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Prebooking must for Swiss mountain rides?

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Jun 15th, 2016, 05:34 AM
  #1
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Prebooking must for Swiss mountain rides?

I was just told by a travel agent who is helping me with part-booking the trip (and will get me Swiss pass) that I need to pre-book gondola rides/train rides to the mountain peaks I want to visit, such as Mt Titlis, Jungfraujoch (I know, not a peak but still) etc.That means choose and pay for these before leaving for Switzerland.

Till now I was quite sure from reading all the fora on Switzerland that it is best to take a call on whether to go up these mountains after looking at the web cam that day, else the price is too steep to risk it.

I wanted to keep it flexible as a result, and not pre-book it. But this agent tells me that her Swiss pass terms and conditions mentions that outsiders (tourists) have to prebook such trips and can't get tickets once there.

Kindly let me know if there is any truth in this or not. The rules would not have changed in 2016, will they?

Thanks again.
esskay8 is offline  
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Jun 15th, 2016, 06:09 AM
  #2
 
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No definitely not needed and not possible on most mountain lifts and trains - very poor advice - for lots of accurate info check www.swisstravelsystem.com; www.ricksteves.com and www.budgeteuropetravel.com (call Byron here if any questions you want accurate answers to - I'll bought passes from him for years and even if not buying he'll answer expertly) - do you need a Swiss Pass - if only going to Lucerne and Jungfrau area may well not be the best deal.
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Jun 15th, 2016, 06:14 AM
  #3
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PalenQ, thank you. I will read up and get in touch with Byron. And, this might put me off this agent of mine too...

I am planning to take lots of trains within in the Lauterbrunnen-Wengen-Murren region.

Then will be travelling from Zurich to Lucerne.

From Bernese Oberland to Zermatt. Then from Zermatt to Geneva before leaving Switzerland.

That is why I thought Swiss Pass would be good. It would also let me use public transport for free in Geneva, Zurich and Lucerne?

I was also hoping to use buses in Lauterbrunnen as our stay is a few stops from the main centre. Hence, the Swiss pass should make that free too?
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Jun 15th, 2016, 07:38 AM
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Yes, that was terrible advice your agent gave you. Buy your ticket for the Schilthorn, Jungfraujoch, etc. the day-of when the weather is good. Get an early start, too!
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Jun 15th, 2016, 09:20 AM
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As everyone else has said not a good idea, if face so bad I'd forget the TA and do it yourself.
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Jun 15th, 2016, 09:21 AM
  #6
twk
 
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I went to the Jungfarujoch today. Although it's possible to reserve a place on the train from KS to Jungfraujoch (in fact, they show an animation on the Wegeneralpbahn trains which shows you how passengers with seat reservations will be allowed on board first at KS, and have a large area of the platform set aside for folks with reservations), not a single sole bothered with seat reservations this morning. Maybe at the height of the high season it would be worth reserving a place the day before, but, I doubt it.
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Jun 15th, 2016, 01:21 PM
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esskay - yes all those things are 100% covered (not really free) by a Swiss Pass - if it is a consecutive-day pass - if a flexipass they will only be covered on flexible travel days where you use the pass for unlimited travel that certain day but not on days in between.

So yes with what you said an 8-consecutive-day pass would be ideal.I thought if you were only doing Lucerne and the Berner Oberland the Berner Oberland Pass could be better but not if you are going to other parts of Switzerland.

Not sure Lauterbrunnen has many buses with the town itself - everything in Lauterbrunnen should be walkable.
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Jun 16th, 2016, 05:24 AM
  #8
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You are correct @ PalenQ. It is not really free, hehehehe...just a virtual sense of free having prepaid for those trips.

Have my parents with me, hence, want to ensure buses are available if needed.

Yes, I was also looked at BO pass but then the other cities would get costly.

Thanks again every one for sharing your own experiences. This is of great help.
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Jun 16th, 2016, 09:43 AM
  #9
twk
 
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The Post Bus, which will take you from Lauterbrunnen to Stechelberg, where you can catch the lift to Gimmelwald, Murren, and the Schilthorn, is covered by the Swiss Pass.
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Jun 16th, 2016, 11:45 AM
  #10
 
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If going up to Murren for a day take the cable car from Lauterbrunnen to Grutschalp then the short train along the cliff's edge to Murren but return via Gimmelwald - cable from Murren - then from there cable car that seems to plunge down to the valley floor at Stechelberg for the post bus or a lovely easy few-miles walk back to Lauterbrunnen (from Wengen take the train to Lauterbrunnen).
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Jun 18th, 2016, 04:54 AM
  #11
 
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Keep in mind, travel agents get a fee or commission on everything they book for you.
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Jun 18th, 2016, 09:38 AM
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Travel agents are great at some things - but rarely would know anything about whether or not you should pre-book such mountain trains or even if possible.
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Jun 19th, 2016, 01:22 PM
  #13
 
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Keep in mind, travel agents get a fee or commission on everything they book for you.>

I doubt if they get a commission from such single trip reservations but can and do charge a hefty service charge often for doing it - their own charges but not a commission - same thing I guess.
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