amsterdam experience.
#7: Visit A Brown Bar
One of the best places to experience Dutch culture and get a feel of the Amsterdam thrill is in a brown bar.
These vintage Dutch cafés are packed with suitable brown wood, suitable lamps, and an atmosphere.
It’s a great place to stop off for a delicious fresh mint tea or a beer.
These cafés aren’t about rushing your way through, but rather enjoying.
So, do enjoy it!
#8:Try Jenever or Local Liquors
Jenever also called Genever in English is a Dutch drink that is locally brewed from juniper berries that predates gin.
these shops are usually free to visit esp when you are curious about jenever, feel free to stop at any of the tasting rooms to get a glass shot.
#9: Explore Amsterdam
Most tourists see Prinsengracht as the invisible border of where they should stop walking when in Amsterdam.
There are a few terrific regions with first-rate food, shopping, and activities which you might leave out in case you handiest live withinside the traveler regions.
Explore other parts of the city and go off-beaten-paths.
Get it all!
Western Amsterdam is a remarkable region to discover with a few truly cool attractions, inclusive of a meals hall.
#10: Enter A Hofje (Hidden Courtyard)
All around the city of Amsterdam, you’ll find historic hidden courtyards.
There has been a legacy of wealthy Dutch aristocrats who donate money to those in need by building houses for them.
Some of those hidden courtyards are exceptionally lovely and a tremendous respite from the crowds of Amsterdam Centre.
The Begijnhof is the largest and most famous courtyard in Amsterdam.
#11: Book Your Anne Frank Tickets Beforehand
Tickets for the Anne Frank museum are quite hard to get. The museum is usually open during the mornings for those with tickets and only opened to the public without tickets in the afternoon.
The tickets usually sell for a few months, so it’s best to buy them far in advance.
#12: Amsterdam is Safe To Visit Alone
Amsterdam is a great city to try out solo travel for the first time.
It’s clean, clean to stroll around, and comparatively safe.
The locals here speak good English.
For solo traveling, we recommend taking some tours or staying at a hostel as this is a great way to meet new people. And it’s absolutely safe for female travelers who wants to do a solo trip.
#13: The Water Is Safe For Drinking, But Scarce
The tap water in Amsterdam is safe for drinking. However, carrying a water bottle, it’s a great idea to stay hydrated.
This is because most restaurants will not give you unlimited water, even if it’s free.
You would possibly get a completely small glass in case you ask.
Some do not offer water at all, instead they will give you pathetic small bottles sold for €2.5-£3.
#14: Try Indonesian or Surinamese Food
Due to the Dutch colonial legacy, there’s a large number of Dutch people of Indonesian and Surinamese descent who are amazing cooks in Amsterdam.
You can locate Indonesian take-out eating places and “tokos,” which are take-out locations wherein locals frequently choose up a short dinner to go.
Just keep in mind that most local restaurants close by 10 pm and many places really don’t serve much food past 8 pm without reservations.
Snack bars in Center are essentially 24/7, however in case you plan well, you’ll pay about €8 – €9 for extremely good quantities of meals that you’ll do not forget lengthy after your journey to Amsterdam.
#15: Stay Away From The Canals
I have watched the garbage boat clean the canals and lost things due to dropping them in the canals.
If it falls withinside the canal, it’s far long gone forever.
If you are drunk, please be careful and don’t pee in the canal.
This is a matter of safety!
#16: Take Lots Of Photos
There are so many lovely canals in Amsterdam.
Whether it’s the historic canals in the Centre that you can walk through or the more modern canals on the outskirts of the city, you can never go wrong.
One of the favorite lesser-known canals is Bickersgracht, which is hidden up in the Western Islands.
You should see them!
#17: Explore Amsterdam
Explore the city, that’s right!
See the Rijks museum for the Dutch masters.
For modern art lovers, check out the Stedelijk Museum.
For architecture/history lovers, there’s the Our Lady in the Attic, a fascinating hidden Catholic Church built within the attics of 3 different canal houses.
Many of the entrance fees for these museums are included in the Amsterdam card.
#18: Expect Showers (Wear Your Raincoat)
The weather in Amsterdam is so unstable that the most popular app that will help you keep up with the weather situation is a weather map.
You can see while the clouds will cross above you in the subsequent hour.
Bring shoes that won’t get too wet and a waterproof jacket if you’re visiting in winter or spring.
#19: Bring Some Cash
You might see PIN graag at popular grocery stores, which means that they may accept cash or Dutch debit cards only.
If you don’t have cash, you’ll want to visit an ATM, which ought to take the delivery of different cards.
The situation is improving and more places are gradually accepting credit cards-Visa, Mastercard, Maestro-however many smaller shops don’t accept non-Dutch cards.
What Should I Avoid In Amsterdam?
If you’re visiting Amsterdam for the first time, there are things you should avoid, to make your trip a memorable one.
Here are a few things you should never do while in Amsterdam.
You should know that parking is difficult and expensive in Amsterdam, with parking regulations strictly enforced.
The clampers work day and night and seem to pay particular attention to foreign cars.
If your car happens to be clamped, you will find a yellow sticker on the window telling you were to pay the fine of €67,00 for the clamp to be removed.
And if the fine is not paid within 24 hours, the car will be towed away.
1. Avoid walking on bike lanes
The lanes are usually clearly marked with a bike symbol on the way.
These are express-roads via Amsterdam metropolis wherein the motorcycles rule. Avoid taking walks on, and status in motorcycle lanes searching at maps, chat around, etc. This drives locals mad.
When you hear a motorcycle bell, get quick out of the way.
2. Do not smoke in trains/train stations
Smoking in Amsterdam is prohibited in all train stations, waiting for areas, and on platforms in Amsterdam.
However, there are special smoking areas that have been created.
The fines for smoking outside these designated areas is € 25, and throwing your cigarette butt on the platform can cost you €40.
3. Avoid smoking cannabis in public
Smoking cannabis in public is unsafe and illegal.
Once you are stoned, you should go home.
You can without difficulty stumble upon a motorcycle or a tram and die.
But you have to, use cannabis in the privacy of coffeeshops.
Is It Safe To Walk In Amsterdam At Night?
It would possibly marvel traffic to understand that Amsterdam is one of the most secure towns withinside the world.
It has been ranked 22 out of 215 cities in the world for personal safety.
The secure nature of this city has a lot to do with the small size of the country plus the independent and live-and-let-live attitude of the locals.
This sort of atmosphere inhibits criminal behavior.
One place to avoid during nighttime is the Red Light District.
The district is filled with different people during the day, and the area attracts seedy visitors and vagrants at night.
And this consists of pick-wallet and those peddling unlawful tough drugs.
While violent crimes are not common in Amsterdam, tourists should watch out for pickpockets on crowded trains and trams especially during high tourist seasons.
Every travel situation has its fair share of perils, but all these are avoidable with a little bit of precaution.
in this post, we have fully covered Armsteram travel tips, what you need to know before going to Amsterdam and things to avoid in Amsterdam in other to help you plan your trip to Amsterdam.
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