Metros in Switzerland: Lausanne Metro

Lausanne is the fourth most populated city in Switzerland. It has a population of around 150,000 inhabitants. People speak French in this region. It is located around 60 kilometers from Geneva, on the edge of Lake Geneva. Lausanne is the city with the lowest population in the world to have a metro. Lausanne is famous for growing wine. The city is also an important place for sports, since the International Olympic Committee is located here. The city will host the winter games of the 2020 Olympics.

History

There was a cable railway line in Lausanne Ouchy which opened to the public in 1877. This is one of the predecessors of Lausanne Metro. In 1954, these funiculars went from other stations to the main station in Flon. Its trains and rails got replaced with newer and more modern ones in 1959, and the line was renamed from tramway to metro. Two stations got demolished to construct new underground ones. This line stopped operations in 2006 and its trains were sold. Two years later, in 2008, it eventually turn into the M2 line.

Another predecessor of Lausanne Metro was the original M1 line. M1 line inaugurated in 1896. Its railway was expanded around 60 kilometers long in 1934, but it closed in 1964. M1 line later reopened in the official inauguration of Lausanne Metro, on May 24, 1991. The trains were now owned by Tramway du Sud-Ouest Lausannoise (TSOL.) M2 line was planned in September 2001, and was built during five years in the closed line of Lausanne Ouchy. M2 line finally opened to the public in September 21st, 2008.

Lines and stations

The Lausanne Metro has 30 stations and two lines, M1 and M2. Each one has 15 stations. The stations for each line are the following:

  • M1 Line stations: Renens CFF, UNIL-Sorge, Cerisaie, EPFL, Crochy, Bassenges, Epenex, Malley, Vigie, Bourdonnette, Montelly, UNIL-Dorigny, Provence, UNIL-Mouline, Lausanne-Flon
  • M2 Line stations: Croisettes, Ouchy-Olympique, CHUV, Riponne-Maurice Béjart, Délices, Sallaz, Grancy, Vennes, Jordils, Ours, Montriond, Bessiéres, Lausanne Railway Station, Lausanne Flon, Fourmi

Rail connections

Buses are also owned by TL, which allows you to transfer from the metro to them. Also, with the Mobilis pass, you are able to transfer to the following 11 transport agencies: Swiss Federal Railways (SBB CFF FFS), LEB, Car Postal, MBC, TPN, NStCM, MOB, Transports VMCV, Travys, AVJ, TPC

Connection to the airport

The closest airport is Geneva Airport (GVA). The trip from the airport to the metro's main hub is one hour long. There are four trains towards Lausanne every hour. The trip costs 27 Swiss Francs (CHF). From the airport, take the InterRegio 1717 train towards Brig, and get off at Lausanne. Walk five minutes to arrive to Gare station. Then, board the M2 metro towards Epalinges, Croisettes, and you will arrive to Flon station. From here, you can take M1 and M2 trains.

Schedule, timetables, and hour of operations

The weekday schedule for M1 and M2 lines is the following:

1) M1 Line: There are trains available every five minutes. The trains go from Renens-Gare station to Lausanne-Flon station. The opening and closing times for each station are the following:

  • Renens-Gare station: It opens at 5:37 am, and closes at 00:37 am.
  • Epenex station: It opens at 5:38 am, and closes at 00:38 am.
  • Crochy station: It opens at 5:39 am, and closes at 00:39 am.
  • Cerisaie station: It opens at 5:40 am, and closes at 00:40 am.
  • Bassenges station: It opens at 5:41 am, and closes at 00:41 am.
  • EPFL station: It opens at 5:43 am, and closes at 11:58 pm.
  • UNIL-Sorge station: It opens at 5:14 am, and it closes at 11:59 pm.
  • UNIL-Mouline station: It opens at 5:15 am, and it closes at 00:00 am
  • UNIL-Dorigny station: It opens at 5:16 am, and closes at 00:01 am.
  • Bourdonnette station: It opens at 5:18 am, and closes at 00:03 am.
  • Malley station: It opens at 5:21 am, and closes at 00:05 am.
  • Provence station: It opens at 5:22 am, and closes at 00:06 am.
  • Montelly station: It opens at 5:23 am, and closes at 00:07 am.
  • Vigie station: It opens at 5:26 am, and closes at 00:09 am.

2) M2 Line: There are trains available every 5 to 7.5 minutes. The trains go from Ouchy-Olympique station to Croissets station. The opening and closing times for each station are the following:

  • Ouchy-Olympique station: It opens at 5:26 am, and closes at 00:40 am.
  • Jordils station: It opens at 5:27 am, and closes at 00:42 am.
  • Délices station: It opens at 5:28 am, and closes at 00:43 am.
  • Grancy station: It opens at 5:29 am, and closes at 00:44 am.
  • Lausanne-Gare station: It opens at 5:31 am, and closes at 00:46 am.
  • Lausanne-Flon station: It opens at 5:32 am, and closes at 00:47 am.
  • Riponne-M. Béjart station: It opens at 5:34 am, and closes at 00:49 am.
  • Bessiéres station: It opens at 5:35 am, and closes at 00:50 am.
  • Ours station: It opens at 5:37 am, and closes at 00:52 am.
  • CHUV station: It opens at 5:38 am, and closes at 00:53 am.
  • Sallaz station: It opens at 5:40 am, and closes at 00:55 am.
  • Fourmi station: It opens at 5:42 am, and closes at 00:57 am.
  • Vennes station: It opens at 5:44 am, and closes at 00:59 am.

Price, tickets, and cards

To pay the metro’s fares, you can buy individual tickets, buy a subscription or buy cards. All prices are shown in Swiss Francs (CHF.)

Tickets

The tickets are divided into the following categories: Billet Court Parcours, Billet Grand Lausanne, Carte Journaliére, and Billet “Mini Groupe”. Here are the prices for each ticket:

  • 1) Billet Court Parcours (2.30 CHF): Valid for three stops only. It lasts for 30 minutes. It covers zones 11 and 12 by metro and buses. It also works in buses 703 MBC (Morges), 701, 702, and 705 in areas 12, 30, 31, 32, and 33.
  • 2) Billet Grand Lausanne: It covers zones 11 and 12, which is most of Lausanne. Reduced rates are offered to children between 6 and 16 years old, dogs, and the Half Price subscription. This ticket lets you travel between one and two hours from two to four zones. The prices are the following:
    • 2.1) Two zones: 3.7 CHF at full price, 2.4 CHF at reduced rates, and is valid for one hour.
    • 2.2) Three zones: 5.6 CHF at full price, 2.8 at reduced rates, and is valid for two hours.
    • 2.3) Four zones: 7.4 CHF at full price, 3.7 at reduced rates, and is valid for two hours.
  • 3) Carte Journaliére: This ticket lets you travel unlimited for a day, until 5 am of the next day. It lets you travel from two to four zones. Zones 11 and 12 count as a single zone. The reduced rates have the same conditions as in Billet Grand Lausanne. The prices are the following:
    • 3.1) Two zones: 9.3 CHF at full price, and 6.9 CHF at reduced rates.
    • 3.2) Three zones: 11.2 CHF at full price, and 7 CHF at reduced rates.
    • 3.3) Four zones: 14.8 CHF at full price, and 7.4 at reduced rates.
  • 4) Billet “Mini Groupe” (12 CHF per person): This ticket offers you unlimited rides on the weekend, as long as you are in a group of four adults.

Subscriptions

The subscriptions offered are the following: For 6 to 25 year olds, from 25 years and older, from 64 years and older, and dog passes.

  • 1) From 6 to 25 years old: The passes offered give unlimited rides from two to four zones for people between the ages of 6 and 25 years old. You can choose between weekly, monthly, or yearly plans. The prices are the following:
    • 1.1) Two zones: 26 CHF for a weekly pass, 52 CHF for a monthly pass, and 468 CHF for a yearly pass.
    • 1.2) Three zones: 38 CHF for a weekly pass, 78 CHF for a monthly pass, and 684 CHF for a yearly pass.
    • 1.3) Four zones: 48 CHF for a weekly pass, 96 CHF for a monthly pass, and 864 for a yearly pass.
  • 2) From 25 years and older: This pass gives unlimited rides to people between the ages of 25 and 64 years old. It covers two to four zones. The prices are the following:
    • 2.1) Two zones: 37 CHF for a weekly pass, 74 CHF for a monthly pass, and 740 CHF for a yearly pass.
    • 2.2) Three zones: 54 CHF for a weekly pass, 108 CHF for a monthly pass, and 1080 CHF for a yearly pass.
    • 2.3) Four zones: 69 CHF for a weekly pass, 137 for a monthly pass, and 1370 for a yearly pass.
  • 3) 64 years and older: This pass gives unlimited rides to customers of 64 years of age and older. The prices are the following:
    • 3.1) Two zones: 34 CHF for a weekly pass, 67 CHF for a monthly pass, and 670 for a yearly pass.
    • 3.2) Three zones: 49 CHF for a weekly pass, 98 CHF for a monthly pass, and 980 CHF for a yearly pass.
    • 3.3) Four zones: 62 CHF for a weekly pass, 124 CHF for a monthly pass, and 1240 CHF for a yearly pass.
  • 4) Dog passes: A subscription needed to board with dogs. The prices are:
    • 4.1) Two zones: 26 CHF for a weekly pass, 52 CHF for a monthly pass, and 468 CHF for a yearly pass.
    • 4.2) Three zones: 38 CHF for a weekly pass, 76 CHF for a monthly pass, and 684 for a yearly pass.
    • 4.3) Four zones: 48 CHF for a weekly pass, 96 CHF for a monthly pass, and 864 for a yearly pass.

Passes

There are two special passes offered: the Swiss Pass, and the Mobilis Pass. The Swiss Pass offers the Half Price subscription, and offers rides to most of Switzerland’s public transportation agencies. The Mobilis Pass is needed to travel in Lausanne Metro. This pass goes to over 300 municipalities, and makes connection to some transportation agencies.

Rules

  • If you are standing on the metro, grab the handles, since the metro may brake suddenly and may cause injuries.
  • The metro’s doors close when a visual and auditive signal appears. Do not rush into the metro if you see or hear this signal.
  • If you bring a Rollator walking aid, strap it into the handle so it does not obstruct other passengers.
  • There are special seats for people with strollers or large luggage.
  • Fasten the strollers in these special seats for your child’s safety.
  • If you bring electronic tickets (E-tickets), you need to bring your ID and have an active subscription to the ticket’s service.
  • Animals and people with bikes need to buy special tickets.

The number of bikes allowed per passenger car is shown in stickers in the train. M1 trains accept two bikes per passenger car, whereas M2 trains allow four bikes per car. However, bikes are not allowed if the train is crowded, like in rush hours. The price to bring a bike to the metro varies according to the following conditions:
Free: If bike is folded or if the bike is a kid’s bike.
Half price: If owner of the bike is an adult with a 6 to 16 year old companion.
Full price: For adults.

Segways, motor bikes, and other fuel-powered vehicles are not allowed. Wheelchairs are allowed up to the following dimensions: 70 centimeters wide, 120 centimeters long, and 140 centimeters high.

Future expansions

Two new sections will be added to the metro: Northward extension, and New Lausanne-Gare section.

  • Northward extension: Expansion that will allow travel to Le-Chalet-á-Gobet, Epalinges-Village.
  • New Lausanne-Gare section: A new extension that will be done in 2025. It will have double track. A new line, M3 Line, is planned to be built here.

M3 Line will begin construction in 2018. This line will use the same type of trains and tracks as M2 Line.

Lausanne Metro Tips

Travelling through the metro makes it easy to travel within Lausanne, since the city has a lot of hills, and the metro goes up and down the hills.

If you check-in in Lausanne's hotels, you will get the Lausanne Transport Card, which gives you free rides in the metro. The card is valid for as long as you stay in the hotel. It covers the following zones: 11, 12, 15, 16, 18, and 19.

You can buy tickets at vending machines in stations and bus stops. The vending machines accept credit cards, debit cards, and bills. Be careful, since some old vending machines do not give change.

The price of the ticket and passes are tied to a zone system. In other words, depending on the region, prices will differ. This price system is established by the Mobilis card, which gives transportation to Lausanne and its surrounding cities in the Canton Vaud region. Most of Lausanne counts as zone 11 and 12. The Grand Lausanne tickets covers zones 11 and 12, and is divided into single tickets and Day tickets. A single ticket gives unlimited rides for an hour. A Day ticket gives you unlimited travels until 5 am of the following day. Three single tickets cost the same as a Day ticket, so buy a Day ticket if you will travel three or more times a day. Another option is buying the Swiss Federal Pass, which is recommended for unlimited travel for more than one day.

Fun facts

Trains of the M2 line use rubber wheels, whereas M1 trains use steel wheels. M2 trains are fully automatic, whereas M1 trains require drivers. Another difference between the lines is that M2 stations have safety doors that separate the platforms from the rails. M1 uses single track rails, whereas M2 uses double track rails. The altitude changes 300 m in an entire trip through all the stations in the M2 line.

Nearby attractions

The closest international airport to Lausanne is Geneva Airport. Here are the directions to travel from Geneva Airport to Lausanne’s touristic attractions using the Lausanne Metro.

1) Escaliers du Marché: The trip lasts 56 minutes. From Geneva Airport, take the InterRegio 2527 train towards Luzern, and get off in Lausanne. Once in Lausanne, walk five minutes towards Gare station. Then, take the M2 Line train towards Epalinges, Croisettes, and get off in Lausanne Ripone-M. Béjart station. Walk three minutes to1003 Lausanne, Escaliers du Marché. This place is a series of steps in front of a cathedral. It is beautiful to look around while you go down the stairs, and there are cafés available.

2) Fine Art Museum: The trip lasts 1 hour and six minutes. From Geneva Airport, board the InterRegio 1825 train towards Brig, and get off at Lausanne. Then, walk to Gare station. Board a M2 Line train towards Epalinges, Croisettes, and get off at Lausanne-Flon station. Walk 8 minutes to 1005 Lausanne Place de La Ripone 6. This museum has high quality French art, and it also has archeologic discoveries from the surrounding area.

3) Saint François Church: The trip lasts one hour and 7 minutes. From Geneva Airport, take the InterRegio 1825 train towards Brig, and get off at Lausanne. Walk five minutes towards Gare station. Board the M2 Line towards Epalinges, Croisettes, and get off at Lausanne-Flon station. Walk five minutes towards Lausanne-Bel-Air station. Board Bus 9 towards Lutry, Corniche, and get off at Lausanne Saint François. This is a 13th century church with stained glasses. There are also markets in the area.

4) Lausanne-Vidy Roman Museum: The trip lasts one hour and 16 minutes. From the airport, board the InterRegio 2527 train towards Luzern, and get off at Lausanne. Walk five minutes towards Gare station. Board the M2 Line train towards Epalinges, Croisettes, and get off at Lausanne-Flon station. Board the M1 Line train towards Renens VD, Gare, and get off at Malley station. Walk 13 minutes towards 1007 Lausanne, Chemin du Bois-de-Vaux 24. This museum shows the remains of a roman city in a shore, as well showing the collection of artifacts from the old city.

5) Flon Quarter: The trip lasts an hour. From the airport, board the InterRegio 1825 train towards Brig, and get off at Lausanne. Walk five minutes to Gare station. Board the M2 Line towards Epalinges, Croisettes, and get off at Flon station. This city is full of futuristic-looking architecture. There are many cafés, art galleries, and shops.

6) Chateau d’ Ouchy and Promenade: The trip lasts one hour and 10 minutes. From the airport, board the InterRegio 1825 train towards Brig, and get off at Lausanne. Walk five minutes to Gare station. Board the M2 Line train towards Lausanne, Ouchy-Olympique, and get off at the Ouchy-Olympique station. Walk five minutes to 1006 Lausanne, Place du Port 2. Here, you can stroll and enjoy the view of a flowery park, the harbor, and an old castle.

7) Place de la Palud: The trip lasts one hour and two minutes. From the airport, board the InterRegio 1825 train towards Brig, and get off at Lausanne. Walk five minutes to Gare station. Board the M2 Line towards Epalinges, Croisettes, and get off at Riponne-M. Béjart station. Walk three minutes to 1003 Lausanne, Place de la Palud. Here, you can buy produce at the farmers market. The town hall has a Renaissance style of architecture with stained glass. You can also enjoy the view of an old fountain with a statue.

Lausanne metro map

  • Passengers/Day
  • Fares: honour system
  • 24h operation: No
  • Air Conditioning: No
  • Walk between platforms: Yes
  • Driverless trains: Line m2 (since 2008)
  • Screen Doors Platforms: No
  • Operator: TL
  • VARIABLE
  • Lausanne Metro Official Website
  • Tlf: +41 021 621 01 110
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Metro map of Lausanne

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