At tourist sites, at your accommodation, at train stations, at bike repair shops: you will find somewhere to rent a bicycle wherever you are in Holland. Renting a bicycle is easy and not that expensive. It can save you the hassle bringing your own bike along.
Renting a bicycle - how does it work?
You can rent a bicycle for however long you want: a couple of hours, a day, or even several weeks. Renting a bike for a longer period is usually relatively cheaper. To rent a bike you will need to show a valid identification document. You will also be asked to pay a deposit, which you will get back when you safely return the bike. The rental fee usually includes an insurance should the bike get stolen or damaged.
Reserving a bicycle in advance is always a good idea, especially in the busy holiday season, or if you want to rent bikes for the whole family. Some rental places only have standard Dutch bicycles (see photo above). Others offer a wider variety of bikes, ranging from tandems, cargo bikes and electric bikes to children's bicycles in all sizes.
If you want to know what type of bikes are available at a bike rental place, check out their website. Also find out whether accessories such as bicycle bags, child bike seats or bike trailers are available. A bicycle pump and basic repair kit to mend a puncture are not provided as standard. You can buy the latter for a few euros at a bicycle shop or even at some supermarkets.
Are you in Holland for a longer period and do you want to rent a bicycle on a regular basis? You could subscribe to the OV-bicycle scheme (OV stands for Openbaar Vervoer = public transport).
The idea is that you go somewhere by public transport and then use the OV-bicycle to get to your exact destination. The OV-bicycle can also be used for day trips.
You can rent an OV- bicycle at most train stations. Some of the smaller train stations have a self-service system, whereby you use a special pass to take the OV-bicycle out of a storage place or locker.
How does the OV-bicycle scheme work?
- Subscribe to the scheme online on the website of Dutch Rail (only in Dutch). For this you pay a small annual fee.
- You are charged a small fee for every time you rent a bike.
- The rental fee is automatically taken from your bank account afterwards.
- You can rent up to 2 bikes at the same time on one pass.
- Maximum period you can rent a bike for is 72 hrs. If you return the bike after that you pay a surcharge.
- No identification, paperwork or deposits. You simply scan your pass and you're done.
- Besides a standard Dutch bike, you can also rent an electric bicycle at some of the larger train stations.
- You can adjust the height of the bike to your needs without any tools.
- For an additional fee you can return the standard OV-bicycle (not the electric bicycle!) to any train station that doesn't use a self-service system. See: Fietsverhuur op mijn station? (Bike rental at my train station?)
Finding somewhere to rent a bicycle
Although there are many bike rental places all over Holland, finding out if there actually is one where you need one, is not that straightforward. Here are some options:
- Go to the online cycle route planner. Click on the locations tab and select the box ‘Bovag Cycle rental’. All the rental places that are a member of the Bovag trade organisation will appear on the map. Please note that this is only a selection of all the places in Holland where you can rent a bike.
- Look on your cycle map or in your guide book, they often tell you where some bike rental places are.
- For bike rental options at train stations follow this link to Fietsverhuur op mijn station? (Bike rental at my train station?) Enter the name of a station to find out if you can rent a bike there. If there is bike rental available, the telephone number is given for enquiries and/or reservations.
fiets = bicycle
OV-fiets = public transport bicycle
fietsverhuur or rijwielverhuur = bicycle rental
borg = deposit
fietsverzekering = bike insurance
kinderzitje = child bike seat
fietstas = bicycle bag
fietspomp = bicycle pump
Ik wil graag een fiets reserveren/huren = I would like to reserve/rent a bike
Heeft u een ...? = Do you have a ...?