Switzerland can be discovered by trains, buses, boats and scenic mountain trains. Use the Swiss half fare card to get one month’s of half-price travel, while children under 16 travel free of charge when accompanied by an adult who is a holder of a Swiss Family Card.
Swiss Half Fare Card
This card provides savings up to 50% off for travel on most trains, boats, and buses in Switzerland
- 50% discount on most trains, buses and boats for one month
- Issued as a paper document
- Discounts off 1st and 2nd class travel
- Free Swiss Family Card: Children under 16 travel for free with a parent or legal guardian
WING SHAN Y
How does it work?
Rail Passes in 3 steps
1. Pick the right rail pass
Rail passes can be booked for travel in one specific country or you can choose one of a few pre-selected country/region combinations. Extensive travel plans? Try the Eurail Global Pass offering train travel in 31 different countries - including Great Britain.
Once you've selected your pass, its price will depend on the class of service selected, passenger type, and the number of rail travel days.
2. Reserve your seats
Most trains in Switzerland do not require reservations. You can simply board with your rail pass and take any open seat.
3. Activate and travel
Your pass was pre-validated at the time of booking, it is now valid for use for the duration you selected. You're all set and ready to explore.
More than just trains
Main discounts and bonuses in Swiss Half Fare Card
- 50% discount when travelling on board trains.
- 50% discount when using urban public transport in 75 towns.
- Free travel for children under 16, accompanied by a parent, holder of a Swiss Family Card.
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Common Questions, Simple Answers
Q. Can I give or resell my train ticket to someone else? Or can I travel with someone else’s ticket?
A. It depends if the train ticket has your name printed on it or not. In general, most tickets that include a reservation are name-specific and should only be used by the traveller whose name is printed.
Open tickets, on the other hand, are not name-specific. Different travellers can use them as long as the new traveller is eligible for the fare issued.
Q. Does taking an overnight train mean using 2 travel days on my rail pass?
A. If you travel on a direct overnight train departing after 7:00pm and arriving after 4:00am, it’s only necessary to enter the date of arrival in the travel calendar, thereby using only one travel day. If you travel on an overnight train that departs after 7:00pm but has a change of trains or arrives before 4:00am, you will be required to enter both the date of departure and arrival in the travel calendar, using two travel days of your rail pass.
Q. Where can I find more information about European train stations?
A. We offer valuable information on the most popular train stations in Europe. You can find a link to our Train Station page in the footer on any page on the website.
Q. If my travel party won’t fill the entire compartment, can we buy it out to travel by ourselves?
A. We’re only able to sell train tickets/reservations for beds that will be filled by travellers. If you purchase “extra” beds in a compartment to occupy the space, the conductor can fill empty beds if space is needed, even if the whole compartment has been purchased. No refund is given if a conductor fills an “extra” bed.
Q. Do you offer e-tickets?
A. Yes, on certain rail lines. There are two types of e-tickets:
Print at home and Print at the Station
Let’s begin with Print at Home e-tickets, of which there are 3 different types.
The first type of e-tickets are those issued as a PDF’s which will be emailed to you and can be downloaded via a link contained in your Rail Europe email confirmation. You must print the PDF (using a printer) and bring your ticket with you to board the train.
The second type of e-tickets are those that are individually emailed to you. You must print the email (using a printer) and bring it with you to board the train – this is your train ticket. Each ticket will be in a separate email, so if you booked more than one ticket, please be sure you print all tickets that were emailed to you.
The last type of e-tickets are those which have a unique e-ticket confirmation code that is printed on your Rail Europe confirmation email. You must provide the e-ticket confirmation code along with your id to the conductor on board the train.
Next, Print at the station e-tickets!
You will receive a 6 or 8 alpha-numeric e-ticket confirmation code (also known as a PNR or Passenger Name Record) in your Rail Europe confirmation email, which you then enter into a self-service kiosk at the train station in Europe to print out your actual train ticket.
Use this e-ticket confirmation code at a self-service kiosk at the train station to retrieve your ticket. Not all rail lines offer these e-ticket options. Once you have selected a ticket on our website, you’ll be able to choose from its available methods of issuance at checkout.
Q. How can I contact Rail Europe prior to my departure to Europe?
A. Please send us a message from our Contact Us page and we will respond to you via email within 24 to 48 hours.
Q. Why do some German station names have extra characters in the station name?
A. In a few circumstances, German station names are listed with extra characters extended after the official station name. They are of no concern for travellers, and can be disregarded.
Muenchen Hbf Gl.27-36 = Munich Main Train Station
Koeln Messedeutz11-12 = Cologne Messe Deatz Station
Berlin Hbf (Tief) = Berlin Main Train Station
Q. How do I request an exchange through the Rail Protection Plan™?
A. To apply for an exchange under the Rail Protection Plan™, please contact us via our Contact Us page. Rail passes/train tickets/reservations/city passes/tours may be exchanged for the same or new products.
Q. I bought a print at home e ticket but now don’t have access to a printer to print it. What should I do?
A. French print at home e-tickets can be re-issued from a self-service kiosk at the station. You will need the e-ticket # located on your booking confirmation email.
Eurostar print at home e-tickets can be re-issued at the Eurostar desk in the departure station, but there is a 15£ fee per ticket. You will need the e-ticket # located on your booking confirmation email.
No other print at home e-tickets can be re-issued at the station. Your best option is to find an internet cafe or self-service print shop where you can go online and print your e-ticket.
Q. How do I use the bonuses that come with rail passes?
A. Rail Pass travel bonuses must be redeemed locally.
There are two types of bonuses. Free bonuses (such as a free airport transfer) require the use of a travel day on your pass. If all travel days have been used on your rail pass you will not be able to take advantage of any more free bonuses. Discount bonuses do not require you to use a travel day, but do require that your pass still be within its validity period. In other words, even if you’ve used up all your days on a pass, you can still claim discounted bonuses as long as the pass validity period has not expired.
The exception to this rule is the Swiss Travel Pass. Although a discounted bonus doesn’t require you to use a travel day on your Swiss Travel Pass, the pass must still be valid and you must not have used up all your travel days.