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 a reservation date on an overnight train be changed?
A. This is possible in some cases, but with the limited availability of overnight trains, please do it as soon as you can and at least 24-hours before the train’s departure. New reservations will be required when you reschedule. Make sure to check the fare rules for the reservation you’ve purchased so you’re aware of the exchange policies. If you’re already traveling in Europe and need to make a change, you may be subject to local service fees and/or upgrade charges.
Q. How can I check to see if food is served on a particular train?
A. When you search for a train schedule, the results page will give you the opportunity to click and view the onboard services for each class of service offered.
Q. I accidentally deleted the email with the link to print my print at home e-ticket, what should I do?
A. No worries. If you registered on our site and have a Rail Europe user account, you can simply log in and review your most recent booking in your dashboard. The link to reprint your e-ticket is available on this page. If you have not created a Rail Europe user account, you can send us a email at firstname.lastname@example.org, include your booking number and we will resend the link to print your e-ticket.
Q. Are all products eligible for Rail Protection Plan™ coverage?
A. Rail passes, train tickets, reservations, and select city passes and tours are eligible for Rail Protection Plan™ coverage.
All other categories of products including hotels and select activities are not eligible for coverage at this time. Please read the detailed Rail Protection Plan™ policy for more information.
Q. How can I find the cheapest train tickets?
A. There are two ways you can ensure you get the best price. The most effective way is to book your train ticket(s) in advance. Many rail carriers operating high speed trains or night trains make a limited number of cheaper seats available for advance purchase. Once those seats have been sold or the purchase window has passed, prices go up. That’s why we recommend booking 60 to 90 days prior to the train departure, especially if you plan on traveling during peak season (summer and holidays).
The other way to ensure you get the best rate is to correctly indicate the composition and number of your traveling party when requesting your fares and schedules. This will allow us to determine eligibility for some reduced fares such as child, youth or senior fares when offered by the rail carrier.
Q. Does each journey I take require using a separate day of travel on my rail pass?
A. No. You can take as many train journeys as you want within one day and only use one day, as long as your last train ride arrives before 11:59pm.
Q. My promo code is not working. What should I do?
A. If for any reason you experience an issue with your promo code, please verify that all criteria are met for the code to be valid (dates, booking minimum, products, etc.). If all of this seems correct, make sure you’re using the correct code. If you received your code in an email, sometimes it’s best to copy and paste the code to avoid typographical errors.
If you continue to have trouble, get in touch with us using our Contact Us page.
Q. Can I choose a specific seat when booking a train ticket?
A. At this time, we are unable to offer this service. Unlike airlines, most rail carriers do not offer the possibility to select your specific seat.
Q. Can my family sit together if I have a First class rail pass and my child has a Second class youth pass?
A. Yes, of course! However, everyone will need to sit in Second class. The rule is with a First class pass you can sit in either First or Second class, with a Second class pass you can only sit in Second class. If you wish to travel in First class and the rail pass you are interested in does not offer a First class youth option, you will need to purchase an adult pass for your youth traveller.
Be mindful if you intend to book seat reservations that you book in the class of service you intend to sit in. Once a reservation has been issued, you must sit in the seat that has been assigned to you.
Q. Do I need to do anything to my train ticket before boarding the train?
A. If you purchased and received a paper train ticket in the mail, there is nothing further you need to do.
If you purchased a print at home e-ticket, be sure to print your ticket before you leave home and keep your train ticket safe and secure. For Italo tickets, just print your Rail Europe email confirmation which includes your unique e-ticket confirmation code(s). This e-ticket confirmation code along with your photo i.d. will be checked when on the Italo train.
If you purchased a print at the station e-ticket, you’ll need to visit a self-service kiosk to print your train ticket (remember, you’ll need the e-ticket confirmation code included on your invoice). When retrieving your e-ticket in France at an SNCF kiosk or in Italy at a Trenitalia kiosk, you will need to “stamp your ticket” (composter votre ticket as French say) prior to boarding the train. Should you have any problems, just ask the conductor of the train to do it for you when you board the train.