I am from Argentina and have a flight for June 2 from Buenos Aires to Frankfurt. It lands on June 3. My final destination is Zurich, to start my PhD. So basically I need a way to travel from Frankfurt to Zurich on June 3. I don't know which is the situation there in Europe. Are trains working? Planes? Bus? Should I expect any inconvenience? I have some paperwork both from the university and from the embassy to help me with this journey.

  • 4
    Are you sure you'll be allowed to fly to Germany on June 3? There are still restrictions on non-essential travel around Europe. Your PhD may not qualify as essential.
    – user105640
    May 27 '20 at 21:48
  • 2
    Related question travel.stackexchange.com/questions/154027/…
    – Traveller
    May 27 '20 at 23:06

In April, local and domestic train traffic was very strongly reduced, long-distance international bus traffic almost completely stopped but both are slowly resuming operations. Time and capacity are still restricted.

Specifically, for your route:

Wearing a mask is mandatory in trains in Germany, strongly recommended but not mandatory in Switzerland.

PS: I am strictly limiting myself to the question you are asking. Since you were in touch with the relevant embassy, I assume you know there are still restrictions on entering the Schengen area from outside Europe and entering individual countries (especially Germany) but you are satisfied that you qualify for an exemption.


Train travel in Europe is fast and comfortable, and trains run extremely frequently, even in this exceedingly odd Coronavirus period of time. Except between roughly midnight and 6am, you'll probably be able to find at least one trip per hour between Frankfurt and Zurich.

Here's a list of trains on 3 June (starting from 8 am) from the Frankfurt Airport train station to the Zurich main station:


While there don't seem to be any direct trains, there are several options that only require a single train change in Mannheim or in Basel Badischer Bahnhof, a German train station in Basel, Switzerland.

The "forecast" for all of these trains on the Deutsche Bahn web site shows very light traveler density, so you probably don't need to bother reserving seats; you can just sit where you find a place.

The trip takes about 4 hours and will cost just over €100 unless you're eligible for some sort of discount.

You should check before you go to make sure you can actually fly to Frankfurt, and to make sure you'll be able to enter Switzerland. Have a look at the What exceptions apply to this border closure? on this linked page to make sure you meet the requirements for entering Switzerland.

It's possible you won't encounter any border control between Germany and Switzerland; the trains don't actually stop at the border, but at train stations before and after it. But there could be border guards on the train between Basel Badischer Bahnhof (German train station in Basel, Switzerland) and Basel SBB (Swiss and French train station in Basel), so be prepared to justify your entry into Switzerland to them if you need to. (It's likely you'll be able to find one who speaks English.)

  • 1
    Thank you for your detailed answer. According to what says the link on boarder closure exceptions I think I should be able to reach Zurich. I also have a letter from UZH explaining why they want me there during June.
    – user171780
    May 28 '20 at 16:13

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