Which pass to get - country passes or Eurail pass?

  1. Hi,

    I'm been reading about the various passes available for traveling in Europe on rail but I'm sill not sure the differences and which passes I should be looking at. I'm still starting to plan my holiday in Europe, with a friend (2 of us) - Switzerland and France and a brief framework of my itinerary

    - 7 full days in Switzerland with the 1st day in Zurich

    - 1 day transit Switzerland to France (Provence n Paris)

    - 3 full days In Provence

    - 1 day transit Provence to Paris

    - 3 full days In Paris

    With the above itinerary, would you recommend me to take the Swiss-France Eurail select or swiss n France pass separately? Which pass will give me more saving? Any additional cost I should take note of?

    For Switzerland, I plan to travel to a few areas - Lucerne, Interlaken, Bern (maybe) then further west to make my way to the French border. I've also found the golden pass, how does it differ from Swiss pass? Can I use either Swiss pass or Eurail select pass for the golden pass line?

    For France - Provence, we are likely to travel without a car. Is it easy to get around to the litte towns via rail? Should I consider France pass or point to point ticket?


Official Answer
photo Travel Expert
Rail Europe Posted 4 years ago

Hello Sush Lin,

Thanks for your question.

To start off, I would suggest that you purchase only the Swiss Travel Pass as most of your travel is within Switzerland. For your travel in France you could purchase point to point tickets as you are only traveling to two sectors in France.

The Swiss Travel Pass would give you the following benefits:

Children below 16 years are free if accompanied by the at least one parent having a Swiss Pass. We issue a Swiss family card for children.

With a Swiss Travel Pass you can travel free within Switzerland on the STS (Swiss Travel System) network on trains, buses and boats. Also with a Swiss Pass you would get discounts on mountain excursions within Switzerland. These discounts can only be availed locally by showing your Swiss Pass to the ticketing office in Switzerland.

With a Swiss Travel Pass you can travel free on intercity trains within Switzerland.

Yes, you can use the Swiss Travel Pass on the Golden Pass Line. You would have to make mandatory seat reservations as this is a scenic train. For reservations on this train you would have to send an email to our fulfillment team who would help you reserve seats.

You can mail us on the ‘Contact Us’ page. You would have to select ‘Already booked’ tab and send in your message.

Keep in mind that seat reservations would be mandatory for all High-Speed, Night, Scenic and Border Crossing trains. But, you will avail pass holder/discounted fares for these journeys with the pass.

Since you would be held up in Paris for 3 days, I would recommend the Paris Pass.

The pass would give you the following benefits:

Free entrance:

Benefit from free entry to over 50 of Paris’s world famous attractions, including the Louvre Museum, Arc of Triumph, Notre Dame, Palace of Versailles, Orsay Museum, Tropical Aquarium, Grevin Wax Museum etc. Get a free passage on Seine River Day Cruise with Bateaux Parisians, Tour Maine-Montparnasse, Tenniseum of Roland Garros.

Unlimited travel:

With a Paris Pass you will benefit from unlimited travel time on the Metro, buses, tramway and RER within central Paris.

To purchase the Swiss Travel Pass click “Here”.

To purchase the Paris Pass click “Here”.

Hope this helps!!!

Best Regards,

Anthony, Rail Europe Travel Expert.

Add Comment

Comments (2)


Hi Anthony,

Thanks for the reply! I will definitely check out the links enclosed.

By the way, how would you recommend for my stay in Provence? If I'm considering Avignon, aix-en provance, Arles for now. Point to point tickets?



photo Travel Expert

Hello Sush Lin,

Thanks for your reply.

Considering that you are traveling to Aix-en-Provence, Avignon and Arles I would suggest that you purchase the combined Eurail France-Switzerland Pass.

This pass would cover all regional and national trains with the two countries.

To purchase the pass click “Here”.

In order to book tickets, please visit our website.

The pass seats can be reserved by clicking on “Seat Reservations” & feed in the Departure city and the Arrival city along with the travel date and preferred time & the number of passengers (Senior, adults, youth and children), and then click on “search tickets”. Once you do so, you would find the schedules along with the fares.

Please click on the “Fare Details” tab to view details regarding the type of fare, type of seat, whether a reservation is included or not and the After Sales Policy.

Hope this helps!!!

Anthony, Rail Europe Travel Expert.

Leave comment


Attach files...

The file must be a jpg, gif, png, bmp, ico, pdf, doc, rtf, txt, zip or rar no more than 8M

By posting a question, you agree to our terms and conditions. You agree not to post any User Generated Content which is: false, misleading, confidential, abusive, defamatory, obscene, invasive to another person's privacy and racially objectionable. Any infringement will result in the removal of your post.