Why Zurich’s central train station is rated the 'best in Europe'
Switzerland’s largest railway station, Zurich Hauptbahnhof (HB), scored the top position in a new Europe-wide ranking. Here’s why it nabbed the top position.
For its annual ranking, the European Railway Station Index, compiled by an international consumer advocacy group, The Consumer Choice Center, ranked Europe’s 50 largest railway stations in terms of ‘passenger experience’.
It assessed the stations based on a number of criteria such how crowded the platforms are, the number of domestic and international destinations, availability of ride-hailing services, competition of train companies, on-site restaurants and take-away spots, shopping, wheelchair accessibility, the existence of first-class lounges, Wi-Fi, as well as convenience in accessing the platforms.
Based on these criteria, Zurich’s HB was ranked the most “passenger friendly” station in Europe.
“Even though the station doesn’t have the highest number of international and domestic destinations, it has a high number of shops/kiosks, and restaurants and take-away spots for consumers to choose from", according to the Index.
This is an impressive score for Zurich, as its station didn’t even get a spot in the top-10 in the 2021 edition.
Interestingly, while Moscow’s Kazansky and Kursky train stations were in the fourth and sixth place, respectively, in the 2021 ranking, this year, “due to Russia’s military aggression against Ukraine, we removed Russia from the Index", its authors said.
Also, “we discovered that Russian train stations are not transparent and honest about their characteristics, which skewed the results of our last year’s index".
This is what you should know about Zurich’s HB:
- Some 470,000 passengers pass through the station each day.
- Nearly 3,000 trains arrive and depart from the station’s 26 platforms daily, including to and from 10 international destinations in Germany, Austria, France, and Italy.
- The HB is also an art centre of sorts: among other objects, contemporary works of art by Niki de Saint Phalle and Mario Merz enhance the main hall.
You can find more information about the Europe’s best railway station here.