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Topping up the balance on your OV-chipkaart

If you would like to use your OV-chipkaart to travel with public transport, you must first top up the balance on your card at any OV-chipkaart top-up point, such as the NS Ticket Machine at any NS station. Remember to top up your balance before you check in. You can top up your balance to a maximum of € 150.

Minimum balance on your OV-chipkaart

In order to travel with NS, you must have at least € 20 on your OV-chipkaart balance. If you have an NS season ticket, then other minimum amounts apply:

  • For an OV-chipkaart with Dal Vrij, Weekend Vrij, Dal Voordeel, Altijd Voordeel or Voordeelurenabonnement, the minimum balance is € 10.
  • For Weekend Vrij, you are only charged if you travel on weekdays outside of the free period.
  • For Dal Vrij, you are only charged if you travel during peak hours.
  • No check-in fee is charged if you have an Altijd Vrij or Traject Vrij season ticket.
  • With an NS-Business Card, you travel on account, so there is no minimum balance requirement.

How to top up your balance

Topping up your card balance is very simple:

  • Select ‘Saldo laden’ (Top up balance) at an NS Ticket Machine, or:
  • Select ‘Saldo aanvullen’ at an NS Ticket Machine.
  • Choose an amount, for example: ‘Top up to € 10’. This may be necessary if you would like to travel with the Combined Travel discount. The machine will display the amounts available for your card. If you have already checked in, then the NS Ticket Machine will not display this option.

If you would like to request a refund for the balance on your card or transfer it to a new OV-chipkaart, please fill in the 'OV-chipkaart balance refund' form at an NS or OV service desk. 

Automatic balance top-up

If you have a personal OV-chipkaart, you can request Automatic top-up to make sure that you always have enough on your balance. As soon as your balance reaches € 0, a fixed amount will be automatically debited from your bank account. Automatic top-up is only available with a personal OV-chipkaart. Your balance is automatically increased when you check in and out at the check-in pole.