Accessing the train
'Sprinter' is the name that the Dutch rail operator NS uses for its stopping train service.
Different types of train provide the 'Sprinter' train service - the most commonly used type of train is the relatively new single deck train (as shown in the image).
However, some 'Sprinter' services are provided by older trains - some of which are double deck trains.
These older double deck trains tend to be used for services for commuter services into cities OTHER than Amsterdam, Den Haag or Rotterdam.
Sprinter services fall into two broad categories:
(1) Branch line trains in both urban and rural areas.
(2) The stopping trains on the main lines.
This second group of services often share the main lines with the faster Intercity trains.
The Intercity trains will skip most of the stations between cities - but the Sprinter trains call at every station.
If you're new to travelling by train at The Netherlands, it often isn't obvious when looking at the departure screens at major stations- that the Intercity trains will be faster than the Sprinter trains (when both trains share a route).
NS is the national railway operator in The Netherlands and it doesn’t allow bicycles to travel on any of its trains between 06:30 – 09:00 and 16:00 – 18:30 on Monday-Friday – except during July and August when there are no time restrictions.
Bikes can be taken on board any train at any other time, including weekends, if you purchase a bike pass for €6.90 - this pass known as a ‘Fietskaart Dal’ has a flat rate price, so it doesn’t matter how far you will be travelling.
An unusual feature of travelling with a bike on NS trains is that tandems can also be taken on board.
Bikes can only be placed in the dedicated bike spaces and because they can’t be reserved, there’s no guarantee that room will be available.
Although neither your train ticket, or bike pass, will be restricted to specific departures, so if need be you can simply take the next train – most routes have departures at least every 30 mins.
This is one of more than 150 train guides available on ShowMeTheJourney, which will make it easier to take the train journeys you want or need to make. As always, all images were captured on trips taken by ShowMeTheJourney.