Faster trains to Europe from Switzerland as part of new SBB timetable

Faster trains to Europe from Switzerland as part of new SBB timetable

Swiss Federal Railways (SBB) has announced a new timetable to begin on December 12, 2021. The new schedule will create more connections between Swiss cities, as well as faster international services to Munich, Paris and a brand new connection to Amsterdam.

New fast rail services between major Swiss cities

In a statement, SBB said the demand for long-distance routes has increased dramatically in 2021, partially due to concerns about the climate. Current passenger numbers are still below pre-pandemic levels, but the company noted that “climate-friendly and traffic jam-free travel will become even more important in the future.”

Among some of the highlights are new services to the Swiss mountains, with new half-hourly services from Basel and Zurich to Chur on Sundays, making it far easier to visit the nearby ski resorts. SBB has also agreed a deal with Swiss South Eastern Railway (SOB) to offer a direct line from Bern to Chur.

Across the country, Intercity (IC) and Interregional (IR) services are being extended to more areas. The IC5 route between the airports in Geneva and Zurich is being extended beyond the final stop at St. Gallen to the banks of Lake Constance at Rorschach. Also for the first time, the capital of Canton Uri will receive its first-ever Intercity service when Altdorf is connected to the service between Zurich and Bellinzona.

Faster trains to Munich from Zurich and a new night train to Amsterdam

One of the most notable features of the new timetable are connections to other top European destinations, such as a new night train between Zurich and Amsterdam. Alongside the new Nightjet service are trains to Munich that will cut the travel time between Zurich and the Bavarian capital by 30 minutes. By spring 2022, all trains between the two cities will only take three and a half hours.

Alongside a new train between Basel, Bern, Brig and Milan, passengers may also notice more night trains, morning services, regional traffic in the mountains and more trains in Canton Ticino. The final change is that, after several decades, SBB will no longer print a physical pocket timetable in order to save on costs.

Jan de Boer


Jan de Boer

Editor for Switzerland at IamExpat Media. Jan studied History at the University of York and Broadcast Journalism at the University of Sheffield. Though born in York, Jan has lived most...

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