Swiss trains cleanliness on our recent trip

Swiss trains cleanliness on our recent trip

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Posts: 9. This thread is closed.
andrew
andrew
43 posts
active member
Aug 9, 2017 - 3:03 PM

We have just returned from yet another wonderful Swiss holiday, this time based first in Locarno and then our usual Spiez. We used first class Swiss Travel Passes which we find worth the extra especially when standard class is packed and also on the boats. Note: boats on Lago di Maggiore are not included. The local Ticino Pass fives a 25% reduction but on lake day passes only, not indivdual fares.

One thing we noticed this time compared to many other visits was the lack of regular cleaning in the trains and particularly in the toilets which many times had floors and other parts running with water. One day, upon boarding a train at Zurich HB, we found all the waste bins near us were already full. The train had a 20-minute turn round in Zurich, so surely a couple of staff with bin bags could have emptied them while another checked the toilets.

Has anyone else noticed this deterioration which demeans the otherwise brilliant service?

Andrew

Peterli
Peterli
82 posts
active member
Aug 9, 2017 - 10:13 PM

Hello Andrew,

I have not noticed any "deterioration" in the Swiss rail service. Perhaps there is a reason you encountered what you saw in Zurich (and elsewhere ?). My only suggestion is that you pass on your observations directly to the SBB, making sure you are very precise about the date(s), train number(s), and perhaps even the wagon(s) you were in.

Lucas
Lucas
3376 posts
expert &
moderator
Aug 10, 2017 - 6:13 AM in reply to andrew

Hi Andrew,

I haven't noticed any big issues on the trains around Zurich except once recently from the airport where the bathroom was quite messy/wet. Overall I've been impressed with the trains here.

Lucas

andrew
andrew
43 posts
active member
Aug 10, 2017 - 6:50 AM

Hi Peterli and Lucas.

Thanks for your replies. Yes, Lucas, Swiss trains are indeed impressive.

The Zurich HB example I mentioned was just an example and not an isolated incident. We found several wet toilet compartments on trains in south, west and central parts of Switzerland and wondered if we were simply unlucky or whether it was an unfortunate trend. It's significant that Lucas could recall immediately a recent experience of a wet/messy toilet.

New readers, please don't be put off and this is the year to meet the Swiss who seem to have discovered "staycation".

Andrew.

Lucas
Lucas
3376 posts
expert &
moderator
Aug 10, 2017 - 6:54 AM in reply to andrew

Yes, it was a recent incident...but overall they are much nicer than any other trains I've been on anywhere in Europe. :)

Peterli
Peterli
82 posts
active member
Aug 10, 2017 - 7:47 AM

Hi,

The following video shows you how seriously the SBB takes cleanliness in the toilets on its trains. Although the people are speaking Swiss-German, there are subtitles available in French. Even if you do not speak either language, you will get a good idea of what they are attempting to convey to us. You can even play with the settings and get a less than perfect translation into English. This is a YouTube option, not a translation done by the SBB, and I guess the auto-translator has not learned Swiss-German ! It does a terrible job of translating. https://youtu.be/uwUql 1knMfM

You may also want to look at this link, entitled Disponibles, propres, agréables: les toilettes des CFF. If I find an English version, I will post it. company.sbb.ch/fr/entr eprise/responsabilites /avantage-ecologique/dechets/wc-video.html

andrew
andrew
43 posts
active member
Aug 10, 2017 - 8:32 AM

Hi Peterli,

I'm sure that the SBB takes cleanliness of trains and their toilets very seriously. Our experience was of isolated but regular occurrences. I wouldn't say that we were complaining: more observing. I should also point out that I didn't mention the SBB particularly because it wasn't only their trains.

I'm sorry that you seem to be taking it personally as well as on behalf of the SBB. Are you, or have you been, connected to Swiss Railways?

I agree with Lucas that Swiss Railways and the whole Swiss public transport system are comfortable, impressive, reliable and generally a pleasure to use. Here in the UK we are told that an integrated public transport system is not possible. I say, "Look at Switzerland."

Now it's aired, perhaps we should be drawing this to a close before it shoots off in many directions.

Andrew

Peterli
Peterli
82 posts
active member
Aug 11, 2017 - 6:16 AM in reply to andrew

Hello Andrew,

I had been hoping that this thread would have come to a close a number of postings back, but in your last contribution you have personalized it by suggesting that I am "taking it personally as well as on behalf of the SBB". You then go on to ask, almost in the style of a courtroom lawyer, "Are you, or have you been, connected to Swiss Railways?" There was nothing personal in my first post to this thread. I was just suggesting that (rather than dissing the Swiss railways in a public forum) you make a detailed report to the SBB. I was hoping that this would be the end of it, as I felt your suggestions of demeaning "deterioration" and "lack of regular cleaning" were unwarranted and unfair. But it wasn't the end of it. Next I was reading that it was "not an isolated incident". So I did some digging and found and posted a video and a website that shows just how serious the SBB takes the cleanliness of its toilets and the subsequent disposal of the waste. Again I hoped that this would be the end of the thread and once again there was nothing personal in what I stated. But it still was not the end of it. In your next post I read that these unsatisfactory toilets were "isolated but regular occurrences", (which seem to be conflicting adjectives)and that you weren't complaining, but more observing. So why not just let this go, rather than digging a deeper hole. I too agree with Lucas that the Swiss railway (also postal cars and boats) system is the finest in Europe, and I see absolutely no value in criticism which is most undeserved. Perhaps the UK will be able to make stunning and exemplary improvements to its system after they exit the EU. I will add one other suggestion to my original post; next time you find an offending toilet and prepare a report for the SBB (or other Swiss railway) be sure to take photographs to support your claim. I would also remind you that it takes just one slob to mess up a toilet and that slob just might be the first to use it after it has left the initial station of the train's route.

Last modified on Aug 11, 2017 - 6:24 AM by Peterli
andrew
andrew
43 posts
active member
Aug 11, 2017 - 6:29 AM

I rest my case

Andrew

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