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Bordeaux to Interlaken &Rail Europe pass

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Bordeaux to Interlaken &Rail Europe pass

I am planning Europe trip from Sydney--> London -->Paris-->Bordeaux-->Lucerne-->Interlaken-->Rome-->Sydney and want to ask if Rail Europe pass is the only best option if I travel by trains? I am finding it a bit expensive as mandatory seat reservation is extra. At the same time I don't want to cause a lot of inconvenience to myself for sake of saving few bucks!

Also what is the best option to travel from Bordeaux to Interlaken with minimum changes?

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Wengen, Switzerland
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1. Re: Bordeaux to Interlaken &Rail Europe pass

Rail Europe is probably the worst option. It is heavily pushed in Australia by unscrupulous travel agents exploiting the fact that Australians are not very knowledgeable about European train travel.

Start here: www.seat61.com, where you can find out where you can buy train tickets directly from the operators.

canada
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2. Re: Bordeaux to Interlaken &Rail Europe pass

Eurailpass is good for those who need to take trains 6 to 8 hours a day, on regional (commuter) trains. For fast trains, book early for discounted fare, as in 90 days. Check on www.trainline.eu for various pricing and schedules.

For your routing, I would choose, a change in Lyon, avoiding Paris, and then Geneva. After that you have a choice to go onto scenic Golden Pass route to Interlaken, before hitting Lucerne. However, the Golden Pass route include sections with narrow gauge tracks, therefore there will be train changes on route.

Canton of Valais...
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3. Re: Bordeaux to Interlaken &Rail Europe pass

Eurail is a pest in France because the number of seats on each TGV are limited for Eurail holders...and here in Switzerland it is not valid on some of the private train companies. French rail fares are not expensive and here in Switzerland you can get a Swiss Travel Pass which covers just about everything in all inhabited areas and gets you discounts on mountain transport.

Wengen, Switzerland
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4. Re: Bordeaux to Interlaken &Rail Europe pass

Regarding Bordeaux - Interlaken: Currently we don't know everything about next years' timetable yet.

Normally the fastest way would be to take a TGV back to Paris, and another one from there to Basel, changing for a train to Interlaken there. But that involves changing stations in Paris, so is not very comfortable.

Another option (that is also probably a lot cheaper) is to take the conventional train from Bordeaux to Lyon, change for train to Geneva there and then continue to Interlaken. That involves a few changes, but all transfers are here in the same station. The problem here is that currently the Bordeaux - Lyon train isn't running. And I don't know yet if it will run next year. SNCF has been concentrating on the TGV, and neglecting their conventional trains...

Alternatively you could just fly Bordeaux to either Basel, Geneva or Zurich.

Canton of Valais...
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5. Re: Bordeaux to Interlaken &Rail Europe pass

Flying EasyJet Bordeaux to Basel is probably easier than anything else..

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