International travel and opening gates

On your international trip you will come realise that a lot of Dutch stations have gates. The square barcode on your HomePrint Ticket or Mobile Ticket and single-use smartcard are specifically designed to open the gates at the station. On this page we provide you with information about opening the gates with different tickets.

Opening gates

An international ticket with a square barcode

With an international ticket you do not have to check in. However, at more and more Dutch stations the gates are closed. You can open the gates with a square barcode on your international ticket. For this purpose, there are special gates with a barcode reader. These can be identified by the scan ticket-symbol on the gate. To open the gate, hold the barcode still over the illuminated area on the gate.

View the film (in Dutch) about Travelling abroad with an international ticket.

An international ticket with a single-use smart card

Are you travelling with an international ticket and a single-use smart cared? Then you can check in in the Netherlands with the single-use smart card to open the gate. You will not be able check out abroad and when returning not be able to check in. When you returning in the Netherlands you can check out using your single-use smart card at the cards and so leave the station.

View the film (in Dutch) about Travelling abroad with an single-use smart card.

With an NS subscription in combination with an NMBS or DB subscription

Are you a frequent traveller to Belgium or Germany in combination with an NMBS or DB subscription? Then you can request a square barcode to open the gates in the Netherlands. This will prevent you having to pay the entry fee, when you open the gates on your OV-chipkaart in the Netherlands without checking out abroad.

Request barcode

Send an email with a copy of your NMBS or DB subscription and the number of your OV-chipkaart to keycard@ns.nl.

Within 5 working days, you will receive an email with a square barcode in return. With it, for a few days, you can open the gates and arrival and departure station in the Netherlands without using your OV-chipkaart.

Please note!

You can only request the barcode if you have only of the following NS subscriptions on your OV-chipkaart:

  • Weekend Vrij of Dal Vrij
  • Studentenreisproduct
  • Traject Vrij to the last domestic station

Ask for help at an information column

Are the gates not opening or do you not have a (working) square barcode on your international ticket?

Go to an information column by the gates and press the blue i-button for assistance. You will be connected to a member of the NS staff who will gladly help you.

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