Oh, yodelers. Lately, The Frau has been talking about things she wish she’d known about life in Switzerland, only to discover one important thing eight years too late.
As most yodelers know, tips for saving money in Switzerland can seem as secretive as a Swiss bank (pre-American government intervention, at least).
For the last eight years, The Frau has left Switzerland for several weeks at a time to travel or visit family in the States. Little did she know she could have been making money while she was gone.
Ja. By turning in her GA (Swiss Train Pass).
Here’s what The Frau should have done:
Before you go on a long trip, give your GA to your local SBB train station. You can do this up to three days before you leave. They then give you a travel card that is valid to use until you leave the country and upon your return, so you don’t need to worry about getting to and from the airport.
When you return to your home station, you simply pick up your GA and receive a voucher for use at any SBB. The Frau’s husband was gone for 13 days so he turned in his GA for the first time and here’s what he got:
A voucher for CHF 126.
The amount works out to be less than CHF 10 per day, and you also have to pay a CHF 10 fee just to turn it in, but it's still totally worth it if you’re going to be gone anyway.
The Frau is sad she didn't know about this offer years earlier since it certainly would have saved–at least her parents–a lot of money in train fare.
But alas, The Frau’s loss is your gain.
Enjoy reading about Swiss life? Then you might enjoy The Frau’s new book, Swiss Life: 30 Things I Wish I’d Known. It even has a section on Mutterhood. Available at fine online retailers and on Zurich’s most famous shopping street too (Bahnhofstrasse 70).