Swiss Half Fare Card - limits on visitors per day?

Swiss Half Fare Card - limits on visitors per day?

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Wollie
Wollie
6 posts
new member
Apr 26, 2018 - 12:47 PM

I want to know if certain places limit the number of visitors who want to use the half-fare card? I ask this because I tried to book on the www.viator.com website for the Schilthorn Cableway from Stechelberg and the website indicated that this option is "unavailable or sold out for this particular day".

If that is the case that they indeed limit the number of half-fare card holders, then it begs the question whether it is actually worth it to buy the half-fare card.

Alpenrose666
Alpenrose666
2127 posts
top member
Apr 26, 2018 - 2:01 PM in reply to Wollie

Hi Wollie, and welcome to MySwissAlps!

No, there is never a limit. Viator's error message is too generic to explain what the actual problem is, but it will not be anything to do with a limit on people with a Swiss Half Fare Card.

No need to book in advance - just get your ticket on the day of travel from the cable car valley station at Stechelberg once you have confirmed that the weather is clear enough to make the trip worthwhile.

Even if you got a ticket from Viator, you would still have to go to the ticket office at Stechelberg to swap it for a card with a bar code that can be read by the turnstile through which you have to pass before boarding the cable car.

What is your date of travel to the Schilthorn? It's closed for maintenance at the moment, but reopens on 28 April 2018.

Alpenrose

Wollie
Wollie
6 posts
new member
Apr 26, 2018 - 2:11 PM in reply to Alpenrose666

Alpenrose, thank you for your reply! We are planning to go in October of this year.

Alpenrose666
Alpenrose666
2127 posts
top member
Apr 26, 2018 - 2:18 PM in reply to Wollie

>> We are planning to go in October of this year.

In that case, the problem is likely to be that you are trying to book too far in advance. For advance bookings, 90 days in advance is usually the limit.

But it is not a good idea at all to buy in advance. There is no point in going up if the Schilthorn is in the clouds.

The best thing is to wait until 24-48 hours before you want to go up, and check the weather forecast. Then, on the day of travel, check the webcam to see if it is clear on top. If it's foggy, you won't see anything.

schilthorn.ch/en/Infos /Live

Alpenrose

Last modified on Apr 26, 2018 - 2:25 PM by Alpenrose666
Wollie
Wollie
6 posts
new member
Apr 26, 2018 - 2:25 PM in reply to Alpenrose666

Thank you, that is valuable advice! I also got the impression that the www.viator.com website is perhaps not the cheapest way of seeing Switzerland.

Alpenrose666
Alpenrose666
2127 posts
top member
Apr 26, 2018 - 2:34 PM in reply to Wollie

>> I also got the impression that the www.viator.com website is perhaps not the cheapest way of seeing Switzerland.

With a Swiss Half Fare Card, you can simply buy tickets shortly before boarding trains, boats, buses and cable cars. Tickets never sell out.

The only thing you need to be aware of is that if you plan to travel on the Glacier Express, Bernina Express or Gotthard Panorama Express, reservations are mandatory. They do sell out, but probably not in October, which is the start of the low season.

The Glacier Express and Gottard Panorama Express only run until 14 October 2018, before taking a break. When they aren't running, you can follow the same routes on regional trains though, and they don't require a reservation.

After 21 October 2018, many mountain transport operations will start closing down, either for the winter, or for 4-6 weeks of maintenance before the ski season starts. When in October are you travelling?

Alpenrose

Arno
Arno
10355 posts
expert &
moderator
Apr 29, 2018 - 2:10 PM in reply to Wollie

Hi Wollie,

I noticed that you wondered if Viator is perhaps not the cheapest way to see Switzerland. Perhaps they are not, but they are certainly not expensive and even have a lowest price guarantee: https://www.viator.com /about/why-book-with-viator/guaranteed-low-prices. So far I have found only minor price differences with other buying options, often caused by exchange rates I think. In some cases their guided tours are even cheaper than buying tickets for a self guided tour on the spot. It's a matter of comparing and taking personal preferences into account (guided vs non-guided).

Enjoy your trip!

Wollie
Wollie
6 posts
new member
Apr 29, 2018 - 4:10 PM in reply to Arno

Arno,

Thank you for clarifying that. It is good to know.

Regards

Wollie

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