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Swiss Flexi Pass V Swiss Card: help with decision

Swiss Flexi Pass V Swiss Card: help with decision

Old Apr 25th, 2013, 06:40 PM
  #1  
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Swiss Flexi Pass V Swiss Card: help with decision

Hi all

Please help me with making the best choice with Swiss rail travel. Our plans are not concrete. We will be based in Grindelwald. We will go up Jungfraujoch, weather permitting. Also hiking. Possible trip to Thun (can't find individual price for this).

Day 1: Paris to Grindelwald
Days 2, 3, 4: Based in Grindelwald
Day 5: Grindelwald to Italy

Me (adult) and two children under 15, so I will also get Swiss Family Card, entitling them to free travel.

Swiss Flexi Pass for 3 days: 260CHF – if I understand this, I have to use the 'free travel' first and last, with 50% off on days between? So I'd have to use it on Day 5, or pay full fare to border? Is it worth using it on Day 1?

-OR-

Swiss Card for 1 month: 195CHF – this will give me 50% off all trips plus free trips to and from Swiss border

There are people out there with lots of experience. I hope someone will be able to say 'Take this option! it will work out best for you.'

Thanks so much.
smm_18 is offline  
Old Apr 26th, 2013, 09:13 AM
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It's up to you to compare.
Only you know at which fare you will buy the Paris - Switzerland and Switzerland - Milan tickets. Some tariffs grant huge discounts for the Swiss legs too. If you get attractive fares for them, it may be useful to have a look at regional passes too.
Same remark for your excursions from Grindelwald. Some of them (Berne etc.) are completely free with the Swiss Pass, for others you will have to pay half fare and for Jungfraujoch even more. Things are different with other passes.
neckervd is offline  
Old Apr 26th, 2013, 09:27 AM
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So I'd have to use it on Day 5, or pay full fare to border? Is it worth using it on Day 1?

the fare from Bern, the closest city served by French TGVs I believe would be substantial - probably $30 or so. It seems that the Swiss Card may be the best bet here and for days 2-4 in Grindelwald if doing the famous Jungfraujoch train you may want to by a Jungfraubahn Pass - good on many mountain trains and gondolas in the area that Swiss Pass would only give 50% off - and I believe you get a discount on the Jungfraubahn Pass with a Swiss Pass or Swiss Card.

Check out these superb sites IMO for lots of good info on Swiss trains, passes, cards, etc - www.budgeteuropetravel.com (any questions call Byron there - I have bought passes from him for years and he will expertly answer any query IME whether you are buying anything or not) and www.ricksteves.com and www.swisstravelsystem.com.

There are people out there with lots of experience. I hope someone will be able to say 'Take this option! it will work out best for you.' Swiss Card with free Family Pass.
PalenQ is offline  
Old Apr 26th, 2013, 10:12 AM
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check Swiss Card prices for those sold in the U S in dollars vs those sold for 195 francs in Switzerland - more often than not the same Swiss Pass or Card sold in Switzerland IME of comparing before buying for years is that they often are cheaper here than there - not always but check - sometimes the difference is substantial.
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Old Apr 26th, 2013, 12:48 PM
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I should have added to be sure to ask about mailing fees if not buying directly in Switzerland - even the Swiss Railways charges about 23 euros mailing fee - but there is no reason to order from Switzerland - just buy the Card or Pass at any train station - like at the airport.
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Old Apr 26th, 2013, 07:46 PM
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Thanks so much for your replies.

Neckervd, I have had a look at the Berner Overland regional pass, thanks: 230CHF for 4 days. Advantage is also it is 50% off Jungfraujoch rather than 25% as in others. Free travel Bern/Brig. Although I think we will take train Paris-Basel rather than Paris-Bern.

Seems to equate in value with the Half Fare Card (120CHF), and advantage with this (HFC) is it can be used anywhere, anytime.

Swiss Card I'm now having second thoughts! But still open.

PalenQ I can't find price for Jungfraubahn Pass! I would like to compare this. Do you know? Also, I am not in the US, but thanks for those websites.

I so want to make a decision on this and be done with it! It's doing my head in, all this comparing of prices, the maths, maths, maths. Probably the most time-consuming exercise for the entire trip. I REALLY appreciate your help.
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Old Apr 27th, 2013, 06:08 AM
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http://www.jungfrau.ch/en/tourism/tr...al-travellers/

Here are the various fares that are covered by the Jungfraubahn Pass - I'll try to find the actual pass prices - can't seem to get on the site though they must be there. It is cheaper than the Berner Oberland pass and covers more things in full I believe.
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Old Apr 27th, 2013, 12:13 PM
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The Jungfrau rilways Pass costs 250 CHF
http://shop.jungfrau.ch/en/bergbahn/jungfraubahnen-pass
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Old Apr 27th, 2013, 01:10 PM
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Thank you both!

So the Jungfrau pass is 250CHF plus 58CHF to go to Jungfraujoch. Not sure if Family Card comes with this or not, or does this only apply to the Swiss railway passes (Flexi/Card, etc)?

This could equate to the Berner Oberland Pass then: 230CHF plus approx. 90CHF for Jungfraujoch. Once again, the site does not say Family Card comes with it. It says Junior Cards are 30CHF each.

My brain is dizzy with it all. I honestly can't figure out the best deal for us.
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Old Apr 28th, 2013, 02:19 AM
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It's up to you to choose the best deal. Have a nice trip.
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Old Apr 28th, 2013, 04:54 AM
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Hard to see how you could realize the benefit of the Jungfraubahn Pass in just a few days stay - the Swiss Card I think is you best bet - gets 50% off everything the Jungfraubahn Pass covers except I believe 25% Grindelwald/Wengen to Jungfraujoch.

Still seems Swiss Card is your best bet IMO.
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Old Apr 28th, 2013, 03:21 PM
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Thanks for your good wishes, neckervd.

Thanks, PalenQ. I think you're probably right and I'm grateful for your clear-sightedness!

I now think it's a choice between the Swiss Card and the Half Fare Card. The latter does the same, apart from the to/from border bonus. It's cheaper, though. I really like the fact that both are valid for a month, so I don't have to concern myself with working out travel days, etc, as in the Flexi and the regionals.

You've been very helpful, thank you!
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Old Apr 29th, 2013, 06:37 AM
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Card for Half-Off Pass simply do the math on the two train trips included with the Card and then add to the price of the Half-off Pass - otherwise exactly same benefits BUT the Jungfraujoch train - not sure each or either get 50% off that or 25% off as a Swiss Pass does (from Wengen or Grindelwald on up - fully covered by pass below those towns and half-off for sure too.
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Old Apr 29th, 2013, 08:43 AM
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can anyway clarify if the Half-Off Card and Swiss Card get 50% off the the Jungfraujoch trains or is it 25% like a Swiss Pass?

thanks in advance.
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Old Apr 29th, 2013, 12:23 PM
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topping - anyone know my last query?

thanks
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Old Apr 29th, 2013, 01:32 PM
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50% with half-fare card according to my interpretation of the validity map

http://files.gadmin.ch/51796

http://www.swisstravelsystem.com/en/...s-card-en.html
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Old Apr 29th, 2013, 02:44 PM
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I can't remember where I found it, but in my notes I had both HFC and SC giving only 25% off Jungfraujoch. The Regional Pass gives 50% off.

Anyone know for certain?

So far HFC is coming out on top for the best deal, having worked out the to/from border trips.

Thanks everyone!
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Old Apr 30th, 2013, 10:39 AM
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Well I think indy dad's link shows the current discounts for the Half-Fare Card - Swiss Card I suspect may be like the Swiss Pass and 25% Wengen/Grindelwald to Jungfraujoch but 100% cover to Wengen and Grindelwald.
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Old Apr 30th, 2013, 12:43 PM
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PQ -- Not sure why you are interpreting it that way. It shows a dotted line that says it is available for 50% off. The note (1) applies to the pass, not the card.

Also, if you go to www.sbb.ch to price it out (say Wengen to Jungfraujoch) it is 83 chf full fare and 41.50 with the half fare card.

Convinced?
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Old Apr 30th, 2013, 01:35 PM
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Love the Switzerland transport system but they havve done a marvelous job of making the purchasing of passes a MASS OF CONFUSION! I hope someday they can somehow simplify!
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