Travel from Salzburg to Wengen with a Eurail Pass that doesn't include Austria / Train Starts in a Non-Pass Country

How do you handle travel under a 2 county pass when a portion of the trip is in a country not covered and that country is the origin of the trip, ie, a trip from Salzburg, Austria to Wengen, Switzerland with a Swiss/France pass?
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  • Jeff (Official Rep) July 05, 2013 15:23
    Hi,

    You would need to purchase additional tickets to be covered in any countries that aren't included on the rail pass you purchased.

    The most feasible connections from Salzburg to Wengen would take about 8.5 to 9 hours in duration and would involve 4 train changes along the way; once in Zurich, once in Bern, once in Interlaken, and then once in Lauterbrunnen.

    For the train from Salzburg to Zurich, you would need to purchase an open ticket from Salzburg to the town of Buchs at the border of Austria and Switzerland. This ticket would cover you for the portion of this route from Salzburg to Buchs, and your Eurail France-Switzerland Pass would cover you for the remaining portion of this route from Buchs to Zurich. This does not mean that you'd have to get off the train in Buchs, it is just so you would be covered for the portion of your travel that is still in Austria.

    In addition to the tickets from Salzburg to Buchs and your Eurail France-Switzerland Pass, reservations are highly recommended on the trains from Salzburg to Zurich. You would purchase the reservations by clicking on 'Book your Rail Pass Reservations' on the homepage of our website, www.raileurope.com.

    When you go to purchase the reservations, our website will prompt you to enter the type of rail pass you'll be traveling. Since the Eurail France-Switzerland Pass by itself does not cover the entire route, you would have to indicate that you will be traveling with either the 'Eurail Austria-Switzerland Pass' or the 'Eurail Global Pass' when prompted, in order to be quoted the reservation fees. Otherwise, if you indicate that you'll be traveling with just the Eurail France-Switzerland Pass, our website will think that you do not have the necessary ticket/pass to cover the entire route, and you will not be quoted the reservation fees. All that matters is that you have the necessary ticket and pass combination when you're actually traveling, so it doesn't matter what pass you enter as long as it covers the entire route. Trains from Salzburg to Zurich can be reserved within 90 days of an intended date of departure.

    You would purchase the open ticket from Salzburg to Buchs by clicking on 'Find Fares & Schedules' on the homepage of our website instead of 'Book your Rail Pass Reservations'. Here you would just do a search for trains from Salzburg to Buchs (instead of Salzburg to Zurich) on the day you intend to travel. To ensure you are issued the appropriate ticket, just make sure the train you select here corresponds to the train from Salzburg to Zurich you booked reservations on. You can do this by matching the train number and the departure time from Salzburg. Once again, even though you are booking a ticket that shows Buchs as an endpoint, that does not mean you would get off the train there. You would just remain on that train until it arrives to its destination of Zurich.

    Your connecting trains from Zurich to Bern and Bern to Interlaken don't accept reservations, so your Eurail France-Switzerland Pass is all you would need to board. For planning purposes, you can just check schedules for these trains under 'Find Fares & Schedules', and you would not purchase reservations.

    One other important thing to note is that the Eurail France-Switzerland Pass would not cover travel beyond Interlaken in the direction of Lauterbrunnen and Wengen. For your train from Interlaken to Lauterbrunnen and the cogwheel from Lauterbrunnen to Wengen, you would need to purchase a 'Jungfraujoch Top of Europe' mountaintop excursion. You would purchase this pass by clicking here: http://www.raileurope.com/activities/jungfraujoch/index.html .

    Since you would be traveling with a Eurail France-Switzerland Pass, you would purchase the 'Interlaken-Jungfraujoch/Eurail Pass' option of this pass.

    Reservations are not accepted for any part of the Jungfraujoch trip, including the trains from Interlaken to Lauterbrunnen and the cogwheel from Lauterbrunnen to Wengen. The 'Jungfraujoch Top of Europe' pass is an open voucher that you would use to hop on any of these trains up to Wengen or Jungfraujoch and back. The roundtrip would just have to be completed within a 24 time period once you begin the journey. If your plans don't involve leaving Wengen within 24 hours of your arrival there, then you would just purchase regular tickets for this part of the journey under 'Find Fares & Schedules'.
    • Jeff (Official Rep) December 29, 2016 18:55
      Update:

      With regard to the excursion up to Jungfraujoch, reservations are now possible for the Jungfrau Railway segment between Kleine Scheidegg and Jungfraujoch. In fact, as a supplement to the ‘Jungfraujoch Top of Europe’, reservations are now highly recommended on the Kleine Scheidegg-Jungfraujoch segment for travel between the months of May and October. The Kleine-Scheidegg-Jungfraujoch reservations can be purchased locally at the preceding stations in Interlaken, Grindelwald, Lauterbrunnen, and Wengen; as well as the nearby station of Mürren.

      Reservations are still not accepted for the segments between Interlaken and Kleine Scheidegg, whether you take the route via Grindelwald or the route via Lauterbrunnen. Therefore, the ‘Jungfraujoch Top of Europe’ would be all you’d need to board for these segments.
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