We will be arriving at Schiphol Airport in a couple of weeks on a Thursday from the United States at around 8:45 a.m. We would like to catch an Intercity train to Utrecht that departs Schiphol at 10:15 a.m.

Is there enough time between disembarkation through customs to catch that train, given US passports and nothing to declare?


3 Answers 3


I have flown many times to Schiphol and using a Dutch passport I get out of the place in 30 to 45 minutes. The time you spend extra waiting at passport control is time you wait less for your luggage.

Most of the time the line for 'all passports' is rather short but slow going.

From the exit of the secure area (the green channel) to the train should not be more than 5 minutes, follow the signs. If possible, look up the platform before you even arrive in the Netherlands. Most trains always leave from the same platform and if you are in a rush, it helps if you know which one you should have.

But I think you are leaving yourself enough time if your plane is not delayed.

I missed that you want to catch a train within the Netherlands. Those are without reservations, so you can catch any on the day, even when you buy a ticket online. Those trains run very often, you might even catch an earlier train rather than a later one. Most of those trains leave from the same platform every train that leaves on a given day or even all the time. But do read the sign on the platform because there are several trains in turn leaving from that one platform.

2016 update. I have been stuck in passport control quite a bit longer recently, 1 hour for one, more than 30 minutes at an other time. And that was using the 'fast' EU passports only options. It may have been the time of day, but do leave enough time for getting out of the airport when you book a seat reservation on a train.


Difficult to predict exactly but it sounds fine. I have done it much quicker but I know the airport and my experience is mostly based on short-haul flights with no hold luggage. However, I always have the feeling planes taxi forever at Schiphol so even if your flight is on time and you actually land at 08.45, there will be some delay before you enter the terminal.

Immigration should not be an issue, it's usually quite fast and it's a kind of “hidden” time anyway as it takes place before the luggage reclaim, which means that the time spent waiting in line is time you would spend waiting for your luggage anyway.

In any case, Intercity trains to Utrecht depart every quarter hour so it really doesn't matter, you can always catch the next one. You could easily lose more time because of some trouble on the train network than with airport formalities.

  • Thank you. The 10:15 IC train was recommended by Deutsche Bahn's site as a connector to the ICE into Dusseldorf, which is our real destination. Commented Jun 5, 2015 at 17:41

I have been there several times. Its quite simple to reach the train since its on the underground floor of the airport. You will find the escalators on the ground floor and it will transfer you to the trains. I would say it will take approximately 20 min. May be less if you are lucky :)

  • forgot to tell you that I have not waited to collect my bag since I had only a handbag
    – yaya
    Commented Jun 5, 2015 at 7:58

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