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Trip report Swiss rail travel by a first timer

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ucchoi01
ucchoi01
24 posts
new member
Sep 18, 2018 - 10:12 AM

Well... I just wrapped up my trip to Switzerland... I understand that I'm not going to state anything that hasn't been said by others earlier.,. But for first timers, I thought I could give a quick summary of things that helped me...

1. What kind of pass? .... My answer won't be for everyone. I realize money and budget is important to many... But for me, buying an 8 day Swiss Travel Pass was a no brainer ... It allowed me to make tight connections from 1 train to another (the efficient Swiss rail system means you RARELY wait more than 10 minutes before your connecting train comes) without stopping to buy a ticket (assuming you didn't buy tickets for every leg if you, like me, like to be spontaneous) ... Believe me... If you're traveling and time is important... And most tourists will be strapped for time.. the convenience of being able to just jump on any train without waiting to buy a ticket first is amazing and worth the money...

2. Download the SBB app to your phone... It is simply amazing. It shows not only trains from city to city, it also shows tram schedules.. and getting around a city on trams is essential.. the app is super easy to use... I use the function where you drag your finger from one place to another.. easy.

3. Read carefully what others have already said here in myswissalps.com about what is NOT covered. You don't want to be in a train going up to kleine Scheidegg from Lauterbrunnen only to realize it doesn't cover going past wengen... I saw a lot of tourists confused about this .. verify verify verify about cable cars, mountain trains, or boat cruises before getting on..

4. Don't get super stressed about train travel... It's easier, more reliable, cleaner, than any train system in the US or elsewhere... Everything runs on time.. just relax, let the trains take you where you want to go...

Last modified on Sep 18, 2018 - 6:29 PM by Lucas
Rail Europe
Lucas
Lucas
10495 posts
top member
Sep 18, 2018 - 6:29 PM in reply to ucchoi01

Hi ucchoi01

Great tips! Thanks for taking the time to post them here. :)

ucchoi01
ucchoi01
24 posts
new member
Sep 19, 2018 - 1:12 PM

you're very welcome Lucas... I just happened to notice that the same questions get asked over and over about passes and trains.. that seems to be the issue that worries tourists the most.. The Swiss Travel Pass allowed me to travel with the least amount of stress and hassle... Like I said before, it was definitely worth the money.

maggiehorswell
maggiehorswell
690 posts
top member
Sep 20, 2018 - 10:52 PM

Hello ucchoi01

I agree wholeheartedly with you about the convenience of using the Swiss Travel Pass which is always our choice. I do the Maths later when I return home to see how much I have saved and am often surprised by how much it was! But it's the spontaneity as well which we like - being able to change plans at last minute perhaps because of weather or just seeing a train about to depart and thinking - wonder what's there? and jumping on board to find out can be an exciting thing to do! We once were in Brienz intending to go up the Rothorn but the train had been cancelled because of a landslip. We saw a bus about to depart which said Axalp so we just got on board, had a wonderful twisty bus ride with great views and in Axalp found the "Carvers' Trail" which was absolutely brilliant. So we had a wonderful day out completely unplanned thanks to STP.

Maggie

ucchoi01
ucchoi01
24 posts
new member
Sep 21, 2018 - 3:30 PM

Maggie, we are of like mind.. Just last week, I was in Zurich HB waiting and saw a train destined for Chur... I said, "why not?" ... That is the true joy and wonder of traveling freely.. I love it...

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