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Swiss Half Fare Pass

Four of us will be traveling in Switzerland for 5 days in early September 2021. One of our days, we plan to take the train to Jungfraujoch and then a separate day, will be traveling via bus, cable car and train from Lauterbrunnen to Schilthorn and returning to Lauterbrunnen via Murren and Grutschalp. There are also various funiculars that we might take advantage of on the remaining days of our trip. It sounds like the Swiss Half Fare Card is the way to go. Is there any listing of trains, cable cars, and funiculars for which the Swiss Half Fare Card can be used? In addition, can the round-trip from Lauterbrunnen to Schilthorn be purchased as a package possibly as the train station in Lauterbrunnen?
Thanks is advance from this confused traveler.

Posted by
1101 posts

https://www.sbb.ch/en/leisure-holidays/travel-in-switzerland/international-guests/swiss-travel-pass.html

Depending on how often you plan on using public transport, the Swiss pass (3- or 4- day one) may work well for you.

You can price individual legs of the trip on the SBB website and see if you would save by buying a pass. (Also, somebody else can weigh in, but I believe the individual fares on the SBB website are already priced at the half cost because it is assume that everybody gets the half-price pass but I could be wrong there.)

When we went in 2018, the cost of the three day pass was the same as buying individual tickets (for the places we wanted to go). We had two children traveling with us who were free. We really enjoyed the freedom of using the pass and not having to purchase tickets all the time.

Posted by
20441 posts

You really have to price out each trip. You don't say how you will get to the Berner Oberland and from where are you are coming, nor where you will go when you leave. Factor that in.

Sometimes, the first price you see is even less than the Half Fare Price because they now include nonrefundable train specific Super Saver tickets as well. You need to click on the specific itinerary, then enter in no discount and no nonrefundable tickets and then you will get the real full fare price.

If any of the 4 of you are children under the age of 16, you can still get the free Family Card with the Half Fare Card. Then those children will travel free with you.

Be aware that the ticket discount for the trip from Wengen to the Jungfraujoch is only 25% with the Swiss Travel Pass, while you still get 50% off with the Half Fare Card. Details are on the Map of Validity you can download from the lower right hand corner of this page.
https://www.sbb.ch/en/leisure-holidays/travel-in-switzerland/international-guests/swiss-halffare-card.html

That shows all the lines where the Half Fare Card is Valid. It is also good for local transportation like trams and public buses.

Posted by
33310 posts

is it 4 adults or 2 adults and 2 little ones? Makes a difference..

Posted by
2 posts

Sorry, but I'm going to ask probably a 'dumb' question. We are meeting 2 friends in Zurich who are going to be there on a business trip but they are going to spend the first couple of days with us on our personal trip. I have purchased a Swiss Half Fare card but I told her that I didn't think she needed one. Here's the question, can I buy tickets for her and her husband using my Half Fare card to save them some money? Or does everyone need to have their own Half Fare card to buy a half-fare ticket? I hope this makes sense. Any help is appreciated. Thanks, Barb

Posted by
20441 posts

@ Barb: The Swiss Half Fare Card is valid for discount only for the person named on the card. When they check your ticket, they check your Half Fare Card to confirm that YOU are entitled to travel at half fare. They may even check your passport to make sure you are the person named on the card.

If it where otherwise, only one person on the train would need a Half Fare Card, then everyone else on the train would pay half fare by saying "I'm with that guy in car 6 who has the Half Fare Card."

BTW, you don't need to have or show a Half Fare Card to purchase a Half Fare ticket. But if you don't have the card on your person when they check your ticket, you are traveling on an invalid ticket, and in Switzerland, you'll be in a heap of trouble. You don't need it when you purchase because many people buy tickets out of vending machines or on-line, where there is no way to confirm you have the card. You just need to have it bought by the time you travel and have it with you.

Posted by
5132 posts

On 6/22/21, under Trip Reports here on the Forum, an OP talked about developing a spreadsheet to figure out the various Swiss passes; lot of discussion followed. Perhaps info is there that would help you. I do find the decision complicated and once I decide on the Pass to buy- don't second guess myself.
Have a great trip!