We'll be taking the Bernina Express from Lugano to Pontresina with a Swiss Pass but would like to stop in Menaggio. Can you make one reservation or do you have to make two separate reservations?

We will be travelling from Lugano to Pontresina on the Bernina Express train using a Swiss Pass. We would like to spend a few days in Menaggio during the course of this journey. Can you make just one reservation for this trip or do you have to make two separate reservations with the first from Lugano to Menaggio and the second from Menaggio to Pontresina.
1 person has
this question
+1
Reply
  • Jeff (Official Rep) July 18, 2012 16:11
    Hi,

    Menaggio is in the opposite direction from Lugano than the Bernina Express route up to Pontresina, so it would not be on your way in between these two points.

    From Menaggio, you would have a few different options:

    Option 1.) You can take a ferry across Lake Como from Menaggio to Varenna. In Varenna, you would make a rail connection to Tirano, where you would board the Bernina Express up to Pontresina. You would purchase tickets for the ferry from Menaggio to Varenna locally upon arrival. Since the Swiss Pass would not cover a rail connection in Italy from Varenna to Tirano, you would have to purchase regular tickets to cover this part of the trip.

    Generally, you can purchase tickets on our website under 'Find Fares & Schedules' on our homepage; however, you would not want to purchase tickets for the segment from Varenna to Tirano in advance from our site, because the station in Varenna does not have a kiosk that would be necessary to print the tickets (as tickets for trains from Varenna to Tirano are only able to be issued as print-at-station tickets). Therefore, you would just purchase these particular tickets locally in Varenna. You would only be able to purchase the tickets from Varenna to Tirano in advance if you'll be at a larger station (where you'd be able to print the tickets) before you go Varenna.

    You can purchase reservations for the Bernina Express by clicking on 'Book your Rail Pass Reservations' on our homepage.

    To purchase reservations on the Bernina Express from Tirano to Pontresina on our website, you would have to enter 'St Moritz' as the destination city. You would then just get off the train when it stops in Pontresina before it arrives into St Moritz. The Bernina Express trains stop in Pontresina 10 to 20 minutes before they arrive into St. Moritz.

    Option 2.) You can take the 'Palm Express' bus directly from Menaggio to St. Moritz, where you can then begin a roundtrip on the Bernina Express by going from St Moritz down to Tirano and then you can just get off the train in Pontresina again on your way back up to St. Moritz. The Swiss Pass actually covers the Palm Express bus from Menaggio to St. Moritz (even the part of the ride still in Italy). You would have to be sure to reserve seats on the Palm Express bus, which you can do from here: http://www.swisspost.com/. There is actually no additional cost to reserve seats on the Palm Express, but they may charge a small supplement when you board.

    You would then have to purchase reservations on the Bernina Express by clicking on 'Book your Rail Pass Reservations' on our homepage, as I described above. You would do one search for the outbound from St Moritz to Tirano and then another search for the return from Tirano back up to St Moritz. You can then just get off the train in Pontresina when it stops there 10 to 20 minutes before the scheduled arrival into St. Moritz.

    If you wish, you could also purchase roundtrip reservations on the bus between Tirano and Lugano, however, that would probably not be necessary considering the travel you would already have done.

    Option 3.) You could take the Palm Express from Menaggio to Lugano, where you can begin the Bernina Express trip. You would reserve the Palm Express from the link I provided above. You would then reserve the Bernina Express bus from Lugano to Tirano and then the train from Tirano up to St Moritz by clicking on 'Book your Rail Pass Reservations' on our homepage. Once again, you would enter 'St Moritz' as your destination city when you book the reservations, with it in mind that you will just get off the train in Pontresina. However, if you were to go with this option, you would have to overnight in Lugano before continuing on the next morning on the Bernina Express.

    The Bernina Express can only be booked within 90 days of an intended date of departure. Due to high demand, this train can sell out quickly, so it is recommended that reservations be purchased as soon as it's possible to do so.
  • (some HTML allowed)
    How does this make you feel?
    Add Image
    I'm

    e.g. sad, anxious, confused, frustrated indifferent, undecided, unconcerned kidding, amused, unsure, silly happy, confident, thankful, excited

  • Jeff (Official Rep) July 18, 2012 16:24
    For the 3rd option, I mentioned that you would have to stay overnight in Lugano before continuing on on the Bernina Express the following morning, however, that would only be the case if you take the actual Palm Express from Menaggio to Lugano. There are other buses earlier in the day from Menaggio to Lugano that would make it so that you don't have to stay overnight in Lugano if you were to take one of them.
  • (some HTML allowed)
    How does this make you feel?
    Add Image
    I'm

    e.g. happy, confident, thankful, excited indifferent, undecided, unconcerned kidding, amused, unsure, silly sad, anxious, confused, frustrated