Guilders have gone and the only currency you can use are the Euro’s (€). Credit cards are generally accepted, but not as widely as in the US. Most accepted credit cards are Visa and MasterCard. Nowadays your signature isn’t good enough anymore to use your credit card. You need to get a pin-code to be able to use your credit card in most stores.
The best place to change money is the GWK. They offer the best exchange rates for the lowest fee. Then there are also the general banks (like ABN Amro, Rabobank, VSB and ING) which also offer reasonable deals. The specialized currency exchanges (loud ads, small offices) tend to have higher fees, which makes it overall more expensive. For addresses see separate section.
Cash tills or ATM’s are scattered around the city, but unlike in several other countries they are not (yet) in many shops or bars. Most of them will accept your bankcard, so it will be easy to get money. On every cash till there is the logo’s which should correspond with one of the logos on your bankcard. If you don’t see a matching logo, look out for another cash till.
In Holland people also use electronic ways of paying: pinnen. With pinnen they give electronic permission to transfer money to the shop’s account. Apply for a Dutch bank account when you are staying longer in Holland and want to use these options.
After these tips shopping in Amsterdam may sound like a journey in the jungle. Have no fear! It is fun and there is a lot to spend your money on.
Addresses for changing money
We’ve listed the main exchange branches of the banks. Of course there are more branches so when you’re familiar with their logo’s watch out for them. Many of these branches have closed though and the only thing left are the ATM’s. Do not accept offers to change money from people in the street: they will trick you out of your money!
GWK Travelex , near may hotspots in the city; among others Central Station (Stationsplein), Dam Square (Damrak 86), Leidseplein (Leidsestraat 103)
ABN Amro Dam, Leidseplein and Haarlemmerplein 2
Rabobank Paulus Potterstraat 7, nextdoor the Van Gogh Museum