Switzerland - Lines with Obscure or Sparse passenger services

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This list is based on the timetable valid 10 December 2023 - 14 December 2024. Standard abbreviations are explained here.

Map references for each route entry are given in parentheses ( ). References prefixed "ERA-E" refer to the European Railway Atlas (All-Europe Edition) by M.G. Ball. References prefixed "ERA-R" refer to the European Railway Atlas (Regional Series: Book 2) by M.G. Ball. References prefixed "S+W", or in italic, refer to Eisenbahnatlas Schweiz by Schweers + Wall.

Obscure services

Renens avoiding line: Denges-Echandens (Les Lécheires) – Bussigny

[150,210] (ERA-E 70C5; ERA-R 140A1; S+W 70C2-C3) CH24/01

This north to west curve connects the Neuchâtel and Genève lines and is used by the hourly IC5 trains to and from Genève-Aéroport, which do not call intermediately between Yverdon-les-Bains and Morges.

From 15 December 2024 all of these trains will be diverted via Lausanne, leaving this connection with no service. A detailed explanation in German can be read here.


[305,355] (ERA-E 67B2 not shown; ERA-R 141A4; S+W 18C3) CH24/02

Click on the thumbnail for a full size map.

The Bern – Neuchâtel and Payerne – Lyss lines cross at Kerzers by a flat crossing, with platforms 1 and 3 on the Lyss line, and platforms 4 and 6 on the Neuchâtel line.

A short curve from the Neuchâtel platforms towards Payerne is used by the hourly S5 stopping services between Bern and Murten/Morat, which reverse in platform 4 (towards Bern) and 6 (towards Murten/Morat) and use the curve between calls at Kerzers and Galmiz, also by the additional hourly S5 services between Kerzers and Payerne. This curve is also used by the hourly R9 services between Kerzers platform 4 and Lausanne via Payerne, except by those shown to use platform 3, below.

The curve from the Lyss platforms towards Bern is done, except during weekday peak hours, by the hourly S52 Bern to Kerzers services which run into platform 1, returning to Bern from platform 3. Exceptions are (SSuX only): 07:34, 16:34 to 19:34 and 21:34 from Bern and 06:00, 07:00 and 18:00 to 21:00 from Kerzers.

The connection between the Lyss platforms and the Payerne line is done by the following services which are booked to use platform 3.

N.B. Most of the trains below only use platform 3 on weekdays. They are therefore shown as SSuX in the table despite running every day.

R9-24914 05:04 Kerzers – Lausanne
R9-24918 06:04 Kerzers – Lausanne
SSuX R9-24976 18:04 Kerzers – Lausanne
SSuX R9-24980 19:04 Kerzers – Lausanne
SSuX R9-24986 20:04 Kerzers – Payerne / Lausanne
SSuX R9-24901 Murten/Morat – 05:50 Galmiz – Kerzers
SSuX R9-24953 Lausanne – 17:51 Galmiz – Kerzers
SSuX R9-24957 Lausanne – 18:51 Galmiz – Kerzers
SSuX R9-24963 Lausanne – 19:51 Galmiz – Kerzers
R9-24083/24983 Lausanne / Payerne – 23:51 Galmiz – Kerzers

Bern avoiding line: Zollikofen (Löchligut) – Ostermundigen (Wankdorf)

[304,344] (ERA-E 67B1; ERA-R 139A5-139B5; S+W 66C3) CH24/03

This north to east curve enables trains to run between the Olten and Interlaken lines without reversal. It is used by one weekday morning peak service and various weekend services on certain dates:

SSuX S46-15020 Solothurn – 07:17 Zollikofen – Ostermundigen
D1 SSuO RE11-4545 Biel/Bienne – 07:54 Zollikofen – Brig
D2 SO IC1304 Zürich HB – 07:58 Lenzburg – Brig
D1 SSuO RE11-4556 Brig – 17:40 Gümligen (SO) / 17:55 Ostermundigen (SuO) – Biel/Bienne
D2 SuO IC1333 Brig – 17:09 Thun – Zürich HB

D1: SSuO 10 December 2023 - 7 April 2024; 8 June - 20 October 2024
D2: SO/SuO 23 December 2023 - 27 October 2024; not most weekends 30 March - 2 June 2024

Bern – Bern Stöckacker / Bern Europaplatz (Bern Weyermannshaus)

[299,302,303,305,306] (ERA-E 67B1, not shown; ERA-R 139A4; S+W 66B3) CH24/04

There are two double-track routes between Bern and Bern Weyermannshaus where the SBB line to Flamatt diverges from the BLS lines to Kerzers, Belp and Schwarzenberg.

The southern pair are SBB, on the surface throughout and only serve platforms 1-10 at Bern, plus the east end of platform 12 and platforms 49 and 50. The northern pair are BLS and pass through the Donnerbühl Tunnel and only serve platforms 10-13. Crossovers at Bern Weyermannshaus facilitate movements between the two pairs of lines in both directions.

Note: During the ongoing large-scale engineering work at Bern, operations may be subject to change. Arrival or departure platforms at Bern should always be checked on journey planners or departure/arrival boards.

Services to and from the Flamatt line use the SBB lines throughout. The following services use platform 10 at Bern, and are shown on the SBB journey planner map as using the SBB lines, but may cross to the BLS lines at Bern Weyermannshaus:

  • IR15 from Genève-Aéroport
  • S1 from Fribourg/Freiburg.

Services to and from the Kerzers, Belp and Schwarzenburg lines use the BLS lines throughout, except the following which cross to or from the SBB lines at Bern Weyermannshaus:

  • IR66 to and from La-Chaux-de-Fonds via Neuchâtel
  • All S-Bahn services to Belp or beyond
  • S3 services from Belp to Bern arrive in Bern platform 10 but are shown on the SBB journey planner map as using the SBB lines so may run this way.

Lötschberg Basistunnel: Reichenbach im Kandertal (Abzw Wengi-Ey) / Frutigen – Visp (Abzw St German)

[300,330] (ERA-E 71C5-C3; ERA-R 141C2-148A5; S+W 77D1-78A4) CH24/05

The Lötschberg Base Tunnel is used by non-stop trains between Spiez and Visp. Between Abzw Wengi-Ey and Abzw. Frutigen-Nordportal, at the northern end of the tunnel, trains may either run through the single-track Engstligen Tunnel or stay on the old line, gaining the tunnel by running through platform 2 at Frutigen station. This depends on operating convenience. One train each way is booked to call at Frutigen platform 2.

SuX IC1093 Bern - 23:17 Frutigen - Brig
IC807 Brig - 05:54 Visp - Romanshorn

There is a single track connection between the north portal of the Lötschberg Base Tunnel and the east side of Frutigen station. This is used by trains using the Basistunnel which call at Frutigen platform 3. It is not possible for trains to reach platforms 1 or 2 using this connection. While no services are booked to use this connection, it is used occasionally as operating convenience dictates.

Click on the thumbnail for a full size map.

The European Train Control System (Level 2) is used through the Lötschberg Base Tunnel, so any train not so equipped has to run via the old main line.

Hindelbank (Abzw Hardfeld) – Bern (Abzw Aspli)

[450] (ERA-E 67C2; ERA-R 139B5; S+W 19B2) CH24/06

The old main line from Olten to Bern crosses the Bahn-2000-Strecke high-speed line (CH24/08) around 2.5 km south of Hindelbank station, with the two tracks of the old line running either side of the high-speed line for around 1.5 km between Abzw Hardfeld and the former Mattstetten station.

Separate northbound and southbound connections between the two tracks of the old line and the high-speed line allow trains running non-stop between Burgdorf and Bern to use the high-speed line between this set of junctions and Bern.

Note that there are no connections to allow trains to run between the high-speed line from Olten and the old line towards Bern via Zollikofen.

Rothrist (Abzw Wanzwil) – Solothurn

[410] (ERA-E 67C3, ERA-R 135C1, S+W 9D4-10B4) CH24/07

This branch off the Olten – Bern high speed line (CH24/08) which leaves the main line at Abzw Wanzwil, within the Gishübel Tunnel, is booked to be used by hourly IC5 trains to and from Genève-Aéroport which run non-stop between Olten and Solothurn. However these trains may occasionally be diverted via Oensingen as operating convenience dictates.

Note that the IC5 services which run to and from Lausanne are booked to call at Oensingen so do not use this route. As a guide, non-stop trains are booked to take 20 minutes between Olten and Solothurn; those that call at Oensingen, 26 minutes. Trains booked to run via the high speed line show "Bahn-2000-Strecke" next to their expanded itinerary in the SBB website and app.

Rothrist – Bern (Wylerfeld) (via Murgenthal and Grauholz tunnels)

[450] (ERA-E 68A3 - 67B2; ERA-R 136A2-139A5; S+W 10C3-66C2) CH24/08

Zürich – Bern trains not stopping between Zürich or Olten and Bern and Luzern – Bern trains not stopping between Zofingen and Bern use the direct high-speed line, known as the Bahn-2000-Strecke, while stopping trains use the original route. Zürich – Solothurn trains (see CH24/07) and non-stop trains between Burgdorf and Bern (see CH24/06) use parts of the high-speed line. Trains booked via the main section of the high-speed line between Mattstetten and Rothrist show "Bahn-2000-Strecke" next to their expanded itinerary in the SBB website and app.

Rothrist – Olten (via Born Tunnel)

[450] (ERA-E 68A3; ERA-R 136A2; S+W 10C3-D2) CH24/09

This line which opened in 1981 now forms the northern part of the Olten – Bern high speed line. It is used by trains between Olten and Langenthal or Bern which do not stop at Aarburg-Oftringen, also by trains non-stop between Olten and Solothurn. Note, however, that IR trains terminating in Olten have been observed being routed via Aarburg-Oftringen instead of via this route. Trains from Basel or Zürich to Bern occaisionally run via Aarburg-Oftringen if operational needs require it

Aarburg-Oftringen south curve: Rothrist (Abzw Aarburg-Oftringen West) – Zofingen (Abzw. Aarburg-Oftringen Süd)

[455, 510] (ERA-E 68A3; ERA-R 136A2; S+W 10D3) CH24/10

This west to south curve links the lines from Bern and from Luzern to Olten. It is used by the hourly IR15 services between Genève-Aéroport, Bern and Luzern via Zofingen, which run non-stop between Bern and Zofingen.

Muttenz – Liestal

[500] (ERA-E 67C4; ERA-R 134C4-134C3; S+W 62C3-10B1) CH24/11

Fast trains between Basel and Liestal not booked to call intermediately use this line which passes through the Adler tunnel (5.3 km).

Basel Area

Click on the thumbnail for a full-sized map.

Basel avoiding line: Basel Bad Bf (Gellert) – Muttenz

[500, 700] (ERA-E 67C4; ERA-R 134B4; S+W 62B2-62C3) CH24/12

This north to east curve enables trains to run between the DB station at Basel Bad and the Olten/Zürich main line without reversal.

The curve has no regular booked passenger use but is occasionally used for diversions or special trains. Trains were diverted this way on several occasions in 2023.

Basel SBB – Pratteln via Basel St. Jakob

[500] (ERA-E 67C4 not shown; ERA-R 134B4; S+W 62B3-C3) CH24/13

As an alternative to the normal main line from the east into Basel SBB, trains can run from the west end of Basel SBB RB (Rangierbahnhof) via the overbridge and high level lines to Basel SBB GB (Güterbahnhof).

There is a platform on the high level lines, known as Basel St. Jakob, which serves FC Basel’s stadium. It is served by the southern (normally towards Basel) line only.

To reach the west end of Basel SBB RB, westbound trains can either run from Pratteln round the north side of the entire yard, or take a spur after Muttenz station to the lines at the south side of Basel SBB RB. In the eastbound direction, trains either take the spur to Muttenz or continue along the south side of Basel SBB RB until Pratteln.

From the west end of Basel SBB GB, trains can either run via surface lines to the higher-numbered platforms at Basel SBB station or via a diveunder beneath the station throat, which allows access to platforms 1-5 only. A report in April 2023 said that outward trains towards the Rheinfelden line from platforms 1-5 went via the diveunder and St. Jakob, but trains towards Basel SBB ran on the main line all the way.

Basel SBB (platforms 16/17) – Basel St. Jakob (via surface route) – Muttenz

For pathing reasons, the S3 local service Porrentruy/Laufen – Basel SBB (reverse) – Olten was booked to use this route in this direction only, therefore running on the track that does not pass through Basel St. Jakob platform. However it may now be the case that these trains, at least temporarily, take the surface route between Basel SBB and Muttenz.

Basel SBB (platforms 1-5) – Basel St. Jakob (via diveunder) – Pratteln

When the main line is blocked by engineering work, S1 trains from Frick or Lauterbourg to Basel SBB use the line round the north side of Basel Rbf and the diveunder to the low-numbered platforms. In the other direction, trains use the diveunder and the line to the south of the Rbf.

Basel SBB – Basel St. Jakob

When FC Basel are playing at home, special trains have operated to St. Jakob platform, which is adjacent to their St.-Jakob-Park stadium. Outward trains from platforms 1 to 5 used the diveunder route, but trains from other platforms followed the ground-level route. However it appears that this station is currently not in use, probably as a result of the large-scale engineering works taking place in the area.

The travel information page of the FC Basel website mentions St. Jakob station under "Zug" (train), but the link to actual dates and times that the stadium station is in use gives a 'not found' result. A search of the SBB journey planner for dates of home fixtures did not show any trains to the stadium either. Dates and times of FC Basel home fixtures can be found at their website.

Olten avoiding line: Tecknau – Dulliken

[500,650] (ERA-E 68A3; ERA-R 136A2; S+W 10D2) CH24/14

The hourly service of IR37 trains between Basel SBB and Zürich HB, calling at Sissach and Aarau, uses this north-to-east curve to avoid reversal at Olten.

Killwangen-Spreitenbach – Othmarsingen

[650] (ERA-E 68B4; ERA-R 136C2; S+W 12A1-11B2) CH24/15

Fast trains between Zürich HB and Olten not booked to call at Baden or Brugg AG use this line which passes through the Heitersberg tunnels (4.9 km) to the south of Baden. Trains with no scheduled stops between Zürich HB and Arth-Goldau may also run via this line and Wohlen.

Birr (Abzw Brunegg) – Mägenwil (Abzw Mägenwil West)

(652) (ERA-E xxx; ERA-R xxx; S+W 11B2) CH24/15A

This brand-new 1.287 km north to east curve was opened on 8 December 2023 and links the lines from Othmarsingen to Brugg AG and to Killwangen-Spreitenbach, avoiding Othmarsingen. It is intended for freight use only in order to free up paths on the Baden line for additional S-Bahn services.

It is in use for diverted S23 passenger services on Saturdays and Sundays 7, 20, 21, 27 & 28 April 2024. Trains will run hourly from Baden to Mägenwil via Brugg AG. Departure times from Birr are at 19 minutes past each hour and from Mägenwil at 33 minutes past each hour.

Zürich: Routes to Effretikon and Dübendorf

[740,749,750,751,800] (S+W 64C3-61B2/C1) CH24/16

Numerous routes via four separate tunnels connect Zürich HB with Effretikon (on the lines to Winterthur and to Wetzikon via Pfäffikon ZH) and Dübendorf (on the line to Rapperswil SG via Uster). A dense network of S-Bahn and longer-distance services ensures that all lines are covered. S-Bahn services run half-hourly unless otherwise stated.

Zürich HB is in three principal parts: the main station with terminal platforms 3-18, the south side low-level through platforms 31-34 and the north side low-level through platforms 41-44.

Routes from north side low-level platforms 41-44

Click on the thumbnail for a full-size map.

Routes described below are identified by letters on the map, and are used by the services listed.

  • Route A: Via Käferberg Tunnel, Zürich Oerlikon west side platforms 7/8 and Zürich Flughafen: S16, terminating at Zürich Flughafen. IC services to Stuttgart via Schaffhausen also run this way but start from platform 18 in the main station.
  • Route B: Via Käferberg Tunnel, Oerlikon platforms 7/8 and Kloten: S7 to Winterthur.

Note that there is a flying junction east of Kloten, not shown in the current (2010) S+W atlas, where S7 trains towards Zürich fly over the Flughafen line.

  • Route C: Via Zürichberg Tunnel and Dietlikon: S3 to Wetzikon via Pfäffikon ZH, S11 to Seulach, Wila or Sennhof-Kyburg and S12 to Winterthur, Wil (SSuX) or Schaffhausen.

Note that S3 does not use the 2013-built flyover line approaching Effretikon over the Bassersdorf line, instead running 'wrong road' from Dietlikon, and that S12 runs fast from Stettbach to Winterthur.

  • Route D: Via Zürichberg Tunnel and Dübendorf: S5 to Pfäffikon SZ via Uster, S9 to Uster and S15 to Rapperswil SG via Uster. Note that S5 and S15 both run fast from Zürich Stadelhofen to Uster.

Other services from platforms 41-44 which use Käferberg Tunnel are S3 to Bülach (SSuX peak hours only), S6 to Baden, S9 to Rafz or Schaffhausen via Bülach and S15 to Niederweningen. S21 (SSuX peak hours only) services to Regensdorf-Watt use Käferberg Tunnel but run to and from platforms 17 or 18 in the main station except departures at 07:56 from Regensdorf-Watt and 16:40 from Zürich HB, which use platforms 41-44. RE48 services to Schaffhausen run to and from platform 18 in the main station and non-stop to/from Oerlikon platforms 7/8, so must also use Käferberg Tunnel.

As a guide, S-Bahn trains routed via Käferberg Tunnel can be identified by calls at both Zürich Hardbrücke and Oerlikon, and those routed via Zürichberg Tunnel can be identified by calls at Zürich Stadelhofen and Stettbach or Uster.

Routes from south side low-level platforms 31-34

Click on the thumbnail for a full-size map.

Routes described below are identified by letters on the map, and are used by the services listed.

  • Route E: Via Weinberg Tunnel, Oerlikon centre platforms 4/5 and Zürich Flughafen: S2 to Zürich Flughafen, IC1 to St. Gallen, IC5 to Rorschach, IC8 to Romanshorn, IR13 to Chur via St. Gallen, IR36 to Zürich Flughafen, IR75 to Konstanz and EC services to München Hbf.
  • Route F: Via Weinberg Tunnel, Oerlikon east side platforms 1/2, Wallisellen and Dietlikon: S8 to Winterthur (Effretikon very early mornings), S19 (SSuX) to Effretikon (Pfäffikon ZH peak hours only).

Note that while S8 towards Effretikon uses the flyover over the Bassersdorf line, S19 runs ‘wrong road’ from Dietlikon instead.

  • Route G: Via Weinberg Tunnel, Oerlikon east side platforms 1/2, Wallisellen and Dübendorf: S14 to Hinwil.

As a guide, S-Bahn trains routed via Weinberg Tunnel can be identified by their running non-stop between Zürich HB and Oerlikon.

Route via Wipkinger Tunnel

  • Route H: Via Wipkinger Tunnel, Oerlikon centre platforms 3/6 and Zürich Flughafen: S24 to Weinfelden or Thayngen.

Note: In the 2023/24 timetable, S24 starts and terminates at Züruch Wipkingen and is the only service to call there. This means that there is no service between Wipkingen and Zürich HB for the duration of this timetable period.

Zürich HB – Zürich Altstetten

[650] (ERA-E 68C3; ERA-R 138B5; S+W 64B3-C3) CH24/17

S-Bahn services from Zürich HB via Zürich Altstetten are:

From the north side low-level platforms 41-44: S5 to Zug via Affoltern am Albis, S11 to Aarau and S12 to Brugg AG.

From the south side low-level platforms 31-34: S14 to Affoltern am Albis and S19 (SSuX) to Dietikon (Koblenz peak hours).

From the main high-level terminal station: S42 (SSuX peak hours only) to Muri AG.

Westbound long-distance trains (but not S-Bahn services) from platforms 31-34 use the Letzigrabenbrücke line which flies over all other passenger lines from south to north towards platform 7 at Zürich Altstetten. These are departures from Zürich HB hourly:

  • 06:10 to 21:10 IR36 to Basel SBB (calling at Zürich Altstetten)
  • 06:32 to 22:32 IC1 to Genève Aéroport (evenings to Lausanne, Fribourg/Freiburg or Bern)
  • 07:02 to 23:02 IC8 to Brig (evenings to Bern; 19:02 is IC81 to Interlaken Ost)
  • 07:04 to 20:04 IC5 to Genève Aéroport (evenings to Biel/Bienne or Morges)

Zürich HB – Thalwil

[660, 720, 800, 900] (ERA-E 68C3; ERA-R 138B5-138B4; S+W 64C3-12C3) CH24/18

There are two routes between Zürich HB and Thalwil: the lakeside route via Zürich Enge and the fast route via the Zimmerberg-Basistunnel (9422 m), opened in 2003.

The following S-Bahn services from Zürich HB via Thalwil use the lakeside route. These are:

From the south side low-level platforms 31-34: S2 to Ziegelbrücke (Unterterzen SSuO) and S8 to Pfäffikon SZ. Note that S2 runs fast from Zürich Enge to Thalwil.

From the main high-level terminal station: S24 to Zug.

All fast trains which run non-stop between Zürich HB (main station) and Thalwil, Wadenswil, Zug or Sargans use the tunnel route.

Zürich Wiedikon – Zürich Giesshübel and Sihlwald – Sihlbrugg

[714] (ERA-E 68C3, not clearly shown; ERA-R 138B5-138B4; S+W 64C3-C4; 12C3-C4) CH24/19

An extremely frequent service of SZU trains runs between Zürich HB and Sihlwald, but the section beyond to Sihlbrugg has had no regular passenger service since 09.12.2006. Sihlbrugg station remained served by trains on the Thalwil – Zug line but was closed after the last train on 08.12.2012 and has since been demolished.

A service of steam trains runs on the last Sunday of the month from May to October plus Saturday 7 December from Sihlwald to Zürich Wiedikon, with the return workings running to Sihlbrugg and back to Sihlwald. This also involves using the non-passenger connection from Zürich Wiedikon to Zürich Giesshübel through the Manesse Tunnel (510 m). There is no boarding or alighting permitted at Sihlbrugg.

The 2024 trains are not affected by the temporary closure to electric passenger services noted at Switzerland - General Information/Temporary Closures.

Separate tickets are required for these trains, which are available at ticket offices and machines, also on the train.

The timetable is shown on the Zürcher Museums-Bahn website but a summary of the 2024 times is as follows:

D SuO Sihlwald – 11:39 Zürich Saalsporthalle (Sihlcity) – Zürich Wiedikon
D SuO Sihlwald – 14:39 Zürich Saalsporthalle (Sihlcity) – Zürich Wiedikon
D SuO 12:00 Zürich Wiedikon – Sihlbrugg – Sihlwald
D SuO 15:20 Zürich Wiedikon – Sihlbrugg – Sihlwald

D: Last Sunday of every month from March to October. A special Santa service operates on Saturday 7 December.

Click on the thumbnail for a full size map.

Kreuzlingen avoiding line: Kreuzlingen Hafen – Konstanz

[820,830] (ERA-E 69B5; ERA-R 138A4; S+W 6B2) CH24/20

This east to north curve is used by the hourly RE1 service between Herisau and Konstanz.

Romanshorn avoiding line: Egnach (Romanshorn Stw. I) – Amriswil

[840,845] (ERA-E 69B3; ERA-R 138B3; S+W 6D3) CH24/21

This curve enables trains to run between Rorschach and Winterthur without reversal at Romanshorn.

There is no booked service, but because of a landslide on 20 May 2024 between St. Gallen St. Fiden and Goldach, there was no service between St. Gallen and Rorschach until start of traffic 10 June 2024. EC trains between Zürich HB and München Hbf were diverted via this curve, not stopping between Winterthur and St. Margrethen SG.

This route is also often used for diversions when the Buchs SG - Feldkirch line is closed for engineering works. This has previously occurred in late April and early May; but an ERG post advised use of this curve by at least NJ465 on 15th, NJ465/466/467 on 16th and NJ466/467 on 17th March 2024. There was no evidence of such diversions during late April and early May 2023.

RJ168 Wien Flughafen – 22:14 Buchs SG – Zürich HB runs via Winterthur rather than Sargans until 24 May, 16 June - 16 August and 6 September - 24 October 2024, but it has been confirmed that this train runs via St. Gallen, as shown in the SBB journey planner map, rather than using this line. RJX166 running non-stop from Buchs SG 20:11 to Zurich runs via Sargans.

The curve can also be done when VHMthB are running their Uferdampffahrten Romanshorn-Rorschach and return. The trains use bay platform 1 at Romanshorn and, to avoid propelling out of the station to run round and propelling in again, the train from Rorschach takes the avoiding line and then propels into Romanshorn station.

There are generally three round trips on operating days but the provisional 2024 timetable suggests two trains in the afternoons of 30 June, 28 July, 29 September and 27 October. Further details can be found on their website.

Sargans – Sevelen (Trübbach)

[880, 900] (ERA-E 69B2; ERA-R 144B4-144B5; S+W 25C2) CH24/22

There are two routes between the Buchs SG line at the former Trübbach station, south of Sevelen, and Sargans - a loop to the west of Sargans station which faces east, and a loop to the east which faces west.

Through trains between the Ziegelbrücke and Buchs SG lines use the eastern loop to avoid reversal at Sargans. These are the two-hourly EC/RJX trains between Zürich HB and Innsbruck and beyond, and the hourly S4 services which run between Einsiedeln (as S17), Sargans and Rapperswil SG via St. Gallen.

The hourly IR13 services between Zürich and Chur via Buchs SG use the western loop.

Klosters (Sasslatsch Nord) – Susch (Sasslatsch II) (Rhätische Bahn)

[910] (ERA-E 73B3; ERA-R 145B4; S+W 27A3-C4) CH24/23

This is the south-west curve out of the Vereina Tunnel, which opened in 2000. Note that the north point of the triangle, at Sasslatsch Nord, is inside the tunnel. It is used by the hourly service between St. Moritz and Landquart. These trains are shown in the timetable as not stopping between Zernez (or occasionally Susch) and Klosters Platz.

Sursee – Triengen (Sursee-Triengen Bahn)

(ERA-E 68A2-A3; ERA-R 136B1; S+W 11A4) CH24/24

This private railway has no regular passenger trains but special public services are provided on the last Sunday of the month from May to October, in conjunction with Dampfbahnverein Surental (DVS).

Gotthard Basistunnel: Altdorf (Rynächt) – Castione-Arbedo (Giustizia)

[600] (ERA-E 68C1-78A3; ERA-R 143A3-149C4; S+W 23A4-48C3) CH24/25

The new tunnel is used by regular trains with no booked stop between Arth-Goldau or Fluelen and Biasca or Bellinzona. The level of traffic via the new tunnel is such that additional trains may use the old route, even if with no booked stops, but with a significantly longer journey time.

Note: Following the freight train derailment in the Gotthard Base Tunnel on 10 August 2023, the western bore remains shut and only a limited passenger service is running through the eastern tunnel with the remainder using the 'classic' (Panoramastrecke) route. This is expected to continue until September 2024.

Biasca: Pollegio Nord Connection

[631] (ERA-E 73A3; ERA-R 149C5; S+W 48C3) CH24/26

With the realignment of the old Gotthard line at Pollegio, north of Biasca, to run alongside the Gotthard Basistunnel route, the 600 m-long former connection between the two routes is now used by all trains on the old Gotthard route. The connection between the two routes is now only around 100 m long. It is used by the following IC services which call at Biasca.

SuX IC893 (SX) /
IC895 (SO)
Zürich HB – 23:49 Arth-Goldau – Bellinzona
SuX IC862 Bellinzona – 05:21 Biasca – Zürich HB

Note: As a result of the freight train derailment in the Gotthard Base Tunnel, the above trains currently have much-lengthened journey times, which implies that they use the 'classic' Gotthard summit route and therefore not this connection. This is expected to continue until September 2024.

Ceneri Basistunnel: Giubiasco/S. Antonino (Biv. Vigana) – Lugano (Biv. Vezia)

[600, 631, 632] (ERA-E 73A2; ERA-R 149C3-149B2; S+W 59D1-D3) CH24/27

The 15.4 km Ceneri Base Tunnel between Giubiasco and Lugano opened to regular passenger services on 13 December 2020. A west to south curve (Biv. Vigana - Biv. Camorino) links the Locarno line with the north end of the tunnel.

The tunnel is used by EC services between Zürich and Milano or other stations in Italy, and IC services between Zürich/Basel and Lugano, which all run non-stop between Bellinzona and Lugano. It is also used by S10 trains between Biasca and Chiasso, which do not stop between Giubiasco and Lugano. Local S90 services call at intermediate stations and so use the old route via Monte Ceneri tunnel.

A half-hourly RE80 service runs between Locarno and Lugano via the west to south curve and the base tunnel.

Note: As a result of the freight train derailment in the Gotthard Base Tunnel, timings of EC and IC services are subject to major alteration and a check with an online journey planner is recommended. This is expected to continue until September 2024.

Capolago Riva San Vitale – Capolago Lago (Ferrovia Monte Generoso)

[636] (ERA-E 73A1; ERA-R 149C2; S+W 59D4) CH24/28

This 250 metre extension northwards from the normal terminus, adjoining Capolago-Riva San Vitale FFS station, was used until 2023 (last train October 29th) to connect with the seasonal calls of vessels of Società Navigazione del Lago di Lugano.

An email from the railway on 28.12.2023 confirmed that this section is now closed to timetabled passenger trains but remains available for private charters or special workings.

Eppenberg Tunnel

[650] (ERA-E 68A3; ERA-R 136B2; S+W 16B) CH24/29

Click on the thumbnail for a full size map.

The opening of the 3114 metre-long Eppenberg tunnel in October 2020 created a four track section of railway between Olten and Aarau. In the middle section the original route via Schönenwerd is a considerable distance away from the Eppenberg tunnel which is effectively a separate route.

The old line via Schönenwerd is used by local trains calling at Schönenwerd and trains to and from Biel/Bienne and Basel. The Eppenberg tunnel is used by trains to and from Bern and Luzern.

Biel/Bienne avoiding line: Biel Bözingenfeld / Bienne Champs-de-Boujean (Abzw Biel Mett) – Brügg BE (Abzw Madretsch)

[410] (ERA-E xxx; ERA-R xxx; S+W 18D1) CH24/30

This line via Biel RB (yard) links the lines from Biel/Bienne to Solothurn and to Lyss, avoiding Biel/Bienne station. It has no regular passenger use but was used on the weekends of 30 September / 1 October and 7-8 October 2023 by diverted RE and IC51 services between Delémont and Lyss.

Genève Lancy-Pont-Rouge – Stade de Genève

(ERA-E 70A3; ERA-R 139B1; S+W 68D3) CH24/31

This branch runs off the Genève to Annemasse line via La Praille marshalling yard to a dedicated station, Genève-Stade, which is adjacent to the ground of Servette FC. No special trains are provided for home fans, with the advice from the club being to use Lancy-Pont-Rouge or Lancy-Bachet stations, which both have frequent services.

However, very occasionally, special trains are run for away supporters to take them directly to the stadium. The most recent examples were one from Luzern on 22.08.2021, one from Zürich on 11.02.2023 and one from Lausanne on 09.12.2023. A planned working from Basel on 25.05.2023 was refused by SBB/CFF because of shortage of stock.

Any such workings in the future will be advertised on the website of the visiting football club, rather than on the Servette FC site. An email inquiry to FC Zürich brought the response that they intend to run at least one special train to Stade de Genève on Saturday April 6 2024 but that details would only be released in the week leading up to the match


See Switzerland - Tram services over obscure routes

Other sparse services

The following lines have few trains (relative to service levels generally in this country) — fewer than five trains each way on at least three days a week.

221 Travers – Pontarlier (France) Three train pairs per day

The following lines have limited or no service throughout the winter. The length of the 'summer season' varies considerably:

314 Wilderswil – Schynige Platte June to late October
473 Alpnachstadt – Pilatus Kulm Early May to mid-November
476 Brienz – Brienzer Rothorn June to late October
636 Capolago – Generoso Vetta Daily service end March to late October, weekends and holidays only until late March and in early December; no service at all in November
12.580 Riffelalp (GGB) – Riffelalp Hotel (Riffelalp Tram) Late June to mid-September, and only between 11:20 and 16:05 each day

Deletions since previous edition

CH23/01 Genève Lancy-Pont-Rouge – Stade de Genève Deleted as no sign of any special trains to Stade de Genève station but reinstated as CH24/31 after information received that very occasional specials for away fans do run

See also