One of the best ways to see the Hague is on bike. Although many people are nervous about biking in the Hague, you have nothing to fear if you’re an experienced biker. To start off your biking experience, I’ve listed the various shops (and services) where you can rent a bike for the day in the Hague, including my personal experience using a few of them with visiting friends. I’ve also included a few important tips to get you started with biking!
This Dutch royal city isn’t too big, but there’s nothing like cruising down its many bike lanes avoiding traffic and pedestrians as you cycle through some of the most beautiful parts of the Hague, including parks. I promise that it’s not as scary as biking in Amsterdam! (Just avoid the Grote Markt area.)
Binkbikes is where I recently went with a group of tourists who I took on a bike tour. The bikes were very new, inconspicuous, and well-maintained. You can rent a typical Dutch city bike, a mountain bike, and even a tandem bike here. You’ll need to bring your passport as well as a credit card (or cash) for the deposit.
I find that Bink has one of the better hours and locations of the Hague bike rentals as it’s very close to Centraal station and they’re generally open to 7 pm. The only downside is that they open a bit later in the afternoons on some days, so check the hours before renting!
For those on a budget who aren’t sure that they need a day rental, but simply need to go from point A to B, MoBikes is a popular company. This company has smart bikes around the Hague that you can unlock using your phone and the MoBike app. (You’ll need data for this.)
It’s fairly inexpensive compared to other bike rentals, but you will also need to locate the nearest Mobike to you as they’re often spread out throughout the city. You simply need to lock it up at a designated drop-off point once you’re done with it, so no need to circle back to a bike rental bike if you go with this clever bike-sharing app!
Fietsverhuur Den Haag (Rent a bike The Hague)
For beautiful bikes with an extra touch, head to Fietsverhuur Den Haag, which is close to Noordeinde Palace. Many of their bikes come with a beautiful basket, perfect for planning a beachside picnic with!
This bike rental shop is open seven days per week during business hours, perfect for a day trip in the Hague! They offer electric bikes for an extra fee as well as racing bikes. For those traveling with young kids, they also rent out bakfiets, which are the bikes with the bathtub attached to the front. (The kids go in the front!)
The Haagse Stadsfiest are the typical tourist bikes that you see around the Hague. Many hotels rent them out to guests for a small fee, so be sure to ask at your hotel or hostel if they have one available. These bikes are generally in great condition and well-suited to those on the shorter side. (Dutch bikes can be very big for those under 5 feet!)
I was able to rent Haagse Stadsfiets bikes for visiting friends from the Babylon Hotel near Den Haag Centraal, but you can also rent them from the Hilton and NH Den Haag if you are here on business. There are many other hotels that offer bike rentals, so ask upfront before you do so!
I haven’t yet rented from Black Bikes due to the inconvenient location. This well-known bike rental store is located in the beautiful Statenkwartier, which is close to the ICC and Scheveningen, but it is quite far from Den Haag Centraal. As a result, I haven’t had a reason to rent from here yet.
for locals: Ovfiets
If you live in the Netherlands, I strongly recommend getting your own personalized OV chipkaart, which has a few benefits. Firstly, if you lose your card, you can recover the balance. Secondly, you can sign up for free for the OVFiets, a bike-sharing program only for those living in the Netherlands with a linked Maestro bank account.
It is a bit involved getting into the OVFiets program for those at the beginning of their time here in the Netherlands, but once you’re in for the year, you can rent a bike for the day for just 3.65 euros (2019). They’re not the fanciest bikes, but they work fine for a day trip in the Hague or doing errands on a budget. You can typically rent two bikes with one OVFiets subscription.
for locals: HTM fiets
One of the new bike-sharing programs in the Hague is the HTM Fiets program. This program with so-far a website only in Dutch is linked to the HTM Fiets app. You need to download the app and register with a valid credit or Maestro card. Beyond that, you just need to find a bike and unlock it using the app. You can drop the bike off anywhere in the designated drop-zone. Perfect for the one-way cycle to the beach on a surprisingly sunny day!
The costs are quite low (1 euro per 30 minutes) at the moment, which is great for errands. It’s not the most expat-friendly bike rental option in the Hague nor is it tourist-friendly in any way, but I hope that it will be improved in the near future!
Some quick tips to get you started after you rent your bike in the Hague
It is now illegal to use your phone while biking. I strongly recommend bringing a pair of headphones to plug into your phone if you will be using it for directions along with a jacket or holder for your phone on your bike.
Do not bike on the sidewalk and in public squares where bikes aren’t supposed to be. Bike lanes are generally colored a red color and most will be one-way unless marked otherwise. I recommend watching carefully for scooters, which often slide past bikes a bit too closely.
I recommend reading up on Dutch bike signaling, which involves using your arms to signal where you are turning. Triangles pointing towards you means that you should yield. This is common at intersections. Similarly, if there is a zebra stripe (e.g. crosswalk), you should yield to pedestrians. Lastly, use the locks given to you! Bike theft is very common here.
Be really careful where you leave your bike as if it disappears, it might be because you illegally parked your rental! I recommend looking for the Biesieklette parking garages where you can generally park your bike for free. You’ll need to get a (free) small keychain from the attendant to scan as you exit, but it’s worth the piece of mind!