Information about visas can be found from the Dutch immigration and naturalisation service; see:
To learn more about The Netherlands please visit the Holland tourism site.
Travelling from Schiphol Airport to Groningen
If you arrive in the Netherlands at Schiphol, the Amsterdam International airport, the easiest way to travel to Groningen is to take the train. The underground train station is located near Schiphol Plaza, less than 5 minutes walk from the luggage claim areas. The Dutch railway system is run by Nederlandse Spoorwegen which can be recognized by its yellow and blue colours. Just follow the yellow illuminated signs that direct you “To the trains”.
WARNING: extended traveling time Schiphol – Groningen on July 5 and 6 !
There are planned maintenance activities on July 5 and July 6 regarding the railway track between Zwolle and Meppel (on the way from Schiphol/Amsterdam/Utrecht to Groningen). This will mean that between Zwolle and Meppel you will be transported by bus (everything will be indicated). This will unfortunately lead to an extension of the total traveling time by 15-30 minutes.
It is important that you purchase a train ticket to Groningen before you board the train. Passengers travelling without a valid ticket will be fined. You can buy either a first-class ticket (€ 42.50 one-way) or a second-class ticket (€ 25.00 one-way). Second class can be very crowded in the summer. There are three ways of purchasing a ticket: at the ticket office in the station hall, where you can purchase a ticket from a railway officer in person. From the yellow and blue ticket-vending machines that you will find in the luggage claim hall and by every entrance to the train terminal. You can purchase tickets from the machines only by using your credit card or a debit card with the Maestro logo. And online
Information on travelling by train can be accessed at the NS website in English
Trains depart from Schiphol Airport to Groningen twice each hour: One is direct (every hour starting from 7.03am), or another one that involves a change of train in Zwolle (every hour starting from 7.33am). The journey from Schiphol Airport takes 2 hours and eleven minutes. The trains are quite comfortable and most feature free wireless internet. However, there is no form of refreshment service on the trains, so be sure to purchase your snack at Schiphol (see
Travelling from Bremen Airport (Germany) to Groningen
Bremen airport might be convenient for cheap intra-European flights, because it hosts the discounter Ryanair and also offers low airport taxes.
There is a direct bus connection from the Bremen airport to Groningen runs by Publicexpress. The bus stop is situated close to the entrance/exit of the Ryanair terminal of the Bremen airport. The bus fare varies from € 9.00 to € 23.00 based on the departing times (for details, see the official schedule). It takes about 2.5 hours to reach the Groningen Central Station (CS).
Another possibility is an indirect train connection. For this, you have first to go to the Bremen Central Station (Hauptbahnhoff) by tram No. 6 (for the tram schedule see http://www.bsag.de/). Then you take a train to Groningen (do not confuse it with Gršningen, Germany!) with a change over in Leer, Germany. The journey from Bremen Hauptbahnhoff takes about 2.5 hours. More detailed information on the train connections can be found at http://www.deutschebahn.com/site/bahn/de/start.html or at http://www.nshispeed.nl/en.
Traveling to Groningen by car
Please note that car traffic in the city center is restricted, and street parking is scarce and limited to 2 hours or less. Also, beware of the numerous cyclists who may not exactly follow the traffic regulations.
There are ten parking garages located near the centre. Note that the opening times vary. For more information on car parking in Groningen, including the street parking regulations; see http://gemeente.groningen.nl/english/parking
Taxis in Groningen
Groningen has various taxi companies, for example:
Taxi Groningen: +31(0)50 541 8452
Taxi Noord: +31(0)50 549 4940
Taxi VTG: +31(0)50 535 0088