Getting to Airport in Zurich during traffic

Getting to Airport in Zurich during traffic

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Oshengrl
Oshengrl
2 posts
new member
Apr 15, 2018 - 7:42 PM

I am going to be flying out of Zurich on an international flight at 9am on Tuesday May 8th. Due to the nature of my trip attending a back-country and telemark ski festival I will have a large ski bag and two other bags. I am trying to decide the best way to plan to get to the airport that morning, and how much time I should allow. In my mind these are my options/thoughts, can anyone comment on your opinions?

1: Stay at an Airbnb or Hotel very close to main train station so that I can enjoy my last day there and walk to or Uber to the train station, and go to airport from there. Concern: will I and my big bags be able to fit on the train at 7am or so in the morning? Am I going to be burdening everyone else? How early of a train should I plan t0 get?

2: Stay at a hotel very near the airport, use the train just for my Monday time in the city, and pay for the 50CHF or more car airport transfer in the morning (or Uber).

3: Stay in old town or city center - in other words find a place to stay based only on where I want to be on Monday, and pay for Uber /Taxi to the airport or train station depending on above comments.

General questions relating to all above:

1. What is the traffic like heading from Old town or the Main station to the airport. How much time, if in some kind of a vehicle do I need to allow to get to airport on time?

2. How long is train ride from Main Station to Airport, how often does that train run?

So. If you had a huge ski bag, a backpack, and a small bag, had to be to the airport around 7:00-7:30am on a weekday, how would you plan to tackle that for the most affordable - but balancing out with stress free - option?

Thank you in advance!

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
4738 posts
expert
Apr 15, 2018 - 10:46 PM in reply to Oshengrl

Hi Oshengri-

Welcome to My Swiss Alps -

Many stay at or near the airport. That tends to be a higher cost option, and you still may find it takes 20 minutes to get to the airport if your hotel has a regular shuttle schedule, or, you are not really close to the the terminal ( as in cheaper hotels). I stopped doing that long ago, once I saw how good the public transport system is.

So, take the train. Unless someone else is paying for the ride. In that case, take a taxi. ;-)

No problem with bags...everyone else will be doing it. Most trains have luggage racks in the compartments. The double deckers have large vestibules where people stand with their luggage. That works best if you are among the earlier passengers to board. Since there are frequent trains, that is not a problem.

The timetable will tell you the track number for departure. Tracks #3 - #18 are on the main level and easiest to access.

Higher numbers are at track levels below the main station and require 2-3 extra minutes to get to them. Good signage.

The luggage carts at the station and at the airport go up and down escalators. Don't overload...they do take on steep angle.

At the airport, they are free.

At the main station, they are in a queue, chained together at many places thughout the station and near the entrances.. A 2 CHF coin unlocks (unplugs) the cart. When you are on the platform for your train there are places to plug the cart back in and get your 2 CHF back. Or, you can forget it.

Seems to me that your biggest problem will be getting your bags to the main station. Under similar circumstances, when I could put my business clothes in a suitcase before a few days of leisure at the end of a trip, I'd do so and ship the suitcase to the airport.

The SBB web-site that has the time table explains luggage shipment.

www.sbb.ch/en/station-services/services/lugg age.html

When I have not had the luxury of a couple of days for my luggage to get there from the back country by the cheap option, I stash a bag in a luggage locker at Zürich main station or at the airport, so I don't have to get it to the airport in a rush. Lots of lockers, many large ones, one level down from the main train level at the main station. Good signs.

There is a left luggage office if you need to leave your skis, which won't ft in the lockers. , but it seems that it opens only at 0730. I remember earlier....you can check at the station.

If someone else is paying, take a cab from your downtown hotel. Have them book it the night before. Avoid the Ben Bus Service. Only 25 CHF, but he goes to multiple hotels before he goes to the airport. Can cause you to worry if you have an early flight and are short on time.

When my wife and I traveled together and she did not feel like hauling luggage, we took a taxi. 65CHF. 20 minute or sometimes less. . The heavy traffic is inbound toward the city, not outbound toward the airport.. If feeling lazy, I still do that.

My preferred hotel is one of those that forum recommends - The Hotel Adler. 10 minutes walk to the main station with somewhat less luggage than you have. Or, two stops from the main station plus 70 meters walk on the #4 tram. Trams run every 8 minutes. Most but not all are the newer models with a floor flat at the level of the platform. However some still make you go up a cople of steps to get on board. There is a hotel at Central ( a tram station) 3 minutes walk from the station. It's OK. Full of tour groups.

central.ch/en/

A friend stayed once a couple of years ago at a basic hotel on the other side of the station, close to the mid-station underground walkway. No food. Starbucks close by. He and his wife were happy with it. Hotel Walhalla. I've never been there.

map.search.ch/?pos=683122,248410&z=25 6&poi_id=a6a62234eff40 b6a-tel&poi=bergbahn,halte stelle,hotel,parking,v iasuisse,zug

At the hour of the day that you are traveling, there will be approximately 8 trains per hour from Zürich main station to the airport.

I have attached a screen grab to give you a sampling. Avoid the #10 tram. It takes forever, but, is the cheapest option.

Please check this instruction page:

www.myswissalps.com/ti metable

then look up the trains departing Zürich Hbf (Hauptbahhof, main station) for Zürich airport (Flughafen) on your date and time. You'll see trips as short as 9 mutes and as long a s 20 minutes...with stops.

I've not used Uber in Zürich.

Slowpoke

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Oshengrl
Oshengrl
2 posts
new member
Apr 16, 2018 - 9:18 PM in reply to Slowpoke

WOW!!! Thank you so much for taking so much time to give me such great info and advice! Lots of options! I was looking at Hotel Adler and thought it looked pretty great. My ski bag has wheels, and my backpack... Well, I will have already hauled the thing all over terrain worse then a 10 minute City Walk, so I think I'll go that route! My biggest concern was bring on a commuter train with all that stuff. But I like the locker idea too. I wonder if there are any at the airport? Maybe in my adventures Monday, I'll head there with my big bags, and then in the morning won't have to deal with them at all. Any idea about that?

thank you ever so much again.

Lynda

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
4738 posts
expert
Apr 16, 2018 - 10:46 PM in reply to Oshengrl

Hi Lynda -

<<"I wonder if there are any at the airport?">>

Yes, there are. The website is not cooperating at the moment, so I can not get you a number, but there are whole lot of them. The left luggage office there could be an option, as well. I'm sure that they are open to meet your schedule.

The Adler is quite popular. Prices are reasonable by Zuerich standards. Their computer does yield management. As the rooms fill up, the prices go up. Book early.

The restaurant at the Adler is quite popular. They have a good location for walk-ins, so the restaurant gets very very busy. Good for various meals; very good for raclette and fondue. (If you are not Swiss, you are permitted to eat those cold weather dishes in months which are not Winter).

Lucas, one of the forum moderators , eats there and recommends the restaurant.

Slowpoke

Last modified on Apr 16, 2018 - 10:49 PM by Slowpoke
Snowman
Snowman
140 posts
active member
Apr 18, 2018 - 6:32 AM

Hi!

I can confirm that Slowpoke’s advices are correct, both on trains and on the Adler. Hotel Leoneck would be an alternative. Enjoy yr trip !

Lucas
Lucas
7223 posts
expert &
moderator
Apr 18, 2018 - 10:14 AM in reply to Slowpoke

Yes, indeed. A nice restaurant and always very busy due to its location!

Snowman
Snowman
140 posts
active member
Apr 18, 2018 - 10:54 AM

The absolutely closest hotel to Zurich main station is Arlette. No-nonsense, affordable, but not attractive as the Adler, surely.

hotelarlette.ch/

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
4738 posts
expert
Apr 18, 2018 - 12:52 PM in reply to Snowman

Hi Snowman -

Check the Walhalla. It's closer.

www.walhalla-hotel.ch/en/welcome/

So is the Central Plaza.

Slowpoke

Snowman
Snowman
140 posts
active member
Apr 18, 2018 - 1:02 PM in reply to Slowpoke

OK Slowpoke, you win. I didn't know the Walhalla. From the pictures on their site, the rooms look like Arlette's. Central Plaza is a member of Warwick and is in another category.

The ones I know for having stayed there are Adler, Arlette and Leoneck. All are acceptable, Adler is in my opinion the nicest.

Walhalla and Arlette are so close that the traveller should be able to bring his or her luggage to the station without using a cab. For the Walhalla, maybe you could also go to the station and bring a trolley to the hotel to then bring the luggage to the station.

Last modified on Apr 18, 2018 - 1:03 PM by Snowman
Slowpoke
Slowpoke
4738 posts
expert
Apr 18, 2018 - 1:40 PM in reply to Snowman

<<"For the Walhalla, maybe you could also go to the station and bring a

trolley to the hotel to then bring the luggage to the station.">>

Yes. And, they are very close to the entrance for the new mid-station pedestrian tunnel, so if you are traveling on tracks 3 through 18, you have quick access to them partway along their platforms.

And, in American English, I'd call it a luggage cart, not a trollee. A trolley is a tram, in the most common usage of the term out here in the colonies.

Slowpoke

Snowman
Snowman
140 posts
active member
Apr 18, 2018 - 2:44 PM in reply to Slowpoke

< in American English, I'd call it a luggage cart, not a trollee. A

trolley is a tram, in the most common usage of the term out here in the

colonies >

Hi Slowpoke.

Right, Jeannette PA had a trolley, phased out in the 1950s I believe ( www.youtube.com/watch?v=INya5TBcAEs ). But New Orleans had a streetcar, if we are to believe Tennessee Williams.

But in Zurich what they need is called äs Wägeli ;)

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
4738 posts
expert
Apr 18, 2018 - 4:25 PM in reply to Snowman

<"But in Zurich what they need is called äs Wägeli ;)">>

Only if you speak the Züri dialect of Swiss German. ;-)

Slowpoke

Last modified on Apr 18, 2018 - 4:25 PM by Slowpoke

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