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Education Master's Master's international students Study in Groningen Living in the Netherlands


Travelling the Dutch way

The City of Groningen has excellent connections to all main airports and railway stations in the Netherlands. It is located in the northeast of the Netherlands, approximately 200 km from Amsterdam and 250 km from Bremen in Germany. To travel in the Netherlands you will need an OV-chip (OV-chipkaart), this card is used in all forms of public transport.

Public transport chip card (OV-chip)

With the OV-chip you have to check in before your trip and check out after having reached your destination. If you switch to another transportation company during your trip, you have to check out with the first company and check in with the new one. E.g. if you take a train to Amsterdam and a bus to the city center, do not forget to check out at the train station and check in in the bus. This is also applicable if you transfer from one train company to another.

Please find more information about the system and how to use the OV-chipkaart at the following web pages:

Discounted public transport for international students

The UG has started a collaboration with Student Mobility, who are offering a public transport card with discounts specifically for international students. The Student Mobility Card is a custom-made public transport card and UG students who choose to purchase one are entitled to the standard 15% off-peak discount for the NS (National train) as well as 40% off-peak discount in local buses (Qbuzz) and trains (Arriva) on top of that for the entire academic year 2022-2023. You can read more about this card and order yours on the Student Mobility website.

Getting to Groningen

There are several ways to get to Groningen: you can rent a car, by taxi, take a train or the bus. Below shows the easiest way to get to Groningen from Schiphol (Amsterdam) or Bremen.

Schiphol - Groningen

You will probably arrive in the Netherlands at Schiphol, Amsterdam International Airport. The easiest way to travel to Groningen is to take the train. The underground train station is located near Schiphol Plaza, within several minutes walking distance from the luggage claim. The Dutch railway system is run by Nederlandse Spoorwegen and known as NS. You will recognize it by its yellow and blue colours. Look out for the yellow illuminated signs that direct you ‘To the trains’.

There is a direct hourly train service to Groningen from Schiphol Airport. Additional connections every hour involve just one change of trains. Make sure that you board one of the carriages marked with the destination Groningen (the other part of the train travels to Leeuwarden). The journey from Amsterdam or Schiphol Airport to Groningen takes a little over 2 hours.

See also the national railway timetables.

Bremen - Groningen

Another way to arrive in the Netherlands is via Bremen Airport. The cheapest and easiest way to travel from Bremen to Groningen is to take the Flixbus . This will take you from Bremen to Groningen in about 2,5 hours and costs around 11 euro (one way), depending on the time you travel. You can book your ticket online or buy one directly from the driver. The buses run about 8 times a day, from 6.30h to 23.30h.

Once arrived in Groningen, you are advised to take a taxi to bring you to your accommodation. You can find taxis at the front of the Groningen railway station.

Transportation within Groningen


Within the city of Groningen several bus lines connect the outer districts with the city center and the railway station. There are two direct bus lines from and to the Zernike campus, which are lines 11 and 15. The OV-chipkaart is used to pay for the bus ride.

You can use this journeyplanner for all Dutch public transport.


The best way to travel in and around Groningen is the way the Dutch do: on bicycle. A vast network of bike lanes extends through the entire city and to many villages around. Some years ago, it was estimated that after Beijing, Groningen has the greatest density of bicycles per person in the world. Most people have at least one, and many people even have two (one for the city, one for sports). The downside is that many bicycles ‘acquire’ a new owner without the consent of the first owner. Always keep it locked, and store it if possible. If you want to buy a 2nd hand bicycle, the best and most reliable way of doing this is from the bicycle garage at the main railway station. Never buy one from someone you meet on the street: it will be a stolen one! If you are caught doing so, you will be heavily fined. There are a lot of bicycle shops in the city. You would rather buy a cheap or even second hand bike than a new one.

Studying at Campus Fryslân

Campus Fryslân is located in the province of Friesland. This province is easy to reach via public transportation from places all over the Netherlands. When you arrive at Schiphol Airport, it's easy to go to Leeuwarden by train. There is a direct connection Schiphol to Leeuwarden which leaves every hour. Getting from Schiphol to Leeuwarden takes about two hours. When you are traveling from Bremen Airport, it is easiest to take the Flixbus to Groningen, where you will continue your journey by train. There is a direct train connection between Groningen en Leeuwarden, this journey takes 34 minutes and leaves every 20 minutes. To read more about traveling to and in Leeuwarden, visit the website of Campus Fryslân.

Are you an international student? Please visit our pages for internationals.

Laatst gewijzigd:01 september 2023 10:05