Glacier Express & car drop off and pickup

Glacier Express & car drop off and pickup

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Ronnie8
Ronnie8
6 posts
new member
Jan 11, 2018 - 11:15 PM

We are travelling to Switzerland in October by car after touring Germany. After visiting some sights we would like to drop the car off & take the Glacier Express from Zermatt to Chur or St. Moritz. At this point we would like to rent a car to carry on toward Salzburg, Austria.

I am looking for suggestions about the best way to plan this. We are currently seeking information before we decide the best option. We are open to using the transportation systems throughout Switzerland if necessary to facilitate this but prefer a car to carry on.

Thank you for any suggestions, Ronnie

rockoyster
rockoyster
3914 posts
expert
Jan 12, 2018 - 12:54 AM in reply to Ronnie8

Hello Ronnie and Welcome to MySwissAlps,

The train network is fantastic in Switzerland and is by far the most relaxed way of seeing the scenery.

Suggest you read this www.myswissalps.com/ca rversustrain

The Glacier Express does not run after 14 October (until early December) although you can follow the same route on regular trains.

Last modified on Jan 12, 2018 - 12:57 AM by rockoyster
Lucas
Lucas
8865 posts
expert &
moderator
Jan 12, 2018 - 7:28 AM in reply to Ronnie8

Hi Ronnie8,

I would also think that you wouldn't need a car while traveling around Switzerland - Use the Swiss railways timetable to plan out the trips you are thinking about and see if it could work for you. Also look here for explanations on the various rail passes in Switzerland.

There are also good rail connections from Chur on to Salzburg (about 1 hour longer than by car)- not sure of your plans after arriving in Salzburg but it is always costly to rent a car in one country and drop it off in another if that was the original plan?

Last modified on Jan 12, 2018 - 7:28 AM by Lucas
Slowpoke
Slowpoke
5006 posts
expert
Jan 13, 2018 - 2:08 AM in reply to Lucas

Hi Lucas-

<<"but it is always costly to rent a car in one country and drop it off in another ">>

For sure.

Slowpoke

Ronnie8
Ronnie8
6 posts
new member
Jan 13, 2018 - 1:08 PM

Thank you all very much for your input. This is our first time travelling to Europe and during my research have found many people travel by train which does seem to be a good idea. Another question is upon arrival at most destinations by train, is there other transportation available at the train station to get to & from accommodations? I am concerned with carrying luggage from train to hotel. Some points of interest we would like to visit are: Jungfrau, Matterhorn, Grindelwald, Lucerne, Zurich, Glacier train and small villages. We love nature and scenery which is the main reason for us to visit Switzerland. If you have any suggestions of must see places, I welcome them.

Lucas
Lucas
8865 posts
expert &
moderator
Jan 13, 2018 - 4:21 PM in reply to Ronnie8

Based on your points of interest, yes there will be transport options to the hotel (if it is far from the train or you don't want to walk wherever it is!). If you don't want to use a local tram or bus taxis would be available. If you go to particularly small villages there may be no or infrequent service but your hotel would be able to help you figure out how to get there most likely. If you stay in a village that doesn't allow cars (Wengen, Murren) the hotels will have transport to help get you to the hotel.

For hotel options in the following towns try these links (we note how far the hotel is from the train station): Zurich, Zermatt, Grindelwald, & Lucerne.

Slowpoke
Slowpoke
5006 posts
expert
Jan 13, 2018 - 5:05 PM in reply to Ronnie8

Hi Ronnie8 -

<<"many people travel by train which does seem to be a good idea. ">>

Check this link -

www.myswissalps.com/tr avel/inswitzerland

The Swiss rail system is particularly good.

The timetable will let you see how frequent the service is, and the times required for travel:

www.myswissalps.com/ti metable

Although some back-country rail lines have been replaced by buses, all of the places you mention can be reached by frequent trains. Almost universal service once per hour; service between major cities, such as those you mentioned, is commonly twice per hour with express trains (minimal local stops on those particular trains).

<<" Another question is upon arrival at most destinations by train, is there other transportation available at the train station to get to & from accommodations? I am concerned with carrying luggage from train to hotel. ">>>

In car-free alpine resort areas such as Wengen, the hotels will pick you up at the station in most cases. Good thing...some of those towns are quite hilly.

Here is an example of a city situation -

In the cities that you name, there are taxis at the station, and frequent bus or tram service. There are always hotels near the train stations inmajor citiesm, as well as minor ones and even many small towns.

In Zürich, I like to stay at the Hotel Adler for my first day or so to deal with jet lag.

If there are two of us with a bunch of luggage, we take a very expensive taxi from the airport. 65 CHF.

If I am by myself, and have luggage that I can roll a few meters, I go by train from the airport. There 5-10 trains from the airport to Zürich main station every hour, taking from 9 to 20 minutes, depending on stops.. They cost a few CHF, and the newer double-decker cars ( frequent on that route) have flat floors level with the platform. Then, at the main station, the #4 tram, (another few CHF) which leaves from platforms a few meters outside the station by the river, every 7 or 8 minutes, takes me two stops to the stop called Rudolf Brun Brücke. From there it about a 50 meter walk to the hotel. The trams on Zürich routes are slowly being modernized as older cars are replaced. The new cars are frequent, and have level floors, at a height level with the platforms. Wheeled luggage goes right on board. The older ones require that you lift your bags up a couple of steps. Sometime I wait for a "flat-floor" one. There is a symbol on the schedule board showing those trams....an icon of a wheelchair, if I recall correctly.

<<"Some points of interest we would like to visit are: Jungfrau, Matterhorn, Grindelwald, Lucerne, Zurich, Glacier train and small villages. We love nature and scenery which is the main reason for us to visit Switzerland. If you have any suggestions of must see places, I welcome them.">>

Small villages are a good option. Quite often, the tourist density is low. Some are on train lines, some requires buses. In those, usually you'll walk to the inn.

For locating hotels near train stops, check the links on this page:

www.myswissalps.com/ho tels

A map I use is quite good for that, too.

map.search.ch/

If you use the menus, under "Points of Interest," then "Traffic" you can turn on the locations of public transport stops.

Under Gastronomy, for some odd reason, you can turn on icons for hotels. I check off "restaurants" too, since many are hotels.

Here is an example:

map.search.ch/?pos=637376,162056&z=32 &poi=gastro,zug

I have zoomed in to a magnification level of "32" at which point the train tracks become visible, as well.

You can search for hotels by name in the search box, as well as towns, cities, etc.

<<"and small villages">>

There are many attractive small villages in Switzerland. Most have accommodations, and some inns are quite luxurious. Others are basic....always clean and neat, though. Many better known country or village restaurants may have a few rooms for those who don't want to travel after their evening meal.

In the mountains, and in areas popular with hikers, some of the old mountain inns don't have rooms with baths/toilets, or may have dormitory accommodations.. Unless you are serious hikers, you are not likely to run into those.

What is your degree of interest in "villages" ? A few random images attached.

Slowpoke

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