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Old 13.04.2011, 13:12
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SBB Demi-tarif (half-fare) with Credit / Debit card

Anyone got this? it costs CHF135 vs CHF 150 (165) of regular demi-tarif
BUT I was told that in the end of the year they invoice certain fees for using / not using the card so it maybe no point to get this one
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Old 13.04.2011, 14:23
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Re: SBB Demi-tarif (half-fare) with Credit / Debit card

Some links:

http://mct.sbb.ch/mct/en/reisemarkt/...t-visa-faq.htm

http://mct.sbb.ch/mct/en/halbtax-mit-visa-karte

Ordering at the station. You can also order your Half-Fare Card at your local station local station.

What you should know before ordering.
  • You should order your Half-Fare Card about 10 days before you want to use it. We will require a good-quality passport photograph (photobase paper), which we will digitise and store on our system for 10 years (5 years for under 25 year-olds) for ticketing purposes only. If you decide to extend your Half-Fare Card after it has expired, we will automatically use the photograph stored on our system for the new Card.
  • You receive the Half-Fare Card and in the practical credit card format by mail within 10 days. If you need it sooner than that, we issue a card for the transition period, so that you can profit from half fares without delay.
  • Please pay your Half-Fare Card when you order it. Apart from cash, we accept all current credit cards and "Postcard"
  • Half-Fare Cards that are no longer valid, can be left at the station to be recycled.
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Old 13.04.2011, 15:59
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Re: SBB Demi-tarif (half-fare) with Credit / Debit card

We are using this as both my husband and I could get the lower rate. We do use the card, but pay it off. I don't believe it's been a year, but we haven't encountered any surprise fees. SBB offers it through Jelmoli.
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Old 13.04.2011, 16:12
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Re: SBB Demi-tarif (half-fare) with Credit / Debit card

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We are using this as both my husband and I could get the lower rate. We do use the card, but pay it off. I don't believe it's been a year, but we haven't encountered any surprise fees. SBB offers it through Jelmoli.
Same here. Its very convenient to buy stuff online. Thats what i use it for. Whatever you do dont use it to get cash from ATMs. I did it once and had to pay extra 5chfs. Im not complaining though as it was written on the info paper i got. I was just a bit careless. Im not making this mistake again. Except if i get really desperate :P
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Old 13.04.2011, 16:22
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Re: SBB Demi-tarif (half-fare) with Credit / Debit card

I've used it for a couple of years now and am generally quite happy with them. I normally don't have to wait long when I call them up and they're generally pretty flexible about temperarily raising the limit if needed.

What I feel is lacking is a online account to check your transactions online. I don't think they have an official english call centre either although I'm not quite sure.

I've never noticed any additional fees for using it but it makes sense that there are some penalty fees if you don't use it otherwise there would be tons of people getting it to save the 30 Fr.
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Old 14.04.2011, 09:20
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Re: SBB Demi-tarif (half-fare) with Credit / Debit card

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I've never noticed any additional fees for using it but it makes sense that there are some penalty fees if you don't use it otherwise there would be tons of people getting it to save the 30 Fr.
Well, personally I don't find it logical...
Besides, if it's true that they charge for no-use it would be nice to mention it somewhere in all of their info papers which I studied carefully. Agree?
I just don't use credit cards at all and I use a pre-paid debit card for online transactions.
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Old 14.04.2011, 09:47
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Re: SBB Demi-tarif (half-fare) with Credit / Debit card

I looked into this - specifically at the prepaid Visa card option as I did not want to apply for another fully-fledge Visa credit card. What put me off was:

1) The fact that the thing auto-renews unless you give 2 months written notice. I prefer to choose when my half tax card starts and finishes and I hate auto-renewing contracts.

2) The foreign currency charge of 2% when my Post Finance prepaid card only charges 0.9%

3) Worst of all the 1% reload fee! I find this very cheeky. In comparison my Post Finance prepaid card pays me 1% cash back (for the first year and then 0.5%) which amounts to a whole lot more than the small saving on the half tax card fee.
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Old 14.04.2011, 09:57
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Re: SBB Demi-tarif (half-fare) with Credit / Debit card

I have it (was 125CHF vs 150CHF for the halbtax without the credit card).

Advantages: It's a credit card. It saves you 25 CHF (30 CHF now?). It renews automatically so you don't forget.

Disadvantages: The credit card has no online functionality for checking balances or payment. The orang slip for payment arrives 10 days before the payment day, although I've paid quite late and there's been no issue. It renews automatically so you need to cancel in advance if you don't want the halbtax to be renewed.
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Old 14.04.2011, 09:59
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Re: SBB Demi-tarif (half-fare) with Credit / Debit card

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I've used it for a couple of years now and am generally quite happy with them. I normally don't have to wait long when I call them up and they're generally pretty flexible about temperarily raising the limit if needed.

What I feel is lacking is a online account to check your transactions online. I don't think they have an official english call centre either although I'm not quite sure.

I've never noticed any additional fees for using it but it makes sense that there are some penalty fees if you don't use it otherwise there would be tons of people getting it to save the 30 Fr.
I would agree with the lack of online being a sticking point. There is no official English call centre but I've never had any problem getting an English speaker.
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Old 14.04.2011, 10:09
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Re: SBB Demi-tarif (half-fare) with Credit / Debit card

To me, it's simple. As with most decisions in life, there are pros and cons. You weigh them up and make a choice. Why complain? It seems that some people want the discount on the halb-tax card without the perceived annoyances of having the credit card.

If you can't manage those perceived disadvantages, or if you think they outweigh the benefits, just pay cash for the card, and you are doing yourself a favour by avoiding the things you don't like.

What's the problem?
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Old 07.03.2013, 09:02
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Re: SBB Demi-tarif (half-fare) with Credit / Debit card

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I would agree with the lack of online being a sticking point. There is no official English call centre but I've never had any problem getting an English speaker.
I see the last posts to this thread are almost 2 years old.

Online account information is now available. You just need to sign up via BonusCard.ch and your account information will be available as soon as you enter the code they send via SMS.

Also, I've just discovered a surprise fee. When you receive your card, you'll also receive a PIN in a separate mailing. This is standard practice in Canada as well.

However, changing that PIN to something you can easily remember will cost CHF 10.00!! For a transaction that requires no human contact, this is exorbitant.

This may be covered in the use agreement, but it came as a surprise to me because I've never heard of a company charging anything for such a basic service, let alone CHF 10.
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Old 30.10.2013, 01:59
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Re: SBB Demi-tarif (half-fare) with Credit / Debit card

Hello, I'm also interested in buying a Halbtax card with Visa, however from this thread it's not clear to me whether there are any fees for not using it as a credit card.
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Old 30.10.2013, 02:52
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Re: SBB Demi-tarif (half-fare) with Credit / Debit card

None. But note that the halftax card will be renewed each year and the amount billed to the associated visa part.
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Old 30.10.2013, 06:20
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Re: SBB Demi-tarif (half-fare) with Credit / Debit card

I have the prepay. There are fees for paying over the PO counter, and they take a little of money paid in as admin fees. But that is still less than credit card fees (unless you pay the entire, ontime, everymonth).
It's useful to have charged for me as I have postfinance which isn't accepted everwhere, and for internet purchases.
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