Built for boats and not for cars, Amsterdam is best visited on foot or by cycling on its awesome bike path network. Parking in Amsterdam is always a challenge, but there are ways to do it without going broke. Being a compact city in a compact country, a lot of thought has gone into the Netherlands’ excellent road network in order to manage congestion successfully. The city has a very efficient park and ride system that is possibly your best option if you want to park and tour the city while not having to worry about traffic and getting to other destinations with ease.
Where to Find On-Street Parking
If you do want to use the city’s on-street parking you will need either a local or international credit or debit card. That will allow you to use the digital parking meters that have been implemented throughout the city. The on-street parking is expensive but easy to use with a card and your license plate number. Most of the on-street parking is on Amsterdam’s side streets that usually adjoin pedestrianized areas.
Where to Find Parking Garages
There are also some good parking garage options in the center. Garages from companies like APCOA, IJDock, and MobyPark are very central to the city’s nightlife and major sights, providing useful facilities such as 24/7 access, electric charges, advance booking, and disabled parking spots.
Where to Park for Free
There are no parking spots in central Amsterdam that don’t cost anything. You will find a few in Amsterdam-Noord but the closer you get to the center the more parking meters you will find. Here are some tips on free parking:
- Park at Dieman-Zuid near the train station. There are some free parking spaces and you can take the train straight into the center.
- You can park in Amsterdam-Noord in many places for free but it is not the most convenient spot for public transportation.
Park & Ride Locations
Park and ride is a great option for Amsterdam. The parking is very reasonably priced and good for long stays. You pay between 1 and 8 euros for your first 24 hours depending on if it’s a weekday or weekend, and the subsequent 24-hour periods are charged at just 1 euro. You can stay for a maximum of 96 hours and the public transportation links from all park and ride locations are excellent. The parking lots are also easily accessible from the motorway meaning you can get into the city center faster!