Rail pass for Switzerland and Italy

My husband and I are visiting Switzerland and Italy this summer, for 23 days. Our itinerary (nights): Zurich (1) - Lucerne(3) - Meiringen(2) - Florence(3) - Cinque Terre(2) - Tuscany (rent a car for this) (3)- Verona (3)- Lausanne (5)- Geneva (0) Based on my reading, it seems like a rail pass is not cost-effictive for Italy. But on comparing a few options, it seemed like the Global Eurail pass for 21 days continuous will be the cheapest option. This seems contrary to everything I read, can someone please advise if I missed something here? Prices below are approximate and for 2 people total, using the Saver option for individual rates 1) Global Eurail 21 days approx $1740 + cost of reservations in Italy. (2 days at start/end of trip not included which is ok) 2) Eurail 5 country pass for 15 days, mainly for Switzerland and to travel into/out of Italy: approx $1878 + cost of point-to-point tickets in Italy (3 country did not have 15 day option) 3) Eurail Italy 3 days (to cover inbound/outbound from Switzerland) $478 + Eurail Austria-Switzerland 10 days $1198 = total $1676. Plus cost of point to point tickets in Italy
4)Swiss pass either 5/6 day flexi or 8 day continuous, which we might need to buy two of since the trip is in 2 parts, would cost more than $2000, and add to this another few days of Italy pass. Options 2, 3 and 4 all seem more expensive than 1. Does this make sense? Are there other alternatives I haven't taken into account? Any advice is appreciated!

Posted by Lola
Seattle, WA
5444 posts

Where are you seeing these prices? Even a 22-day Swiss pass in First Class, which is way overkill, would be $1510 for the two of you. I suggest you look at the Swiss Flexpass in Second Class, which is fine for Switzerland. The 3-day Flex is $240 each, and the 4-day Flex is $291 each. These would give you 3 or 4 days of fully covered travel within Switzerland, and everything else is 1/2 off, including boats and high mountain lifts (which the Eurail pass won't even cover.). Then buy a discounted ticket from Luzern to Milan from SBB for around 30 CHF each, and use this as part of your trip from Meiringen to Florence. Buy p2p tickets in Italy. Use the rest of your Flex pass (save 2 covered days) to get to Lausanne, and for your last day of travel. If you go Verona to Milan to Brig to Lausanne, the coverage of the Swiss pass kicks in at Domodossola, so you only need buy your Italy ticket that far.