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How much time to allow for train transfers

Pennsylvania
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97 posts
156 reviews
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How much time to allow for train transfers

I'm curious how much time is needed when transferring trains. We'd be coming from Basel and changing at Interlaken Ost to continue onto Lauterbrunnen. Is 8 minutes enough time when we're not familiar with the stations, platforms, etc. or should be figure it's best to give ourselves more time?

I'm asking as I'm trying to figure out when we might actually arrive in Lauterbrunnen so we ask to get in our apartment early if need be.

W. Palm Beach, FL
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for Murren, Interlaken, Bernese Oberland
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1. Re: How much time to allow for train transfers

Transfering trains at Interlaken Ost is quick and easy. Trains from Basil, Bern etc usually arrive on tracks 3 or 4 and the trains to Lauterbrunnen leave from track one or two. You just walk down the ramp, under the tracks, and back up to the next train. 8 minutes should be fine.

Anchorage, Alaska
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for Anchorage, Zermatt
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2. Re: How much time to allow for train transfers

Additionally, there are usually more trains within the hour so if you miss one, the next one's fine, too! Be at the door of your train from Basel as it pulls into Interlaken so that you can quickly get off - if there's more than one, have one get down and the other hand down the luggage and then hop off. You may not be able to find a luggage trolley but it's an even surface (you do go up and down ramps so it's not really flat) so you can do it easily with wheeled bags. When the conductor comes through to check your tickets between Basel and Bern, ask him which trrack (gleis - pronounced glice) for the Lauterbrunnen train and show him a print out of the timetable you've gotten from Swiss Rail - he'll confirm the track for you.

You can print your schedule as well as the trains to Lauterbrunnen from Bern on the English language pages of the Swiss Rail website

www.sbb.ch/en

Hope this helps.

Pennsylvania
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97 posts
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3. Re: How much time to allow for train transfers

Thank you mountaintopper and kileysmom for the very helpful information. Looks like it is really easy. Love it!

Lucerne, Switzerland
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4. Re: How much time to allow for train transfers

One thing to bear in mind when changing at Interlaken is that the train you will be getting onto goes to two destinations. Leaving Interlaken it's just one train, but at Zweilütschinen it splits, with one half of the train going on to Lauterbrunnen and the other half to Grindelwald.

Make sure you get in the right part of the train at Interlaken (the destination is marked on each coach and there are usually station staff pointing people the right way as well).

Pennsylvania
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156 reviews
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5. Re: How much time to allow for train transfers

Thanks neuch for that added info..........appreciate knowing what to be on the lookout for.

Texas
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138 posts
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6. Re: How much time to allow for train transfers

8 minutes is ample time. I have made transfers in busier stations such as Geneva and Lucerne in less than 5 minutes and that too with two little kids dragging their carry on bags.

Pennsylvania
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97 posts
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7. Re: How much time to allow for train transfers

Thanks Travel4Crick..... good to know - especially with two little kids. LOL I think I'm safe from dealing with that.

Cedarville, Ohio
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8. Re: How much time to allow for train transfers

We had four minutes to make a connection in StGallen last summer and it was no problem...the Swiss train system is one of the seven wonders of the world for an American like me who can't count on airlines and trains to be arriving within a half hour of the scheduled time.

Pennsylvania
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156 reviews
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9. Re: How much time to allow for train transfers

Hi Solasmark.......the precision of Swiss train arrivals & departures is what had me wonder if 8 minutes was enough time for folks like ourselves not knowing the area/station, dragging luggage etc. to get from one train to another before it left. I was wondering about us, not the trains. ;-D

Thanks for your reply. All this information is so helpful and I can see that we'll most likely make our destination by noon, which is great and what I wanted to discern.

Cedarville, Ohio
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10. Re: How much time to allow for train transfers

Yes that is a concern. They DO NOT wait for anything. So yes you must prepare as you are going to disembark so that everyone moves efficiently. We travelled with my 86 year old mother who moves a little slow (she almost got caught by a closing door)...But we did it! Many trains have a digital sign that reads how many seconds the train is "off" schedule ...in REAL TIME. Yes I said seconds. We did find that the stations could be a little tricky at times but we travelled all over and got anxious at times but never missed a connection.