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Geneva to Verbier trains

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
I’ve Decided to try to have a short weekend to Verbier in December, all things going well with Covid.
The plan was to catch the train from Geneva Airport on 10th December to Le Chable and return on the 12th December.
Going onto SBB, the outward journey is fine (2.15 hours, change at Martigny) but it won’t give me the return journey on the 12th. I’ve tried dates after this as well with the same result. Surely the trains don’t stop running at this point? Is it likely to be a new timetable yet to be published? Can anyone help please?
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
@EdYarker, exactly - it will be the new timetable which starts from 13 Dec. This happens every year (also in Germany and Austria). I’d feel comfortable assuming it will not be significantly different from this year’s.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Thanks. I guessed it must be something like that but didn’t really want to commit to flights etc until I knew a transfer was guaranteed.
Any idea when the new timetable is published?
Many thanks
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Don’t know if it’s running on the same timetable as TGV Lyria, but if so, tix from 12th onwards go on sale on Wednesday at 5am U.K. time.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
@Timmycb5, thanks. I will check again on Wednesday
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Just some advice and I don't mean to scaremonger, but just be aware of thieves who target obvious holidaymakers on the return leg from the Valais/Vaud to GVA. I've done the run to/from Martigny many times on my own, then stupidly when in a group, put my passport in my rucksack and put that on the overhead shelf and got distracted chatting with the others. When I got to GVA my black rucksack wasn't mine - it'd been swapped. Fortunately, I had everything else on me. I had to go to Berne for the weekend and pick up a new temporary passport on the Monday. There were six or so other people there, all of whom had had their passports stolen the previous few days on trains en route to GVA. I don't think it's any worse than other European country, but it's worth stating the obvious about being careful when you're a conspicuous holidaymaker, and on trains, especially the point where there's a lot of to-ing and fro-ing at station stops.

Chatting to the others waiting at the Berne Consulate, one woman fell victim to the 'Oh so sorry I dropped my coat on your stuff' (as they pick up her handbag under the coat) trick, and another, the 'Damm! I've dropped my phone on the floor under the seat!' (where you reach down to help look and they take your rucksack and then quickly leave the train) trick.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
As the wise people of Snowheads advised, the winter train times from Geneva airport to Le Chable had now come out.

I have seen that they have done a train and lift pass ticket in the past. Does anyone know about this? Our first day is Saturday 18th Dec and we arrive at 08.45. So would hope to get some skiing in that day.

We then have two full days skiing and flight departs at 21.05 on Monday 20th December.

Looking at train times we could go for the 17.46 train arriving at the airport for 19.59. We won’t have luggage but I wouldn’t cut it this fine in the UK. Are Swiss trains really all they’re cracked up to be punctuality wise?

Finally, I have seen that advance tickets are the cheapest. Of course, this means we loose any flexibility. Would you buy in advance or purchase an open ticket, or buy at the airport?
Thank you again
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
The trains should usually be OK but you have to make an allowance for delays in security. And as you know, like most airports, it can take 20 mins just to get from security to your gate. So I'd not leave it that tight and would go for an earlier train.

Outbound, I'd tend not to buy an advance ticket for a specific train, as I'd not trust any flight to be on schedule. I'd go for an open advance ticket, or a ticket from the station. I've bought tickets there and it's taken no more than 10 minutes at busy times, but it'd be annoying of course if that meant you missed a connection.

I've seen train+skipass offers from time to time on both the SBB.ch website and the MySwitzerland.com website. But not on any predictable schedule - you'll just have to take a look from time to time.
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
@LaForet, I think that’s good advice. I should be able to catch one earlier without compromising our ski time in the last day by too much.

Also fine to get an open ticket out. I haven’t compared the prices but presumably the difference between set and open can’t be as ludicrously different as they are in the UK.

I will keep looking for ski/ train deals SBB do advertise them but I can’t seem to get into it to work out what the discount is

Thanks for your help
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
@EdYarker, the prices are not that different between set and open fairs compared to UK. The snow&rail deals only come out nearer the time and they don’t do it for all resorts (though I am fairly sure they do it for Verbier). It’s only for ski passes of 1, 2 or 6 days and not all resorts offer 6 days. So you’d need an add-on for your 2.5-3 days. It’s not a set discount but resort dependent, so you have to wait and see the offer when they come out.

You can also download the SBB app and buy your tickets on that to save time (setup beforehand and load a credit card), it’s very easy to use and automatically in English if that is the set language on your phone.

Generally the SBB trains are very reliable, much more than UK trains but that’s not to say there is never a problem, and I also think that 17.46 train is cutting it too tight. However there are two trains an hour and with the limited daylight at that time of year you probably won’t want to be skiing much after 4pm anyway.
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
Another vote for downloading the SBB app. It will also show Supersaver fares so you can see the difference to the standard fare. This is the week before as there is a 2 month limit for pricing but should be similar week after:




Super saver often has good deals on First class tickets if you want a bit of extra space


With only hand luggage that 17:46 should be fine but the one before gives you an insurance policy and super saver prices if you want them.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Just worth being alert - both the SBB app and the website sometimes lead with a price based on your having an annual abonnemont rail discount card. Which can cause some confusion. A lot of regular Swiss train travellers will have one. So just make sure you're looking at the actual price, sans carte, especially if there's a big difference when comparing different fares.
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
LaForet wrote:
Just worth being alert - both the SBB app and the website sometimes lead with a price based on your having an annual abonnemont rail discount card. Which can cause some confusion. A lot of regular Swiss train travellers will have one. So just make sure you're looking at the actual price, sans carte, especially if there's a big difference when comparing different fares.


These are the full, one way prices. Standard price doesn’t change, supersaver fares are variable based on demand and often not available close to the travel date/time
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
This is all very helpful. Thank you so much. Probably the best plan is to buy an open ticket for the way out, when flights can be delayed etc and a Supersaver for the return.

Any thoughts about the snow n rail tickets? They market them on the SBB site- I would be looking at the 2 day ski pass/ but I can’t actually find a way of booking.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Apologies @Gämsbock, I have just seen the first part of your message. Do you think it’s worth waiting to see whether they do a Verbier snow n rail deal?

As long as we don’t miss out on the Supersaver price while we wait.

Thanks again
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
@EdYarker, it’s a long time since I’ve bought one because with two of us it’s generally cheaper and easier to drive so I can’t really remember, though I do remember it was dependent on many variables! I found this page from last year which indicates 20% off the rail journey part at the tails of the season
https://www.sbb.ch/en/leisure-holidays/leisure-offers/day-trips/promotionen-snow-rail.html

This site indicates that it’s then 10% off the ski pass part. At least last year, Verbier was included. You could try contacting SBB or the Verbier tourist office to ask if it will be included again this year.
http://www.oatridge.co.uk/nic/transportation/snownrail/

So if you assume 20% of the rail journey and 10% off the ski pass and work out whether that saves you more than a supersaver for the return?
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
@Gämsbock, excellent info. I will try to get in touch with them. As you say, it may not make much difference but worth trying to save anything we can. We will need the extra cash in Verbier!
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Late post on this but I've gone to Verbier by train from Geneva multiple years including 2020 - though not '21 Sad A big reason for doing it is how easy it is to get the train to Verbier from GVA airport so you're on to a good plan. Happy ! I usually book a ticket for a specific train allowing enough time to get through security and baggage collection. It's pretty much always been very smooth. I looked at the packages with the ski pass last time but it ended up looking like it was not creating any saving - worth re-checking though and I'll look again on the link you posted. Another tip with this is that you arrive at Le Chable and if you are staying at the end of town nearest the gondola you can easily take that up to the village - otherwise it's the bus and there are sometimes gaps in the timetable so you might have a wait depending on the timing (although there is always the taxi option, too).
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Further to all the above good advice - if you book your Verbier ski pass online at least 10 days before, you will a) get a 10% discount and b) be able to use the lift pass (on your pre-loaded card) to use the Le Chable to Verbier gondola the afternoon/evening before your lift pass commences (i.e. from the train to town).

I would leave a little extra (10-15 minutes) for the train from Martigny to Geneva however, as on our last three journeys (Sep, Oct & Nov this year), there have been "holes at the trackside" which have resulted in a change of train at Lausanne!
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