Trains in Groningen
If you want to travel by public transport, the train is a very good option in the Netherlands. There is an extensive railway network, which means you can reach almost every destination by using the train.
There are a couple of railway stations in Groningen, namely Station Europapark, Station Groningen-Noord and the Central Station Groningen. The last station is the biggest and most important one in Groningen and is located right next to the city centre. From here, you can take a train to almost everywhere in the Netherlands.
Although you can still buy single tickets at the station or online, most people in the Netherlands use a public transport chip card (OV-chipkaart). This card is the general public transport card and can also be used when travelling by bus, tram or metro. You should charge the card with electronic credits. Note that the card must contain enough credit to complete a journey. Using a chip card is a lot cheaper than buying single tickets, especially when you regularly use public transport.
When you enter a bus, train, metro or tram, you have to check in by holding your card up to the card reader until you see a green light and hear a beep. Always remember to check out when leaving the vehicle.
Have a look at the OV-chipkaart website for more information on how to use it properly.
NS and Arriva
There are two railway companies operating from the stations of Groningen: NS and Arriva. NS is short for Nederlandse Spoorwegen (Dutch railways) and is the biggest train operator in the Netherlands. If you want to travel outside of the north of the Netherlands, you will probably need to get one of the yellow NS trains. If you want to travel to Friesland or within the province of Groningen, you will probably take one of the Arriva trains. Although a ticket often lets you travel with either one of the companies, it is important to check in with your OV public transport chip card at the right company. If you travel with the NS, you should check in at one of the yellow pillars and you should look for the grey and red pillars when you want to travel with Arriva.
Plan your journey
If you want to plan your journey, you can use the website 9292. You can enter your departing location and your destination and either the time you want to depart or the time you want to arrive. The planner shows the best public transport options for your journey.