The sensitivity and specificity of 7 PCR assays described for the identification of Campylobacter jejuni and Campylobacter coli were examined using alkaline cell lysates from a collection of 100 well characterized reference strains of C. jejuni, C. coli, Campylobacter lari and related Campylobacter, Helicobacter and Arcobacter species. Based on a preliminary evaluation, one multiplex test was excluded from further evaluation. The various assays differed considerably in sensitivity and specificity towards their target species. For C. coli, 4 of the 5 assays were 100% specific and sensitive, but for C. jejuni, none of the 5 assays were found to be 100% specific or sensitive. Subsequently, a statistically valid sample (n=263) was taken from a Belgian collection of 1906 human Campylobacter field isolates. This second collection was used to further evaluate two selected multiplex PCR assays. The present study indicates that PCR-based identification using each of the two selected multiplex PCR assays was highly reliable. The R-mPCR assay, followed by species-specific PCR assays or the ceu-oxr mPCR assay if necessary, is our current strategy of choice for the molecular identification of C. jejuni and C. coli. Results presented here should aid researchers in selecting a PCR assay suitable for their specific needs.