How to save on Swiss Travel Passes

How to save on Swiss Travel Passes

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Removed user
Removed user
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Jul 19, 2017 - 6:21 PM

Hi is there anyone that can help us find a discount on the Swiss travel pass for 2 people under 25 for 3 days August 7-9.

Also is there any chocolate or Swiss cheese factories near any of the following 3 cities Zurich, Davos, or St. Moritz

Lucas
Lucas
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Jul 20, 2017 - 10:03 AM in reply to Removed user

Hi Vacationer and welcome to MySwissAlps!

There is a discount for youth (under 26) always available at 15% off. Have a look at where to buy the Swiss Travel Pass online here.

We also have a promotions page here that will alert you to any current sales for the Swiss Travel Pass (nothing at the moment). Most sales are offered in the Spring time and I doubt there will be any more promotions until after the summer season, but you never know!

Also, you can sign up for our newsletter to be notified immediately about any promotions as soon as we know about them.

There is a cheese factory in Zermatt you can check out, another one in Arosa (not too close to Davos though) and I don't know of any in Zurich...perhaps another member knows of others as well!

Most are located in central and eastern Switzerland. If you can stop near Appenzell / St. Gallen area you will have more luck or near Montreux- Gruyeres for example.

Lucas

Last modified on Jul 20, 2017 - 10:10 AM by Lucas
chyna106
chyna106
31 posts
active member
Jul 20, 2017 - 6:21 PM in reply to Lucas

Hi Lucas and Vacationer,

thanks for the post and info! I will be travelling Switzerland for 10.5 days starting 3rd week of September this year. I'm assuming I should be buying the 15-day pass? I'm also looking out for promotions as well. Have you seen promotions around that time? Or is September still considered "Summer"? Also since I'm waiting to purchase the Swiss Pass, can I still reserve train seats for ex on Gothard and Golden Pass first?

And which site seems to be better to purchase the pass? www.sbb.ch/en/leisure-holidays/travel-in-switzerland/internatio nal-guests/swiss-travel-pass.html or raileurope.com? I saw a past promotion on raileurope but their prices were higher?!

Thanks so much!

Lucas
Lucas
3339 posts
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Jul 21, 2017 - 6:14 AM in reply to chyna106

Hi Chyna106,

The 15 day Swiss Travel Pass is probably the most economical (and convenient for sure) for your trip. The only way to know for sure about the most economical option is to compare various rail passes and point to point tickets. We have an Excel sheet to help you do that on our page about choosing the best rail pass.

September is still summer season here yes *though not really in the higher altitudes! There might be a promotion that comes out in late September or early Fall but there is no way to know until it comes out (most promotions seem to come out in the Spring) but be sure to sign up for our newsletter - link in my previous post.

You don't have to have bought the Swiss Travel Pass before making any reservations no. Just make sure you have it on your before you board the train! If ordering online, which is the best idea, ensure you have a good week before you leave home to receive and print it out before your trip.

Rail pass websites do differ a little on prices depending on their own possible markup and currency exchange rates. Check out our list of recommended companies here to buy the Swiss Travel Pass online.

Lucas

chyna106
chyna106
31 posts
active member
Jul 21, 2017 - 6:47 AM in reply to Lucas

Thanks so much Lucas! I can also have the Swiss Pass emailed to me as well right? And I heard you have to show your passport with the Swiss Pass? I assume a driver's license wouldn't suffice?

Lucas
Lucas
3339 posts
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Jul 21, 2017 - 6:58 AM in reply to chyna106

Correct.

When you order the Swiss Travel Pass online you can have it emailed to you and print at home before you travel to Switzerland - by far the most convenient option!

Yes, you must have your passport with you (you will have your passport details on the Swiss Travel Pass) to show train employees when asked.

*Note that for your website comparisons above, we recommend using always using the Swiss Railways site here, which is the official web shop of the SBB for tourist passes.

Lucas

Last modified on Jul 21, 2017 - 12:22 PM by Lucas
chyna106
chyna106
31 posts
active member
Jul 21, 2017 - 8:17 PM in reply to Lucas

Thanks again Lucas! Which website do you recommend getting reservations for the Gothard Express and Golden Pass? (cheapest price that is) Reservations on Gothard are mandatory?

Also I will be travelling from Interlaken to Montreux (with Swiss Pass 2nd class)

- Do I need to make reservations from Interlaken Ost to Zweisimmen? I assume there will be plenty of seats? Is it first come first serve when you get on the 2nd class trains?

- And if I want to sit 1st class from Zweisimmen to Montreux? I heard it's worth it for the view? How do I upgrade and reserve the front seats?

Thanks so much for your help!

Alpenrose666
Alpenrose666
1176 posts
top member
Jul 22, 2017 - 8:01 AM in reply to chyna106

>> I saw a past promotion on raileurope but their prices were higher?!

Just a tip when comparing prices between various websites: make sure you are comparing the same currency! Sometimes one will be in Swiss Francs, and the other will be in Euros or another currency.

Alpenrose

Alpenrose666
Alpenrose666
1176 posts
top member
Jul 22, 2017 - 8:45 AM in reply to chyna106

>> Which website do you recommend getting reservations for the Gothard Express and Golden Pass? (cheapest price that is) Reservations on Gothard are mandatory?

There is never a discount on seat reservations unfortunately!

Gotthard Express reservations (mandatory):

www.myswissalps.com/go tthardpanoramaexpress/ packages

Golden Pass reservations:

tickets.goldenpass.ch/ pls/apex/f?p=151:1:67048311426951 56::NO:::

>> I will be travelling from Interlaken to Montreux (with Swiss Pass 2nd class) - Do I need to make reservations from Interlaken Ost to Zweisimmen?

Reservations are not compulsory, but if you want to be sure of sitting together and getting a window seat, reservations are a good idea.

>> I assume there will be plenty of seats?

Not necessarily. Did you read this recent trip report?

www.myswissalps.com/fo rum/topic/6-days-in-switzerland-montreux-zermatt-luzern

>> Is it first come first serve when you get on the 2nd class trains?

Yes, if you don't have a seat reservation.

>> if I want to sit 1st class from Zweisimmen to Montreux? I heard it's worth it for the view?

The VIP seats at the very front of the first carriage, where you get the view from the driver's perspective, are worth it for the view. Out of all the first-class seats, only 8 of them are these VIP seats, and only 4 of them are in the front row (see attached diagram, with VIP seats circled in red).

Not all Golden Pass trains have the carriage with VIP seats. From Zewisimmen to Montreux, only the 12:25 and 18:25 departures have carriages with VIP seats. If you leave it too late to reserve, all the VIP seats will be taken.

>> How do I upgrade and reserve the front seats?

You can buy a class upgrade from any staffed railway station in Switzerland.

Reservations are best done online if you want the VIP seats. You can do this before you get your class upgrade, but must have both the reservation and the upgrade when you board the train.

Alpenrose

Last modified on Jul 22, 2017 - 8:54 AM by Alpenrose666
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chyna106
chyna106
31 posts
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Jul 25, 2017 - 9:38 PM in reply to Alpenrose666
rockoyster
rockoyster
910 posts
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Jul 25, 2017 - 9:56 PM in reply to chyna106

You can purchase a class upgrade at any station or even better here www.sbb.ch/ticketshop/ b2c/adw.do?sprache=en&artikelnumm er=7725 and print at home before you leave.

If buying on-line you need to specify "Half-fare travelcard" in the "Reduction" field on the "Passengers" page in order to get the correct price.

Alpenrose666
Alpenrose666
1176 posts
top member
Jul 26, 2017 - 4:21 AM in reply to chyna106

>> For Gotthard Express reservations, the link ... led me to the Happy rail site and getting tickets to Gothard didn’t seem to work.

You need to click on one of the "28 Euro" options to make a selection for 1st or 2nd class before proceeding - perhaps you didn't do that.

>> www.sbb.ch/ Description says price is 24CHF but not easy to select what cities to/from to travel.

If you are travelling from Luzern to Lugano, put in Lucerne Bahnhofquai and Lugano.

>> upgrade from 2nd to 1st class in person at the station? I wonder if there is enough time to do that when switching trains (Interlaken to Zweisimmen)?

No, you won't have time to do it at Zweisimmen, as the standard connection time is 6 minutes.

Alpenrose

rockoyster
rockoyster
910 posts
top member
Jul 26, 2017 - 5:32 AM in reply to chyna106

That link I provided above for class upgrades got butchered.Try this https://goo.gl/hUhJTb

ps Lucas, Arno if you are listening. Why does the forum post editor stick random spaces in long URLs? It doesn't make life easy when you are trying to copy a link from one post to another.

Last modified on Jul 26, 2017 - 5:39 AM by rockoyster
Arno
Arno
9614 posts
expert &
moderator
Jul 26, 2017 - 1:18 PM

Hi Rockoyster,

The spaces make sure that long URLs display ok on narrow screens too (cell phones mainly). Without spaces the URL would be wider than the screen. I'm looking for another way to achieve that but haven't found it yet. It's indeed not ideal, sorry about that!

A tip to copy URLs is to not copy them right off the screen, but right click the link and click "Copy link address" or something similar, depending on your operating system and browser.

Last modified on Jul 26, 2017 - 1:19 PM by Arno
Lucas
Lucas
3339 posts
expert &
moderator
Jul 26, 2017 - 1:51 PM in reply to rockoyster

PS We're always watching ;)

rockoyster
rockoyster
910 posts
top member
Jul 26, 2017 - 9:05 PM in reply to Arno

Good tip Arno. Thanks, I should have thought of that for when using Windows or Mac. Unfortunately no such option on iOS where Copy option copiesURL with spaces (%20) included. :-(

Stop Press: In fact just tested "Copy Link" on Mac with same result. The problem is that not only are you inserting a space in the display text you are also inserting %20 in the URL in the HREF attribute. That's why copied links break. Your developers should be able to make long URLs responsive to various screen sizes by judicious use of CSS. Their current method is very old school. Suggest they look at gist.github.com/stalmo k/3346629 ;-)

Last modified on Jul 26, 2017 - 10:33 PM by rockoyster
rockoyster
rockoyster
910 posts
top member
Jul 27, 2017 - 12:01 AM in reply to Arno

StopStopPress: Forget my rantings. I didn't get my testing method peer reviewed. 🤓

rockoyster
rockoyster
910 posts
top member
Jul 27, 2017 - 3:33 AM in reply to Arno

Triple Stop Press:

A thousand apologies Arno! My more thorough self has now completed a peer review of my sloppier self's testing methodology. It was rubbish. As you suggested Copy Link function works in Safari on both iOS (where it is only called Copy and appears when you long press on a link) and Mac. Ignore my previous two posts except for the bit about using CSS to modernise the approach you use for handling long urls.

Now if only I had access to that "Insert Link" feature in the post edit toolbar. 🤡

Last modified on Jul 27, 2017 - 4:15 AM by rockoyster
Arno
Arno
9614 posts
expert &
moderator
Jul 27, 2017 - 10:58 AM

Thanks for that CSS tip Rockoyster. We're in very early stages of a new design and there might be a way to include this.

jlovda
jlovda
38 posts
active member
Jul 27, 2017 - 12:34 PM in reply to Removed user

I have been to Switzerland about 20 times to take railroad pictures. My advice is to buy your Swiss Travel Pass in the SBB office at the Zürich Airport when you get off the plane. You pay straight advertised price without handling fees or shipping and you don't have to worry about being stuck with a several hundred dollar ticket that is useless if you change your dates or cancel your trip. I personally do not go to a walk-up ticket window. I go next door to the SBB walk-in information center where you feel less rushed. The SBB ticket area is on the lowest level right next to the escalators going down to the tracks.

John

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