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  #61  
Old 27.11.2015, 11:17
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Re: SBB is just ridiculous...

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Another oddity to add to the thread. My wife wanted to buy a one-way half-fare ticket from our local station into Fribourg, which she normally does using the iPhone app; cost 3.-. When she tried to use the machine at the station the cost was 5.- for the identical trip, so she just used the app. The only difference we could see was that the app ticket had a validity for 2h, whereas the machine ticket was all day, but there wasn't an option to buy a 2h ticket.
I find this on the SBB ticket machines all the time - you have to select the type of ticket you want before putting in the route if it's anything non-standard.

Why can't they just give you all viable options for the selected route, the same as the app does?

Maybe because it would cause too much waiting as people faff about on the machine.
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  #62  
Old 27.11.2015, 11:25
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Re: SBB is just ridiculous...

I wish I knew this earlier! Have booked with SBB multiple times for triain tickets to Köln or Frankfurt at CHF 250+!
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  #63  
Old 27.11.2015, 12:18
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Re: SBB is just ridiculous...

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I wish I knew this earlier! Have booked with SBB multiple times for triain tickets to Köln or Frankfurt at CHF 250+!
You have to make a correct comparison however. A normal price ticket is fully flexible and refundable. It allows you to interrupt your journey and continue on a later train. It allows you to change your plans, travel on a later day etc.
A "Sparpreis" ticket does not allow you this flexibility. But it is indeed cheaper.
Until recently DB would not allow SBB to sell such reduced tickets. However now SBB can.

For example looking at prices for Bern - Frankfurt for Dec. 23d I see the following sparpreise:
- DB 89 euro
- SBB 98 CHF

At current exchange rates that is basically the same.

Of course, with a Halbtax the normal price for this trip becomes 87,- which is even better, as this is a fully flexible ticket.
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  #64  
Old 27.11.2015, 12:20
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Re: SBB is just ridiculous...

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I find this on the SBB ticket machines all the time - you have to select the type of ticket you want before putting in the route if it's anything non-standard.

Why can't they just give you all viable options for the selected route, the same as the app does?

Maybe because it would cause too much waiting as people faff about on the machine.
One way not to change this now, as that SBb (and the other PT companies) are working on a new tarrif system for the whole of Switzerland that will be zone based. So the different local zone based systems will all be merged in to one.
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  #65  
Old 27.11.2015, 12:28
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Re: SBB is just ridiculous...

Another change, which came into affect around 2 years ago (ie after this thread was started), is that it's no longer possible (officially) to use a Halftax to get the BahnCard discounts.

Previously it was allowed, as there was no Halftax option on the DB machines or online, but they've fixed this and I've been told they will no longer accept people pressing BahnCard, getting the really good "sparpreise" prices and waving a Halftax at the inspector.

I'm new to having the SBB mobile app, but is it right that tickets one buys online don't show in the app (same account) and that you have to buy the ticket directly within the app to see them there?
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  #66  
Old 27.11.2015, 12:28
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Re: SBB is just ridiculous...

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One way not to change this now, as that SBb (and the other PT companies) are working on a new tarrif system for the whole of Switzerland that will be zone based. So the different local zone based systems will all be merged in to one.
I'm surprised by this actually.

The big plus of a zone based system is that it's easier to understand and easier to calculate fares. Before the introduction of computers, ticket office staff had huge tables with all the fares from any place to any other place and the ticket clerk had to look fares up up manually. If he couldn't find a direct fare he could calculate the distance in kilometers using more maps and tables and then calculate the fare based on that. Grouping stations into zones was essentially a labour saving exercise that reduced the time spent serving a customer and reduced the rate of calculation error.

Today, with software becoming smarter and smarter, the need for zones is becoming weaker, not stronger.
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  #67  
Old 27.11.2015, 12:52
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Re: SBB is just ridiculous...

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I'm surprised by this actually.

The big plus of a zone based system is that it's easier to understand and easier to calculate fares. Before the introduction of computers, ticket office staff had huge tables with all the fares from any place to any other place and the ticket clerk had to look fares up up manually. If he couldn't find a direct fare he could calculate the distance in kilometers using more maps and tables and then calculate the fare based on that. Grouping stations into zones was essentially a labour saving exercise that reduced the time spent serving a customer and reduced the rate of calculation error.

Today, with software becoming smarter and smarter, the need for zones is becoming weaker, not stronger.
But an advantage of zones is that you just buy a ticket to the main station in your village, and it includes the bus without having to mess about finding "Streetname, Village" which will probably cost the same anyway.

Same if there are a couple of close stations suitable for one end of your journey, you don't have to decide when buying the ticket.

Plus obviously for season tickets - difficult to handle without zones.
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  #68  
Old 27.11.2015, 13:13
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Re: SBB is just ridiculous...

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But an advantage of zones is that you just buy a ticket to the main station in your village, and it includes the bus without having to mess about finding "Streetname, Village" which will probably cost the same anyway.

Same if there are a couple of close stations suitable for one end of your journey, you don't have to decide when buying the ticket.

Plus obviously for season tickets - difficult to handle without zones.
Isn't this what Oyster does pretty well in London? You can board at any station you want and get off at any station you want, even changing your mind half way, and the system always charges you the optimal fare rather than forcing you to decide beforehand whether you want an annual pass or want to pay as you go and how many zones that is and whether you will walk to the tube station or spontaneously catch the bus.

Admittedly London still has a zone based system, but thanks to Oyster people no longer think in terms of zones but just ride as required.

It's about technology taking the onerous side out of everyday things so we can free up those brain cycles for more enjoyable stuff.
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  #69  
Old 27.11.2015, 13:27
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Re: SBB is just ridiculous...

That would be a great use for the new SwissPass.

Although the chance of "price shock" is a bit higher than on the underground - I wonder what the default fare would be for failing to check out, Zurich to Geneva?
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  #70  
Old 27.11.2015, 14:45
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Re: SBB is just ridiculous...

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That would be a great use for the new SwissPass.

Although the chance of "price shock" is a bit higher than on the underground - I wonder what the default fare would be for failing to check out, Zurich to Geneva?
I can see a new EF complaint thread coming up
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  #71  
Old 27.11.2015, 16:12
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Re: SBB is just ridiculous...

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Isn't this what Oyster does pretty well in London? You can board at any station you want and get off at any station you want, even changing your mind half way, and the system always charges you the optimal fare rather than forcing you to decide beforehand whether you want an annual pass or want to pay as you go and how many zones that is and whether you will walk to the tube station or spontaneously catch the bus.

Admittedly London still has a zone based system, but thanks to Oyster people no longer think in terms of zones but just ride as required.

It's about technology taking the onerous side out of everyday things so we can free up those brain cycles for more enjoyable stuff.
There are smiliar systems in Hong Kong ,Melbourne ,Sydney for example.
The latest version of the sbb app shows your tickets in the apple wallet, if you want to.

Is somebody doing the commute from Basel to zurich by train ?
What is the price for the monthly ticket(if you need only to go Zurich HB)?
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  #72  
Old 27.11.2015, 17:35
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Re: SBB is just ridiculous...

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is somebody doing the commute from basel to zurich by train ?
What is the price for the monthly ticket(if you need only to go zurich hb)?
chf 365.00
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  #73  
Old 27.11.2015, 17:38
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Re: SBB is just ridiculous...

I got round most of these problems by installing the CAR app on my life.


My only problem now is Mrs DK wants to uninstall some of the multiple instances of it
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  #74  
Old 27.11.2015, 17:44
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Re: SBB is just ridiculous...

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Let me add to your venting. So not only does it not work properly for buying tickets in advance, but also:

1. One CAN'T buy for another person (a colleague) without having that person's credit card details as a form of ID.

DB? Yes, you need some form of "ID", and only a few national ID-crads are supported.
SBB? Never seen that you need more then Name and DOB.
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Old 27.11.2015, 18:37
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Re: SBB is just ridiculous...

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DB? Yes, you need some form of "ID", and only a few national ID-crads are supported.
SBB? Never seen that you need more then Name and DOB.
You can absolutely buy DB tickets using a bogus name. I've never been ID'd.

If you have a ticket with seat reservation and nobody is disputing your right to occupy that seat, I guess the inspector will understand you haven't printed out and sold multiple instances.
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  #76  
Old 27.11.2015, 19:02
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Re: SBB is just ridiculous...

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. . .
- You have to enter your name and date of birth before you can see prices. . .
No. You can see the prices as soon as you make a choice in the field "Reduction" (Ger: Ermässigung ). Until you select whether you have a half price season ticket etc., the system cannot give a price.
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  #77  
Old 08.12.2015, 14:45
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Re: SBB is just ridiculous...

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There are smiliar systems in Hong Kong ,Melbourne ,Sydney for example.
The latest version of the sbb app shows your tickets in the apple wallet, if you want to.
I wouldn't recommend using that feature, the ticket will continuously pop up on your phone throughout the day

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Is somebody doing the commute from Basel to zurich by train ?
What is the price for the monthly ticket(if you need only to go Zurich HB)?
you can find this on SBB.ch; generally speaking it is better to get a halbtax if you travel anywhere other than that stretch (e.g. local zurich transport)
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  #78  
Old 08.12.2015, 14:46
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Re: SBB is just ridiculous...

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DB? Yes, you need some form of "ID", and only a few national ID-crads are supported.
You can use any credit card. Doesn't even have to be the one that paid.
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  #79  
Old 08.12.2015, 18:43
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Re: SBB is just ridiculous...

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You can absolutely buy DB tickets using a bogus name. I've never been ID'd.

If you have a ticket with seat reservation and nobody is disputing your right to occupy that seat, I guess the inspector will understand you haven't printed out and sold multiple instances.
Not necessarily. Since you don't have to sit in the seat you reserved. The persons with the other copies could be anywhere. Even on another train...
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Old 08.12.2015, 18:47
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Re: SBB is just ridiculous...

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Another change, which came into affect around 2 years ago (ie after this thread was started), is that it's no longer possible (officially) to use a Halftax to get the BahnCard discounts.

Previously it was allowed, as there was no Halftax option on the DB machines or online, but they've fixed this and I've been told they will no longer accept people pressing BahnCard, getting the really good "sparpreise" prices and waving a Halftax at the inspector.
Officially the 25% off you get with the Halbtax is only for international tickets. So it's not exactly the same as a Bahncard 25. Anyway, you can now just select the swiss halbtax when buying tickets on bahn.de

But only for international tickets... I often buy tickets from Basel Bad bf. when going to Germany, and there you can't get a reduction with your Halbtax, but can get good Sparpreise anyway.
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