Cheapest train travel / Glacier Express

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Samski10
Samski10
10 posts
new member
Jan 10, 2019 - 11:04 PM

HI,

I am coming to Zurich Aiprort on 14 Feb 2019 - we will be 2 adults.

We need to travel from Zurich Airport to Luczern on 14 Feb 2019,

We need to travel from Luzern to Chur on 15 Feb 2019 to get the Glacier Express to St Moritz, returning to Chur on tge Glacier Express on 18 Feb, with a further train from Chur to Zurich Airport on 18 Feb.

We have already booked the seats on the Glacier Express but not the train itself?

Question 1 - how do we book the actual Glacier Express train ticket?

Question 2 - with reference to the train journeys that we need, is it worth getting The Swiss Pass?

Can the Swiss Pass be used to get the Glacier Express tickets?

Any advice would be helpful.

Thanks, Sam

1960man
1960man
1402 posts
top member
Jan 11, 2019 - 1:41 AM

Firstly you need to understand that Chur to St Moritz is a normal railway (The Albula Railway). The Glacier Express (GEX) is a premium train which for a small part of its journey runs on the Albula line, but the Albula line has plenty of normal 'walk-on' train services.

I'm confused by your statement; you can't 'book the seats on the Glacier Express without booking the train itself'

That is impossible.

If you have booked the Glacier Express you will be on that train. You will have been charged extra fare /reservation fee for the privilege of travelling on the GEX

However, there is actually little point in travelling on the Glacier Express from Chur to St Moritz as that railway (The Unesco listed Albula Railway) has hourly express trains on which you don't have to pay any supplementary fare or reservation fee.

Last modified on Jan 11, 2019 - 1:45 AM by 1960man
rockoyster
rockoyster
5468 posts
expert
Jan 11, 2019 - 2:08 AM in reply to Samski10

Hello Sam,

If you already have seat reservations on the Glacier Express then you need to buy tickets at a station or using the SBB Timetable (www.myswissalps.com/ti metable).

If you have a Swiss Travel Pass (www.myswissalps.com/sw isstravelpass) you won't need tickets - it covers the Glacier Express route.

To determine if a Swiss Travel Pass (not a Swiss Pass which is a different product not available to tourists) suits your itinerary you should read “How to choose the best travel pass” (www.myswissalps.com/tr ain/ticketspasses/prac tical/chooserailpass), download the handy spreadsheet calculator and do the math.

It may well be that Saver Day Pass (www.myswissalps.com/sa verdaypass and bit.ly/2rkekat) for each of your travel days may be more appropriate. Without knowing your full itinerary it is impossible to say.

If you don't already have reservations on the Glacier Express then take 1960man's advice.

Last modified on Jan 11, 2019 - 2:10 AM by rockoyster
Samski10
Samski10
10 posts
new member
Jan 11, 2019 - 9:27 AM in reply to 1960man

Thank you for your feedback, and yes it is posisble to have the seats only as that is what I currently have.

We are happy with the slower journey as like to take our time :-)

Thanks!

Samski10
Samski10
10 posts
new member
Jan 11, 2019 - 9:32 AM in reply to rockoyster

Hi Rockoyster,

Thank you for your reply, and the links, this is helpful.

Yes the seats on the GEX are already confirmed and we are happy with that, as want the slower route.

With regard to our train itinary it is all mentioned in my post, so just wanted to know if better to buy individual tickets or the Swiss Pass, but I guess I just plug in the journeys online and see the costs, if you already know then the trains we need are as follows:-

14 Feb Zurich Airport to Luzern

15 Feb Luzern to Chur

15 Feb Chur to St Moritz on the GEX

18 Feb St Mortiz to Chur on the GEX

18 Feb Chur to Zurich Airport

Thanks, Sam

Lucas
Lucas
10496 posts
top member
Jan 11, 2019 - 9:55 AM in reply to Samski10

Hi Sam,

Yes, you'll need to find ticket costs and compare to the rail pass options, like the Swiss Travel Pass (www.myswissalps.com/sw isstravelpass).

Rail passes can cover between 25% and 100% of a ticket's cost for a particular route.

The following link gives you instructions on how to find prices and compare various rail passes www.myswissalps.com/tr ain/ticketspasses/prac tical/chooserailpass (we even have a spreadsheet there to help with the math).

I'd look at either a 4 day Swiss Travel Pass or perhaps the Swiss Half Fare Card: www.myswissalps.com/sw isshalffarecard

Lucas
Lucas
10496 posts
top member
Jan 11, 2019 - 9:58 AM in reply to 1960man

Yes, you can book the seat reservations only but still need to pay for the train ticket separately. Most commonly done with people who have a rail pass.

Samski10
Samski10
10 posts
new member
Jan 11, 2019 - 10:08 AM

Thank you Lucas, much appreciated.

Samski10
Samski10
10 posts
new member
Jan 11, 2019 - 10:36 AM in reply to Lucas

See attached, is this the correct selection for the Glacier Express, not sure what PE means as the type of train but the times of train match teh GEX timetable?

Thanks,

Sam

Please login to see the attached documents
Lucas
Lucas
10496 posts
top member
Jan 11, 2019 - 4:29 PM in reply to Samski10

That's it yes.

PE = Panorama Express

The timetable used to differentiate on the different panoramic express trains (GEX, BEX, GPEX) but now it is just PE.

Samski10
Samski10
10 posts
new member
Jan 11, 2019 - 4:50 PM

Thank you.

So as I have already booked my seats, is that in First Class so do I have to buy a first class train ticket as well?

Thanks,

Sam

Lucas
Lucas
10496 posts
top member
Jan 11, 2019 - 6:15 PM in reply to Samski10

If you booked first class seat reservations then you need a first class ticket as well.

If you have a rail pass in 2nd class you'll need to upgrade it for that trip (that can be done at the train station at any time prior to boarding the train).

1960man
1960man
1402 posts
top member
Jan 12, 2019 - 1:09 AM in reply to Samski10

If you have booked seats on a particular GEX service, all you need to buy is a normal ticket Chur - St Moritz, first class or second class depends on what seats you bought.

Samski10
Samski10
10 posts
new member
Jan 14, 2019 - 2:14 PM in reply to Lucas

Hi Lucas,

I have looked up the rail passes and think the Saver Day is the best option, so if I book a first class Saver Day Pass, does that cover all rail travel on that particular day. Including Glacier Express?

As i have 2 days with 2 rail journeys the pass seems to be cheaper that buying the indiviual tickets.

Is my understanding correct?

Kind regards, Sam

Last modified on Jan 14, 2019 - 2:15 PM by Samski10
Arno
Arno
12546 posts
expert &
moderator
Jan 14, 2019 - 5:01 PM in reply to Samski10

Hi Sam,

Yes, the Saver Day Pass covers all trains including the Glacier Express, but excluding seat reservations: www.myswissalps.com/sa verdaypass/validity. A Saver Day Pass is only worth it if you can get it for a lower price than regular tickets, and if you don't mind the restrictions: www.myswissalps.com/sa verdaypass. For example: a regular 1st class ticket Chur to St. Moritz costs CHF 74. A Saver Day Pass will be at least CHF 88 (never saw them cheaper).

I'd recommend to do the math as Lucas suggested on January 11, and compare the Swiss Travel Pass, Swiss Half Fare Card and the option of getting point to point tickets/Saver Day Passes. Your day trips while in St. Moritz should be included in those calculations as well.

I hope this helps!

Samski10
Samski10
10 posts
new member
Jan 14, 2019 - 6:06 PM

Hi Arno,

Thank you. Yes I can get the Day Saver for 88.00 and as I have multiple train journeys on 2 of my days I think it is the best value as buying the tickets will exceed the 88.00.

Not really planning any rail trips whilst in St Moritz.

Thanks, Sam

Arno
Arno
12546 posts
expert &
moderator
Jan 14, 2019 - 6:32 PM in reply to Samski10

Hi Sam,

Just to make sure: the Saver Day Pass gets you one day of travel, not two. The amount of CHF 88 is the lowest possible price. It can be more expensive or sold out, depending on the travel date and purchase date. It indeed looks like a good option for you, but the price is only sure once you've actually purchased.

Enjoy your trips!

Last modified on Jan 14, 2019 - 6:34 PM by Arno

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