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Transferring trains at Zurich HBF

Is it possible to change trains from platform 6-15 at Zurich HBF in 7 minutes, with minimal luggage?

Posted by
7205 posts

Of course. But you have no time to stop and talk along the way. Learn how to read the departure and arrival boards.

Posted by
18312 posts

In Zürich, if you are close to the front of the train, you can walk to the interconnecting platform and go to your next platform from there. If you are farther back, there are two interconnecting tunnels. Take the stairs or escalator (looks like in Zürich there are escalators) down into the tunnel and find the big signs with platform numbers hanging above the escalators. Go to the platform you want. The platforms are not that far apart; most of you time will be taken getting to the escalators and down into the tunnel, then back up to the platform. 6 to 15 is not that much farther (couple hundred feet) than 6 to 7.

The main thing is to be at the end of the car, with your luggage, ready to get off, when the train stops. (This is not an aircraft, where they say stay seated until the vehicle comes to a complete stop.) When the train stop, get off and locate the nearest escalator. Follow the herd. Other people will be headed there, too.

Posted by
2580 posts

yes, as I learned at several stations if you know where you're going and don't stop along the way you'll make the transfer. If you stop to ponder the destination board too long or buy a snacky snack or use the loo, you might miss your train. All the connections mesh together like (wait for it) a fine Swiss watch.

Posted by
27752 posts

Because Zuerich Hbf is a dead end station for the upstairs tracks numbered 3 to 18, if you follow the advice above you can walk on the level, just past the front of your old train , in front of a few more, and pop onto your new one very quickly if you are at the front when you draw in.

Then as you walk along the new train you can can glance at the Swiss clocks which will tell you how much strolling time you have.

Would it be rude to ask where you will be coming from and where your connecting train is going to?

If look on the displays as you walk you will see that portions of the train may be in anything from Zone A to (B,C,D) Zone E, with Zone A nearest the dead end of the station and E furthest away. It will generally say which class of travel is in each Zone by use of a "1" or a "2" above the Zone letter. The automated announcement will say that too, and if it is a major train it will also be in English on the PA.

Posted by
16834 posts

@ Nigel. From previous posts, the OP is arriving from Chur and changing to Basel where they have 20 minute connection to Offenburg. They are traveling on a Europa-Spezial ticket.

Posted by
2580 posts

yes, very important to figure out which "zone" you need to stand in for your section.

Each time I passed through the Zurich station there was a crowd of people around a grand piano, under that odd lady statue, listen but don't look!

In Japan, the trains stop so precisely there are little footprints or lines drawn on the station platform to show you where the door will be.

Posted by
815 posts

Yes, it should be no problem at all. Here is the station map, depending on where you are in the train you can either walk around the head of the train or use one of the two underground passage ways. As a rough guide, if you are in the third carriage from the front you should be in line to use the first underground passage and if you are in the fifth you should be in line for the second underground passage way. Both have escalators and stairs and near the second passage you should also find an elevator.

Enjoy the trip.

Jim.