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Reservation of Bernina Express issues

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Oct 8, 2019 - 9:42 AM

Dear Forum,

I want to do something special with my son who turned 15. A father son trip with the Glacier Expres and Bernina Expres in his holiday week of 21 octobre. I booked and payed this in June. Two things went wrong. After many, many weeks they (happy rail) sent us an email that the Glacier expres is not going that week, all hotels, flight tickets, etc were already booked. Now we have to go by regular train and have to change train four times. Oké, very dissapointed but we are stil going. Yesterday I was printing the reservation Bernina express and found out they booked us a week earlier (16 instead of 23 octobre). Happy Rail says "sorry, we can not change the reservation and sorry for your money but you don't get anything back". You have to make a new reservation. I had to do this for 75€ but I wonder why they don't give the money back for a fault in the systeem. Can you help.

Baxterdeck
Baxterdeck
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Oct 8, 2019 - 2:01 PM

I am on the plane home from an AMAZING two weeks in Switzerland. I learned much from this forum.

unfortunately, I too, have a complaint about “Happy Rail”. I bought two Swiss travel passes on line. For some reason I was under the impression they would activate upon our first use in country WRONG, At the top of the application there is a small box that auto fills to the day’s date. For me was September 18. 15 days later we are on a train from Zermatt to Visp, pull out our phones to show the ticket collector and she says “no good”. “Expired”. She was kind enough to let us continue. I immediately contacted unhappily contacted “Happy Rail” and they were completely impervious to our situation.

i accept that I made a mistake. However it would have been comforting to feel they were an advocate and perhaps slightly sympathetic. NEIN.

We ended up paying big bucks on travel as we were headed to 4 days in Lauterbrunnen and then back to Zürich airport

We are just a travel agent” was their continued response. So be it. I suggest not using them as it was clear to me they are not interested in anything but our money. Customer service was very poor. I told them I would share this with all of you. They did not care

On a a more positive note, our adventures were amazing, the weather was stunning. I hope to post a travel report with pics when we return home.

Thanks for all the info on the forum,

Arno
Arno
14121 posts
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Oct 8, 2019 - 2:40 PM

Hi Casakoene, and welcome to MySwissAlps!

I agree it would have been logical not to be able to request a reservation for a day the train does not operate, or at least receive a notification soon after. For your information, the operational dates of the Glacier Express can be found here: www.myswissalps.com/gl acierexpress/gettingth ere. I'm sure you'll enjoy the regular trains too; the views will be the same.

As for the Bernina Express issue: if you filled out the correct date and they issued reservations for another date, then they should fix that with no costs to you. Can you share your HappyRail order number please, so I can get in touch with them?

Arno
Arno
14121 posts
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Oct 8, 2019 - 2:44 PM

Hi Baxterdeck,

I'm sorry to hear that, that's an unpleasant surprise! Indeed the Swiss Travel Pass does not require activation as you pick the start date while purchasing. It's explained here: www.myswissalps.com/sw isstravelpass/howtouse. I agree that pre-filled boxes can be risky. I think they are working on that, but I want to pass this on to them anyway. Particularly because of the way your described they handled this case. You can share your HappyRail order number please?

I'm glad you enjoyed Switzerland and I am looking forward to your report!

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Oct 8, 2019 - 3:28 PM in reply to Arno

Hi Arno, thank you for helping. I send you the files. I filled in the right data on the internet. I see the first conformation was already wrong. I should have notices that but trusted the site. Michael. ps. we hope for some snow on the Bernina pass.

Arno
Arno
14121 posts
expert &
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Oct 9, 2019 - 5:39 AM

Hi Casakoene,

Thanks but I don't see any files. What is your HappyRail order number?

Arno
Arno
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Oct 9, 2019 - 10:44 AM

Hi Casakoene,

I received the scan of your tickets and passed it on to them. Hopefully that's sufficient for them to find your case and investigate.

Arno
Arno
14121 posts
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Oct 9, 2019 - 12:33 PM

Hi again Casakoene,

I checked with Happyrail and it appears that the booking was actually requested for 16 October, so it's no system error. Unfortunately seat reservations are not refundable, regardless of how and where you purchase them. I don't like that it works like that, but it's the way it is at the moment :-(

Arno
Arno
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Oct 9, 2019 - 12:35 PM in reply to Baxterdeck

Hi Baxterdeck,

Can you let me know your Happyrail order number so I can look into this with them?

You wrote about Swiss Travel Passes. Is that what you ordered, or was it the Swiss Travel Pass Flex?

Baxterdeck
Baxterdeck
19 posts
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Oct 10, 2019 - 7:05 PM in reply to Arno

Hi

I ordered two SwissTravel Passes. My order number is 0UBQSI.

i doubt they will care much, but appreciate you following up. Thank you.

Baxterdeck

Arno
Arno
14121 posts
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Oct 11, 2019 - 6:06 AM in reply to Baxterdeck

Thanks Baxterdeck, I'll see what I can find out.

Arno

Arno
Arno
14121 posts
expert &
moderator
Oct 11, 2019 - 8:44 AM

Hi Baxterdeck,

Thanks again, they checked your case: as you said you ordered the Swiss Travel Pass with a start date of September 18, which was not what you wanted. When Happyrail received your e-mail they offered to cancel the pass for a 15% cancellation fee (which is standard wherever you buy), so you would get an 85% refund to buy the new pass. They did not hear back from you. They will reach out to you again and ask to send the new passes to them, so they can attempt to get a refund through the Swiss Railways. Please keep an eye on your mailbox and work with them to get this sorted. The financial implications will then be limited hopefully.

Happyrail feels they have served you well when mailing back and forth. Of course I can't see what and how things were discussed. If you feel they weren't friendly or didn't offer the expected service level, please feel free to forward all e-mails to us, and I'll be glad to have a look: www.myswissalps.com/co ntact/email/addresses.

Arno
Arno
14121 posts
expert &
moderator
Oct 28, 2019 - 8:43 AM

Hi Baxterdeck,

May I assume that you've worked things out with Happyrail now? This thread will close in about two weeks.

Arno
Arno
14121 posts
expert &
moderator
Oct 29, 2019 - 5:25 AM

Hi Baxterdeck,

I noticed that you wrote this in another thread: "They offered no more help despite your advocacy. I chose not to pursue my complaint since it was my responsibility to be more careful. Live and learn."

I'm confused as Happyrail reached out to you after you contacted them, as well as on October 11 after I contacted them. This is what they e-mailed to you on October 11: "We understand that this is a very unfortunate situation. We were wondering if you have purchased a new Swiss Travel Pass. With a new Swiss Travel Pass, we can try to request a full refund for the Swiss Travel Passes with the incorrect date. With proof of a new Swiss Travel Pass, the chance for a refund is bigger. Could you send a scan or the ticketnumber so we can proof this to the SBB?"

They did not get a reply from you. I'm glad to see that you were able to put this behind you, and if you don't want to pursue this anymore then that's fine too. But to me it does not look like Happyrail is unwilling to at least try and see what they can do. You understandably made a mistake and they are trying to solve it, while strictly speaking they don't have to do so. Even if you did not buy a new pass you can scan the tickets you purchased and e-mail those to them. If you don't want to bother that's ok, but please let them know as they are still waiting for your answer. Or am I missing something here?

Anyway, thanks again for your trip report at www.myswissalps.com/fo rum/topic/two-weeks-of-fun-and-adventure, it looks like you had a great time in Switzerland. I was happy to read that!

Last modified on Oct 29, 2019 - 5:28 AM by Arno

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