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Swiss Pass 25% off sale if bought in July 2021

If you buy a Swiss Travel Pass in July 2021, you will get a 25% discount, and you'll be able to pick a start date up to 11 months in the future. The pass can be cancelled and refunded until 1 day before the start date.

So, you can even buy a discounted pass for a trip in the spring of 2022. That's worth your consideration because discounts on Swiss Travel Passes rarely get better than this. Also note that there's a fair chance that pass prices for next year will go up. Swiss Travel Pass (Flex) prices for trips between 1 May and 31 October 2022 are expected to increase by 10%. This was already announced for 2021 but luckily it was postponed.

To get the 25% discount, please go to one of these website between July 1 and July 31:

SBB travel centre: https://shop.switzerlandtravelcentre.com/#/en/home
HappyRail: https://www.happyrail.com/en/pass/europe/switzerland/swiss-travel-pass-consecutive
Rail Europe: https://www.raileurope.com/destinations/passes/swiss-travel-pass
Details:

The discount applies to the Swiss Travel Pass and Swiss Travel Pass Flex. This includes the cheaper Youth versions of these passes (double discount!), and both 2nd and 1st class.
You need to pick a start date while purchasing, up to 11 months in the future.
You can cancel up to 1 day before the start date.
All you need to know about the Swiss Travel Pass: www.myswissalps.com/swisstravelpass
All you need to know about the Swiss Travel Pass Flex: www.myswissalps.com/swisstravelpassflex
Always read the "small print" of the website you buy from.
Enjoy your journeys!
The promotions runs from 1 July to 31 July.
Regards,
Anne
© MySwissAlps.com

Posted by
1292 posts

If anyone successfully purchases one of these, pls post the news here.

In the past, I have had problems buying the Swiss Travel Pass online, and I tried EVERYTHING THE FORUM'S OP's recommended:
changing browsers, computers, credit cards, multiple attempts, notifying credit card companies, etc. Past OP's experiences seem to suggest that certain credit cards worked better than others. I would enter all my info, everything seemed ok, submit to buy, and an "error notice" resulted.
If this discount is valid for non-Swiss travelers, I sure hope I can figure out how to purchase during July.
Thanks for sharing!

Posted by
25595 posts

Thanks for the info.

It was fun reading another forum about the travel. Where did you copy it from?

Posted by
380 posts

Susan, thanks for info. I plan to buy the 15-day Swiss Travel Pass for my Sept. trip and this will save my traveling companions and I approximately $130 each.

Pat, I’m curious, when you were unsuccessful in pre-purchasing the Pass in the past, was that just from the SBB site? Or did you also try purchasing from the third party sellers mentioned above? I will try to buy in July and will let you know if I’m able to so. Also, my understanding is that the Swiss Travel Pass is only available to non-Swiss travelers. I believe those living in Switzerland have different options available to them for discounts on public transportation.

Posted by
1292 posts

Carrie, good question, which taxes my memory all the way back to 2019. :)
I'm not sure if my daughter and I tried other sites. Since there was no price difference, we just bought the Pass once we landed. But I did post the problem here on the Forum, and found that our experience was not unique.

I have an elementary question: what is the difference between using the SBB site and the other sites?

Since this is quite a good discount, and we have an entire month, with perhaps improved online technology, we will hopefully have a better result.

Safe travels!

Posted by
563 posts

Carrie….Jane here. Have been communicating with you about our trip tp Switzerland in September 2021…..am planning on buying Swiss passes for me and my hubby and this looks great! Will try to buy them in July……I will let you know how it goes and please do the same for me! Thanks !!!

Posted by
380 posts

Pat, I was just thinking that maybe the issue was that the SBB site didn’t like your card (s) and maybe a different site would have accepted them. I know when people have trouble buying train tickets online, the advice is often to try a different seller. I am confident we can get it to work this time with multiple sites to try and multiple people here trying. I will keep my fingers crossed. But honestly, I am so excited this trip is finally happening that I would gladly pay double for the pass. 😊

Jane, I am super excited our Sept. trips are (hopefully) finally happening. I’m not sure I’ll 100% believe it until I land in Zurich. I think I’ll try this Friday to buy it. I will let you know if I’m successful.

Posted by
7205 posts

SBB uses advanced security technology that blocks most of my transactions. I’ve been successful on the past using my Amex Csrd when no other card would work. Also the SBB App is quite useful for schedules and buying tickets.

Posted by
563 posts

Thanks Carrie! Researched it again last night and will try as you report back……thank you!!!

Posted by
380 posts

Hi everyone!!! I just bought my Swiss Travel Pass for Sept. with the 25% discount. It was super quick and easy. I used my Chase Visa and the payment was processed immediately. A confirmation email was immediately sent to my email and the email with the ticket/pass will come at a later date. Wait, as I was typing this, I received the email with the PDF for the pass. It doesn't look very official. 😊 And I was able to easily add it to the wallet on my iphone. So, I have it on my phone and also printed out 5 copies. So, i'm all covered if I lose my phone and a couple copies of the printed pass. 😊 This trip is starting to feel real!!!

I used this website. It took less than 5 minutes.

https://shop.switzerlandtravelcentre.com/?affiliateId=23&currency=CHF#/en/home

Posted by
1292 posts

YES!!!!! So happy for the successful report!

Posted by
563 posts

Question……if there is this discount should this be a good time to pop for first class instead of second class if we are going to be there for 2 weeks and are buying the 2 week pass? It’s our first all-train trip with no car rental and I need your advice…..thank you!

Posted by
380 posts

Hi Jane, I thought about that too. But, I ended up sticking with 2nd class to take advantage of the cost savings. I bought the 15-day pass and according to the pending charge on my VISA it came to $435.35 which is a great deal!!!

I’ve watched some videos of the trains and the 2nd class looked super nice to me. I’ve read 1st class is a bit roomier and has less travelers. But I didn’t see much difference to justify the higher price.

With the Swiss Travel Pass, you can upgrade to 1st class for a route or the day. Pay for a class upgrade for the route concerned online, via the smartphone app, at the ticket machine or at the ticket counter. I’m thinking about doing this for our boat cruise on Lake Thun.

https://www.sbb.ch/en/travelcards-and-tickets/tickets-for-switzerland/class-upgrade.html

Posted by
11261 posts

First class is 2-1 seating, while second class is 2-2 seating. So the seats are wider in first class, and there are fewer people per compartment. That's the only difference. And, not all trains have two classes. Most people traveling in first class aren't paying for their own tickets as they're on business, and they appreciate the extra space to spread out their laptop and other work. For leisure travelers, second class is usually more than adequate (it's a LOT more spacious than coach on a plane).

For some of the special trains running on the named routes (like Glacier Express or Bernina Express), first class gets you different train cars, with panoramic views. If you have a second class pass, you can usually pay extra to upgrade to first class just for these trains. Rick notes that the windows on the special panoramic trains don't open, so pictures taken on these can have reflections, while you can open the windows on the regular trains to avoid these.

Here's rail guru The Man In Seat 61 with travel tips for Swiss trains, including a link to pictures of both classes, so you can see if it's worth it for you.

https://www.seat61.com/train-travel-in-switzerland.htm#travel-tips

Posted by
55 posts

Carrie, that is such good news!
Swiss train travelers: for me, this is the most daunting part of travel planning! It gives me bit of anxiety. Like many of you, we will be traveling throughout Switzerland via rail, including a couple of the routes on the "named" trains (Golden Pass, Glacier Express, Bernina Express).
--------> On page 362 of Rick Steves' Switzerland travel book he says the Swiss Travel Pass will cover travel on all 4 scenic trains, but it does cost extra to make reservations. He goes on to say that when you reserve your seats, make sure the ticket agent (can this be done online?) understands what TYPE of rail pass you have.
If any of you have advice as to how to relatively easily reserve our seats I would be so grateful!
Vielen Dank,
Diane

Posted by
380 posts

Hi Diane, it looks like you can make just the seat reservation online. The link below takes you to seat 61, which details how to make the reservation. If you scroll down, you’ll see a section on “How to make a Bernina Express seat reservation” and “If you've a Eurail, Interrail or Swiss Pass.” I would assume the process is similar for the other named trains.

Note: make sure you select “reservation only” in the reduction section.

https://www.seat61.com/trains-and-routes/bernina-express.htm#Bernina_Express_seat_reservation

If you're anxious about train travel in general, as I am 😊, these videos from How to Switzerland helped ease my mind:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FdSu2QkM0Ho

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fTGV1eVhqT8

Posted by
1292 posts

Question-
we will be doing the Bernina Express route using the regular trains [whose windows open.] Do we need a reservation for the regular route?
Thx and safe travels!

Posted by
25595 posts

Pat, no you don't. Just pop on like a city bus and look for the seat you like best.

That and the sealed windows and perceived somewhat snooty atmosphere is why I travel with the locals.

Posted by
380 posts

Just a heads up, my sister received a fraud alert from Chase when purchasing her pass, but after communicating with them, was able to make the purchase.

Posted by
563 posts

Also got the fraud alert and then cleared that up…..got ‘em! So excited!

Posted by
13 posts

I'm looking at travelling in June 2022. I went to the SBB site and the start date goes out to 31 January. I checked these links and some say 6 months in advance and HappyRail says 11 months. I did go to the HappyRail and typed in a start date of 3 June and it shows the reduced price. I will check and see later in the month if I can get the 25% off with start date of 11 June which is my planned first day of travel. I see HappyRail has a 15% cancellation fee where others are free.

https://www.myswissalps.com/swisstravelpass/promotions

Posted by
55 posts

I was looking for the discounted pass for a May 2022 trip. As noted earlier, the option to purchase doesn't go out that far. There is a "note" in the form that says for 2022 passes to email them. I just did so we'll see what I find out!

Posted by
1292 posts

Just purchased our STP today! It was easy, no credit card alert needed, and nice to have both an electronic and paper Pass.
Safe travels to all!

Posted by
28 posts

I realize that Nigel knows more about travel in Switzerland than I could ever hope. But I have, more than once, gotten on a train in Switzerland to find 2nd class completely full. The last time going from Luzern to Interlaken Ost.

Posted by
2 posts

I too ordered my pass today for a mid August trip. Does anyone know if it's possible to get a VAT refund for the travel pass? I see on my 15 day pass that there is a 7.7% VAT included.

Posted by
2121 posts

No, a VAT refund is not possible, it only applies to shopping, and then only in select stores where you make a large one-time purchase.

Posted by
25595 posts

The VAT refund is if it is goods (not a service) which is taken out of the country unused, never to return to the country, and only with stores willing to do the paperwork.

You are buying a service, not goods, and it won't be unused (you hope) after the travel. Sorry, no refund.