Netherlands

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ShermansTravel experts rely on years of collective travel experience to bring you the best money-saving tips for your vacation. We take a discerning look at all the attraction passes, public transportation options, and other local bargains to make sure you get the most bang for your buck while traveling.

Netherlands Money-Saving Tips

Ask for your bill

When dining, waiters won’t bring the bill to your table unless you ask, especially in laidback Amsterdam where it’s considered rude to appear to be rushing patrons out the door.

Dine like a local

For authentic Dutch cuisine, book a meal with Like-a-Local, an online company that matches visitors up with locals willing to open their homes to dinner guests.

Dress the part

Dutch weather can be wet, dry, humid, warm, and cold . . . often all in one day! Wear layers that can easily be removed should things warm up, always bring a rain proof jacket, and bring sweaters even in summer months.

Tipping

If you buy a coffee or snack, it’s sufficient to round up to the nearest dollar. For a bill of 20 Euros (€), for example, an extra Euro or two will be plenty.

Language

Nearly everyone in Holland is fluent in English, but a few basic Dutch words and phrases like “alstublieft” and “dank u” – please and thank you respectively – will break the ice.

Go car-less

Parking spaces are rare and expensive. You’ll do better walking or biking through Holland’s pedestrian-friendly cities. When it comes to day trips, the country’s efficient train system can get you everywhere you need to go.

Museum savings

Visitors planning to tour The Netherlands should strongly consider purchasing the “Museum Year Card” (available at most museums). A single fee of $51 secures admission to more than 400 of the country’s top cultural attractions.

Affordable connections

The “NS Off-Peak Discount Pass," sold at major train stations, offers the holder and up to three travel companions a 40% discount on all train journeys between 9-4am.

Annual events

The Netherlands has events year-round, including the world’s largest documentary film festival in November (www.idfa.nl), February’s Carnival, art and antique fairs in March (www.tefaf.com), the legendary North Sea Jazz festival in July (www.northseajazz.nl) and August’s Gay Pride parade (www.amsterdamgaypride.nl).

Dutch cuisine

In a word: Hearty. A long coastline and plenty of farms spell high-quality seafood, vegetables, and world-famous cheeses like Gouda and Edam. One local specialty worth trying is kroket (think stew encased in fried breadcrumbs).

Speed skating

Soccer is the most popular spectator sport, but speed skating occasionally brings the nation to a halt. The nearly 143-mile, 16,000 participant, Elfstedentocht (eleven cities tour) is held only when ice conditions allow (about 15 times in the 20th century).

Soccer

In this soccer-crazed nation, complex ticket-sales restrictions make showing up and catching a game impossible. If you’re dead-set on seeing a match, check team websites far in advance to find out what foreigners must do to apply (yes, apply) for tickets.

The Dutch Waterways

The most authentic way to experience Holland is on the vast Dutch waterway system, which the locals take advantage of regularly via motorboats and sailboats.

The Netherlands or Holland?

The country’s two most populated provinces are North and South Holland, but the country as a whole is officially known as “The Netherlands.” So, while all Hollanders are Dutch, not all Dutch are Hollanders!

Compare Rates to Netherlands






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