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India emerges as a very important market for Rhaetian Railway

Rhaetian Railway is a Swiss transport company and is promoting two of its panoramic trains the Bernina Express & Glacier Express in the Indian market. Patric Miescher,Market Manager Asia-Pacific,Rhaetian Railway Inc, while talking to TravelBiz Monitor during his recent visit to India, said, “I met travel agents here in India to promote these two trains and the response is very good.The Glacier Express is well known in the Indian market when compared with the Bernina Express.” Now, the company stepped up its efforts to promote the Bernina Express in this market.

The Bernina Express connects the north with the south of Europe. It runs from Chur, the oldest city of Switzerland, all the way to Tirano in Italy. It runs through 55 tunnels, crosses 196 bridges, passes forests, mountains and even glaciers. The train’s route from Thusis to Tirano is also listed as UNESCO World Heritage site. The route was added to the UNESCO World Heritage sites in July 2008. “The Landwasser- and Brusio Circular Viaduct are probably the two most iconic landmarks along the Bernina Express route, with worldwide recognition,” said Miescher.

The canton of Grisons, within which, the trains of Rhaetian Railway operate, is still relatively unknown in Asia and also in India. The most well-known town, would probably be St. Moritz, which is famous for its history regarding being the birthplace of winter tourism. Therefore, the canton of Grisons is a popular choice for visitors, who like to explore Switzerland in more depth and who are in search of hidden gems, such as the Swiss National Park, Mt.Diavolezza or of course a ride with the Bernina Express.

However, despite being still relatively unknown, the overnight statistics of the canton show,that the numbers of visitors from Asian countries and also from India are increasing strongly. “The figures of Asian and Indian visitors on Bernina Express, show the same picture. One of the reasons, why Bernina Express is getting more and more desired, especially in India, might lie within the Swiss Travel Pass, a pass which allows individual travellers in Switzerland to use local transport for free, including the trains, such as the Bernina Express; all that is still needed is a valid seat reservation,” he said.

Talking about the Indian market Miescher said that it is one of the biggest markets in Asia-pacific region for them. “Rising middle class, popularity of Switzerland etc. making it more potential for us,” he said. According to him, a notable post-COVID trend is the increased inclination of people from India to extend their stays in Switzerland and participate in a greater number of activities. “Previously, tourists wanted to visit multiple countries, but now they are opting to extend their stays in Switzerland. This shift in trend is advantageous for us since the longer they stay, the more they explore Switzerland. This, in turn, increases the likelihood of them travelling to the eastern part where our railway operates,” he emphasized.

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