The basics

You bet renting a boat in Amsterdam and driving it yourself is more fun than doing one of the standard canal cruises on a large tourist boat! Wanna know why? Check out our article about private boat rental.

Yes, you can drive the boat yourself! No boating license or previous experience is required. Prior to the start of your private Amsterdam canal tour you will receive a personal explanation by our enthusiastic and knowledgeable staff. The handling of our boats is very basic and easy. And the maximum speed on the Amsterdam canals is just 6 km/h. So you can steer your own canal boat with absolute confidence. After your canal tour make sure to include ‘skipper’ on your resume!

You need a couple of things for renting a boat in Amsterdam. To start with: you need some common sense, some responsibility and some respect for beautiful Amsterdam canals and the people that live and work there. Secondly, we ask you to bring one valid ID and a credit card when picking up your boat. This credit card can also belong to someone else on your boat. If no one of you has a credit card, please contact us in advance to find another solution.
You don’t need any boating experience, nor a boat license.

It’s good to be prepared! Please use our checklist for that.


You need to be at least 18 years old for renting our boats. If you’re not, please find an adult that wants to accompany you. Or grow up quickly!

No, music on board of boats on the Amsterdam is strictly forbidden by law. So please leave your speakers, boom boxes and instruments at home. The fine is euro 220,-!

Yes, you may smoke on board. However, don’t put your cigarette stubs in the battery boxes (this might get explosive) and please do not litter in the canals either.

There has to be one ‘designated driver’: the skipper of your boat is not allowed to drink any alcohol or use any drugs. Other people on the boat are allowed to do so, as long as they know how to behave as a decent guest in our beautiful city.

The boats

Remember Henry Ford? “Any customer can have a car painted any color that he wants so long as it is black.” Likewise, we have one type of canal boat. Our boats are all blank aluminium and built with one thing in mind: to take you on a relaxes and safe boat tour on the Amsterdam canals. There is enough space for six people and some luggage. The engine is electric, so very clean and silent.

6 people per boat is the maximum allowed, due to the insurance and the license of our boats.

Yes, that’s no problem. It’s best to take a travel cod or a Maxi-cosi, so the baby can sleep as you enjoy the Amsterdam canals. We have small life vests. Please let us know in advance if you need one (info@boats4rent.nl). And please be informed that a life vest for a baby only works properly if your baby wears a special swimming daiper or no daiper.

The maximum speed on the Amsterdam canals is 6 km/h and our boats go 5 km/h, which equals the average walking speed. So you will get to see as much of the city as during a three or four hour walk, without having to walk for three or four hours… And believe us: there is a lot to see in three or four hours!

No, we only have open boats. If you prefer to hire a partially covered electric boat please check our colleagues of Boaty Boat Rental Amsterdam.

Sorry, we don’t rent houseboats. But we do have a list of 9 tips for renting a houseboat in Amsterdam.

Booking, rescheduling, canceling

If you want to rent a boat today, please call +31 20 700 9377. For any other day please use our easy online booking tool.

On weekends and on holidays we are often fully booked. If the weather is good, weekday afternoons and evening are also in high demand. Our advice: always book your boat in advance, either by phone for today or online for any other day. Don’t worry about the weather when making your booking: in case of an unfavorable weather forecast (rain, storm, thunder or snow) you may reschedule your booking for free until 24 hours before the starting time of your rental.

You may find that your favorite time slot is already fully booked. Our online booking tool will show all available alternatives. If they don’t suit you, please check the availability at our colleagues of Boaty Amsterdam Boat Rental.

In case of a bad weather forecast you may reschedule your rental for free, until 24 hours before the start of your rental. We cannot take responsibility for any other possible reasons for rescheduling.

Normally, we don’t cancel and refund. However, if you let us know far in advance we might be willing to make an exception.

Planning your trip: rental periods, location, routes

You can choose between a rental period of 3 hours, 4 hours, or a full day of maximum 10 hours. For more information please check out our overview of rental times and rates.

For reservations we open at 9 AM. For two reasons it pays off to start early. Firstly, our unbeatable morning rates apply. And secondly, the canals will be much more quiet.

We close half an hour before the sun goes down. This means our closing time varies from 7 PM in early spring and late autumn until 9.30 PM during summer.

Your boat tour starts and ends at our dock in the canal opposite Nassaukade 155. In many ways this is an ideal location to start and end your canal tour. Firstly, the location is very central, easy to get to and close to the most beautiful canals in town. Secondly, the Jordaan is a very popular and charming part of Amsterdam. There are lots of nearby places to enjoy some food and drinks before or after your canal tour.

Our staff will show you the nicest Amsterdam canal routes before departure. In three or four hours you can combine a significant part of the World Heritage Area (including canals like Prinsengracht, Keizersgracht and Herengracht) with a good impression of the majestic Amstel river.

It’s up to you when to take a break on your way. You can pull over for a toilet break or for buying some food and drinks. However, the boat cannot be locked. So please do not leave your boat out of sight. You will be held fully responsible in case the boat gets stolen.

No. Our boats are well suited to explore both the Amsterdam city center canals and the Amstel river. But the port area/the IJ and the Nieuwe Meer are strictly forbidden for your own safety.

Rates, payment, deposit, insurance

Our rental rates are the best in town, guaranteed! They start at just 79,- for a three hour morning rental, any day of the week.  Additionally, there is a municipal tour tax of 1,50 per person. For an overview of all rates, please have a look at our pricing table.

Yes, we collect a mandatory tour tax of 1,50 per person on behalf of the city of Amsterdam. Apart from that everything you need for a nice tour on the canals is included in your boat hire: VAT, insurance, full batteries, foam seats, life jackets, a map of the Amsterdam canals and a personal instruction by our staff. Just bring the right clothing and buy some nice food and drinks to enjoy on your way.

We highly recommend to book your Amsterdam boat rental in advance. For any other day than today your online reservation includes the payment, either by Ideal, Paypal or credit card (all methods of payment are free of surcharges). After that you will receive a confirmation via e-mail. Only same day rentals are being paid for when picking up the boat (either by credit or debit card).

Please mind to provide us with one valid ID (passport, driving license or ID card) and one credit card. We will use these for the deposit. It is also fine if the credit card belongs to someone else in your group.

Insurance is included in your boat rental. If you respect the basic rules that we will personally explain to you prior to your departure, the obligatory deductible excess is € 250,-.

Events & celebrations: corporate events, Kingsday, Gay Pride, gift vouchers

Absolutely! Renting our boats is a great activity for corporate events, both for your staff and your clients. It is the ideal way to relax, to socialize and to enjoy the Amsterdam canals in an authentic way. If you want to add some spice to this, we recommend using our quiz tour. This consists of more than 20 questions, including a lot of ‘nice to knows’ about Amsterdam and its canals, and some photo challenges. Let’s see how your teams compete!

Yes, we do! A quiz is a nice thing to do with a large group. You can have a competition with an attractive incentive for the winning boat. The quiz consists of some 25 questions about Amsterdam and the canals, partly serious, partly fun. And it also includes some photo challenges. At the end we have a bottle of German ‘champagne’ (sekt) in a gift wrap for the winners. The cost of this quiz is an additional 10,- per boat.

Yes, you can! Renting your own boat is a great way to celebrate your Kingsday or Gay Pride! Special conditions and rates apply. Please check them out at our pages about renting a boat on Kingsday and renting a boat for the Gay Pride.

Yes, we do. Please have a look at our rental rates and let us know the amount you want to spend on your gift voucher (info@boats4rent.nl).

No, we don’t welcome bachelor(ette) parties, sorry.

Additional services: catering, skipper, boat delivery & pick-up

We don’t cater ourselves. We prefer to focus on renting boats to you at the best rates in Amsterdam. You may bring your own food and drinks. If you want to outsource the food and drinks on board for your group, please let us know (info@boats4rent.nl). Depending on your wishes we will recommend the best supplier.

No, sorry. We only rent boats to drive yourself. Don’t worry about that though: our canal boats are designed and built in a way that everyone is able to handle the boat with ease. Neither experienced, nor license required. A short personal instruction before departure will do!

That depends. Only for large groups and not on busy days. Please let us know your wishes (info@boats4rent.nl) and we’ll let you know what we can do.