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Old 06.09.2011, 18:39
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Will a halbtax abo be worth it

We are a family of 6, 3 kids above 6 and 1 under.

I was at the SBB SH office today and couldn't decide if the Halbtax abo is worth it for us.

I am going to Zurich by train thursday but only with the youngest.

I am not sure how much we will use the train in the future. But it also says that you get discount by some of the ski-lifts and cable cars etc.

Anyone in the same position who did or did not buy the Halbtax abo who can advice me?

Thanks
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Old 06.09.2011, 18:48
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Re: Will a halbtax abo be worth it

Where are your usual holiday haunts (thinking skiing/cable cars here). Have a look at their websites and see what sort of reductions you can get. They are generally not half price reductions (sometimes are) but are nevertheless, very good. This will give you an idea of how much you could potentially save on non rail trips.

They are also valid on buses and boats (for example, Lakes Lucerne and Zurich). Do you ever use these?

Finally do not underestimate the extra use you will make of these transports once you know that you are benefiting from these reductions ... I found this with the Halbtax and even more so now I have got a GA.

But if with all your children, logistics of a public transport trip are not thinkable, then this will obviously largely mitigate against it ....

On the whole, I would say if you make just 6 big rail trips in the year (along the lines of your Zurich trip), you will recoup the cost.
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Old 06.09.2011, 18:49
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Re: Will a halbtax abo be worth it

You know there is also a junior card, which costs 30 CHF and will give your over-6 children free travel for a year if they are with you ?

http://www.sbb.ch/en/travelcards-and...dchildren.html

If you buy cards for all three children at the same time, you will get one for free.
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Old 06.09.2011, 18:49
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Re: Will a halbtax abo be worth it

For your children aged 6 & over you can buy a Junior Travelcard, then they travel free when with their mother or their father.

Junior travelcard.
With the Junior travelcard for CHF 30, children aged 6 to 16 years may travel on public transport all year free of charge when accompanied by a parent with a valid ticket or abonnement.

http://www.sbb.ch/en/travelcards-and.../children.html
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Old 06.09.2011, 18:52
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Re: Will a halbtax abo be worth it

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For your children aged 6 & over you can buy a Junior Travelcard, then they travel free when with their mother or their father.

Junior travelcard.
With the Junior travelcard for CHF 30, children aged 6 to 16 years may travel on public transport all year free of charge when accompanied by a parent with a valid ticket or abonnement.

http://www.sbb.ch/en/travelcards-and.../children.html
Beat you by 10 seconds
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Old 06.09.2011, 18:56
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Re: Will a halbtax abo be worth it

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On the whole, I would say if you make just 6 big rail trips in the year (along the lines of your Zurich trip), you will recoup the cost.
Actually, two big trips will do it: e.g. a trip to geneva and a trip to graubunden will pretttttttty much cover the cost of a year's halbtax.
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Old 06.09.2011, 18:56
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Re: Will a halbtax abo be worth it

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But if with all your children, logistics of a public transport trip are not thinkable, then this will obviously largely mitigate against it ....

On the whole, I would say if you make just 6 big rail trips in the year (along the lines of your Zurich trip), you will recoup the cost.
Second that. If you just make a few bigger trips on the weekends and use buses or trams sometimes, it is usually worth it.

Just do the comparison for a few bigger trips (mountains, Geneva, etc.) on sbb.ch

You can also get a junior travelcard for your older kids (30 chuffs, basically free train/bus/boat rides for the whole year).


Dammit, I am really really slow...
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Old 06.09.2011, 18:58
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Re: Will a halbtax abo be worth it

Some of the "RailAway" tourist deals and the "Snow & Rail" train plus skilift packages also become very interesting indeed with a Halbtax.
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Old 06.09.2011, 18:59
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Re: Will a halbtax abo be worth it

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Actually, two big trips will do it: e.g. a trip to geneva and a trip to graubunden will pretttttttty much cover the cost of a year's halbtax.
actually yes .. in light of the probable price of a Schaffhausen-Zurich trip, you will need quite a few of these to make up the price of a halbtax ...
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Old 06.09.2011, 19:04
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Re: Will a halbtax abo be worth it

Thanks everyone...The junior cards sound very good, we haven't gone on boat trips yet but I am sure we will do some of those.
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Old 06.09.2011, 19:09
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Re: Will a halbtax abo be worth it

If you can estimate at least the minimum travel you are likely to do in the next 1,2, or 3 years you can do the math to see if the Abo is worthwhile, or not.

For instance, I'm an infrequent traveler, only using public transportation to get to ZH city and back once a month - yet the Halbtax still makes sense for me:


A three year Halbtax Abo costs CHF 400. Paying for it with REKA checks brings the price down to 320 - that means the abo costs 107 per year.

As said, I travel to ZH city once a month; the most efficient ticket for me is the 9 Uhr all-zone pass. I get the 6 ride Mehrfahrkart, 65.00 with Halbtax. 129 without.

So the cost of my yearly travel, 12 trips into the city, would be:
2 regular priced 6 ride cards - (129 + 129 ) = 258.
2 Halbtax 6 ride cards plus 1 year's worth of the Abo (65+65 +107) = 237

Any additional travel or use on the mountain cable cars or boats makes the savings greater.

Last edited by meloncollie; 06.09.2011 at 20:17. Reason: Can't add, type and cook dinner at the same time
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Old 06.09.2011, 19:13
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Re: Will a halbtax abo be worth it

I have a car, but bought a halbtax anyway. I figured, I probably use the Public transport in Zürich more often than every 2 weeks, and that would almost break even. Then I am just need to join 1 or 2 social train trips somewhere, and then I start saving. Without the Halbtax, I declined most train trips, as they were just too expensive, and took the car instead.

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Old 06.09.2011, 19:17
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Re: Will a halbtax abo be worth it

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Thanks everyone...The junior cards sound very good, we haven't gone on boat trips yet but I am sure we will do some of those.
I vaguely remember a conversation (or rather an explanation) I had when I arrived in sunny CH. It basically ran along the lines of "Almost everyone has a 1/2tax, so yes it would make sense to just chop all the fares by 50%, especially taking into account the cost of administering the whole thing, but then some people would lose their halb-tax-administering jobs, and we wouldn't be able to fleece the tourists ".

Perhaps taking the "one year" option initially might be worth considering?
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Old 06.09.2011, 19:37
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Re: Will a halbtax abo be worth it

"The Junior card.
With the Junior travelcard for CHF 30, children aged 6 to 16 years can travel on public transport for a whole year, accompanied by a parent with a valid ticket."

So If I read this correctly I can take all 3 kids above 6 for free with these passes on the train, it is not 1 parent - 1 kid free kind of rule....
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Old 06.09.2011, 19:41
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Re: Will a halbtax abo be worth it

[QUOTE=SwissAstrid;1329502

So If I read this correctly I can take all 3 kids above 6 for free with these passes on the train, it is not 1 parent - 1 kid free kind of rule....[/QUOTE]

Correct - it is not 1 parent 1 child, you can take them all with you.

Also the junior cards are valid for a lot of mountain transport and all boats on Lakes Lucerne and Zurich .. so you can get quite far for not very much. It's brilliant!

Plus if you have grandparents to stay quite often, you can get a grandparent card that works the same way so they can take the children out too.
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Old 06.09.2011, 19:52
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Re: Will a halbtax abo be worth it

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Correct - it is not 1 parent 1 child, you can take them all with you.

Also the junior cards are valid for a lot of mountain transport and all boats on Lakes Lucerne and Zurich .. so you can get quite far for not very much. It's brilliant!

Plus if you have grandparents to stay quite often, you can get a grandparent card that works the same way so they can take the children out too.
Thanks, I will go and get it tomorrow, I need 8 Zurich trips in 1 year and I happen to like the buzz of big cities!
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Old 06.09.2011, 19:54
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Re: Will a halbtax abo be worth it

Enjoy! (and squeeze in some of the those boat trips I've been raving about !!!)
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Old 06.09.2011, 21:22
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Re: Will a halbtax abo be worth it

Yes, the Junior card is a total no-brainer. It's marvellous to take them on everything from the local bus to Morges, to the cable car to the top of the Champery mountains, for completely free! Plus kids usually love public transport.

You'll need to take their permits to buy the cards; passports work too.
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