Do we need to validate our Swiss Travel Passes?

Do we need to validate our Swiss Travel Passes?

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Canadarocks
Canadarocks
80 posts
active member
May 6, 2016 - 3:55 PM

This is what I have read: "You will need to activate your Swiss Travel Pass at the ticket window before boarding your first train. A railroad official will check your passport, then stamp your rail pass and enter the travel period."

We have 8 day Swiss Travel Passes that are paper documents. We will sign our names and put our passport numbers them before using them, and they are already dated. And we'll keep our passports with the passes.

So do we still need to validate them before boarding our first train?

Annika
Annika
4417 posts
expert &
moderator
May 7, 2016 - 12:51 PM

Hi Canadarocks,

Validation processes differ per reseller. It's explained here. Did you order through www.swissrailways.com/ en? In that case you're ready to go once you've written down your names and passport numbers; further validation isn't required.

Canadarocks
Canadarocks
80 posts
active member
May 8, 2016 - 9:26 PM in reply to Annika

No, I got them through raileurope.ca I'll check them to see if they need to be stamped, thank you.

Annika
Annika
4417 posts
expert &
moderator
May 8, 2016 - 9:41 PM in reply to Canadarocks

Ok, unless they've made recent changes, your pass has a blank space for a stamp and needs to be validated within 6 months after purchase. If you enter Switzerland by train it can be done on board as well.

Last modified on May 8, 2016 - 9:41 PM by Annika
Canadarocks
Canadarocks
80 posts
active member
May 8, 2016 - 10:04 PM in reply to Annika

We'll be arriving on a Trenord train from Varenna-Esino into Tirano and then transferring to a Regio train from Tirano to St Moritz. Will we be okay validating our passes once we are onboard the second train?

And if we are okay validating them on the second train, is eight minutes enough time between the arrival of our first train and our departure on the second?

Arno
Arno
7719 posts
expert &
moderator
May 9, 2016 - 6:06 AM in reply to Canadarocks

The passes need to be validated at the station of Tirano. The 8 minutes are enough time to change, but could be tight if there's a queue at the ticket window. In that case I would ask the conductor of the Swiss train, but do so before you board. By the way, there are print at home passes too which don't need to be validated at all. That's the better option for a next time.

One more thought: you can ask the conductor of the Italian train to validate your passes too. I don't think he/she can do it, but you can try.

Last modified on May 9, 2016 - 6:09 AM by Arno
Junior
Junior
6 posts
new member
May 9, 2016 - 7:21 AM

Hi

I purchased our Swiss Pass Flex back in October for our use in June. They were bought on a special Rail Europe Australia promotion and they have both an Issuing and Validating stamp on them by Rail Europe. The first and last available dates of travel are also listed. I assume therefore they are ready for us to put our passport data and signature on them plus our chosen days of travel as they occur.

Arno
Arno
7719 posts
expert &
moderator
May 9, 2016 - 8:04 AM in reply to Junior

Hi Junior,

If it's a print at home pass you're good to go. Other passes usually need to be validated. Feel free to attach an image of your pass here if you're in doubt. Perhaps I can tell if I see it.

Junior
Junior
6 posts
new member
May 9, 2016 - 9:05 AM in reply to Arno

Hi Arno

This wasn't a print at home pass so have attached a modified copy for your perusal.Let's know what you think.

Thanks

Please login to see the attached documents
Arno
Arno
7719 posts
expert &
moderator
May 9, 2016 - 12:02 PM

Hi Junior,

Indeed this one is already stamped and dated. It looks like you only need to fill out your passport number and signature, and the date of the first travel day. To be sure you can read the conditions of use they mention on the pass, but I don't see anything else that needs to be done to start traveling.

Enjoy your travels!

Canadarocks
Canadarocks
80 posts
active member
May 9, 2016 - 9:39 PM in reply to Arno

Thanks so much for your reply Arno. I've adjusted our travel times, so now we'll have 48 minutes to make the connection. I know that's more than enough, but it's really our only option. I don't want the stress worrying about whether we can validate them onboard with just an 8 minute window. And it will save the worry over the precise arrival time of the Varenna-Esino train. An hour later arrival into St Moritz is worth the peace of mind! :)

Arno
Arno
7719 posts
expert &
moderator
May 10, 2016 - 10:04 AM in reply to Canadarocks

Great! Italian trains are, on average, late more often than Swiss trains, so the extra time might be handy anyway. You can have a drink at the station square and relax a bit before you board the next train.

Canadarocks
Canadarocks
80 posts
active member
May 10, 2016 - 4:24 PM in reply to Arno

Do you know if there are any take out restaurants at the station square where we could perhaps buy a sandwich to take onboard the Tirano-St Moritz train?

Arno
Arno
7719 posts
expert &
moderator
May 10, 2016 - 4:39 PM in reply to Canadarocks

I don't know from own experience, but you could try the Merizzi Bistro at 50 m from the station square: www.bistrotmerizzi.it/ il-bistrot/ristorante-sondrio-tirano-merizzi/. I'm not sure if they offer take away. They're open all day long, except Mondays.

Canadarocks
Canadarocks
80 posts
active member
May 10, 2016 - 4:48 PM in reply to Arno

Thanks so much Arno. I see that they sell panini, so we should be good to go! :)

Arno
Arno
7719 posts
expert &
moderator
May 11, 2016 - 8:48 AM in reply to Junior

Junior: I searched some more and can 100% confirm that you don't need to validate your pass through railway staff. Just fill out the blank fields and you're good to go.

Junior
Junior
6 posts
new member
May 11, 2016 - 8:56 AM

Arno thank you for your trouble. Much obliged. Roll on June so we can use it!

Arno
Arno
7719 posts
expert &
moderator
May 12, 2016 - 7:18 AM in reply to Canadarocks

Canadarocks: I found that raileurope.ca changed their validation policy for Swiss products and no longer requires railway staff to validate the pass. The change was made not too long ago, so you may or may not have a pass you can simply fill out yourself. I'm not sure if you doubled check with Rail Europe already. Feel free to post a scan of the pass here if you're in doubt. In any case, the longer transfer time in Tirano is still comfortable I would say. Better to stretch the legs a bit than to rush to the next train and sit again.

Canadarocks
Canadarocks
80 posts
active member
May 12, 2016 - 3:52 PM in reply to Arno

Arno, that's why I asked here about the topic. The raileurope.ca website and my ticket folder both had the misleading information. I just contacted them and it turns out that we don't have to validate them after all. Thank you so much for looking further into this as well.

But I think I agree with you about the break between trains. Stretching our legs and getting a quick lunch makes sense. But getting to St Moritz an hour earlier is also very appealing!

Good to know that now at least we have the choice. :)

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