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Rail journey within Austria, Switzerland and Italy

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Apr 20th, 2012, 01:38 AM
  #1
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Rail journey within Austria, Switzerland and Italy

This is such a wonderful forum for a novice who plans his first trip to Europe! I have collected lots of information from the response to my previous postings. However, need some more information regarding journey by rail within and outside the countries. Details as follows:

Tentative itinerary - 5 days in Austria (Vienna), 3 days in Switizerland (Zurich, Rapperswil, Luzern and any other nearby places) and then off to Italy - Venice, Florence and Rome. Total 8 days in Italy. Must exit from Rome. Should I take a Rail Pass (Eurorail Select Pass ?) or buy individual tickets for all sectors, which is more economical ? We are a family of 4 and planning the trip for Aug-Sept. If we take a pass, then will it also cover the trips within each country ? Also, is night train a good idea while crossing the countries.
Ani12 is offline  
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Apr 20th, 2012, 04:34 AM
  #2
 
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This type of question cannot be answered without your usage model and a lot of computations - on your part.

Austria: www.oebb.at
Switzerland: www.sbb.ch
Italy: www.trenitalia.com

Here is a framework on how you do this:
http://www.ricksteves.com/rail/comparetickets.htm

If you are stationary in Austria, it is doubtful that you benefit from any long distance train passes.

Switzerland is a high point-to-point fare country. So even if everything else is unfavorable, a Switzerland specific pass/card of some sort: Half-care card, Swisspass, etc, may be of benefit. Here is where they are valid http://www.swisstravelsystem.com/dow...tskarte_en.pdf. The Swisspass includes discount on high mountain transportation, museum entrances, and boats. So you have to do a lot of computations to see if it is economical.

For Italy, note the highspeed train reservation cost http://www.ricksteves.com/rail/pdfs/reservations.pdf

The Eurail passes are not valid for inside the city fares.
The comprehensive Swisspass includes city transit fares.
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Apr 20th, 2012, 07:32 AM
  #3
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
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Hi Ani -

If you look carefully at your map, you will see that Switzerland doesn't really fit - it's too far west. Especially not for 3 days. I suggest using those 3 days for more time in Italy. 8 days is not enough time for Venice, Florence, and Rome. But 11 days is. Sort of.
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Apr 20th, 2012, 07:46 AM
  #4
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Thanks Greg and Robertino for your suggestions. Quite useful information.
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