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I am going to the Netherlands and might need to get a train. (Between Eindhoven and Amsterdam). On www.ns.nl (the large train operator that does that route), they list the price as €17.90ish. That's for booking it online.

However, I'm not sure what price it'd be if I were to turn up on the day and buy a ticket for the next train going that way.

Here in Ireland if you book train tickets online in advance, it's much cheaper than if you arrive in the train station and want to buy a ticket for the next train. (e.g. €20 online vs. €60 last minute in some cases). Is this the same in the Netherlands with NS or is it the same price regardless of when you book?

Update I don't care what sort of train to take, I just want to get from Eindhoven to Amsterdam.

Money isn't too much of an issue, I just don't want to be asked to pay €50 per ticket when I could have got it for <€20 had I only booked online!

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Are you planning to take a regular train the whole way, or would you want to take one of the high speed services for part of it? (ICE, Thalys or Frya) –  Gagravarr Mar 18 '13 at 18:21
    
@Gagravarr I don't care what sort of train, so long as it doesn't really take more than 1½ hrs. –  Rory Mar 20 '13 at 14:21

2 Answers 2

up vote 8 down vote accepted

With regular NS trains (intercity's, sprinter's and stoptrains) booking in advance does not give you any discount. If you would travel with a NS HiSpeed train this could be the case, but there's no direct HiSpeed connection between Eindhoven and Amsterdam, so it's irrelevant to your journey.

There's a direct train between Eindhoven and Amsterdam Central Station which would cost you €17.90 one way. If you buy the ticket at the counter, instead of at the machine, you'll have to pay an additional €0.5.

If you're really tight on money you could look for someone who looks like a student and ask politely if you can travel "together". 90% off all students has a card which gives them and 3 fellow travellers a 40% reduction on any train journey. Fellow travellers can make use of this system after 09:00 on weekdays, the whole day during weekends and also the whole day during the months July and August. When I was a student I've had this question asked several times. When a conductor asked the other person why he had a ticket with 40% discount, I would just say that we travelled together, making the discounted ticket valid.

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The odds of finding a student that travels to Eindhoven are small, however, so you have to repeat this trick quite often. Also realize that it may not be valid at all hours of the day. –  Bernhard Mar 18 '13 at 22:14
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Eindhoven has a university of technology, so finding a student shouldn't be a huge problem. You're right about the validity being time dependent. I've updated my answer. –  Bart Arondson Mar 18 '13 at 22:40
    
In Eindhoven it is ok, but the student will most likely not travel to Amsterdam is what I'm saying. –  Bernhard Mar 18 '13 at 22:43

No. The fares are fixed. You can get cheapers fares if you buy a reductioncard, where you will be entitled to a reduction of 40 % if traveling during off peak hours.

EDIT: @nsn makes a valid point. Fares are not influenced by booking earlier, but it is cheaper if you buy your tickets at the automatic vending machines. When you buy your tickets at the counter, you pay an employee fee.

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If you buy on the machine it´s the same price. If you buy to the sailsperson it's more expensive. –  nsn Mar 18 '13 at 19:07

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