TGV Tickets - Switzerland

Old May 27th, 2004, 06:50 AM
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TGV Tickets - Switzerland

I will be taking the TGV from Berne to Paris. If I order TGV tickets from SNCF.com, what do I need to do to get the tickets in Switzerland? The site talks about picking them up at an SNCF station or boutique, but the station in Berne will not be an SNCF station (or so I assume). If you put Switzerland as the country you will pick the tickets up in, the only option presented is to have the tickets mailed to a Switzerland address. I could buy the tickets from Swiss National Railways, but they just mail the tickets to you, at a steep price. Has anyone done this?
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Old May 27th, 2004, 07:56 AM
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We use the trains a lot; I like the scenery. Assuming that you will be in Bern for a few days, I usually just walk to the train station a day or two before departure and buy the tickets. Sometimes I just buy them at the station at the time of departure. We have never been unable to obtain tickets this way, and only once (returning from Giverny to Paris, a local train) was the train so crowded that we had to stand for while.

I try to avoid buying tickets far ahead, as we sometimes change our schedule. I know the tickets can be exchanged, but why tie up my money all those weeks?

Enjoy your trip. We visited Bern twice, once to visit the art museum, and once just to soak up the scenery.
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Old May 27th, 2004, 08:05 AM
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You are correct..the station in Bern is an SBB station and not an SNCF one. You may have to be content with going to the Bern station at your first opportunity, or to any rail station in Switzerland for that matter, and buying the tickets that way.

Someone else here may offer a better, alternative plan, however so am topping this for you.
 
Old Jun 2nd, 2004, 04:03 PM
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Has anyone taken the TGV from Switzerland to Paris and bought the tickets prior to leaving home? If so, where did you buy them and how did you get the tickets?
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Old Jun 2nd, 2004, 04:50 PM
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Last year I ordered my Swiss Card and my round trip tickets in and out of the country. Because I had a complex transaction with multi part tickets, I wanted to go ahead and make seat reservations to ensure I had a non smoking section. Therefore, I ordered from the Swiss people.

As I recall they did send the tickets Fed Ex, but I wanted the tickets in hand before I left, particularly the Swiss Card, so I paid the price. The cost was no more than what I would have had to pay Rail Europe for sending me tickets, and the cost was less.

I could not get the Swiss Card any other way because it is sold in a limited number of places. The free ride in and out between the border and my destination built into the Swiss Card, plus the 50% discount on the Jungfraujoch trip just about hit the breakeven cost point.

The reason for the seat reservation was to make sure I got a non smoking seat.
The Zürich to Munich train on some weekends is crowded in 2nd class and one year I got hung out to dry: no seats in 2nd class non smoking for part of the journey.

The Zürich - Munich train is run by the DB, with a German crew. I never have had a problem with seating most of the time in Switzerland. I do recall one Sunday afternoon we rode from Bern to Interlaken Ost, and our car was full, but there were no standees that I saw.
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