Delivery: digital and paper rail products
Almost all rail passes and tickets can be stored on your phone or printed at home, so there's no shipping fee. The digital products will be sent by e-mail, often instantaneously.
In rare cases, passes are physical documents that need to be shipped to you. However, this does not necessarily mean that you pay for shipping. Shipping is often free, or free from a minimum order amount. Even if shipping is not free, ordering online can still be cheaper than buying in Switzerland.
E-tickets and print at home options
Most Swiss rail passes and tickets are digital products, delivered by e-mail. This means that you don't have to wait for a shipment, nor do you have to visit a staffed ticket office once in Switzerland. You can immediately board your first train.
Train conductors can scan your digital pass directly from your cell phone. You may want to take along a printed version, in case your battery runs out.
Recommended purchase options and promotions
To make it easier to pick the best point of sale, we have listed the recommended purchase options in the 'Price' section of each pass/ticket page, e.g. at www.myswissalps.com/ swisstravelpass/price (all passes can be found here).
The retailers displayed there sell to your country of residence. Your country should be selected automatically, but you can change it if necessary.
If promotions are available, you'll find them in the 'Promotions' section of each pass/ticket page, e.g. at www.myswissalps.com/swisstravelpass/promotions.
What else to consider
There's more to consider when choosing a reseller:
- shipping fees. Most products are sent digitally, so shipping fees are mostly a thing of the past. If there is shipping fee for paper products, it may be waived from a certain order amount.
- booking fees. Some retailers charge a fee per booking, per pass or per traveler. This isn't very common though.
- banking fees. If you choose a retailer using a currency different from the one in your country, your bank may charge a fee. The final amount spent depends on the exchange rate of the day. This also applies if you buy your pass in Switzerland: even if you pick your own currency at the payment terminal, the exchange rate will not be in your favor. Tips about the cheapest way to pay can be found here.
- promotions. Sometimes a specific reseller offers a promotion, whereas others don't. There can also be promotions for specific pass versions only. For example: there can be a discount only for a 4-day Swiss Travel Pass and not for the 3-, 6-, 8- and 15-day versions. If there are discounts, you'll find them in the "Promotions" sections of our pass pages. See an example here.
Point to point tickets: where and when to buy
Point to point tickets for traveling in Switzerland can be purchased online (this applies to standard tickets and cheaper ones if purchased well in advance), or at rail stations. There are staffed service desks at the larger stations. Check the opening hours in advance. All stations have ticketing machines too.
Tickets can be bought via the domestic SBB website and app, but there are more options that are well geared to travelers from abroad. You'll find them here for normal tickets, and here for discounted tickets.
Regular tickets do not sell out, except, in rare cases, for mountain trains on very popular days. The following products can sell out:
You're advised to order products that can sell out well in advance.
Save money by planning carefully
You may need multiple tickets and/or passes. We recommend to first complete your itinerary. Then pick a pass and buy all tickets, passes and seat reservations (if any) at once.
- You may have planned to travel from Paris to Zurich by train, so you buy the ticket online.
- However, if you later decide that you need a rail pass for your further travels in Switzerland, you could have saved money as the Swiss part of the journey Paris-Zurich is covered by that pass.
Buying the tickets and passes at once, from a single website, might be cheaper than two separate orders. But this doesn't have to be the case.