OVpay on NS: Check in on Dutch trains with your phone or debit card
From January 31, passengers on Nederlandse Spoorwegen (NS) trains across the country will no longer need their OV-chipkaart in order to travel. Instead, they’ll be able to check in and out using contactless payment systems on their mobile phones, debit cards and credit cards.
OVpay gradually being rolled out across the Netherlands
It’s been a long time coming, but slowly but surely OVpay - the new contactless payment system for public transport in the Netherlands - is being rolled out nationwide. While travellers will still be able to use their OV-chipkaart to travel, the idea behind OVpay is that it will be easier for those without the Dutch public transport card (i.e. tourists and new arrivals) to travel in the Netherlands.
The official launch of the system has been postponed several times, but is now gradually being introduced to different cities and modes of transportation. The system was introduced in Amsterdam and The Hague last year, and the plan is for OVpay to be in operation nationwide before the end of March 2023.
New contactless payment system now also available on Dutch trains
The next step in the national rollout is the use of OVpay for train travel. NS announced on Thursday morning that, from Tuesday, January 31, travellers will “no longer have to go to a ticket machine to buy a ticket or top up their [OV-chipkaart] balance." Instead, those “who travel full fare in second class” (i.e. those who don’t have any discounts or subscriptions) will be able to check in and out at the barriers with a smartphone or contactless debit or credit card.
"We want to offer travellers an extra choice to travel even more easily by public transport," says Tjalling Smit, Director of Commerce and Development at NS. The new payment system will also be available to those travelling via Arriva and Qbuzz trains, but is not yet compatible with OV-fiets rental or passenger discounts.
Currently, OVpay is compatible with contactless debit cards from all of the major Dutch banks, as well as Mastercard and Visa contactless credit cards and contactless debit and credit cards from Maestro, VPAY, Mastercard and Visa.
Thumb: Dutchmen Photography via Shutterstock.com.