ATMs widely available. Credit cards accepted in most hotels, but not all restaurants, cafes and shops. Non-European credit cards are quite often rejected.
Automated teller machines (ATMs, aka cash machines) can be found outside most banks and at airports and most train stations. Credit cards such as Visa and MasterCard/Eurocard are widely accepted, as well as cards from the Plus and Cirrus networks. Using an ATM can be the cheapest way to exchange your money from home but check with your home bank for service charges before you leave.
You can use your ATM card to keep stocked up with euros throughout the Netherlands so there's no need for currency exchange. However, using your ATM card as a debit card, as opposed to a credit card, to pay for purchases won't always work as an astonishing amount of businesses – including many restaurants, cafes and shops – only accept Dutch PIN cards.
Cash is commonly used for everyday purchases throughout the Netherlands.
All the major international credit cards are recognised, and most hotels and large stores accept them. But many shops, restaurants and other businesses (including Dutch Railways and supermarket chains) do not accept credit cards, including European cards with security chips.
Some establishments levy a 5% surcharge (or more) on credit cards to offset the commissions charged by card providers. Always check first.
The Netherlands uses the euro (€). Denominations of the currency are €5, €10, €20, €50, €100, €200 and €500 notes, and €0.05, €0.10, €0.20, €0.50, €1 and €2 coins (amounts under €1 are called cents).
For current exchange rates, see www.xe.com.
In the Netherlands you'll notice people gleefully using 'PIN' cards everywhere, from shops to supermarkets and vending machines. These direct-debit cards look like credit or bank cards with little circuit chips on them, but they won't be of much use to visitors without a Dutch bank account.
The Dutch do tip, but modestly.
- Hotel porters €1 to €2
- Restaurants round up, or 5% to 10%
- Taxis 5% to 10%