Credit card payments in the Netherlands are widely accepted. Visa and Mastercard are more popular, but you could find some merchant acceptance of American Express and Discover cards.
When traveling in Amsterdam, expect to find many shops, restaurants and cafes that will not accept cash at all. If you need cash, you can easily find an ATM.
Compare travel cards for use in the Netherlands
All credit cards in the table below have no foreign transaction fees. That means you can save up to 3% of the amount of every transaction made abroad. You can save even more money on flights, checked bags, priority boarding, etc., with an airline cobranded credit card.
If you often travel to the Netherlands, you could save money with the following cards:
The Delta SkyMiles® Gold American Express Card (see rates & fees) and Delta SkyMiles® Platinum American Express Card (see rates & fees) have no foreign transaction fees, plus you can earn and redeem miles on your Delta and KLM flights to the Netherlands.
But if you prefer Visa cards, consider one of the two United credit cards. You’ll also save money on foreign transaction fees and you can board United or Lufthansa flights between the US and the Netherlands.
Potential credit card fees in the Netherlands
Depending on your credit card, you could incur the following fees:
Foreign transaction fees. Some credit cards come with foreign transaction fees of up to 3% of the amount of each purchase. That’s $120 for every $4,000 spent in the Netherlands.
Currency conversion fees. Vendors and ATMs may offer you to pay or make a cash withdrawal in US dollars. This is known as a Dynamic Currency Conversion (DCC) and it comes with a poor conversion rate and extra fees.
Can I incur both fees?
Yes. Consider getting a credit card without foreign transaction fees and decline DCC, if offered. That way you’ll incur no unnecessary fees.
Which credit card issuers are accepted in the Netherlands?
Visa and Mastercard are most widely accepted. American Express credit cards come in third, then Discover cards.
If you want to make an ATM cash withdrawal with your Amex card, look for Euronet, ABN Amro Bank and Rabobank ATMs among others.
Should I use my credit card to get cash in the Netherlands?
Carrying cash is wise since some smaller restaurants, cafés and even some museums that don’t accept credit cards.
ATMs are widely available across the country. However, if you use your credit card to make a cash withdrawal, you could incur cash advance fees and a high APR. Debit cards are more ideal for cash withdrawals as they are free of such fees.
Some do, some don’t. Ask your hotel to call for a taxi that accepts credit cards.
If that’s not an option, use Uber and pay with your card through the app.
Chip and PIN credit cards
Chip and PIN cards are most common in the Netherlands. Some places may accept chip cards without a PIN, but you’ll have to sign the receipt. However, you may still need a PIN to make cash withdrawals. Ask your bank to assign a four-digit PIN to your card before departing to the Netherlands.
Is it safe to use my credit card in the Netherlands?
The Netherlands is a credit-card-friendly country. However, always exercise caution when using your card. For example:
Select ATMs with care. Always try to use ATMs in a bank. These ATMs are less likely to have card-skimming devices.
Take two cards. You’d never want to be stranded without money if something happens to your credit card. Carrying a backup could be a lifesaver.
Keep your card in sight. Avoid card misuse by watching your card at all times.
How to prepare before traveling to the Netherlands
Get a credit card without foreign transaction fees. This way you’ll save on each transaction made abroad.
Visa and Mastercard are universally accepted. American Express is also accepted at most large hotels and restaurants. Look for the Diners Club logo to use your Discover card.
Notify your bank before you travel. Otherwise, your bank could interpret charges made abroad as fraudulent and block your card.
Get your bank’s phone number. In case your card is blocked or stolen, you can quickly resolve your issue.
Get a backup card. Keep it safe so you’ll have it if something happens to your primary card.
Get some cash. Smaller restaurants and cafés may only accept cash.
You should have no problems paying with your credit card in the Netherlands. Especially if it’s a Visa or Mastercard. However, it’s always good to also carry cash, as some smaller establishments may not take cards.
Editorial Note: Any opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the author’s alone, and have not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any card issuer.
Kliment Dukovski is a credit cards writer. He's written over 600 articles to help readers find and compare the best credit cards. Kliment has also written on money transfers, home loans and more. Previously, he ghostwrote guides and articles on foreign exchange, stock market trading and cryptocurrencies.
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