Which rail pass is best? Price?

Which rail pass is best? Price?

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bouboucadeau
bouboucadeau
14 posts
new member
Jan 11, 2016 - 5:25 PM

hello all

planning my february 2016 trip to swiss.

this is itinerary that is planned and hostels been booked so this would be the plan

question is, which of the rail pass is best...

im considering getting the half fare pass ($120 CHF) as i wont be doing much train rides, would it be best as far as price to get the pass... or the swiss pass 3 day flex (250 CHF)

itinerary

Day 1 - late morning, arriving in zurich

day 2 - zurich

day 3 - train from zurich to lucerne, day trip...... lucerne to interlaken

day 4 - interlaken

day 5 - interlaken to lauternbrunnen

day 7,8 - day trips to grindelwald-jungfrajoch on one day; next day gimmelwald-murren-schilthorn

day 9-lauternbrunnen-interlaken -bern

day 10 - bern

day 11- bern-zurich airport

base on this itinerary... and calcuations of all fares, ​is swiss rail pass 3 day flex a good option or the half fare, or both

my 3 day train days are days 3,9,11

swiss flex 3 = $250 CHF ???

swiss flex 3 + half fare is about = 315 CHF ????

half fare + rail cost is about = approx same as above (based on fare cost done on sbb.ch)

which is best.. too many different rail passes to consider

Arno
Arno
7716 posts
expert &
moderator
Jan 11, 2016 - 7:09 PM

Welcome bouboucadeau,

I understand the confusion. From my experience the Swiss Travel Pass Flex is pretty expensive. It only works for some specific itineraries. I would start by comparing the Swiss Travel Pass and Swiss Half Fare Card. Please see myswissalps.com/train/ ticketspasses/practica l/chooserailpass for tips. Is that what you're looking for?

Last modified on Jan 13, 2016 - 6:28 PM by Annika
bouboucadeau
bouboucadeau
14 posts
new member
Jan 11, 2016 - 7:57 PM in reply to Arno

thanks arno

im in process of plugging all the prices and comparing and see which is best

very helpful. thanks

another question

do you know if i were to get the swiss flex 3 day pass, and if my first travel day is february 14th.

can i use the bonus of free museums on the 13th? or its just only on day of traveling can you see the museums, 14th?

if seems if im doing 1 train ride, or 2 rides (if im going from zurich to lucerne to interlaken)... there wouldnt be enough time to squeeze museums (in both zurch and lucerne) or at least time would be rushed

thanks

Annika
Annika
4417 posts
expert &
moderator
Jan 12, 2016 - 6:44 AM in reply to bouboucadeau

Hi bouboucadeau,

You will only get free museum entrance on the travel days (see here for details). That's one of the reasons the Swiss Travel Pass Flex does not work that well in many cases: you get all the advantages on the travel days, but nothing on the other days. There's the Swiss Travel Pass Flex Combi that gets you discounted travel tickets on the other days, but still no museums. The regular Swiss Travel Pass does not have such limitations: www.myswissalps.com/sw isstravelpass.

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
2652 posts
expert
Jan 12, 2016 - 7:28 PM in reply to bouboucadeau

The fares on the SBB web site assume that you have a 1/2 fare cards, since most Swiss residents have one.

You have to double them if you have no discount.

Slowpoke

Last modified on Jan 12, 2016 - 7:29 PM by Slowpoke
Slowpoke
Slowpoke
2652 posts
expert
Jan 12, 2016 - 7:32 PM in reply to bouboucadeau

<<"if seems if im doing 1 train ride, or 2 rides (if im going from zurich to lucerne to interlaken)... there wouldnt be enough time to squeeze museums (in both zurch and lucerne) or at least time would be rushed">>

Check out the Rosengart collection, 3 minutes from Luzern main station.

www.rosengart.ch/museu m_rosengart_en.php5

Fabulous Klees - large room full, in chronological order, lots of Picassos, and others.

Slowpoke

bouboucadeau
bouboucadeau
14 posts
new member
Jan 13, 2016 - 4:59 PM in reply to Slowpoke

thank you slowpoke

after considering all the prices and plugging my sites into the spreadsheet..

i believe the swiss flex 3 day + half fare is best affordable pass option for my itinerary..

it came out to about $360 with half fare only; without any pass - my total would be over $450.. if i did my calculations correctly and prices reflect correctly on sbb.ch website

while the flex 3 day + half fare is only $299 (239+60 based on sbb website)

on my 3 train days...

how do i validate a flex pass for a travel day if i were to see a museum before my train, does the museum validate my pass or i have to go to train station to validate and go back to museum? or WORST i cant see museum before train ride?

1) zurich -lucerne - interlaken ; i will fit any zurich museums that morning before leaving to lucerne.. and squeeze whatever they may have in lucerne.. including the rosengart

2) lauternbrunnen - interlaken - thun- bern; what museums is a good see along this route?

3) bern - zurich airport;

thanks for everyone's input

Last modified on Jan 13, 2016 - 5:08 PM by bouboucadeau
Slowpoke
Slowpoke
2652 posts
expert
Jan 13, 2016 - 5:36 PM in reply to bouboucadeau

<<"1) zurich -lucerne - interlaken ; i will fit any zurichmuseums that morning before leaving to lucerne.. and squeeze whateverthey may have in lucerne.. including the rosengart">>

Sounds like a very long day.

What dates are you traveling? Lots of stuff is closed on Monday. Also, check open hours for museums.

Don't know if you can make it, but the Rietberg is near central Zürich, and has a superb collection.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ Rietberg_Museum

Arno and Annika are the rail pass experts.....I don't even try to figure out all that stuff. They are the best experts to comment on your calculations.

I visit Switzerland two or three times per year, and have a Swiss resident's half fare card (so called Halb-Abo or Halb-Tax) , costing about 450CHF for three years. So, I just use that.

<<"2) lauternbrunnen - interlaken - thun- bern; what museums is a good see along this route?">>

The only ones that I know of are in Bern.....but there may be some smaller ones along the way. I vaguely recall a very small museum in Lauterbrunnen. (Note the spelling of Lauterbrunnen.) When I'm in that area, I concentrate on the out of doors.....which will be very cold in February. I hope you have sunshine.

It's too bad that you don't have Winterthur on your schedule - one of the best museums in Switzerland is:

www.bundesmuseen.ch/ro emerholz/index.html?lang=en

Basel has several good art museums www.museenbasel.ch/en/).

Foundation Beyeler is worth a journey. A bit of tram ride; near the German border.

Slowpoke

PS -

<<"day 5 - interlaken to lauternbrunnen">>

Day 5 will require about 30 minutes each way to accomplish. ;-)

Last modified on Jan 13, 2016 - 5:49 PM by Slowpoke
bouboucadeau
bouboucadeau
14 posts
new member
Jan 13, 2016 - 6:22 PM in reply to Slowpoke

1) zurich -lucerne - interlaken

this will be done on a sunday.... my hostel is left side of lake zurich.. close to the friedhof manegg.. its aabout 20 min walk. the museum is open at 10am.. i will have to plan that accordingly...

how long is a good time to see the major sights in Reitberg museum

thanks

Annika
Annika
4417 posts
expert &
moderator
Jan 13, 2016 - 6:33 PM in reply to bouboucadeau

Hi bouboucadeau,

A Swiss Travel Pass Flex has blank fields for the travel dates. So in the morning you simply write down the date of that day. It does not matter in which order you do things that day. You can certainly go to a museum first and do a train ride later.

It's hard to say whether your calculations are correct, but I don't think they are. A pass of CHF 299 and a total of CHF 360 can't be right since only the Jungfraujoch ride will cost you more than CHF 61. Feel free to attach your spreadsheet if you want us to do a quick check (you may have to zip it in order to attach it). Did you use our spreadsheet?

Last modified on Jan 13, 2016 - 6:40 PM by Annika
bouboucadeau
bouboucadeau
14 posts
new member
Jan 13, 2016 - 7:02 PM in reply to Annika

hi

thanks.. i will send to you.. i did use your spreadsheet

the 360 CHF is just the total cost of itinerary with half fare pass.

also i plan to do the interlaken/lauterbrunen - jungfraujoch GOOD MORNING TICKET which is cheaper than the regular routes... its about 145 CHF roundtrip; is there a half fare for good morning ticket

many thanks

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
2652 posts
expert
Jan 13, 2016 - 7:28 PM in reply to bouboucadeau

<<"this will be done on a sunday.... my hostel is leftside of lake zurich.. close to the friedhof manegg.. its aabout 20 minwalk. the museum is open at 10am.. i will have to plan thataccordingly... how long is a good time to see the major sights in Reitberg museum">>

You might save some time by catching a tram at station Morgental.

Or, if you are at Jugengherberge Zürich, take the bus 66 or 72 north from the stop Herberge on Mutschellenstrasse - ride 3 stops to Hügelstrasse.

It is not "Reitberg" which is pronounced differently from the correct name - "Rietberg." (In American English it sounds something like "Reet Bearg"

It is small museum, but the collection is very intense. We often spent quite few minutes looking at some of the pieces. I believe that they may have added another building since we visited them.....

It should take no more than a day. ;-)

Perhaps you could be selective. ;-) .....

In which case a couple of hours would give you a good sampling.

This is one of those cases where your available time may control what you see.

Check out -

www.inyourpocket.com/z urich/sightseeing/muse ums

Slowpoke

Last modified on Jan 14, 2016 - 1:33 AM by Slowpoke
bouboucadeau
bouboucadeau
14 posts
new member
Jan 13, 2016 - 10:12 PM in reply to Slowpoke

after doing another round of cost and input into spreadsheet

cost was alot more than i had reported

my itinerary with a 3 day flex pass will be 526, while if i get the half fare only it will be 487.

maybe these are my real cost, not sure...

i have all these numbers in my head and im seeing them float in my head...

if you can check if its accurate, or any feedback will be greatly appreciated

i guess my question is

which pass is more economical for my trip,

3 day flex? a half fare? or 3 day flex+hare care?

thanks very much to all

Last modified on Jan 13, 2016 - 10:15 PM by bouboucadeau
Please login to see the attached documents
Slowpoke
Slowpoke
2652 posts
expert
Jan 14, 2016 - 1:38 AM

You may have double counted Jungfraujoch....?

If you visit Jungfraujoch, do you want to vist Schilthorn, or vice versa?

Swiss travel pass gives 25% off Jungraujoch, I think....

Slowpoke

bouboucadeau
bouboucadeau
14 posts
new member
Jan 14, 2016 - 1:51 AM in reply to Slowpoke

hi

i actually want to see both.. it may be similar but different view points

if not.. at least see both of the towns on each side

yeah.. swiss pass gives 25% of jungfrah (im only doing the flex 3 day), while half fare gives 50%

my mistake from my excel spreadsheet may have been where i used the half fare discount on a good morning ticket to jungfraujoch, which i believe cant be discounted...

its either gonna be GOOD morning ticket for 145 CHF or the half fare cost of 102 CHF if im not mistaken,,, in this case the half fare cost would be a better deal than GOOD MORNING... but you dont get the rest of the half fare cost of the rest of my train rides...

so many pros of getting the half fare pass and ONLY 1 cons of getting it i see, not the best deal to Jungfraujoch.

decision decisions

Last modified on Jan 14, 2016 - 1:52 AM by bouboucadeau
Arno
Arno
7716 posts
expert &
moderator
Jan 14, 2016 - 7:31 AM in reply to bouboucadeau

Hi bouboucadeau,

Your calculations are almost right. I made a few changes (in red) in the attached file. The Swiss Half Fare Card is the cheapest option for you.

The Good Morning Ticket only makes sense for people without a rail pass. Any rail pass will give you a better discount.

As far as I know the Kunsthaus in Zurich is not free with the Swiss Travel Pass, but the one in Zug (between Lucerne and Zurich) is: www.kunsthauszug.ch.

Your calculations were based on the Swiss Travel Pass Flex Combi, but you filled out the price of the Swiss Travel Pass Flex, so I changed that.

You can buy a Swiss Half Fare Card through www.swissrailways.com/ en and print it at home. Additionally, you could consider a ZurichCARD for day 3: www.zuerich.com/en/vis it/your-city-travel-pass.

If I understand your itinerary correctly you would spend a night in Interlaken and later in Lauterbrunnen too. Both towns are very close to each other and there's not much to see in Interlaken. You save time by going to Lauterbrunnen directly. You could even consider doing day trips to Thun and Bern from there, rather than changing hotels again. The advantage of that is that you have more days to choose from for the mountain excursions, which require good weather. Of course this approach would require to adjust your calculations.

Last modified on Jan 14, 2016 - 7:39 AM by Arno
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bouboucadeau
bouboucadeau
14 posts
new member
Jan 14, 2016 - 3:05 PM in reply to Arno

hello arno and all

thank you for your time and making the corrections.

i think i will get the Zurich 3 day pass... which will cost me 48 CHF compared to 89 CHF with alll my 3 days + museums i plan to see... this i dont have to worry about rushing only on my 3rd day and hop on /off in Zurich

can i get the half fare pass at zurich airport before my tram ride to Zurich city? if yes, where at?

is there a half fare discount, even on the Good Morning Ticket????.. i read somewhere its not discounted if you are getting the Good Morning... only regular routes... i may be incorrect.. but if they do.. the 89 CHF is a great price.. better than the Good Morning Ticket price of 145 CHF alone...

unfortunately, i booked all my hostels in every stop already... with my stay in interlaken late on first night.. i will be coming from zurich-lucerne.. so there wouldnt be anything to do that night.. for my 1st full day.. it will be either a Jungfraujoch trip (if weather is good or just do a daytrip to see Trummbach Falls and other falls and hikes; if anything.. i might do a Thun day trip)

my next 3 days will be at Lauternbrunnen.

many thanks

Last modified on Jan 14, 2016 - 3:07 PM by bouboucadeau
Arno
Arno
7716 posts
expert &
moderator
Jan 14, 2016 - 3:19 PM in reply to bouboucadeau

You're welcome bouboucadeau! You can buy a Swiss Half Fare Card from the manned ticket office at the train station of the airport. It can be busy there so it might take a lot of time. It's easier to simply get one through the website I mentioned. Same price but you save time: you can skip the ticket office and get a discounted ticket from one of the many machines. Then take a train (quickest) to town.

The Good Morning Ticket is not for pas holders. You don't get a discount on it, so it's a more expensive option. Just use your pass discount.

Enjoy your stay!

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