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Will my France-Italy pass cover my stop in Switzerland

If I buy a France-Italy pass but I want to stop 2 days in Switzerland will my pass cover me in and out of Switzerland I was thinking of staying in Lucerne or Bern. have not decided yet.
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  • Jeff (Official Rep) April 03, 2012 15:32
    Hi Ciro,

    Technically, a Eurail France-Italy Pass would not cover the ticket costs for any travel within Switzerland. However, some high-speed 'premier' trains offer what is called a 'Passholder 2' rate, which is a special rate created to allow passengers in possession of a rail pass that doesn't cover one of the countries being traveled through for a particular route, to still take the train at a lesser cost.

    There are trains from Milan into some cities in Switzerland that offer these rates, and there are trains from some cities into Switzerland to Paris or Dijon that offer these rates.

    As part of a connection from Milan to Lucerne, there are direct trains from Milan to Switzerland that would arrive into Lausanne, Arth Goldau or Olten. These trains would offer the Passholder 2 rate. An additional point-to-point ticket would then need to be purchased to continue on to Lucerne. You would purchase a regular point-to-point ticket under 'Check Fares and Schedules' on the homepage of our website.

    There are also direct trains from Milan to Bern that would offer the Passholder 2 rate.

    In regards to a trip from Switzerland to France, there are direct trains from Bern to Paris or Dijon that would offer Passholder 2 rates. The trains from Switzerland up to Paris or Dijon that offer Passholder 2 rates would depart from either Bern, Geneva, Lausanne, or Zurich.

    To ensure you are purchasing the reservations at a Passholder 2 rate for one of the applicable trains mentioned above, 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 (you would just type 'Eurail France-Italy 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 2' (for the direct trains from Milan to cities in Switzerland) or 'Lyria Passholder 2' (for the direct trains from some cities in Switzerland to Paris or Dijon). Generally, the Passholder 2 rate would be found under the 'Semi Flexible' option.

    4.) Be sure the option with 'Passholder 2' in its name is checked, and then click 'Select' to proceed and add it to your shopping cart.

    Please note there is incorrect error message that is currently sometimes displaying for the Lyria trains from Switzerland to Paris or Dijon when you do a passholder reservation search. This error message would display where the reservation costs would ordinarily show, and it says that the "passholder fares are unavailable or sold out at this time". Please disregard this error message, as it is not correct, and it is likely that the Passholder 2 fares would still be available on the train. If you attempt to book these Passholder 2 fares and you see such an error message, then you would call us at 1-800-622-8600. We hope to have this error fixed as soon as possible, and we apologize for any inconvenience posed in the meantime.
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  • Hi. Can I stop in Switzerland over night to break up the train ride. I do not plan on traveling within Switzerland , is this possible with my France-Italy rail pass? Thx
    • Jeff (Official Rep) August 27, 2012 18:57
      Hi Laurence,

      Generally, all countries being traveled through would have to be accounted for on the pass you choose. What specific cities are you traveling between and where did you intend on stopping in Switzerland?

      If you'll be traveling on a direct train from Paris to either Basel, Bern, Geneva, Interlaken, Lausanne, or Zurich, then you can purchase your tickets at a Passholder 2 rate, similar to what is described above, except these trains are called 'Lyria' TGV trains. Therefore, the rate would be called 'Lyria Passholder 2' under the Ticket Flexibility.

      Depending on where you're traveling from, you may also be able to purchase tickets at a Passholder 2 rate on many direct trains from Switzerland down to Italy, like described above.
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