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  #21  
Old 08.12.2009, 21:58
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Re: Half Price Train Card

You can't buy online s they want a copy of your passport.

Not sure about Half fare cards for non resident, but you can get GA cards, so I guess maybe.

I just got my partner one, using just her passport at Zurich station. Try!!
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  #22  
Old 08.12.2009, 22:06
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Re: Half Price Train Card

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You can't buy online s they want a copy of your passport.

Not sure about Half fare cards for non resident, but you can get GA cards, so I guess maybe.

I just got my partner one, using just her passport at Zurich station. Try!!
Hi, thanks!
Well why they have a website where you can order one then...
They ask for the numbers of the passport, or the french ID card. It's even a "scrollbar menu" to select the type.

it's here:ticket shop/season ticket/half fare card...

I know, now I'll have to go to the train station: it's far and it will make me pay 2 way for the local transports, 20chf more lost!!!

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  #23  
Old 08.12.2009, 22:17
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Re: Half Price Train Card

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Anyone know if I can buy half-price cards for my parents? They live in the UK, but come and visit us and gad about Switzerland several times a year, and it would really keep their holiday travel costs down.

kodokan
We did exactly this for my husband's parents (South African) earlier this year, who were coming for two long stays this year. In fact, the lady at the SBB counter actually suggested that we get them Halbtax cards as it was the best deal for them.

All we needed was photos of them (can't remember if it was one or two each) and then just my husband's proof of address (Ausweis). As they have the same surname as my husband, the cards were in our mailbox a few days later... Easy!
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  #24  
Old 08.12.2009, 22:25
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Re: Half Price Train Card

From what I remember, all you need to buy a halbtax is some form of ID and a passport photo, nothing more. Having just checked the actual terms and conditions, I don't see anything limiting holding a halbtax to Swiss residents - indeed, the online purchasing form allows a lot more countries in the dropdown than just "Schweiz".

What stage are you getting to in the online purchase process? I just ran through it as far as hitting the button on the payment screen (I have a GA already, no real need to buy a halbtax as well..) and if I selected the "I don't have an abo" option ('Kein Abo vorhanden' in German) it didn't ask for any ID details. For what it's worth, after seeing a lot of other countries' railways' websites (SNCF's and the UK's are particularly rubbish) the SBB's is excellent, particularly the online ticketing stuff.

That said, a 1/2 abo can be brought just about everywhere. It's not just an SBB thing, it should be obtainable if you happen to have a ticket office for one of the 'small railways' nearly as well (BOB, AB, MGB, etc).
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  #25  
Old 08.12.2009, 22:30
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Re: Half Price Train Card

Thanks,
I am stuck to the address, passport or ID details.
Basically it says something like the "numbers are not recognised" whatever... It does not even say where are the wrong numbers as I can "switch" to the next page (passport/Id).

I really double checked everything, tried different address type, etc...

Not letting me go further.

I thought it was the address, as if it can not recognised my address but no...
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  #26  
Old 08.12.2009, 22:32
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Re: Half Price Train Card

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I know, now I'll have to go to the train station: it's far and it will make me pay 2 way for the local transports, 20chf more lost!!!

Don't forget that if you do have to do that, I believe you can claim back half the fare at the counter upon purchase of a halbtax the same day.
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Old 08.12.2009, 22:36
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Re: Half Price Train Card

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Don't forget that if you do have to do that, I believe you can claim back half the fare at the counter upon purchase of a halbtax the same day.
True! But it's only for 3 tickets apparently, so getting half price on my local "leb" train will be like 2chf...

While I can carefully put the valid date from 22december (time of my train trip), then I'll get much more days of availability until next year!!


Skint attitude!

Thanks anyway
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  #28  
Old 08.12.2009, 22:39
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Re: Half Price Train Card

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Thanks,
I am stuck to the address, passport or ID details.
Basically it says something like the "numbers are not recognised" whatever... It does not even say where are the wrong numbers as I can "switch" to the next page (passport/Id).
That's very strange - I don't even get asked for address or ID or anything when trying to buy a halbtax (which seems odd to me in turn because you'd expect they'd at least need you to upload a JPEG of the photo to go on the card). Just entered basic details and then straight to the checkout to enter my card details. I'm starting from this link right here:

https://www.sbb.ch:443/mct/wi/shop/b2c/adw.do?5936

I've found that the SBB contact centre people are really helpful - if you're in no hurry to get it today, you could do worse than contact them through the "Contact" link and wait for an email response. Good luck!
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  #29  
Old 08.12.2009, 22:48
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Re: Half Price Train Card

Step number 3 it is asking me:
I buy for myself
then I dont have "membership" or whatever similar,
then it asks for my coordinates , then I press next,
Then it says ID control and offer me a dropdown menu to select "france ID or France Passport" (I tried both), then i press next.

Then the website kicking me back to 1 step before (ask for my coordinates) and says this number not correct blabla...

Anyway I can't be bothered anymore tonight, i'm tired and angry (been trying this and to buy on microspot.ch since 16h30 now)
I'll go to the train station whenever and I wont buy the local ticket, if I get caught I'll tell them to get my ticket from their website and come back to me.

Thanks anyway!
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  #30  
Old 08.12.2009, 22:56
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Re: Half Price Train Card

For visitors, we just take them to the SBB office at the airport and they are issued a 1 month, 99chf 'halbtax'...if you find out they are coming more than once in a year, trade in the 99chf for an 'annual' one and they will refund the difference (maybe minus a 'handling fee').

I did this for my dad, using our address and his details, so all the post came to me - it arrived with a 'refer a friend' card, so I filled that out and got a 20chf for him and a 10chf voucher for me - except of course he's now back home, so I used both vouchers ...
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  #31  
Old 08.12.2009, 23:10
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Re: Half Price Train Card

Great, thanks all, looks like it's fine to buy them for the rellies. I got them a one month card last year that saved them a small fortune, so this is planned as their Christmas gift, you see.

I've just emailed SBB via their website with this question, mostly so I can print out the 'yes, that's fine' response in case I need to train up our local ticket office bods. And while it's all fresh in my mind, I'll just send the parents an email to bring little photos over with them - then I'm hopefully all set.

Thank you, everyone.

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  #32  
Old 08.12.2009, 23:30
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Re: Half Price Train Card

We tried to do this with my mothers half fare card and they wouldn't reimburse the difference. This only works if you get the conductor on the journey to write on the ticket the name of the person getting the half fare card (need to have other ID for this too). Otherwise, you could just go and pick up a couple of tickets from anywhere and ask them to reimburse them.


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Even if you dont have half-fare card, just buy the full-priced ticket at any station counter(not ticket machines) and later when you apply for half-fare card you will get half the fare on the tickets (upto 3) reimbursed to you. Ofcourse the half-fare card will be back dated to the earliest date of the three tickets
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  #33  
Old 09.12.2009, 19:39
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Re: Half Price Train Card

To follow up: I sent the following email to SBB asking about buying halftax cards for my frequently visiting parents:

"Est-ce que je peux acheter des abonnements demi-tariff pour mes parents? Ils habitent en Angleterre mais viennent ici pour me voir quelques fois chaque année.

Ils viendront en janvier; est-ce que je pourrais les accompagner avec leurs passeports et photos chez la gare, et acheter des abonnements en utilisant mon addresse ici en Suisse?

Merci pour votre aide."

I've just received a reply from SBB confirming that yes, I can just buy halftax cards for my parents at the ticket office with a passport and a photo:

"Nous vous remercions de votre e-mail.

Vous pouvez acheter les demi-tarifs aux guichets avec photos passports à la gare la plus proche."

There we are - the definitive answer, from the horse's mouth.

kodokan
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  #34  
Old 22.01.2010, 16:45
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Re: Half Price Train Card

Thought I'd stick with an existing thread ...

The half price (Halbtax) card costs 150CHF a year, or 125CHF if combined with a Visa card. Would there be any reason NOT to get it combined with a Visa card?

For example, why pay 150 when I could pay 125 and simply not use the pre-paid Visa card at all? There are no charges, and if I don't cancel it and there's no money on the pre-paid card, the website says I'l get a payment ticket for the next year's 125CHF.

I can't find any reason not to do this, even though I don't want a pre-paid card (as it costs a small percentage to charge it up). Am I missing something?
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Old 23.08.2010, 20:53
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Re: Half Price Train Card

Got my card today, took 7 days to arrive, but had a paper ticket before. Didnt see the credit card option, let me know how that works out! Even at 150chf it seems to be worth while
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  #36  
Old 23.08.2010, 21:09
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Re: Half Price Train Card

...one other thing:

You can pay for a card that's valid for 1 year (150CHF), 2yrs (250CHF) or 3yrs (350CHF). Even if you're only expecting to be in Switzerland for 1 year I would consider the 3 year option if you are likely to come back to Switzerland for a holiday/visit.

...also:

For all trips to Germany or Austria you will receive a 25% discount on the ticket cost from the Swiss border to your destination. Unfortunately, the same agreement doesn't seem to be in place with the French or Italian railways.

"Mit dem Halbtax sind alle Reisen nach Deutschland und Österreich ab der Schweizer Grenze 25 Prozent ermässigt."

http://mct.sbb.ch/mct/artinfo/5936.html
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Old 23.08.2010, 21:15
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Re: Half Price Train Card

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To follow up: I sent the following email to SBB asking about buying halftax cards for my frequently visiting parents:

"Est-ce que je peux acheter des abonnements demi-tariff pour mes parents? Ils habitent en Angleterre mais viennent ici pour me voir quelques fois chaque année.

Ils viendront en janvier; est-ce que je pourrais les accompagner avec leurs passeports et photos chez la gare, et acheter des abonnements en utilisant mon addresse ici en Suisse?

Merci pour votre aide."

I've just received a reply from SBB confirming that yes, I can just buy halftax cards for my parents at the ticket office with a passport and a photo:

"Nous vous remercions de votre e-mail.

Vous pouvez acheter les demi-tarifs aux guichets avec photos passports à la gare la plus proche."

There we are - the definitive answer, from the horse's mouth.

kodokan

My parents live in the UK, but have a Ferienwohnung in Wallis. Even though they aren't resident here they make a big saving by having this card. They "pay it off" if they take 2 Geneva Aeroport > Wallis > Geneva Aeroport train rides a year. They usually do 4.
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  #38  
Old 23.08.2010, 22:15
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Re: Half Price Train Card

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Thought I'd stick with an existing thread ...

The half price (Halbtax) card costs 150CHF a year, or 125CHF if combined with a Visa card. Would there be any reason NOT to get it combined with a Visa card?

For example, why pay 150 when I could pay 125 and simply not use the pre-paid Visa card at all? There are no charges, and if I don't cancel it and there's no money on the pre-paid card, the website says I'l get a payment ticket for the next year's 125CHF.

I can't find any reason not to do this, even though I don't want a pre-paid card (as it costs a small percentage to charge it up). Am I missing something?
I know you posted this a while ago, but I just bought my Halbtax card the other day. I definitely agree that it makes sense to get the pre-paid visa with it, and I'm convinced that it's designed that way to push people toward the visa card and the fees associated with using it as a visa card, but there is a small logistical difference between the two halbtax cards.
The day I went to buy my card, I forgot to bring my passport with me, and had only my US drivers license on hand as ID. In order to buy the 125chf halbtax card with the visa, you need to present your passport, but I was able to get the regular halbtax card with just the American drivers license. At the time, I didn't know that you could request your card to be valid retroactively and get fares reimbursed, so I bought the regular halbtax card for 150chf.
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  #39  
Old 23.08.2010, 22:38
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Re: Half Price Train Card

One further contribution on the topic, I was reading 20 Minuten over coffee a couple of weeks ago, and it suggested the cost of the Halbtax card will be going up in the autumn (along with a number of other Swiss rail fares), so if you are thinking of getting one, it's probably worth doing sooner rather than later (and get one for more years if you reckon you might want it), before the price goes up.
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Old 27.06.2015, 12:46
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Re: Half Price Train Card

Oh great and wise ones, this humble supplicant prostrates himself before you.

I have, for reasons that do not bear investigation, held a half price rail card for a year which has now expired. I have been purchasing monthly season tickets until now which, at my local station machine, requires that I enter details from this card before issuing my ticket. It is my belief that I am getting no discount from the half price card so wonder how I may continue to purchase my season ticket without it?

The usual tributes, etc., will be left at the temple doors. Blessings be upon you all.

sprant
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