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Can we use a Swiss pass going from Venice to Lucern?

Hi I bougth 2 swiss rail passes to use them on May. I'll be on Venice May 10, I need to go to Lucern. My question is: Can I use the swiss passes to go from Venice to Lucern? If is not possible, wich will be the best way to travel from Venice to Lucern. Thanks!!!
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  • Jeff (Official Rep) April 13, 2012 14:35
    Hi Claudia,

    The Swiss Pass is not valid for travel in Italy.

    A typical connection from Venice to Lucerne would involve 2 train changes along the way; once in Milan and then once in either Arth Goldau or Lausanne. There is one early evening connection that would involve just one train change in Milan along the way.

    With the Swiss Pass, you would be able to purchase your tickets on the direct trains from Milan to either Arth Goldau, Lausanne or Lucerne at what is known as the 'Passholder 3' rate. The Passholder 3 rate is a special rate that was created to allow passengers in possession of a Swiss Pass to take direct trains from Milan to certain cities in Switzerland at a lesser cost, even though the train would be starting in Italy, which is not covered by a Swiss Pass.

    To ensure you are purchasing the tickets at a Passholder 3 rate for a direct train from Milan to one of those cities, you would take the following steps:

    1.) You would do a search for the individual train under 'Book a Reservation for Your Pass' and indicate the type of pass you are traveling with when prompted (in your case, you would just type 'Swiss Pass').

    2.) You would then locate a direct train and click on 'Select' listed with the costs that are shown for your preferred train.

    3.) After you've clicked on 'Select', you would then refer to where it says 'Ticket Flexibility'. Underneath 'Ticket Flexibility', you may see 3 options: 'Non Flexible', 'Semi Flexible' and 'Fully Flexible. You would click 'Read More' next to each of these options until you see the fare titled 'Trenitalia International Train Passholder 3'. Generally, the Passholder 3 rate would be found under the 'Fully Flexible' option.

    4.) Be sure the option labeled as 'Trenitalia International Train Passholder 3' is checked, and then click 'Select' to proceed and add it to your shopping cart.

    In some instances, for this kind of search, you may see an incorrect error message that states the following:

    "This train requires the passholder to purchase a seat reservation; however the passholder fares are unavailable or sold out at this time. This schedule is informational only. Please reserve your train at a train station in Europe."

    You can disregard this error message as it is very possible that the train is not "unavailable or sold out" as it states, and I would then recommend that you call us at 1-800-622-8600 to verify the fare's availability and book your tickets.

    We hope to have the issue with this incorrect error message fixed as soon as possible, and we're sorry for any confusion.
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  • Is Swiss Pass and Swiss Card the same thing?

    I'll be traveling from Munich to Lucern to Interlokken and then to Milan.

    Is there any discount on the Munich to Zurich leg or would I have to connect somewhere closer to border?

    Like the above states, I would get discount from Spiez to Milan, correct?

    What is not included in this pass in the Berner Oberland area?

    Do I need to reserve seat for train between Lucern and Interlokken? Do I follow the instructions above?

    Finally, with all the other trains in Switzerland I do not need any ticket, I just show pass?'

    Thank You
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  • Jeff (Official Rep) May 31, 2012 16:18
    Hi Darren,

    The Swiss Pass and Swiss Card are not the same. The Swiss Card is a special pass that will allow for an inbound and outbound transfer between any Swiss airport or bordertown and any single destination in Switzerland. The Swiss Pass covers the ticket costs for trains between different cities in Switzerland for the number of days you choose.

    Most of the answers to your questions will depend specifically on what you decide to purchase. When selecting a rail pass on our website, you would generally just want to be sure that all of the countries being traveled through are accounted for on the pass you choose. Considering this, for the requested travel you might consider purchasing a 3 country Eurail Select Pass to include Germany, Switzerland and Italy.

    A rail pass covers the ticket costs on trains between different cities in the country or countries included on the pass. When applicable, reservations are a supplementary cost to a rail pass. Reservations are a much lower cost than the regular point-to-point tickets for the same route (since the ticket costs are already being covered by the rail pass), if that is what you are referring to by "discount".

    The directions in my above reply pertain to a specific scenario when a rail pass doesn't cover both of the countries being traveled through for a particular trip. If you purchase the 3 country Eurail Select Pass for Germany, Switzerland and Italy, the ticket costs for each of your trips would be covered, and you would just be able to purchase reservations at a regular passholder rate whenever reservations are required on a particular train.

    The most feasible connection from Munich to Lucerne would involve changing trains at least once in Zurich along the way. However, the direct train from Munich to Zurich passes through Austria for a short portion of the trip, which would not be covered by your 3 country Eurail Select Pass. To be covered for the portion of the trip that passes through Austria, you would purchase a ticket from Lindau (a town in Germany at the border with Austria) to St. Margrethen (a town in Switzerland at the border with Austria), and you would purchase this particular ticket by calling us at 1-800-622-8600 or else you would be charged the supplement locally. It would be less expensive just to purchase this ticket from Lindau to St. Margrethen than to include Austria on your pass as a fourth country. Reservations are required on the train from Munich to Zurich, and you would purchase the reservations by clicking on 'Book a Reservation for Your Pass' from the homepage of our website, www.raileurope.com. Trains from Zurich to Lucerne do not even accept reservations, so the pass is all you would need to board.

    Otherwise, you can take a connection from Munich to Lucerne that involves 2 train changes along the way; once in Stuttgart and then once in Zurich or else once in Karlsruhe and then once in Basel. In either of these cases, you would not pass through Austria en route, and you would not have to purchase that additional ticket. We would recommend purchasing reservations on the train from Munich to Stuttgart (as part of the connection from Munich to Lucerne that goes via Stuttgart) and the train from Karlsruhe to Basel (as part of the connection from Munich to Lucerne that goes via Karlsruhe). The other trains that comprise of these respective connections do not even accept reservations, so the pass is all you would need to board. For planning purposes, you can just view the schedules for such routes by entering the cities under 'Check Fares and Schedules' on the homepage of our website and clicking the option to 'Check Schedules'.

    Reservations are also not accepted on trains from Lucerne to Interlaken, so the pass is all you would need to board in this case as well.

    The most feasible connection from Interlaken to Milan involves changing trains once in Spiez along the way. The trains from Interlaken to Spiez do not accept reservations, so the pass is all you would need to board. Trains from Spiez to Milan do require reservations, which you would be able to purchase at the regular passholder fare if you purchase the Eurail Select Pass that includes both Switzerland and Italy. Once again, you would do this by clicking on 'Book a Reservation for Your Pass' from the homepage.

    If you end up purchasing just the Swiss Pass instead of the 3 country Eurail Select Pass, you would purchase reservations for a train from Spiez to Milan at the 'Passholder 3' rate, as I described in my above reply to Claudia's question. In that case, you would also have to purchase a ticket to cover you from Munich to the border with Switzerland, which would depend on the connection you opt to take to get you from Munich to Lucerne.

    In the Bernese Oberland area, only the mountain railway up to Jungfraujoch would not be covered. A Eurail Select Pass that includes Switzerland would cover as far as Interlaken. Therefore, to be covered from Interlaken to Jungfraujoch, you would purchase the 'Interlaken-Jungfraujoch/Eurail Pass' option of the 'Jungfraujoch Top of Europe' pass. To purchase this pass, you would click on the following link: http://www.raileurope.com/activities/....

    If you purchase the Swiss Pass instead, you would purchase the 'Grindelwald or Wengen-Jungfraujoch/Swiss Pass' option of the Jungfraujoch Top of Europe pass from this same link.
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  • Thank you for your reply. I have a couple more questions.

    I tried looking up prices to reserve seat from Spiez to Milan. With Swiss Pass it was 1/3 price compared to when I entered 3 country select pass, is that correct?

    How does the passes work for Bernese Oberland? Is it unlimited for a certain amount of days?

    Are you able to advise which pass would be the cheapest option. I just realized that the Swiss pass 2 for 1 is not valid in June/July

    June23-Munich to Salzburg roundtrip
    June 24- Munich to Wengen
    June25- Wengen to Jungfau
    June 26-Wengen to Schithorn
    June 27-Wengen to MIlan
    June 29-MIlan to Cirque
    July 2 Cirque to Bologna

    Thank YOu
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  • Jeff (Official Rep) June 04, 2012 16:47
    Hi Darren,

    Considering that any rail pass that includes Germany would cover travel to Salzburg in Austria, you could purchase a 3 country Eurail Select Pass that includes just Germany, Switzerland and Italy; however, if you do, you would also just have to be sure to take a connection from Munich to Wengen that does not pass through Austria en route. In this case, you would have to take a connection from Munich to Wengen that enters Switzerland directly from Germany.

    Otherwise, you would purchase a 4 country Eurail Select Pass to include Germany, Austria, Switzerland, and Italy.

    You would purchase this pass by clicking here: http://www.raileurope.com/rail-ticket....

    The Jungfraujoch Top of Europe pass that I mentioned above, in regards to your travel in the Bernese Oberland, is an open voucher valid for one roundtrip to completed within a day. It can be used to take any combination of trains on the day you make the trip.

    From Spiez to Milan, the reservations at the Passholder 3 rate for Swiss Pass holders are less expensive than reservations at the Passholder 2 rate for Eurail Select Pass holders. This does go against common logic for rail travel, which says that reservations should be less expensive when all of the countries being traveled through are included on the rail pass being used, but it is how the prices are set for this particular route. In any case, I would still recommend purchasing the 3 or 4 country Eurail Select Pass, as opposed to the Swiss Pass, because it would be the most economical option overall for all of your travels.
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  • Jeff (Official Rep) June 04, 2012 17:55
    For your Mt. Schilthorn trip, you would purchase the 'Schilthorn/Piz Gloria' pass.

    A Eurail Select Pass that includes Switzerland would cover as far as Mürren. Therefore, to be covered from Mürren to Schilthorn, you would purchase the 'Mürren-Schilthorn/Eurail Pass' option of the 'Schilthorn/Piz Gloria' pass. To purchase this pass, you would click on the following link: http://www.raileurope.com/activities/....
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  • Jeff (Official Rep) June 04, 2012 18:14
    Reservations are required on most trains between Munich and Salzburg. However, there are some regional trains (identified by having a 5 digit train number) that do not even accept reservations, for which the rail pass is all you would need to board.

    The most feasible connection from Munich to Wengen would involve 3 train changes en route; once in Karlsruhe, once in Interlaken and then once in Lauterbrunnen. Of these trains, we would only recommend purchasing reservations on the segment from Karlsruhe to Interlaken. The trains from Interlaken to Lauterbrunnen and Lauterbrunnen to Wengen do not even accept reservations. For planning, you can just view schedules by entering the requested cities under 'Check Fares and Schedules' on the homepage of our website and clicking the option to 'Check Schedules'. To do this, you would just piece together the connection by doing a separate search for each segment of the trip. To make your actual reservations on the segment from Karlsruhe to Interlaken, you would click on 'Book a Reservation for Your Pass' on the homepage.

    A connection between Wengen and Mürren would involve changing trains once in Lauterbrunnen along the way. Both trains comprising of this connection do not accept reservations, so the rail pass is all you would need to board.

    The most feasible connections from Wengen to Milan involve 3 train changes along the way; once in Lauterbrunnen, once in Interlaken and then once in Spiez. None of the trains comprising of this connection will accept reservations, except for the final portion of this connection from Spiez, which you would book at the 'Passholder 2' rate, as described above.

    To take rail to the Cinque Terre, you would search schedules to the town of Monterosso, which is the northernmost town of the Cinque Terre. There are direct trains from Milan to Monterosso that do require reservations. You would then be able to use your pass to continue on to the other 4 towns of the Cinque Terre, however, I would not recommend expending a day of rail travel on your pass for what would be such inexpensive travel locally between these towns. Instead, I would recommend that you just pay to board these short trains between the Cinque Terre towns locally upon arrival or else you could even hike between the towns.

    A connection from Monterosso to Bologna involves changing trains once in Milan along the way. The trains from Monterosso to Milan and the trains from Milan to Bologna will both require reservations.

    Reservable trains in this part of Europe can be booked at any point within 90 days of an intended date of departure.
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