Swiss FlexiPass or Eurail

Nov 7th, 2007, 04:25 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Oct 2007
Posts: 8
Swiss FlexiPass or Eurail

If I have a Swiss Flexi-Pass, can it be used for travelling from:
- Lugano to Venezia
- Milano to Zurich
Or do I have to buy a separate ticket.
If yes, can the Swiss Pass be used on EC trains?

Or is the Eurail Pass more suitable for my needs? I am spending 7 nights in Switzerland and 8 nignts in Italy and moving around quite a bit
awwh is offline  
Nov 12th, 2009, 05:56 PM
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 25
Eagerly awaiting replies to your post... we are doing almost the same 14 days total between Switzerland and Italy in May 2010. I am looking at all the different options including Swiss Flexipass (saver for two people)versus point to point tickets or a monthly Swiss Half fare card and trying desperately to calculate what would be the best tickets to buy. I think it will come down to a 3-4 day Swiss pass of some kind plus an Italy pass of 3-4 days.
It doesn't help that the passes are all different prices depending on which site you purchase them from Swiss, USA or Australia.
I am not sure either whether when travelling from Switzerland Tirano to Venezia I'll have to use both country passes.
Sooo confused! Good luck. I'll let you know if I come up with a definitive answer with my calculations.
TassieTwo is offline  
Nov 12th, 2009, 07:17 PM
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A pass is rarely cost effective for Italy since it does not include the cost of mandatory seat reservations for the faster trains (AV,ES,ICPlus,IC) which can add 15-20€ per person per ride.
kybourbon is offline  
Nov 12th, 2009, 08:35 PM
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Within Switzerland, one of the various Swiss passes works better than a 2-country or Eurail pass, as there are some private railways that charge a supplement for th eother pases, but not a Swiss one. Also, the 2-country passes are generally available for adults in First Class only---you don't need that in Switzerland.

By way of example---in 2005 we went to Switzerland for a 2-week hiking vacation with my sister's family. We had a Swiss Flex pass,; my sister had a 2-country pass (France + Switzerland) for her family. On the short trip between Brig and Betten---a 15-minute journey on the Glacier Express route, my sister had to pay 30CHF extra for her family of 4, while we did not.

For most people going to Switzerland and Italy, what works best is point-to-point tickets in Italy, and one of the passes for Switzerland (often the 3-day Flex is the best, as it functions as a half-fare card for other days beyond the three covered days.)

For coverage of the Ssiss passes, see this map:

Going into Italy, it will cover as far as Chiasso. Tirano or Domosdossola, depending on your route.

As for the price, I can't help with Australia, but I do know that right now you are better off paying in US dollars (201 for a 3-day saver flex pass) than in Swiss francs (212 CHF for the same pass). You do have to add shipping or service fees to that. If in the US, I think the best deal is through Rick Steves, where the standard shipping cost (charged by Eurail) is offset by a discount you get on any shopping in the travel store. If you need any luggage, this discount can more than cover the fees. I don't know if they will ship to Australia, TassieTwo. You might try BETS (Budget European Travel Service:
enzian is offline  
Nov 13th, 2009, 01:17 AM
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 25
Enzian, brilliant information. I had just about reached the same conclusion but was unsure of what you could do on a Swiss Flexi pass on days other than the 3 or 4 days covered. That's great that it can be used as a half price card. I think that's what we'll go for and point to point tickets in Italy...... Sorry awwh for hijacking your thread!
TassieTwo is offline  
Nov 13th, 2009, 02:08 AM
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I don't think awwh cares..this thread is two years old.
Melnq8 is offline  
Nov 13th, 2009, 02:36 AM
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Funny I didn't look at the date. Oh well, I got answers I wanted. Just searched for a question I wanted to ask. New at this. Now wondering if awwh has done the trip!
TassieTwo is offline  
Nov 13th, 2009, 05:59 AM
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 6,509
TassieTwo---just remember that the FlexPass works as a half-fare card only between the first and last dates you use it as a pass. In other words, if you are starting in Switzerland, use the first covered day on your pass to go to your destination area, and the last to travel out into Italy. It works as a half fare card between those two dates. Save the additional fully-covered days for your longest day excursion.
enzian is offline  
Nov 13th, 2009, 06:05 AM
Join Date: Feb 2009
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Swiss Pass often IMO a no-brainer for train travel plans likes yours but in Italy do tickets as you go along - like others have said even with a pass in Italy you still must pay $20-28 extra to use the fastest trains. when going to Italy show your Swiss Pass at the Swiss departure station and buy the Italian portion of the ticket say to Venice or Milan before getting on the train. If you don't you'll have to buy one on the train once it reaches Italy and there often is a surcharge or penalty fare for that. Swiss trains do not require seat reservations within Switzerland but once the Cisalpino (Switzerland to Italy) trains cross the border you do need a seat reservation so book it in Switzerland when you buy your supplemental ticket for the Italian portion. For loads on Swiss and Italian trains and passes here are some great info-laden sources:;; and for lots of neat info on Swiss trains, specialty scenic trains, lake boats, postal buses, etc, which also links you to the Swiss Federal Railways site -
Palenque is offline  
Nov 13th, 2009, 11:50 AM
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two years old! I just saw Nov 7 and did not think - but now TassieTwo has the same conundrum and got great advice from enzian IMO
Palenque is offline  
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