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Swiss stops with luggage in the car

Old Sep 18th, 2015, 01:56 PM
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Swiss stops with luggage in the car

Hi

Like many others, I don't like to make touring stops while there is luggage in the trunk of a rental car. There are some places where I just wouldn't do it, but I'm wondering if it is perhaps less dangerous in Switzerland.

One stop we really want to make on our way from Grindelwald to Cannobio is at Bellinzona. There isn't that much information easily available about Bellinzona, and little to none about car travel.

I have a route marked out, and there is parking near the elevator up to the Castel Grande, where we were hoping to park.

I wonder if anyone has an opinion on stopping to see sights in Switzerland with luggage in the car/trunk/boot.
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Old Sep 18th, 2015, 02:17 PM
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What I can tell, in Bellinzona be sure to park in a parking zone. According to my friends there, any car parked in no parking areas gets fined in 30 minutes or so.
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Old Sep 18th, 2015, 03:14 PM
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We will certainly be parking in a parking zone; just worried about car break ins.

Any advice for parking in Switzerland? Are vignettes or other things required?
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Old Sep 18th, 2015, 04:01 PM
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You do need a vignette on your car window to use the motorways in Switzerland. It's been a while since we drove there so I don't know if they have a "prorated" version or if you have to buy one that covers the whole year.

Sorry, I can't help you with your luggage question... You don't mention if the car has a trunk so that the luggage isn't visible or if it's a hatchback where it might be visible to passersby, but since you're worried, you might try to avoid a rental with a hatchback.
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Old Sep 18th, 2015, 05:40 PM
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We've rented a car with a trunk, and the rental company provides the vignette.

I have the "feeling" that Switzerland is safer than some places, but still hope someone responds.
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Old Sep 18th, 2015, 07:50 PM
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I do think Switzerland is safer than other places I could name but you can never rule out crimes of opportunity anywhere. You already know the drill: make certain everything is in the trunk when you depart from your original location and don't open it at your destination, make certain there are no telltale tourist maps or travel books visible in the car, no valuables visible in the car, park in well lighted area, yadda, yadda, yadda.
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Old Sep 18th, 2015, 07:57 PM
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While not an answer to your quest, I trust you are familiar with swiss rail's wonderful luggage forwarding options?
http://www.sbb.ch/en/station-service...s/baggage.html

BTW, the recently restored frescoes of Santa Maria delle Grazie in Bellinzona are magnificent, IMO.
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Old Sep 19th, 2015, 08:08 AM
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Nobody can answer your question.
If you haven't too much luggage, you can of course deposit it at Bellinzona railway station (lockers and counter).
You cluld also drive directly to Cannobio (a bit less than 1 hr more) and visit Bellinzona and other gems in the area (like Locarno, Madonna del Sasso Sanctuary, Tamaro Park http://tamaropark.ch/en/, Capriasca (Last Supper), Lugano, Swissminiatur, Morcote, Riva San Vitale...) in a day trip from there.
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Old Sep 19th, 2015, 08:44 AM
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It's true that no one can answer this question. I was hoping to hear more local people say things like they had never heard of such a thing in Switzerland, but I guess that sort of reassurance would be unrealistic to expect.

kja: I have spent time looking in to the luggage forwarding options. We arrive too late in Zurich to make use of them, and we have a car for later exploring.

The frescoes have now been put on my list.

neckervd: deposit at Bellinzona is a good idea.

We have two day trips planned from Cannobio that will cover some of the sites you mention. We wanted to take in Bellinzona on our way.
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Old Sep 20th, 2015, 01:52 PM
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If you are worried about leaving luggage in your car, consider options for forwarding from wherever you are before heading to Bellinzona to wherever you will be afterwards. The train station in Bellinzona is, of course, also an option -- as neckervd noted.
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Old Sep 20th, 2015, 02:15 PM
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I think a trunk is much safer than a fast back. We had a VW polo last trip and even with the cover you could see the luggage. I tried tucking any valuable away.
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Old Sep 20th, 2015, 05:56 PM
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I was under the impression that the Swiss rail luggage forward service requires a valid train ticket for the route. Is this wrong?

Another glitch for me in the luggage forwarding system is that we would have to deposit our luggage in Zurich too early for arrival there. I planned our route to Grindelwald by train based on the information I was told here that I could deposit my luggage at the rail station at Zurich airport and pick it up in Grindelwald (or Interlaken) but it was only after working out our plans that I found that the luggage has to be deposited before 9:30.

Now I'm dragging my luggage on two separate trains. That might not sound like much to others but I am in compromised health and it sounds like a pain to me. I wish I could change the plans but haven't the health or time to deal with it now.

I think luggage forwarding sounds great, but after looking in to the system it's not quite as simple as it sounded when I was first told about here.
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Old Sep 20th, 2015, 06:08 PM
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My bad, tuscanlifeedit, and many sincere apologies for it -- I wasn't thinking about the need for a valid ticket, just about the ease of forwarding luggage.

It seems that neckarvd's suggestions to explore luggage lockers along the way might better meet your needs.

So sorry to have thrown a wrench in!
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Old Sep 20th, 2015, 06:29 PM
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Oh kja, it's OK. I'm just stressed because I'm sick and trying to make the trip as best I can.

You have been a great help and I didn't mean to sound ungrateful. Thanks for all your help.
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Old Sep 20th, 2015, 07:12 PM
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@ tuscanlifeedit -- you didn't sound ungrateful to me in any way shape or form! No worries -- just lots of wishes for a great experience!

I'm sorry that you are feeling sick and stressed -- neither makes for an easy start to a trip!

I haven't looked at your other posts, but my recollection is that you are a traveller with a purpose -- and OMG. Switzerland should give you a chance to see some wonderful things! Take some deep breaths, keep in mind that there is probably NO country on earth in which it would be easier to move around with ANY limitation (except maybe Japan-- but we'll "chat" about that before your next trip!), and realize that Switzerland offers some of the world's most spectacular scenery ANY where. I mean seriously awesome. -- Just go for it!
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Old Sep 20th, 2015, 08:00 PM
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I made stops in Einsiedeln, Broc, and Gruyeres with my luggage in the car. Had a hatch back with cover and had no issues. Don't leave anything showing.
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Old Sep 21st, 2015, 07:36 PM
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There you go, both kja and joannyc: completely reassuring.

Thank you both so much.
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Old Sep 21st, 2015, 08:13 PM
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Glad to be of help, tuscanlifedit.

If it helps, you may feel more secure by backing your car into a parking space against a wall, fence, tree, etc. where it would be difficult, if not impossible, to open your trunk/hatchback.
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Old Sep 21st, 2015, 08:20 PM
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joannyc has given some good advice (as she always does). And you probably already know to leave NOTHING in the car that can be seen from outside; if you have to move anything into the trunk, stop somewhere BEFORE parking so no one sees what you are moving into the trunk; try to park in a well lit area in sight of lots of people; etc.
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Old Sep 23rd, 2015, 05:23 AM
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We returned yesterday from a 2 week driving tour of Switzerland. 3 adults with suitcases and backpacks in the car. We are always wary of our surroundings, but I have to say we never felt safer with our belongings than while we were in Switzerland. You will have no issues with your luggage in the car while touring. Enjoy
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