Trains from Italy to Switzerland
There are quick direct trains from Milan and other Italian cities to various Swiss towns. Many high speed trains connect Venice, Rome and other towns to Milan. The eco-friendly and comfortable trains offer a more scenic way to travel than planes. A flight, including the time to get to and from airports, is rarely worth the hassle. A train ride from Milan to Zurich only takes 3h15. From Genoa it's about 5h15 (via a direct train), from Venice about 6h15, and from Rome about 7h15.
Scenic route from Italy to Switzerland
If alpine scenery is more important than travel time, the Bernina Express route and Gotthard Panorama Express route are beautiful options.
How to get the cheapest tickets
- Book as early as possible. You can book from 6 months before traveling (options vary). Find prices here.
- It helps if your travel date and time are flexible. This makes it easier to get the best price.
- Check if there are promotions.
- If you have a Swiss rail pass, you only need a ticket to the border. Chiasso (Switzerland), Domodossola (Italy) and Tirano (Italy) are common border stations. For example: with a Swiss Travel Pass, there is no need for a ticket all the way from Milan to Zurich, because the leg from Chiasso to Zurich is covered by the pass. Just buy a ticket from Milan to Chiasso.
- An alternative to booking a ticket to the Swiss border station, is to book a ticket for the "passholder fare". That's a ticket for the entire route for people who own a rail pass for Switzerland or Italy. The ticket is cheaper than a regular ticket because the leg covered by the rail pass is free. An advantage of this fare is that it includes a seat reservation for the entire route, not just to the border. Passholder fares are not always available, nor needed (because seat reservations are not required within Switzerland). If they're unavailable, you simply book to the border.
- If you have a rail pass that covers both Italy and Switzerland, you don't need a ticket at all. You just need a seat reservation.
Find ticket prices and points of sale.
Is something not clear yet? Just post your questions to the Swiss rail forum and get a quick answer.