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Swiss Card - Is my understanding correct?

Hi! I am flying into Zurich, spending a couple of days in the Bernese Oberland, and them moving on to Chamonix.

It seems like the Swiss Card is the best way to go, but seeing as how I've never used a rail pass before, I wanted to ask more experienced travelers if my info is correct.

My understand is that:

The Swiss Card will cover my train ride from Zurich to Interlaken.

I will receive a 50% discount on transportation from Interlaken to Schilthorn.

The Swiss Card will then cover my train ride from Interlaken to Chamonix.

Is this correct? Thank you :)

Posted by
7209 posts

Yes, you're correct. My only question to you is why are you stopping in Interlaken which is NOT in the Swiss Alps? The Swiss Card will take you all the way to Murren for free on your initial journey from Zurich Airport. Murren is much more beautiful perched on the cliffs overlooking the Lauterbrunnen Valley. The Schilthorn is also much closer to Murren.

Posted by
20343 posts

Agree that if the Swiss Card is getting you from the Airport to your destination for free, go all the way to Muerren. If you're a real Ricknick, stay in Gimmelwald. Not sure if the Swiss Card will get you all the way to Chamonix. My pass map has a note on the Martigny-Chamonix link, "half fare reduction not granted", but this may only refer to internal travel during your stay. Whatever, it would be a relatively small adder. The Martigny-Chamonix line is being rebuilt and there is a bus link operating around the construction right now, but I believe it will be complete by June.

Posted by
6898 posts

The Swiss pass or card is good from Switzerland to and from Chamonix-Mt. Blanc in France. Chamonix-Mt. Blanc is one of at least 3 cities that I know of outside of Switzerland where you can actually buy and/or use the Swiss pass or card for travel to and from Switzerland (Domodossola and Tirano are the other two). I have been in the Chamonix-Mt. Blanc train station and I confirmed that I could buy the Swiss pass or card there. Your understandings above are all correct IMHO.

Posted by
5 posts

Thank you all for the info and the tips. That's an excellent idea to go to Murren on the first day.

Posted by
196 posts

However, before leaving Interlaken, I would consider taking the boat ride on one of the two lakes Interlaken sits between. You can catch the boat on the Brienzersee from Interlaken Ost train station. It is about a 3 hour roundtrip. The boat on the Thunersee leaves from the Interlaken West station. It is over 4 hours round trip which might be a little long but you can get off halfway at the town of Thun where there are frequent trains back to Interlaken. Both boats stop at quaint small towns along the way and the views to the Alps are a different perspective from being in the Alps. Food and beverage are served on board. If the day is nice, it is a great trip (I even go if it is a little cloudy or raining lightly because the sun always seems trying to break through and the clouds can create some great pictures flowing around the mountains). I believe your Swiss card will get you a discount on these rides.

And I, too, would like to second Tom from Germany's pet peeve: All questioners need to give us a timeframe; dates or time of year you are traveling, please.

Posted by
22 posts

Decided to add my question to this post instead of starting another topic...

We have 4 people traveling together from Munich to Murren, staying 3 nights (Schilthorn trip one day, biking the other) and then traveling to Paris.

Would a Swiss Card or Half-Fare Card be a good idea for us? And I'm guessing EACH of us will have to buy the card (we can't have one person buy the card and then buy tickets for everyone)....just wanted to clarify that.

Any help is appreciated!

Posted by
20343 posts

I made a specific inquiry to SBB pass office. Asking if I could use the Swiss Card for free transport from Zurich airport to my holiday destination, receive the half-fare function during my stay, and get free transport from my exit point in Switzerland at St Margrethen. Answer follows:
"Thank you for your query.
Yes that will work. Your exit point from Switzerland does not necessarily need to be the same as your entry point.
Information Swiss Travel System:
Kind regards
Frederic Pannatier
Contact Center
P.O. Box - 3900 Brig, Switzerland
Rail Service: 0900 300 300 (CHF 1.19/min. from the Swiss fixed-line network)
[email protected] -"