I need advice on Swiss rail options. thank you!

I need advice on Swiss rail options. thank you!

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fd100
fd100
2 posts
new member
May 29, 2012 - 10:37 AM
Below is our itinerary for an upcoming trip. Most of the time will be spent in the Jungfrau region. I've been researching the Swiss Pass, the Jungfrau Centenary Pass, and the Jungfrau Unlimited Railways Pass, and just learned about the Swiss Half Fare Pass. All the options are quite overwhelming. Any advice is appreciated.
4 People:
2 Adults
2 Youth (19 year old)
Fly into Frankfurt
Day 1 : Rent car, visit Karlsrue and Oberammergau. Sleep in Oberammergau.

Day 2 : Neuschwanstein and surrounding area. Travel to Interlaken
Option 1: Drive car to Interlaken and turn it in there
Option 2: Turn the car in at Zurich and take train to Interlaken
(Probably not much difference. save a little in the rental dropping it off in Zurich,
but then have to get train tickets. Driving will have gas expense).
Train from Interlaken to Wengen where we will be staying 4 nights

Day 3, 4, 5, 6
All Jungfrau region
  • Lauterbrunnen
  • Grindelwald
  • Kleine Scheidegg
  • Murren
  • Schilthorn
  • Jungfraujoch
  • Trümmelbach Falls
  • Hiking trails
Day 6 Night: Travel to Rome via train
Interlaken to Domodossola
Domodossola to Milan
Milan to Rome (sleeper)
Day 7, 8: Rome
Observations:

Swiss Saver Pass (200.00 per youth, 225.00 per Adult)
This was my first option. It would cover the Day 2 trip from Zurich to Interlaken if we decide to return the rental car there. It would also cover the Switzerland part of the Day 6 travel to Rome. In the Jungfrau region we would get 50% off Shilthorn and 25% off Jungfraujoch and Kleine Scheidegg. I think all other destinations are valid. The 2 adults could get the Saver Pass and the other 2 could get the Youth Pass.

Jungfrau Centenary Pass (225.00 per person)
This seems to go everywhere we want in the Jungfrau Region, but only good for 3 days. Jungfraujoch is included in this. Shilthorn is excluded and would be full price. We would pay for individual tickets on the Switzerland leg of our journey to Rome.

Jungfrau Unlimited Railways Pass (235.00 per person)
6 Days unlimited travel. 50% off Jungfraujoch. I don't think there is a discount for Schilthorn. Similar to the Centenary Pass, we would pay for individual tickets on the Switzerland leg of our journey to Rome.

Swiss Half Fare Pass (110.00 per person)
I just recently found out about this pass, and my head was already spinning from the other 3. Are there exceptions for this pass, or is it exactly what it says: 1/2 fare on *everythng*? (Jungfraujoch,Schilthorn)

Based on what I've written, do any of these 4 passes jump out as being the best one? Or are they going to end up being pretty close in price? Some sites recommended combining (Swiss Saver Pass + Jungfrau Railways) but that seems like too much.
Another variable is that one of the youths will have a 3-Country EuroRail pass, with Switzerland being one of the countries. The cost for this EuroRail pass is not relevant as it is being paid by someone else.
thank you!
Arno
Arno
7718 posts
expert &
moderator
May 29, 2012 - 4:13 PM
Thanks for your post fd100! Could you fill us in about your travel dates and your country of residence please? That may influence the options you have.
fd100
fd100
2 posts
new member
May 29, 2012 - 4:36 PM
sorry, yes I should have provided that.
Country of residence: USA
Travel dates : Mid July 2012
Arno
Arno
7718 posts
expert &
moderator
May 30, 2012 - 2:28 PM
Hi fd100,

I would not recommend to combine passes, with the possible exception of the youth with the Eurail Pass. It does not provide as much discounts as Swiss Passes, so adding a Swiss Half Fare Card may be economical in that case. To see what's covered, network maps can be downloaded from the Eurail pages. It all comes down to whether you know for sure you will make the trips you listed. If you do, you can "simply" do the math and see what works out best.

I am going to take the risk of contributing to your confusion by mentioning another pass: the Regional-Pass Bernese Oberland. The reason for that is that you're focusing on the Jungfrau region, but you need to be aware that the Jungfrau Centenary Pass, and the Jungfrau Unlimited Railways Pass cover a really small area. If the weather is bad during your 4 days there, it's good to have a pass that covers a larger area so that you can visit Bern or do something else that's an alternative on a rainy day. Without doing the math, I would personally prefer the Swiss Pass or the Regional-Pass Bernese Oberland. Please note that a 4-day Swiss Pass does not cover both day 2 and 6, as the days need to be used consecutively. A 3-day Swiss Flexi Pass makes more sense if you're traveling by train from Zurich. You can use it for day 2, 6 and one free travel day in between. Please also note the discount (at least € 20 off the order value) you would get on top of the pass prices listed on the Swiss Flexi Pass page when ordering through raileurope-world.com.

Hopefully this helps a bit.
Last modified on Nov 17, 2014 - 5:16 PM by Arno
piglet
piglet
6 posts
new member
May 30, 2012 - 5:18 PM
Hi,

I'll be travelling with my family ( 2 adults + a 2 yr old child) from 15 June to 28 June 2012.

Would like to seek your advice on which pass to obtain..Here's our planned itenerary:
- Lucerne
- Interlaken
- Berne
- Zermatt
- Lugano
- Fox Town
- Visit the Rhine Falls
- Black Forest in Germany
- Konstanz

Is it too ambitious? What is the pass which I should buy?

Thanks!
Arno
Arno
7718 posts
expert &
moderator
May 30, 2012 - 10:48 PM
Hi piglet,

Can you please open a new topic for your questions? Thanks!

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