How it started
We created this website to help people prepare for their holidays to Switzerland. It was a natural thing for us to do, because we had both fallen in love with the country. Annika had spent many summers in Switzerland since early childhood. Arno has always been a train enthusiast, and couldn't stop visiting Switzerland after his first Swiss train trip in 1997. It felt like a waste not to share what we had learned during our visits.
Arno's technical skills allowed him to build the website. Annika is a teacher of Classics and enjoyed writing the articles. MySwissAlps.com was launched on May 10, 2002.
Our goal is to help people by sharing what we know. Most content on MySwissAlps.com is from our own experience. We also added some information about popular activities we did not visit ourselves (yet). We offer a lively forum, where you can ask for help and share tips.
We like train traveling
Switzerland prides itself for its excellent rail network. Traveling by train is very pleasant, spectacular even. It's safe, and it helps to protect the Alps from global warming. We use Swiss rail a lot, and suggest you to do the same to experience the best of Switzerland.
We're rail pass experts
We have used many rail passes ourselves. Train traveling and rail passes may seem overwhelming at first glance. That's why we list all rail passes that matter, and explain how they work. Our step by step plan helps you to choose the right pass. For each pass, all relevant points of sale are mentioned. We pay a lot of attention to discounts and promotions. The rail forum is where we provide help if any questions remain.
We like hiking
Switzerland's natural beauty can best be explored on foot. Numerous well marked trails across the Alps are just waiting to be discovered. We enjoy it a lot, so we've walked quite some kilometers by now. MySwissAlps lists many trails for you to choose from.
We care for the planet
It's important for us to work and travel in an eco-friendly manner, and help travelers to do so too. Global warming is our main concern. It already affects many regions in the world, and the Swiss Alps are no exception. This is what we do to minimize our carbon footprint:
- Office space: electricity is generated by our solar panels. The rest is purchased from a local wind farm. Heating operates on gas, and its carbon emission is compensated through our supplier by purchasing Gold Standard certificates. We're looking into heat pumps and other alternatives to reduce gas consumption or stop using it completely;
- Internet: we use various web services and a web server. Calculating energy consumption and knowing how power is generated for all those services is close to impossible. We made an educated guess for power consumption, assumed fossil energy, and compensate annually for the carbon emission;
- Bank: we are a client of Triodos Bank, ensuring that funds will have a positive impact on the planet;
- Transportation: we use the excellent Swiss public transport for 95% of our day trips. Our car has a low fuel consumption, and we compensate for the remaining carbon emission. We don't fly;
- Miscellaneous: 2.5% of our profit is reserved for further green donations or investments.
Community & partners
Our small team can't do it all alone. The forum community helps by answering questions. Our partners provide the things you need for your holidays: accommodation, rail passes and more. We carefully selected our partners; they need to be trustworthy, knowledgeable and customer friendly. If you see us refer to them on our website, you can be sure they're the right party to turn to. We also need them to earn income if any of our referrals places an order. This allows us to maintain and expand MySwissAlps. We do not sell anything ourselves.
- Annika: content manager and moderator
- Arno: founder, programmer and moderator
- Steph: moderator