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A few more questions about NS Flex


Reputatie 1
Hello!

1) I’ll be in Holland (visiting family that live there) for 29 days at the end of the month and have interest in ordering NS Flex with Dal Vrij for a month as it’s obviously the successor to the summer Dal Vrij month pass. By the way, I also asked about that, they told me it is NOT coming back this year. Anyways, 29 days, 1 days less than a month. Do I need a ticket machine to cancel Dal Vrij on NS Flex like a traditional abonnement? Or do you just regulate it online? This one is the most important question for me because I will leave again a day earlier before the end of the month, and obviously won’t have access to a ticket machine.

2) unfortunately for me the earliest start date is June 30th (I have to order a new one, the old card has expired), I arrive a day earlier on the 29th. Is it possible to travel on full fare (on account) with NS Flex so getting home from schiphol is easy and stress free or will I need to upload with €20 euros?

3) Can someone confirm for me is it seriously not possible to load a seperate bus/tram product on the card? For example, a GVB-Only month pass. I’m willling to accept this flaw, but just wanted someone to confirm first before I accidentally waste €92 on it.

if it’s really too complicated another idea is I’ll just order Dal voordeel, manage a budget and turn it into Dal Vrij for a month when I next come back in a year (that is, if NS Flex hasn’t resulted in traditional abonnements being scrapped 😉 )
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Beste antwoord door Robert B 23 juni 2018, 14:03

Hi Jake!

You're in luck because any change in NS Flex subscriptions is handled administratively, and does NOT require confirmation at a ticket machine anymore!

Other products like GVB bus/tram/metro (or even credit for the coffee machine at work) can easily be added to a (personal) card. No worries.

Only the complete cancellation of NS Flex needs to be confirmed/removed from your card at a machine, but if you just switch to Flex Basic (which is free) after a month of Dal Vrij, you are good to go.

Best of all, a new ov-chipcard with NS Flex Dal Vrij is free, and valid for 5 years. To order, you will probably need a Dutch IBAN account with iDeal payment, though... so ask a family member to handle that.
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Badge +3
Hi Jake!

You're in luck because any change in NS Flex subscriptions is handled administratively, and does NOT require confirmation at a ticket machine anymore!

Other products like GVB bus/tram/metro (or even credit for the coffee machine at work) can easily be added to a (personal) card. No worries.

Only the complete cancellation of NS Flex needs to be confirmed/removed from your card at a machine, but if you just switch to Flex Basic (which is free) after a month of Dal Vrij, you are good to go.

Best of all, a new ov-chipcard with NS Flex Dal Vrij is free, and valid for 5 years. To order, you will probably need a Dutch IBAN account with iDeal payment, though... so ask a family member to handle that.
Reputatie 1
Hey Robert, this sounds really amazing to be honest! Thank you for your quick reply.

The (free travel with) the train is more important to me because I will be travelling with the train almost every day to see as much as the beautiful country as I can in a month. In Amsterdam I don’t live right next to an NS Station though, so would be taking a tram almost every day too, even for the days I stay in Amsterdam. As I note NS flex states the travel on account applies for the bus tram and metro as well, I just want to really really be sure that the card readers at GVB won’t pick up NS Flex (full fare) over the GVB-abonnement, that’s what I wanted to clear up.

Switching to NS Flex Basic (free) after the one month of Dal Vrij is over is exactly what I had in mind and if I can do that online by myself without a ticket machine, that is really awesome to hear and another improvement from the old abonnements, and I think otherwise, I will order it now!

as for the last paragraph, yes I know about that, they’re willing to order it and I simply pay them the costs. plan is, they will meet me at the airport with my new card! Reading some other topics here, hopefully it does arrive on time 🙂
Badge +3
I stand corrected... see this snippet of a discussion (in Dutch).

The GVB subscription is not compatible with NS Flex on the same card, because Flex handles any public transport transactions and wil overrule the GVB subscription.

Ask GVB if they can lend you a separate card for that (I know HTM in The Hague has that option).

Too bad http://www.tripkey.nl/registration-for-tripkey-cards-temporarily-closed Tripkey is temporarily closed for registration :(

Regarding the timely arrival of a newly ordered card and the horror stories about that, please keep in mind that it can take up to a week (on average 3 business days to make the card, plus postal delivery time).
Reputatie 1
No worries Robert I’ll either just travel on full fare Flex or order another card from ovchipkaart.nl for tram travel - shame though, but thanks for picking that up for me (I can understand the general ideas mentioned in that topic). The really most important thing for me is just being able to switch from Dal Vrij to the Basic (free) online overseas
when the one month is over otherwise that will be a huge nightmare, the rest I can take care of!
Badge +3
I edited my previous reply a bit, but rest assured that NS Flex Dal Vrij for a month is completely possible and does not require any machine interaction to change to a different plan.

Happy travel!
Reputatie 1
It’s been ordered and I have a confirmation email 😃 I just read the NS Flex terms and conditions and I do see it says under terminating (yes I do understand a limited amount of Dutch) that it’s the base product (free) that requires a ticket machine to be removed, the actual abonnements are adjusted online (yay!)

https://www.ns.nl/binaries/_ht_1526461593341/content/assets/ns-nl/voorwaarden/productvoorwaarden-ns-flex.pdf

as for the bus and tram, what I might do this time actually. Ok, last summer, I had Dal Vrij monthly in combination with a month Netabonnement for 275 euros, yes, I really did explore around in many cities. It was fun. Mostly The Hague and Rotterdam (and Amsterdam obviously), but anyways. But after two weeks I lost track of counting the actual costs incurred. This time around, I might just use the NS Flex in the bus tram and metro everywhere in the country. And then now I can accurately see as a trial if I spend under 275 euros, and if I do, then that’s completely fine for me. Or decide if a seperate ov chipkaart is the best option. I’ll work it out!
Badge +3
Cool!

Bus/tram/metro fares are € 0,90 starting fee plus roughly € 0,16 per km. I'll leave the math to you :P

As far as I know, the OV-fiets (bicycle) rental subscription is included with Flex. Rent is € 3,85 per 24 hours, and you can rent two bikes simultaneously.
Reputatie 5
Hello Jake_89!

I can see that Robert has already been so kind as to help you along.

It's indeed not possible as of yet to combine NS Flex with a regional bus, tram or metro product yet.
This is due to technical reasons. In the future this is something that might be resolved, but for the time being we advise people to use a separate chipcard if they have such a product.

Is there anything else you would like to have cleared up about NS Flex?
Reputatie 1
Hello Jake_89!

I can see that Robert has already been so kind as to help you along.

It's indeed not possible as of yet to combine NS Flex with a regional bus, tram or metro product yet.
This is due to technical reasons.
In the future this is something that might be resolved, but for the time being we advise people to use a separate chipcard
if they have such a product.

Is there anything else you would like to have cleared up about NS Flex?

Thanks Ben! If anything else comes up, I'll respond to this thread 🙂 Thank you!
Reputatie 1
Okay so I’m here, the 30th is tomorrow and unfortunately I’m about to become a victim of the very thing I said, don’t do, and that is, my new OV-Chipkaart has not arrived on time. 😪

Absolutely no information in Mijn NS either about Flex. Neither NS customer service or ov-chipkaart could tell me the whereabouts of the card or if it’s even been produced which is even more worrying, proposed solution was “just pay for all your trips and we’ll reimburse you :)”

NS I appreciate you trying, but i have to stress, I’m very dissapointed. Is this really the best you can do here? If it doesn’t arrive tomorrow on Saturday, we’re talking about me having to put aside about three-four days worth of full fare train trips which I haven’t budgeted for, having already paid beforehand upfront (or simply lose 4 days of the month). As the card can come in next possible date on Tuesday if it’s not tomorrow on Saturday.
That's a pity, Jake_89. I can not promise you anything, but I would like to ask you to send me a private message with your name, dutch postal code + house number, date of birth, card number and your email address. To send a private message, click on my username and then click on 'stuur bericht'.
Reputatie 1
Hi Erryt, thank you, I’ll message you now
Badge +3
Oops.. for a new ov-chipcard with any subscription (including Flex I assume) the starting date is always set to 7 days after ordering.

Usually a new card will have been produced and delivered (by snail mail). Until then, you can buy tickets at a machine, which will be reimbursed afterwards so keep them safe!
I did receive a message from Jake and we did get to a solution so Jake doesn't need to purchase tickets this weekend.
Reputatie 1
I thank Erryt for his help in assisting me with a temporary solution that did help me out a lot, so thank you very much for letting my holiday run more smoothly so far. Its very kind, and I appreciate the considerate gesture on his behalf.

Im confident the card will arrive in the next few days (if it hasn’t today, will check when I get home) ☺ and otherwise bought a pass for the bus and tram for my other ov chipcard so been able to enjoy that half of public transport so far!
Reputatie 1
Well, I have to seriously give some advice to people - if you want to try out NS Flex, don’t order it on a new card. It might be free, but it comes with a catch, and that is, reading other people’s stories here too, you can expect it to arrive (very) late. If possible, I would just use a spare personal ov-chipkaart if you happen to have one, then it starts the same day, no drama.

My own Flex was supposed to start on the 30th of June, and the card only arrived today, 10th of July. Reading the letter, the card was only produced on the 3rd of July and still took a whole week to reach my house (laughable). That’s OV Chipkaarts fault, not NS though. Now I do of course want to acknowledge and thank, NS customer service was very helpful in keeping me moving during this rather stressful period with some compensation, but reading on this forum that many other people have had the exact same problem as I have, maybe it’s a known glitch. The OV chipkaart customer service couldn’t even see my new card or advise me of an estimated delivery date until a few days ago, something also quite concerning. Point is, it was pretty stressful. In my case, we’re already 1/3rd through the month. Finally, there’s still absolutely no information in Mijn NS whatsoever, which is weird.

And further, I would give feedback myself now and advise NS perhaps in the meantime to help remedy it, extend the compulsory one-week-in-advance start date for new Flex cards (and let people choose the start date, it’s very questionable you can do so for the normal subscriptions, but not Flex) - one week evidently just isn’t enough for OV-Chipkaart anymore to produce and deliver, which is a pity. They used to be able to deliver cards with a turnaround time of a few days.

anyways negatives aside, now that it’s finally here, I look forward to trying out this new system!

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