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I'll be travelling from Amsterdam airport to Rotterdam and I was wondering where do you actually store your luggage in these trains? The only experience I have with trains in Europe was with TGV's but since they cover a large distance, there were luggage racks present in the train.

I've never really took local trains in Europe before and certainly not in the Netherlands so although it may sound like a very basic questions, I would still like to know if anybody here has traveled in these Dutch intercity trains before and can advice me where I can put my large 30kg suitcase that I'll be travelling with? Are there any sort of luggage racks in the back of the coach like in TGV's?

Would it be a better idea to purchase tickets in the first class to avoid rush and get space to store my stuff?

  • I guess you mean the Intercity Direct train running straight to Rotterdam Centraal from Schiphol over the high speed line. That one is completely different from Intercity (double-decker) trains. – TooTea Aug 7 '18 at 8:26
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There are basically two types of intercity train in The Netherlands: Single and Double deck.

The Single deck type has overhead luggage racks, these may be big enough to fit your suitcase. Intercity Direct (running between Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Brussels) also has luggage racks near the entrance of the carriage.

The Double deck type has small overhead bins on the lower floor only, but these won't be big enough for a 30 kg suitcase. Some Double deck trains have seats in the entrance hallway, either foldable or full size. If you sit here, you won't have to haul your luggage through the narrow gangway, and up or down the stairs.

In both Single and Double deck types, it may be possible to store luggage between seats, but it depends on the seat configuration. Seats positioned back to back will have room between them.

Trains between Amsterdam and Rotterdam can be crowded, and leaving your luggage in the aisle, or worse, on seats, will not make you very popular.

  • Hey Berend! Thanks for the reply. Is it permitted to just stand in the train with your bags? Like there is always some sort of space between the coaches and I wanted to know if you could just stand there. In that way, I wouldn't have to disturb other passengers by hauling my luggage up and down the cabin. – Ashi Aug 7 '18 at 13:02
  • Yes, you can do that. In that case I would recommend taking the Intercity Direct (with a surcharge of € 2.40) which goes directly from Amsterdam Airport to Rotterdam and takes only 25 minutes, whereas the 'normal' intercity takes 50 minutes, and has several stops. – Berend Aug 7 '18 at 13:10
  • You may find there are many travelers with a lot of luggage on this train though, because it continues to Brussels. So you may be unlucky when many have entered the train at Amsterdam Central, which is one stop before the airport. The NS travel planner will give an estimation of how busy trains on a specific time usually are. ns.nl/en/journeyplanner#/… – Berend Aug 7 '18 at 13:15
  • Thanks for the link. It does show my trip as "quiet" so I imagine there won't be too many people so I'll just find a place to stand for 20 minutes. Thanks! – Ashi Aug 7 '18 at 22:56
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It depends on the train type, but usually it is allowed to bring your baggage with you, and keep it near your sit. You will occupy some extra seats, but often it is not a problem (and if it is very crowded, just put the baggage in the aisle, the people will probably standing in aisle).

Schiphol to Rotterdam is a short travel, and just few stops (if any).

I never used first class, but there you will have some more place. Just if the train is crowded, it will be difficult to find the right wagon.

Alternatively, you may choose the Thalys (an high speed train, similar to TGV). The reservation is like TGV (or flights). Personally for such short travel, I would choose the first train to Rotterdam, without booking a specific train in advance (this will just add stress in case of delays).

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    @anomuse: I would not book it. It is not possible to get into Thalis from Schiphol to Amsterdam, but if I remember correctly it is possible to get in in Rotterdam (direction Amsterdam). – Giacomo Catenazzi Aug 7 '18 at 11:58
  • It is indeed possible to go to Rotterdam on Thalys. – Ashi Aug 7 '18 at 13:00
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    Yes, you can, in theory, take Thalys. It € 21 single way and takes 20 minutes. But since a reservation is required, you are bound to a specific departure time, which may not be convenient when arriving on Schiphol by air. Thalys is 5 minutes faster than IC Direct (25 mins, €14.80), and 30 minutes faster than a normal IC (50 mins, €12.40) neither of which requires reservations. – Berend Aug 7 '18 at 13:29
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There are no dedicated luggage areas in Dutch intercity trains.

Some trains have seats which are back to back and you can store your luggage between the seat backs.
Some have a bit of space with the seat(s) at the end of the carriage.

But in most you are restricted to the racks above the seats, which have very little space in double decker trains and not a lot in single level ones.

You can bring you luggage into the area with the seats but if at all possible do not leave it in the aisle, as that will block people passing.

An other No is leaving your cases near the door and sit somewhere else as some luggage thieves are around.
There are often some seat with more space near the doors.

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