Understanding the differences in Swiss rail passes

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2 posts
new member
Apr 14, 2018 - 2:06 AM


My family and I will be traveling to Switzerland come July. We will be flying into Zurich where we will then head straight to Interlaken. We will be arriving July 19th and then return back to Zurich the 22nd where we will stay a few days before returning back to the States.

I have looked into three possible options for purchasing a train pass

1. Jungfraujoch regional pass and then adding our round trip to and from Zurich, also taking into account the 50% price discount for the top of Jungfraujoch train ticket

2. The Swiss Train pass and then adding on the 25% off Jungfraujoch ticket

3. The half fare Swiss card adding on the 50% Jungfraujoch ticket

We plan to travel extensively within the Interlaken region during our stay there to places such as Lake Spiez, Grindelwald, Lake Thun, and Harder Kulm. This is our first time traveling to Switzerland and we would like to ensure that we get the right travel pass to have the best possible experience.

I welcome any suggestions and greatly appreciate your help!

4620 posts
Apr 14, 2018 - 5:49 AM in reply to lrko223

Hello Irko223 and Welcome to MySwissAlps,

There is no easy answer to this question. It depends on individual itineraries. E.g. will you do any travel during your few days in Zurich? Why not stay in Lucerne instead of Zurich? Then an 8-day Swiss Travel Pass may start to look quite attractive. It offers the ultimate in convenience and flexibility.

Given you are primarily staying in the Jungfrau Region then that pass may make sense.

The Swiss Half Fare Card you need to add the half price fare for every trip you make, not just the cost of Jungfrauoch on top of the cost of the card.

The other option is the Bernese Oberland Pass (www.myswissalps.com/re gionalpassberneseoberl and). With that pass you only need a ticket from Zurich to Lucerne or Bern. One way Zurich to Lucerne is CHF30.

I guess you have alread read “How to choose the best travel pass” (www.myswissalps.com/tr ain/ticketspasses/prac tical/chooserailpass)?

Many people take on look at the 50% (SHFC) versus 25% (STP) discount difference for Jungfraujoch and jump at the Swiss Half Fare Card. In reality the difference is around CHF35.

2 posts
new member
Apr 14, 2018 - 2:14 PM

Hello thank you for your reply!

Switzerland is our last stop on a month long Europe trip and we will be focusing our travels primarily in Interlaken and also Zurich at the end of our trip before we fly back out of Zurich to the States. Our lodging is already booked for those two cities so unfortunately we cannot change that.

I am leaning more towards the Jungfraujoch regional pass as I see that as the area where we will be traveling extensively and then getting the 50% discounted ticket as well as our tickets from Zurich to Interlaken round trip. Do you know much about this pass and if it is inclusive of boat rides on Lake Thun and Briez?

We will be staying in Zurich the 22-25 and flying out early on the 25th. We have heard Zurich is a fairly walkable city and you may also rent bikes so we do not see us needing the train pass ice we arrive there, please correct me if I am wrong.

We are also open to exploring areas near Zurich if you have any suggestions.

Ultimately we are looking for the best value that will enable us to see the main attractions of the Interlaken region for our short stay in the area.

Thank you.

10385 posts
expert &
Apr 14, 2018 - 3:10 PM in reply to lrko223

Hi Irk0223,

You can read all about the Jungfrau Travel Pass here. It shows prices, how to use and where it is valid (with pfd map). If you get a longer duration pass (5 or more days) it covers Lake Thun and Lake Brienz.

Zurich is quite walkable yes - see our page on what to do in Zurich. You may want to take a train ride up to Uetliberg (about 30 minutes from Zurich main station) to see some great views over the area and do an easy hike.

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