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Old 30.07.2011, 09:09
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Train passes, half price, etc....

Hello,
I'll be in Switzerland (with wife and son) from August 5, 2011 to July 6, 2012. Everything has been taken care of: visas, apartment, insurance, etc.
I am now considering purchasing a half price card for public transportation. I am not sure what it is called. I am talking about this card that you pay up-front, it is good for a year and with this card you can purchase train tickets at half price.
1. Where do you buy such a pass?
2. How much does it cost?
3. How much travel do you have to do to make this card worth it?

I will arrive in Geneva on August 5 and I will take a train to Lausanne on August 6. Can I buy the half price card in Geneva (so my train to Lausanne will be half price)?

Thanks!
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Old 30.07.2011, 09:28
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Re: Train passes, half price, etc....

Welcome!
You can get your travel card at any train station or online.
Here is the information in english.
Here is the information in french.

There is a train station right at the Geneva airport, you can purchase your half price card and your ticket to Lausanne there.
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Old 30.07.2011, 09:39
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Re: Train passes, half price, etc....

You will need a passport sized photo for adults to purchase the 'halbtax' cards, and a swiss address (I've had no problem with visitors using our address c/o for the passes)..

And for the child, there is the 'family card' which is 20chf for the year, and entitles them to free travel whenever they are travelling with you, and discounts here and there on the public transport system...on the big mountains kids are often free with these cards too!

When you purchase the cards at the train station, they will fill all the paperwork and issue you with a temporary one, and then the Photo Id card will come in the post a few days later...
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Old 30.07.2011, 09:58
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Re: Train passes, half price, etc....

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Here is the information in english.
Here is the information in french.
...and here is the Sticky Public Transport in Switzerland with links to a load of other bits which you will doubtless want to know about when you get here.

PS. There are Stickies (Threads which stay at the top of each sub-forum) in practically every area on here with useful Info. Worth checking out.
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Old 30.07.2011, 13:09
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Re: Train passes, half price, etc....

This card is my favorite thing about Switzerland. I got mine last year, and did not need to bring a photo. They took one of me right there at the train station. Be prepared for that! Good luck.
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Old 30.07.2011, 18:01
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Re: Train passes, half price, etc....

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... and a swiss address (I've had no problem with visitors using our address c/o for the passes)...
I have picked mine up at the railway station ... another option is poste restante at your destination. They only need it to mail you your permanent card, issued a week or ten days later.
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