Last updated on 26 October 2021
Face masks in Amsterdam: where to wear and what to buy in 2023
Den Haag, October 26, 2021
Hello and welcome. We are Mondkatjes, a shop of washable cloth face masks made in Amsterdam.
Many people land on this page looking for information about where it is mandatory to wear face masks in the city. Although central government regulations change quickly, we strive to keep a list up-to-date as often as possible.
We first published this page in 2020, as a guide to face masks in Amsterdam: where they are required, where it is recommended to wear them and where you can buy them.
Where are face masks mandatory in Amsterdam?
Like in other cities of the Netherlands, from June 26, 2021, a face mask will only be mandatory on public transport, passenger transport, inside stations, airports and in the secondary education. This also applies if you are fully vaccinated.
A face mask is therefore only mandatory on public transport, passenger transport, in airplanes, at airports and at secondary schools. The mask mandate applies to everyone older than 13 years.
In any other place, including shops, coffee shops, restaurants, shops, museums, wearing a face mask is not mandatory by the Dutch government.
In certain places, for example specific shops or buildings, you may have to wear a face mask.
If so, there's a sign like this at the entrance:
Where to buy face masks in Amsterdam
At Mondkatjes we make high-quality, custom-made reusable face masks, reusable face masks so that they always fit well to your face. Our face masks are made of four layers of cotton to ensure maximum safety. Thanks to the quality fabric and the detachable ear loops, a face mask Mondkatjes is a bargain that can last for months.
Which face masks to wear in Amsterdam, if necessary?
According to the guidelines of the RIVM and the Dutch Government, a face mask does not have to be of medical quality, but it should completely cover the mouth and nose.
The purpose of the mask is to prevent the spread of viruses and other germs. This means that a scarf or bandana is not considered a face mask. A face shield is not considered as a valid alternative to a face mask either. After all, it does not completely cover the mouth and nose.
In a peer-reviewed study published in the journal Science Advances, researchers found that some masks — particularly neck gaiters — can disperse large droplets into smaller, more airborne droplets.
This means that a bandana can actually make things worse and spread dangerous infected particles into the air.
However, surgical and cotton face masks have been shown to reduce transmission and significantly slow the spread of airborne viruses.
Below you find a detailed overview of specific places in Amsterdam where a mask may be needed. We try to keep this list up to date, although the rules can change quickly as we saw in 2020 and 2021.
Face masks in Amsterdam Central Station
Wearing a face mask is mandatory on public transport. This is because it is not always possible to keep 1,5 meters away.
The mask mandate applies to the train, bus, tram and metro, the platforms, the stops and for the entire station building. So for the entire station, and also for the shops at the station.
This applies to travelers aged 13 and older and also to public transport staff. A face mask is also mandatory on platforms and at bus stops.
Note: If you do not wear a face mask where it is mandatory, you can be fined 95 euros. 💸
Face masks in Amsterdam taxis
Wearing a face mask in taxis in Amsterdam and in the Netherlands is mandatory, but not if you are the only passenger. If you travel with other people, wearing a face mask is mandatory. This applies to passengers from 13 years of age.
The same rules apply to coaches: if you are the only passenger, you do not have to wear a mask. If you travel with more passengers in the coach, a mask is mandatory.
For more information about travel and public transport, visit the website of the Rijksoverheid.
Face masks mandatory at Amsterdam Schiphol
Wearing a face mask is mandatory within Schiphol, as is keeping a distance of 1.5 meters. This is important in queues, at check-in, at security and when boarding the plane.
In practice, wearing a face mask is mandatory from your arrival at Schiphol Plaza to the aircraft.
If you have just landed at Schiphol, a face mask is mandatory until you are outside again.
What type of mouth masks are suitable on the plane?
The type of face masks you wear depends on the airline you are flying with. Dutch airlines allow masks for public use, so surgical masks and cloth masks are fine. This may be different for other companies. You can inform the airline in advance.
Change your face mask every four hours 🕓
It is advisable to take more than one face with you for travel. A face cap can be worn for a maximum of 4 hours at a time. You should put on a clean mask after each use.
For more information about face masks at Schiphol airport, view the Schipol website.
Face masks mandatory on the ferry in Amsterdam
The mask mandate does apply on the ferries and on the ferries that sail from Amsterdam Central, with one exception: on the Hempont in Zaanstad, passengers can board without a mask, but if they disembark on Amsterdam territory without their mask on, they can receive a fine. This is because Zaanstad is part of Zaanstreek Waterland, where there is no obligation to wear a face mask on the ferries.
A logical solution? Always wear your face mask during your trip to avoid being fined.
Face masks in the supermarkets of Amsterdam
In the supermarkets of Amsterdam, the rules of the central government apply.
It is recommended to keep 1.5 meters away from each other and the employees.
At large supermarket chains, the use of a shopping cart or a shopping basket is mandatory. You can also pay for your groceries contactless with your debit card or mob
Masks compulsory in museums, such as the Rijksmuseum and the Stedelijk museum
In Amsterdam museums, wearing a face mask is not mandatory for visitors. It is of course allowed if visitors feel comfortable with that.
The basic rules of the government continue to apply in the Rijksmuseum:
Keep 1.5 meters away from others.
Wash your hands often and thoroughly.
Do not visit the museum if you have complaints and have yourself tested immediately.
Please note: it is not possible to pay with cash in the museum. Not even in the shop or Het Café within the museum.
Parks in Amsterdam: compulsory masks or not?
Some people, especially tourists, still ask themselves the question: should I wear a face mask when I go to the Westerpark or the Vondelpark in Amsterdam?
You don't have to wear a mask in the open air, so if you want to have a pic-nic or a BBQ in the parks of Amsterdam, don't worry about it.
It is of course important that you follow the advice of the central government: keep a minimum distance (1.5 m) from other people, wash your hands often, cough and sneeze into your elbow and do not visit crowded places.