What rail pass to get for Zermatt and Jungfrau?

What rail pass to get for Zermatt and Jungfrau?

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alisan
alisan
5 posts
new member
Oct 12, 2016 - 2:46 AM

We will be in Switzerland from 15 - 24 Oct. We will pick up a car immediate at ZRH once we arrive. We are planning to spend a night at Zermatt on 16 Oct and also go to Jungfraujoch on 19 Oct. For Junfraujoch, we are planning to park at Lauterbrunnen then take the train. Since we have a car, we will only be taking the train for Tasch to Zermatt and Lauterbrunnen to Jungfraujoch. May I know what kind of Rail Pass I should buy? I understand both Zermatt and Jungfraujoch are weather dependent, should I buy the Rail Pass now online before I arrive Zurich? Or I should buy a pass when I arrive at Tasch for both the Zermatt and Jungfraujoch ride? Also, we may take a boat ride on Lake Lucerne, is there any pass that also offer discount on boat ride at Lake Lucerne?

Thanks in advance.

Arno
Arno
7718 posts
expert &
moderator
Oct 12, 2016 - 7:49 AM

Hi alisan,

Most drivers pick the Swiss Half Fare Card. I think that's the right choice for you as well, because the Zermatt cableways, Jungfraujoch and boat trips will all be discounted with that card. Purchase options are listed here. Buying online is more convenient as you can skip waiting for a staffed ticket office. Unfortunately you're too late to buy and print it through www.swissrailways.com/ en, but since you live in Hong Kong you can still order today through www.raileurope.hk/pass /swiss-half-fare-card.

I would not rent a car for your trip unless you have also included plans where you really need it. A car can't be used for the plans you listed so it will be parked a lot (often paid parking unless your hotel offers free parking space).

Have a wonderful trip!

alisan
alisan
5 posts
new member
Oct 13, 2016 - 1:44 AM in reply to Arno

Dear Arno,

Thank you very much for your reply. Here's our traveling plan, would appreciate if you can let me know if there's anything that you think it's not gonna work. FYI, my husband love to drive, so long driving time is not a problem for him at all and we don't mind to pack and unpack everyday, we are used to it.

15 Oct, Sat: arrive ZRH early morning and then we will pick up the car and drive to Bern and spend the whole day and one night in Bern

16 Oct, Sun: leave Bern in the morning and drive to Montreux and Lavaux, spend a couple of hours there and then drive to Tasch (targeting to arrive Tasch before 5 pm), park there and then go to Zermatt and spend one night in Zermatt

17 Oct, Mon: leave Zermatt around noon, pick up car at Tasch and drive to Interlaken (2 nights in Interlaken)

18 Oct, Tues: Interlaken, maybe drive to Lauterbrunnen to cycle around or visit Grindelwald

19 Oct, Wed: Haven't decided whether we will go up to Jungfraujoch or Schilthorn yet, as it really depends on weather. After Jungfraujoch or Schilthorn, we will drive to Lucerne late afternoon (2 nights in Lucerne)

20 Oct, Thurs: Lucerne - explores the city and maybe car ferry or boat trip on Lake Lucerne. We like car ferry, any suggestions where should we drive to in order to take the car ferry?

21 Oct, Fri: leave Lucerne for St. Gallen, we would like to visit the Abbey and Olma Festival (1 night in St. Gallen)

22 Oct, Sat: leave St. Gallen to Rhine Falls and Stein am Rhein. Will return car late afternoon that day back to ZRH, probably leave our heavy luggage at the airport Baggage Service and take the train to Zurich City (2 nights in Zurich)

23 Oct, Sun: Zurich - Haven't decided what to do in Zurich yet, any suggestions?

24 Oct, Mon: Breakfast and then head to ZRH (our flight depart ZRH at 1:30 pm)

Would appreciate any feedback/suggestions.

Arno
Arno
7718 posts
expert &
moderator
Oct 13, 2016 - 8:01 AM

Hi alisan,

Of course this will work if you don't mind spending time on traveling, packing and unpacking each day. You've indicated you're used to traveling around and driving, so that shouldn't be a problem. Mind that your personal preferences are what matters most. Just a personal thought though: to my taste it's a pretty full itinerary. One problem is that scenic "highlights" such as the Jungfraujoch, Schilthorn and Zermatt are very weather dependent, yet you only spend one day or even part of a day there. If you want to increase your chances of enjoying scenery in clear weather, you could consider to limit your number of base towns and make day trips from there instead. For example, you could spend some more days in or near Interlaken and Lucerne. Interlaken would allow for (car or train) day trips as far as Bern, Montreux and Zermatt. Zurich can be reached pretty well from Lucerne. This will still result in long traveling days, but it does allow you to plan with more flexibility.

Some more tips:

  • there's a car ferry on Lake Lucerne between Beckenried and Gersau. It will still be accessible by end October. As far as I can tell there's no Swiss Half Fare Card discount, but you could contact the ferry company to make sure;
  • please check our Zurich page for sightseeing tips;
  • our hotel pages may help you to find appropriate accommodation.
alisan
alisan
5 posts
new member
Oct 13, 2016 - 8:13 AM in reply to Arno

Thank you very much Arno, really appreciate all the information you shared.

I understand that Jungfraujoch, Schilthorn and Zermatt are weather dependent. If I can't go to these places this time, then it gives me a good excuse to come back to Switzerland again in the future. :)

Once again, thank you.

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