Travel Advice

 

​In this section I'll be discussing common questions I see about transportation in Switzerland, and provide some possible options you can use for getting around.

  • What I get asked the most often about traveling is if it's important to rent a car. No!

    • Not once in the time I was there did I feel the need to have a car or miss having a car. I can think of some scenarios where having a car might be more convenient (long distance traveling, specific areas that a car has easier access to, more luggage, etc.), but you can get trains, buses, and boats almost anywhere.

  • My number one tip for traveling by public transit is to get the SBB Mobile App

    • This will let you buy tickets to show right on your phone​

    • Give extremely accurate and up to date info on trains and buses 

    • Provide easy to follow route options when choosing destinations

  • Do not take trains and buses as your main method of transportation without getting some kind of pass.

    • If you plan on doing a decent amount of traveling by train while in Switzerland, more so than going between two cities once or twice, I highly recommend getting some kind of pass to save money.​

    • Options

      • Swiss Travel Pass (Standard or Flex)​

      • Half Fare Card (combining with SuperSaver Ticket)

      • Berner Oberland Regional Pass

    • There are other more specific options besides these which you can find on the SBB website, but in my experience these are probably the best options for travel just within Switzerland. Be on the lookout for random special offers on the SBB website though!

  • Swiss Travel Pass

    • This is the pass I recommend the most ​and the one I used most often.

    • It's the easiest to use, covers several popular cable cars and gets most others half off, and lets you use all public transit on an active day (train, bus, boat)

    • You need your passport to get and use this, do not lose it as it can't be replaced

    • Best for long trips and days with lots of different transit 

  • Half Fare Card

    • Another option I used, good for if you're doing shorter day trips in less touristy areas​

      • For ex, staying Zurich and traveling into Glarus or other nearby areas​

    • Combine with SuperSaver tickets for big savings

    • You can get a month one for $120, but you can actually get the year one for $100

  • Berner Oberland Regional Pass

    • Not a pass I've used before​

    • However, it sounds like it'd be a really good deal if you are in this specific area (this is also probably the area with the most stuff to see)

    • There are probably other regional passes if this one doesn't cover the locations you'll be visiting

  • When traveling in Switzerland I believe it's best to be flexible with your day trip options

    • The weather in Switzerland can be a bit unpredictable​

    • Weather can greatly affect your enjoyment of outside activities and views

    • Switzerland is small and easy to travel around making long day trips easy

    • Therefore if it's raining where you want to go one day have a backup destination in mind to go to instead, and wait until the weather has improved!

  • Buses and Trains are generally self check areas

    • This means it's expected that you buy a ticket before getting on, and there's no one to show a ticket to when boarding​

    • Occasionally people will come around to check tickets, but it's possible you won't be checked on a given ride

    • Traveling by transit in cities you will almost never be checked, often people just have the ticket pulled up on a phone ready to buy it if they see a ticket checker get on the bus, and even on longer train rides between cities sometimes you won't be checked

    • If you don't have a ticket when checked you won't be able to buy one, and you will have to pay a large fine

  • Trains are rarely ever late, the time listed for a train is when it's leaving so be punctual.

  • If you don't have a first class ticket make sure that you're seated in second class (look for the number two)

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