How to buy a bike in Amsterdam as a student

A bicycle is the ideal means of transport in Amsterdam. Your bike is always there for you and will take you exactly to your destination. But first, you must find a suitable bike. Do you want a cheap student bike from a webshop, or do you want a secondhand bicycle? But remember, never buy a bicycle from a stranger at the station for a little money; these are always stolen.

Buying a bike online 

You can buy a cheap new bicycle at various webshops and stores. At Decathlon, you can purchase a new bike for 150 euros, and at you can also choose from many different city bikes. When buying, pay attention to the bike's measures. Bicycles for adults have a standard wheel size of 28 inches and the bicycle size is determined by the size of the frame. The frame size indicates the distance between the bottom bracket's center and the seat tube's top. 

Here is an overview of which frame size you need for your height: 

  • From 1m55 you need frame size 47 - 50 cm 
  • From 1m65 you need frame size 50 - 52 cm 
  • From 1m70 you need frame size 52 - 55 cm 
  • From 1m75 you need frame size 55 - 58 cm 
  • From 1m80 you need frame size 58 - 61 cm 
  • From 1m85 you need frame size 61 - 63 cm 
  • From 1m90 you need frame size 63 - 66 cm 

Buying a secondhand bike from a bike shop 

Suppose you find it difficult to determine whether a bicycle is a good buy. In that case, you can go to a bicycle shop for secondhand bikes. Here the prices of bicycles start from about 200 euros. You often buy a bike of a good brand at a bicycle shop for a low cost. You will also receive advice about the size, and you can take a test ride. You also know that the necessary repairs have already been done. Secondhand bike shops can be found on every street corner. Just use your Google Maps and search for 'Bicycle shop’. Online variants are, for example, Cheapassbikes, ASVA and studentfiets

Buying a secondhand bike from a private individual 

You can easily buy a second-hand bicycle via Marktplaats or on Facebook Marketplace. Such a bicycle costs at least 50 euros. Can you find a cheaper bike? Then you are either very lucky, or you’re buying rubbish. So, make sure you know what to look for and which second-hand bikes have the quality you want. At Marktplaats you can buy a well-maintained bicycle that cost 1000 euros a few years ago, now for 200 euros. Where to look out for? A bike from the brand Koga, Gazelle and Giant with 3×8 or 3×7 gears and V-brakes would be a good buy. When the second-hand bike has been properly maintained, it is wise to ask for the serial number of the bicycle and the purchase invoice. This way, you know exactly what the price was, and you can be sure that the bike has not been stolen. 

Now that you have a new bike, you don't want it to get stolen. You can read here how you can prevent that.