Rotterdam is very well connected by air, road and rail. The nearest airports are Rotterdam The Hague and Amsterdam Schiphol. Rotterdam Central Station has direct international train connections to major cities including London, Paris, Berlin, and Brussels among others. The RIPE 86 venue, Ahoy, also has a large parking area for those arriving by car.
RIPE 86 Venue
Rotterdam Ahoy Convention Centre
3084 BA Rotterdam
Tel: +381 11-3333100
The Ahoy website provides detailed accessibility information
- Public transport in the Netherlands
- Rotterdam Centraal Station
- Airports to the venue
- Train travel from abroad
- By car
- Useful links
Public transport in the Netherlands
Using an OV Chipkaart
It’s possible to travel on all public transportation, including trains, buses, trams and metros, in the Netherlands using the Dutch public transportation card – the OV-Chipkaart. An OV-Chipkaart can be bought from the NS ticket counter at Schiphol Airport, certain NS vending machines and at Rotterdam Centraal Station.
A limited number of OV Chipkaarts are available at the registration desk for RIPE 86 attendees. Check if there are any available while collecting your badge.
Using Your Bank Card
For visitors, it is often not necessary to buy this card as public transport carriers support both e-tickets as well as checking in and out directly with a contactless bank card using the OVpay system. If your bank card is compatible, you can simply tap in and out of public transport systems using your bank card instead of an OV Chipkaart. Make sure you use the same device for checking in and out. Your card will be charged the next day. You can get an overview of your trips on the OVpay website.
OVpay is available on trains as well as the Rotterdam metro (but not yet on trams and buses in Rotterdam). Simply hold your bank card or mobile payment device next to the reader on a gate or ticket pole both at the beginning and the end of your journey. In case you travel on an Intercity Direct train between Schiphol Airport and Rotterdam Centraal, you also have to pay a surcharge by tapping one of the red poles on the platform before boarding the train.
Using an e-ticket
You can buy a train ticket on the website of NS or in the mobile app. The barcode printed on the ticket can be used to open gates in stations.
Important: If you plan to show the barcode on your mobile phone, make sure to use the NS app. Do not try to show it in a PDF viewer or as a screenshot. This might result in accidental NFC payment. For getting around Rotterdam, you can buy an e-ticket using the RET App.
Rotterdam Centraal Station to the RIPE 86 venue
The main railway station in Rotterdam is Rotterdam Centraal. Rotterdam has a public transport system provided by the RET. You can get all over the city by bus, tram and metro.
Estimated journey time: 12 minutes in the metro and a 5 minute walk
From Rotterdam Centraal Station, take Metro D or Metro E (towards De Akkers/Slinge) and exit at Zuidplein. Rotterdam Ahoy is about a 5-minute walk from there.
To use the metro, you can use a bank card, or an OV Chipkaart for checking in and out (one journey costs € 1.97) or buy tickets from vending machines or the RET app (2 hour ticket for € 4.50, 24 hour ticket for € 9.50).
Airports to the venue
Rotterdam The Hague Airport (RTM)
Estimated journey time: 26 mins
Estimated taxi fare: €50-70
By Public Transport
Total journey time: 40-45 mins
Estimated fare: €4.50
There are frequent buses (about once every 10 – 15 minutes) from Rotterdam The Hague Airport. Take bus 33 (towards Overschie) and get off at Blijdorp. From Blijdorp take Metro D or Metro E (toward De Akkers/Slinge) and exit at Zuidplein. Rotterdam Ahoy is about a 5 minute walk from there.
TIP: In Rotterdam, you can purchase public transport tickets from the desks or the terminals at the airport or using the RET App.
Please note: It is not yet possible to check in and out using a bank card on buses and trams of Rotterdam.
Amsterdam Schiphol Airport (AMS)
Estimated journey time: 50 mins
Estimated taxi fare: €110–150
Directions: Follow the signs above and on the floor towards the terminal to reach the official taxi stands in front of Schiphol Plaza. From there, you can catch a metered taxi, so you’ll never pay more than you have to. The drivers accept credit cards, cannot refuse carriage and will issue a printed receipt. Please avoid all unsolicited rides from taxi touts.
By Public Transport
Total journey time: 40 – 60 mins
Ticket fare: €15
There are frequent trains (about once every 10 – 15 minutes) from Amsterdam Schiphol Airport to Rotterdam Centraal Station. The Intercity Direct train takes roughly 26 minutes, and the standard Intercity train takes almost an hour.
From Rotterdam Centraal Station, take Metro D or Metro E (towards De Akkers/Slinge) and get off at Zuidplein. Rotterdam Ahoy is about a 5 minute walk from there.
You can purchase train tickets from the desks or the terminals at the airport. You can also buy train tickets online from the NS website and load them directly on your mobile phone.
You can check in at one of the yellow poles in Schiphol plaza with your bank card (or an OV-chipkaart). You can also purchase train tickets from the desks or the terminals at the airport or online from the NS website or in the NS app (booking a ticket at least 4 days in advance gets you a 10% discount). When using an online ticket, make sure to have it either printed or loaded into the NS app. Using a PDF viewer to show the barcode might cause issues by accidentally triggering an NFC payment instead.
TIP: Take the Intercity Direct train, but make sure to get the supplement. There is a €2.90 supplement charge for taking the Intercity Direct train that goes directly between Schiphol Airport and Rotterdam Central station. If you are buying an e-ticket, make sure to include the IC Direct supplement when paying. If you are using an OV Chipkaart or paying by bank card, you need to tap in additionally at the red supplement posts on the platform itself, in addition to checking in for the train. If you forget to tap in for the high-speed supplement, you may be charged a supplement fee on the train.
Train travel from abroad
The Dutch railways international website allows you to book international train journeys to the UK, Germany, Belgium and France. Trains such as the Eurostar and Thalys also have their own booking websites along with other national railways.
London St Pancras International – Rotterdam Centraal
Estimated journey time: 3 – 5 hours
Estimated fare: €110-190
Trains depart for Rotterdam Central roughly every two hours from London St. Pancras International. Please note that there are border controls prior to boarding the train in London as you will enter the Schengen area. Make sure to allow for additional time for passport and security checks.
Berlin Hbf – Rotterdam Centraal Train Hannover Hbf – Rotterdam Centraal
Estimated journey time: 4 – 5.30 hours
Estimated fare: €150-170
Trains run roughly once an hour with a transfer at Amersfoort Centraal station from Hannover Hbf station to Rotterdam Centraal station.
Paris Gare du Nord – Rotterdam Centraal
Estimated journey time: 2:30 – 4 hours
Estimated fare: €350-400
The Thalys runs from Paris Gare du Nord to Rotterdam Centraal, with departures nearly every hour.
Brussels Central – Rotterdam Centraal
Estimated journey time: 2 hours
Estimated fare: €54
Direct trains operate hourly from Brussels Central to Rotterdam Centraal.
Rotterdam Ahoy has 2,000 parking spaces. To be sure of a parking space on event days, it is possible to buy a parking ticket with a parking guarantee until 2 hours before the event. For €19, you are assured that you will have a parking space next to Ahoy, without a parking guarantee you pay €16.
If the parking lot is full and you do not have a pre-purchased parking ticket with a guarantee, you can go to Q-Park Zuidplein or another parking facility in the vicinity.
You can park your car for and then continue by public transportation to Ahoy. P+R Slinge is only one metro stop from Zuidplein/Ahoy.
RIPE 86 venue accessibility information
OV Chipkaart – the Dutch public transport card
Travelling by train within the Netherlands
Travelling by train from another country
Parking in Rotterdam
Rotterdam public transport information