Swiss Pass or not?

Old Jun 10th, 2014, 11:00 AM
  #1  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 30
Swiss Pass or not?

My husband and I will be traveling from Munich to St. Moritz. On the Glacier Express to Zermatt. (Please do not comment on what a waste of time or money it is to take.) Zermatt to Bern and then Bern to Basel. Flying after that to Edinburgh. My question is, will I save money by buying a Swiss Flexible Pass for three days. We will be on at least one cog railway and go to two museums. Plus will need local transport in Bern. Am I right?
Thanks
mschock is offline  
Old Jun 10th, 2014, 11:31 AM
  #2  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,710
Why don't you do the math?

We on this board have no idea how you will travel to St. Moritz. Would you use one of the days of your Swiss Flexi Pass for that?

Which cog-trains will you take? Are these covered by Swiss Pass or do you at least get a discount? Just go to their website and find out!

www.sbb.ch will give you fares for the train rides within Switzerland that you might save with the Swiss Pass.

How much is the admission fee to the museums?
Ingo is offline  
Old Jun 10th, 2014, 11:34 AM
  #3  
 
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 36,027
Assuming First Class travel the cost on the GE is 254 CHF per person between St. Moritz and Zermatt (I believe you will have to pay for seat reservations regardless); another approx 202 CHF per person in First for the trip Zermatt-Basel. That's about $500 per person. And yes, I think you will get local public transport in Bern and Basel with a SwissPass; in St Moritz it's gonna be a taxi and in Zermatt you can walk most places or hire one of those electric carts/taxis.
Dukey1 is offline  
Old Jun 10th, 2014, 11:51 AM
  #4  
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 78,322
It seems that with those long train rides the Swiss Pass may indeed be a good deal - especially is the $50 off each pass RailEurope in the U.s. is now offering (temporarily for the first 500 passes - have not checked if it is still on) - if you know exactly which trains you will be taking then yes do the maths - www.sbb.ch - site of Swiss Federal Railways will tell you all the prices

then compare with the Half-Fare Card - bought at any Swiss train station - but I always find that with a pass I do more than expected - and if thinking Half-Fare thing then compare that to the Swiss Card which gives everything the Half-Fare Card does and more - two train trips from any airport or border station to any place in Switzerland and back out to any border point - though if starting in St Moritz and ending in Basel that would be useless to you. Half-Fare I believe gives no reduction on museums.

And yes there is a hefty surcharge for the GE, even in 2nd class of about $35-40 or so I believe.

and finally check prices in your home country for the exact same pass as in Switzerland - in several years of checking here Stateside the same pass has often been cheaper if bought here than there - not always the case but sometimes significantly so - just check both sources if buying a pass - figuring in any 3% or so that many credit cards charge for foreign transactions - if about the same just buy at any station in Switzerland (so that is a decision you can put off literally to the last second).

Great sources of info on Swiss trains, passes, etc IMO - www.swisstravelsystem.com; www.budgeteuropetravel.com (I've bought passes from Byron there for years - he'll expertly IME answer any questions even if not buying - and www.ricksteves.com - phone jockeys there also seem to know a lot about their product - www.raileurope.com, part owned by the Swiss Railways is the official outlet in the U.S. that all agents work thru and prices are supposed to be the same but handling/mailing fees can be tacked on, even by RailEurope, who BTW is impossible to find anyone on phone there who knows anything more than prices.

Your train trips are more extensive than most so I think a pass would perhaps be a good deal for you - a Saverpass of course with more than one name on one pass - one person could use it themselves if say that comes up.
PalenQ is offline  
Old Jun 10th, 2014, 12:09 PM
  #5  
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 30
Thanks PalenQ , >Ingo I did the math. Just checking to see if "Fodors forum experts" would know something I didn't. You are one of the rude people that I see referenced here on Fodor's forum. If you can't answer polietly, don't answer at all!
mschock is offline  
Old Jun 10th, 2014, 01:13 PM
  #6  
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 78,322
I wonder how the Half-Fare Card works on the Glacier Express - is it half off the train fare and also half off the supplement - could make a difference say if it's only half-off the basic train fare and not the required seat reservation and supplement?

Curious as to what you found out.

And if the pass even comes close to the Half-Fare Card then go for the pass - on your unlimited travel days just hop on and off at will any train - no waiting for tickets, etc. and again figure in any conversion exchange fees when paying half-fare with the Half-Fare Card.
PalenQ is offline  
Old Jun 10th, 2014, 01:33 PM
  #7  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 4,710
> You are one of the rude people that I see referenced here on Fodor's forum. If you can't answer polietly, don't answer at all!

LOL! Rude? I gave you food for thought. Telling us "Fodors forum experts" what comments you want and which not is rude.
Ingo is offline  
Old Jun 10th, 2014, 04:30 PM
  #8  
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 78,322
Without weighing in on what transpired above I will vouch for Ingo being a longtime and IME very polite, ordinarily at least, contributor who, being German, knows a lot about Switzerland and Germany and many other European places and is usually very very polite and makes very valuable comments.
PalenQ is offline  
Old Jun 12th, 2014, 08:10 AM
  #9  
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 6,753
How will you travel from Munich to St. Moritz:
most scenic route via Garmisch - Ehrwald - Fernpass - Landeck - Nauders - Scuol?
all by train via Lindau - Buchs SG - Chur?
bus Munich - Friedrichshafen plus train via Buchs SG - Chur (cheapest solution)?

"We will be on at least one cog railway".
Do you mean the Visp - Zermatt railway or another one?

Fare differencies between standard fare and Swiss Pass for all other cog railways along your itinerary:
St. Moritz - Corviglia: 0 CHF (standard fare 50 CHF)
Zermatt - Gornergrat: 42 CHF (standard fare 84 CHF)
neckervd is offline  
Old Jun 12th, 2014, 09:06 AM
  #10  
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 78,322
maybe the cog railway they mean is the Bernina Pass line which I do believe if I recall right uses cogs at points.

But the OP does not indicate they are doing the Bernina Pass Railway at all - just going to St Moritz to catch the Glacier Express - I would encourage you to add a day in there and do the Bernina Pass Railway - with or without the official Bernina Express as this to me is Europe's most awesomely scenic main rail line - a line that does not just go to mountain tops.

Do it as a day trip - taking a train to the summit stations around Bernina Ospiz and Alp Grum - otherwise St Moritz itself for most is non-plussing and you will be backtracking on the GE over a long stretch of track you took to get to St Moritz.
PalenQ is offline  
Old Jun 12th, 2014, 01:59 PM
  #11  
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Posts: 6,753
Bernina is NOT a cog wheel railway.
Some legs of the GEX have cog wheel sections, however, like Disentis - Oberalp Pass - Andermatt, Fuergangen - Fiesch, Lax - Moerel.

BTW: in a full day, you may also do circular trips like
St. Moritz - Bernina Pass - Tirano - Stelvio Pass - Umbrail Pass - Ofen Pass - Zernez - St. Moritz
or
St. Moritz - Bernina Pass - Tirano - Colico - Chiavenna - Maloja Pass - St. Moritz.
neckervd is offline  
Old Jun 13th, 2014, 01:50 PM
  #12  
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 78,322
St. Moritz - Bernina Pass - Tirano - Colico - Chiavenna - Maloja Pass - St. Moritz.>

I did this route in reverse once - actually starting from Lugano and that is a fantastically awesomely scenic route - the Maloja Pass bus being to me one of the most fantastic bus rides in Switzerland.
PalenQ is offline  
Old Jun 14th, 2014, 10:13 AM
  #13  
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Posts: 78,322
<The Albula and Bernina rail lines, have been named by UNESCO World Heritage as one of the world's most unique historic railways. Other rail trips in Switzerland climb steep slopes through the use of cog wheel tracks to assist, but the Rhaetian line, completed in 1906, climbs the steep grades of the Alps without cogs, instead making use of circular viaducts and tunnels where the train actually travels over itself.>

one explanation about why the Bernina and Albula lines do not use cogs for their also prodigious ascents and descents and why they have been named UNESCO World Heritage sites because of this, for 1900, bold attempt at mountain railway pioneering.
PalenQ is offline  
Related Topics
Thread
Original Poster
Forum
Replies
Last Post
rncheryl
Europe
6
Jul 31st, 2016 03:40 PM
nsanil
Europe
5
May 20th, 2013 02:29 PM
jhebbar
Europe
6
May 10th, 2013 07:48 AM
smm_18
Europe
34
May 4th, 2013 02:48 PM
rubidium
Europe
15
Oct 9th, 2009 01:16 PM

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Do Not Sell My Personal Information

FODOR'S VIDEO