Economical travel 7 days: half fare or Swiss Pass?

Economical travel 7 days: half fare or Swiss Pass?

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1 post
new member
Dec 26, 2015 - 4:21 PM

hello! thank you in advance for your help!

we are trying to figure out if half card or swiss pass is better (8 or 4 day). we are trying to optimize for price and we are two youths.

high level overview:


(day 2 travel) Chamonix->

(day 4 travel) zermatt->

(day 6) zurich (or day 6 lucerne-> day 7 Zurich)

we arrive saturday night in geneva. i understand travel from the airport to town is free and we will be taking most likely a taxi to our accomodaion from the train station (but maybe a bus? not sure how easy/safe that is at night)

Day 2: after exploring Geneva, we will go to chamonix.

i know this is covered by swiss pass, but the pass doesnt cover anything in Chamonix like the Aiguille du Midi. is there any sort of discount for the Aiguille du Midi?

Day 4: in the evening we want to take the panoramic/scenic train to Zermatt (does that make sense/is it possible?)

i believe this will be covered by swiss pass

Day 6: we plan to take train to lucerne and spend the night there and go to zurich on the morning of Day 7(ie that too hectic?) or to go straight to zurich.

we will be in zurich only one day before flying to a different country.

what should we do? what is most economical?

should we get the 8 day pass to cover whole trip? it doesn't sound like itll cover anything in chamonix and not sure if free museum is worth it?

would the half pass fare be more economical? also any discounts for Aiguille du Midi?

thank you again! im looking forward to learning from you.

4380 posts
expert &
Dec 27, 2015 - 12:38 PM

Hi denzils, welcome to MySwissAlps!

Which pass is best depends on the exact details of your itinerary. You didn't provide information about your plans for the non-transfer days. For example, what do you plan to do while you're in Chamonix, Zermatt, Lucerne and Zurich? You can only tell for sure which pass is most economical if you make a detailed list and start calculating as explained here.

Assuming you'll only be making the transfers you've mentioned, you may me best off buying a Swiss Half Fare Card. It doesn't provide any discounts for the leg to Chamonix though; please refer to isshalffarecard/validi ty.

If you'll be traveling nearly each day, an 8 day Swiss Travel Pass Youth (assuming you're both under 26) would be the most convenient option. Whether the free entrance to museums is interesting, depends on your plans. The leg to Chamonix is included; further attractions in and near Chamonix are not. The map at isstravelpass/validity allows you to find such details. I'm not aware of discount options for Aiguille du Midi, but you can check with the tourist office at Chamonix to find out.

I'm not sure where your accommodation in Geneva is, but if you enter the exact address in the timetable you'll see whether bus or tram connections are available at that time of the night. Traveling from the airport to the town center is free indeed; explanation can be found at our Geneva Airport page.

As for the trip Geneva-Zermatt: there's no special scenic train there, except for the very last part from Brig to Zermatt where one or two Glacier Express trains ride each day. So you can just use any train heading for Brig and Zermatt. The last leg towards Zermatt is very scenic, so make sure you're traveling in daylight to enjoy the views.

I hope this gets you started!


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