I’m overloaded with options!!

Zurich-Interlaken-GoldenPass-Geneva-Paris-Milan-Tirano-Bernina Express-Zurich - TRAIN OPTIONS OVERLOAD!

PLANNING A SPECIAL 70-YR BIRTHDAY TRIP W 'TRAINS IN SWITZERLAND" EXCURSION. i THINK THE TRANSFER PASS MAY BE APPLICABLE ???

Flying to ZURICH - then 2 days in INTERLAKEN (Golden Pass)- MONTREUX/GENEVE (Golden Pass). can we use "transfer ticket" w geneve as final destination?

using pt-to-pt TGV GENEVA-PARIS (4 day stay) then return PARIS - MILAN (TGV).

Milan to TIRANO (Bernina Express) - CHUR - ZURICH. can we use 'transfer ticket' for this segment returning to Zurich?

if not TRANSFER TICKET what do you recommend? half-fare pass, swiss pass, france-swiss pass, or all point-to- ???

THANK YOU! Really want to make this easy and fun for his significant birthday and the 'boy-man-train' thing, but the logistics and planning are a huge headache and really appreciate the expert help!
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  • Jeff (Official Rep) April 22, 2015 21:31
    Hi Margaret. Thank you for your question.

    While the Swiss Transfer Ticket is generally only valid on the most direct connections between a destination and a border-city or airport, it would be accepted on the route you described from Zurich to Geneva (via Interlaken/the GoldenPass route) and the route you described from Tirano to Zurich (via Chur/the Bernina Express route). However, I still would not suggest purchasing the Swiss Transfer Ticket for either of these trips, because you would likely want to purchase a rail pass instead, which would also happen to cover the ticket costs for these trips.

    For the requested itinerary, I would recommend purchasing the 'Eurail France-Switzerland Pass' in combination with reservations on the specific trains on which they would be required.

    The actual GoldenPass route is from Lucerne to Montreux and involves changing trains twice along the way; once in Interlaken and then once in Zweisimmen. Therefore, you would take a direct train from Zurich to Lucerne in order to connect up with the GoldenPass segment from Lucerne to Interlaken.

    Zurich to Interlaken (via Lucerne)

    Trains from Zurich to Lucerne don't accept reservations, so the rail pass is all you would need to board. Reservations are not necessary on the GoldenPass segments from Lucerne to Interlaken and Interlaken to Zweisimmen, so the rail pass is once again all you would need to board these trains.

    Interlaken to Geneva (via Zweisimmen and Montreux on the GoldenPass)


    Of the trains that comprise of the GoldenPass route, reservations would only be recommended on the segment from Zweisimmen to Montreux. To purchase reservations, you would click on 'Book your Rail Pass Reservations' on our homepage, enter the cities, and indicate that you'll be traveling with a 'Eurail France-Switzerland Pass' when you're prompted to enter the type of pass you'll have. The GoldenPass trains can be booked once within 90 days of an intended departure date.

    Trains from Montreux to Geneva don't accept reservations, so the rail pass is all you would need to board.

    Geneva to Paris (high-speed 'TGV Lyria' train)

    With the Eurail France-Switzerland Pass, you would be eligible to purchase tickets on a direct train from Geneva to Paris (the high-speed 'TGV Lyria') at a rate called the 'Passholder 2' rate.

    To ensure that you're purchasing your ticket on this train at a Passholder 2 rate, you would take the following steps:

    1.) Click on 'Book your Rail Pass Reservations' on our homepage, enter the route, and indicate the type of pass you'll be traveling with when you're prompted (i.e. 'Eurail France-Switzerland Pass').

    2.) Locate one of the direct 'TGV Lyria' trains from Geneva to Paris and click the 'View' button with the fare listed under your preferred class of service (for this route, that would be 'Premier' for 1st class and 'Economy' for 2nd class).

    3.) After you've clicked 'View', you would refer to where it says 'Ticket Flexibility' in the box that expands out underneath and click 'Read More' next to the option(s) listed there until you see a fare named 'TGV Lyria Passholder 2'. Generally, the Passholder 2 rate for these trains would be found under the 'Semi Flexible' option.

    4.) Be sure the Passholder 2 option is checked and click 'Select' to proceed and add it to your 'Itinerary' (shopping cart).

    If you do not see the Passholder 2 rate when you take these steps, you can call us to verify their availability. You can reach us at 1-800-622-8600.

    The 'TGV Lyria' trains can be booked once within 90 days of an intended departure date.

    Paris to Milan (high-speed 'France-Italy TGV' train)

    Similar to the Geneva-Paris trains, the Eurail France-Switzerland Pass would qualify you to receive a 'Passholder 2' on the direct 'France-Italy TGV' trains from Paris to Milan as well. To ensure that you're purchasing your tickets at the Passholder 2 rate on this train, you would follow the same steps I described for the 'TGV Lyria' trains from Geneva to Paris. On the 'France-Italy TGV' trains; however, 1st class would typically be found under the 'Comfort' heading for fares instead of the 'Premier' heading). Additionally, the Passholder 2 rates for this train are generally found under the 'Flexible' option under 'Ticket Flexibility' instead of the 'Semi Flexible' option. There they would be labeled 'France-Italy TGV Passholder 2'. The 'France-Italy TGV' trains can be booked once within 90 days of an intended date of departure.

    Milan to Tirano

    Since the rail pass doesn't cover Italy, you would just purchase regular tickets for a train from Milan to Tirano. To purchase regular tickets, you would click on 'Find Fares & Schedules' (instead of 'Book your Rail Pass Reservations') on our homepage and enter the route, this time not indicating that you'll be traveling with any type of rail pass. Trains from Milan to Tirano can only be booked within 60 days of an intended date of departure.

    Tirano to Zurich (via the Bernina Express from Tirano to Chur)

    You would then begin using your Eurail France-Switzerland Pass again to cover on your trip from Tirano to Zurich. The Bernina Express from Tirano to Chur would just require reservations in addition to the pass. You would purchase reservations for the Bernina Express from Tirano to Chur by clicking on 'Book your Rail Pass Reservations' on our homepage, entering the route, and indicating that you'll be traveling with the 'Eurail France-Switzerland Pass' when you're prompted.

    Trains from Chur to Zurich don't accept reservations, so the rail pass is all you would need to board.

    If, for planning purposes, you just wish to check schedules for your non-reservable trains, you would do so by doing a search under 'Find Fares & Schedules' on our homepage, entering the route, and not mentioning that you'll be traveling with any type of rail pass when you're prompted.
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