Switzerland: old challenges, new solutions

31 October 2012  •  Author(s): Peter Füglistaler, Director, Federal Office of Transport, Switzerland

Public transport in Switzerland is of a high standard with frequent, punctual, clean and reliable services. But this does not mean we are resting on our laurels; on the contrary. We are working to ensure we can manage future demand and meet passengers’ expectations of an even better service. However, this is only possible if there is secured long-term funding.

As Switzerland is so small, public transport is perceived as a whole. Customers barely differentiate between long-distance, regional (urban rail, buses) and local services (buses, trams). In larger cities such as Zurich, Geneva, Lausanne, Bern, Lucerne or Basel, urban rail and sometimes even long-distance services play an important role alongside buses in local and agglomeration transport.

This is a sign of quality. It shows that the many different transport service providers work together seamlessly. All timetables are coordinated, which simplifies switching from one mode of transport to another. One important factor here is that customers usually only need one ticket for the whole journey. Season tickets valid on all modes of transport and across all networks are also very common.

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