Blind and visually impaired.
If you are blind or visually impaired and would like assistance from railway staff, please call our SBB Call Center Handicap and arrange a meeting point. To organize such assistance when boarding or alighting from trains, please be sure to have your white stick or your guide dog with you.
SOS-Bahnhofhilfe can also be contacted directly at whichever station you are at.
ID card for blind and visually impaired passengers using local public transport networks.
As a blind or severely visually impaired person, you and your travelling companion or guide dog or both can use the public transport networks of several Swiss cities free of charge. You need a special ID card to be able to do this, however.
Your personal photo ID card is valid only with a valid stamp (Kontrollmarke) and the year of issue. Simply present your "Ärztlicher Attest für Reisende mit einer Behinderung" ("Doctor's Note for Passengers with a Disability") to the public transport network authority in question and it will issue you with an ID card and a valid stamp.
You can obtain detailed information from one of the associated transport companies or the regional advisory service for blind and visually impaired people.
Ordering tickets by telephone.
Passengers with a disability can purchase tickets and have them stored by calling the freephone number 0800 181 181. The product range includes most tickets which are available from ticket machines. You can order tickets by telephone up to 24 hours before your journey, and pay immediately using a credit card or within 30 days on receipt of invoice. No physical ticket is issued for the journey. When train staff are inspecting tickets on the train, they will make a telephone call to clarify that a corresponding ticket is stored for you. You also need to show your "Disabled Passenger's ID Card" (entitling the holder to a travelling companion). After your journey you receive a validated ticket and a receipt for payment by credit card or the outstanding invoice. For this service, dial 0800 181 181 and select the language you need, then press 1.
You can purchase the following items:
- Ordinary Ticket (Single journey, return trip or round trip).
- 1-day travelpass; 1-day travelpass, valid from 9.00 a.m., for the Half-Fare travelcard.
- Class upgrade/ Class upgrade for holders of a 1-day travelpass.
- Route change.
- Ordinary ticket in these integrated fare networks: TNW (Basel/Nordwestschweiz), Libero (Bern/Solothurn), Ostwind, A-Welle.
Information on train services
Information on train services for the blind and visually impaired.
If you are on a journey and would like to know about platform changes or delayed trains, you can obtain the necessary information on the freephone number 0800 181 181. For this service, dial 0800 181 181 and select the language you need, then press 2. You can obtain regular timetable and price information from our Rail Service on 0900 300 300 (CHF 1.19/min. from the Swiss fixed-line network).
SBB ticket machine helpline.
Are you blind or visually impaired and in need of help when using an SBB ticket machine?
If so, dial 0800 11 44 77 and quote the machine's ID number, which is displayed on the start screen and also in raised lettering above the screen. The SBB call centre will be glad to guide you through the purchasing process and operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
We can also access the ticket machine remotely and prepare your ticket for you on request. You can pay for the ticket at the machine, where it will then be printed as usual.
Platform number and sector.
At larger stations, metal plates with notes in Braille and raised regular print are available to help passengers find the platform number and section.
These metal plates can be found on the handrail of every flight of stairs or platform access.
Lifts are marked with notes in Braille and raised symbols on the inside and outside.
At major stations (Bern, Basel, Zurich main station, etc.), a signage system for blind people has been installed which enables them to access platforms independently.
Tactile safety lines.
The area between the outer edges of the visual and tactile safety lines designates the area where it is safe for passengers to stand.
You can find a list of the stations where tactile safety lines have been installed under Download.
Informations and contact line.
Information for the blind and the severely visually impaired.
You can obtain information in Braille, large print and on cassette from organisations for the blind and visually impaired. Among the items available are a list of hub stations, information on Zurich's S-Bahn network (with network map in relief) and on the network of the Zurich public transport authority (Zürcher Verkehrsverbund).
Voicenet – a service of the Swiss Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired (SBV).
You can call Voicenet at 031 390 88 88 to find out the departure times and platforms of trains leaving from the following stations:
- in German: Basel, Bern, Lucerne, Olten, St. Gallen, Winterthur, Zürich Hauptbahnhof and S-Bahn Zürich.
- in French: Delémont, Fribourg/Freiburg, Genève-Aéroport, Genève Cornavin, Neuchâtel e Lausanne.