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How does construction b/w Interlaken Ost & Wilderswill affect transport to Mürren or Wengen?

I’m looking at the SBB app to look at train times between Luzern & Mürren & Luzern & Wengen in mid April. The app tells me of construction and the need for taking replacement buses and that the train/ bus connection is “guaranteed” at Interlaken West. I don’t understand what all this means. So I don’t change trains in Interlaken Ost? How would I get to Mürren or Wengen? I may go to both on two different days. How long is the bus ride? What am I supposed to do?

Thanks.


Posted by
11676 posts

They are saying that a bus will be provided to take you from Interlaken Öst to Wilderswil, where your train to Lauterbrunnen will be waiting. The buses run from InterlKen West to Interlaken Öst to Wilderswil. Since the bus starts at Interlaken West, it is guaranteed there, meaning they will have enough buses for everyone. I am not sure what that means for Interlaken Öst passengers, as no similar "guarantee" is mentioned. But I would think SBB have a good idea of the number of people coming to each station and will provide buses accordingly.

I will bet Chris F in Basel can explain more fully, but it is nighttime there so you may have to wait until tomorrow.

Here is the explanation on SBB for others to view: (assuming the link works):

https://www.sbb.ch/en/buying/pages/fahrplan/fahrplan.xhtml

These bus-train replacement connections around construction zones are quite common. We had one last year going to see friends in Poole from London. It was pretty seamless.

Posted by
8889 posts

What the SBB website says is this:

R 159 (Interlaken Ost - Wilderswil) Construction work: Interlaken Ost - Wilderswil. The rail traffic between Interlaken Ost and Wilderswil is interrupted.
Interlaken Ost - Wilderswil: The rail traffic between Interlaken Ost and Wilderswil is interrupted.
Replacement buses operate Interlaken West - Interlaken Ost - Wilderswil.
The train/bus connections are guaranteed in Interlaken West.
The bus/train connections are guaranteed in Interlaken West.
Passengers from Bern - Thun - Spiez to Wilderswil - Lauterbrunnen / Grindelwald - Jungfraujoch should take the InterCity trains (IC) 61 to Interlaken Ost and change in Interlaken West onto the replacement bus services to Wilderswil.
Grund: Gleisschwenkung im Bereich Flugplatz für Umfahrung Wilderswil
Duration from 14.04.2020 06:00 until 24.04.2020 23:59.
Please note the information at the station. (Interlaken Ost - Wilderswil)

This is perfectly normal, yes you will be able to get wherever you want whenever you want. It is just your train has gained rubber wheels ☺
Instead of a train from Interlaken Ost, it will be a bus from there to Wilderswil, and then back on the train for the rest of the trip.
The bus will probably run from in front of the stations, there will be signs and announcements ("Ersatzbusse" = replacement buses). Just follow everybody else.

The guaranteed connection means if the bus gets stuck in traffic and takes longer than planned, the train will wait for the bus. This is again perfectly normal procedure.

The only issue will be if you are wheelchair bound, or taking a bicycle with you. Normally you have to call ahead in that case as the bus cannot carry these.

Posted by
3118 posts

Thank you very much. Do you advise staying on the train to Interlaken Ost or deboarding at Interlaken West?

Posted by
1653 posts

If your train happens to stop at Interlaken West, then I would get off, but if not (and they don't all stop there) I would not sweat it, and just wait for the bus at Interlaken Ost.

Posted by
11676 posts

Your train is coming from Luzern, right? You will get off at Interlaken Öst and board the bus there. Interlaken West is after Interlaken Öst for the trains coming from Luzern. And as far as I can tell, those regional trains from Luzern do not continue on to Interlaken West; you would have to get off and change trains.

Posted by
8889 posts

Do you advise staying on the train to Interlaken Ost or deboarding at Interlaken West?

If you are coming from Luzern, your train will only stop at Interlaken Ost (the end of the line). It is trains from the other direction (Bern and Spiez) which stop at Interlaken West before terminating at Interlaken Ost.

@Lola, "Interlaken West is after Interlaken Öst for the trains coming from Luzern." -Trains from Luzern end at Interlaken Ost, they do not (and cannot physically) go any further.
There are 3 lines into Interlaken Ost, from 3 directions and they all end there. Only one of the 3 routes is via Interlaken West.

Posted by
3118 posts

Thank you for the clarification.

The reason I mentioned Interlaken West is that the SBB app advises that the bus/train connection to Wilderswil is only guaranteed at Interlaken West.

What does that guarantee of a bus/train connection only at Interlaken West mean for passengers like me who are to board the bus at Interaken Ost?

Thanks.

Posted by
8889 posts

I wouldn't be too worried about the "guarantee". I am sure the bus will wait if the train is a few minutes late. And even if it doesn't, there is a departure every 30 minutes, so no great disaster!

My guess is that at Interlaken West, it is a few steps on the level from the train to the bus stop. See photo here, note yellow bus on left: https://c8.alamy.com/comp/H538G3/interlaken-west-station-interlaken-switzerland-europe-H538G3.jpg
At Interlaken Ost you have to go down an underpass to get out into the street. So a train to bus transfer is easier at Interlaken West.

Posted by
57 posts

Sorry Continental, looks like neither of us will be going. :( I'm scheduled for Switzerland about a week after you. :(

Posted by
3118 posts

Thanks Chris.

Carrie, it’s interesting. My flight leaves April 15 and returns April 22. The travel ban from Schengen nations to the US ends on April 13. So in theory, I am good to go.

In fact, I want to go. The CDC ranks Switzerland as a Level 1 country to travel which is the lowest ranking meaning normal travel, wash your hands often, etc.

If Switzerland in the next month remains Level 1, I am planning to go.

I live in New York and take the subway daily. We are not part of the many in the US who as a precaution have sequestered themselves in their homes, bought tons of groceries to last a lifetime, and have panicked that we don’t have 500 cases of hand sanitizer in the closet. We are out and about. We commute to work. We go to theater. We jog every morning. So if I can live my life like that, why can’t I go to Switzerland?

So I am not changing my plans as of now.

Posted by
3118 posts

Carrie, I just saw that now. Level 3. 🙁

Well, I will wait until a week before I travel which is April 8 and see if Switzerland returns to a Level 1 rating.