The Golden Pass route is one of the most popular train rides in Switzerland. It offers a chance to see some of the best sights in the country while riding on some really unique trains. Our favorite way to experience the Golden Pass route is in VIP seats on the Golden Pass Panorama train.
VIP seats on the Golden Pass
The Golden Pass has a unique train between Zweisimmen and Montreux that features VIP seats which are below and in front of the engineer. These incredible seats look straight out the front of the train. They are the most amazing seats you’ll find on a train in Switzerland.
There are 2 rows of VIP seats arranged in a 3 x 1 formation. One seat is to the left side and three seats are on the right side. Only 8 VIP seats are available on each train and not every train has a VIP section.
Obviously you’ll want to try to secure the front row seats. The 2nd row of seats are also nice, and are slightly raised to see over the front row, but they do not really compare to being right up front.
Here is a view of all 8 seats and how the fit together to form the VIP area of the Golden Pass train.
Beyond the little swinging door is the regular 1st class section which requires no additional reservation or ticket other than your first class ticket.
Reserving VIP Seats on the Golden Pass
Reserving the VIP seats on the Golden Pass is highly recommended, especially in the summer. We rode the train in February, and could have just purchased the seats on the train, but that will not be the case during the busy season.
In fact, on our train, we were the only 2 people that reserved the seats, as is noted by the 2 reserved signs on our seats. 2 other people paid the conductor to ride with us part of the way, and 4 seats were left empty on our ride. We actually reserved the single seat on the left and the seat on the aisle next to it, but the must have thought we made a mistake, and gave us the 2 middle seats. In any case, for most of the ride, we had the entire VIP section to ourselves. This was an incredible bargain!
If you happen to get on this train without a reservation, ask the conductor if there is room in the VIP section, and they will sell you a ticket.
The best idea though is to book your VIP seat ahead of time online. This will guarantee you a seat in the VIP section.
Golden Pass VIP Ticket Costs
The Golden Pass VIP tickets cost CHF 15 each. They can be purchased online or paid for when you board the train. It will take some patience and translation to purchase the tickets online, but we were able to do so without any problems. To buy your tickets online, visit the Mob.ch website.
If you are riding the train on a 2nd class ticket, you’ll also need to pay for the upgrade to 1st class in addition to the VIP Seat charge. If you have the Swiss Pass, you do not need to pay for a full ticket, just the seat reservation. When buying online, check that it has accounted for your Swiss Pass before purchasing. The price should only be CHF 15 with the pass.
The Golden Pass VIP Experience
For CHF 15, this is an unbeatable experience. There is really no where else you can ride a train like this, with a full view of the entire landscape. We rode the Golden Pass Belle Epoque one way on this route, and then rode the Golden Pass VIP back, to make a round trip from Zweisimmen.
If you have the Swiss Pass, doing a round trip like this would only cost you the price of the VIP upgrade.