Close

Living in Switzerland guide

Find out all you need to know to relocate and live in Switzerland with the expat guide

Write an article

Generalities

General information
  • Switzerland has a high concentration of expatriates from Europe and other countries. The country enjoys a vibrant economy.

    Article written by expat.com

Formalities

Visas, passports and entry requirements
  • Formalities relating to marriage in Switzerland are quite simple. Moreover, marriage in the country does not alter an expatriate's nationality.

    Article written by expat.com
  • To make a less than three months stay in Switzerland, you can use a valid passport or a recognized identity card.

    Article written by expat.com

Visas

Work visas, work permits, working holiday visas and residence permits
  • Foreign nationals wishing to work in Switzerland have to apply for a work permit or residence permit from the federal government.

    Article written by expat.com
  • You can choose among different types of visas if you wish to work in Switzerland: the L, B and G visas.

    Article written by expat.com

Work

Labour market, how to find a job
  • Zurich city has a prosperous economy and a dynamic labor market which is very open to expatriates. You will not have trouble finding a job there.

    Article written by expat.com
  • The most open fields to expatriates in Lausanne are health care services, manufacturing, education, as well as the public administration...

    Article written by expat.com
  • Geneva, one of Switzerland's major cities, offers various professional opportunities to European and non-European expatriates.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Job prospects are abundant in Fribourg, Switzerland, both for foreigners and frontier workers. Thus the city's economy is based on many fields.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Berne's main recruiters fields are tourism, industry, technology, among others. These areas are quite open to European and non-European expatriates.

    Article written by expat.com

Accommodation

How to rent a house or an apartment, leases and rental agreements
  • Zurich is one of Switzerland's most pleasant cities, but also where rent prices are the highest. It however offers a range of accommodations.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Switzerland has a wide range of accommodations which are available for lease. But to rent a property, you have to provide a security deposit.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Rent prices in Lausanne, Switzerland, are rather affordable. However, the demand keeps on rising while the city lacks accommodation.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Geneva's different neighborhoods offer a variety of accommodation options to expatriates wishing to settle there: apartments, studios, houses, etc.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Fribourg, one of the most important Swiss cities has a high concentration of expatriates in many neighborhoods where accommodation offers are numerous.

    Article written by expat.com

Study

Student visa, University registration
  • You can enroll in one of Switzerland's prestigious universities if you wish to study there. But you will need a residence permit.

    Article written by expat.com

Health care

Public and private health systems

Bank

Open and manage a bank account
  • You have to be physically present in Switzerland to be able to open a bank account. You cannot proceed online.

    Article written by expat.com

Tax

Tax system, income tax
  • Employees and companies operating in Switzerland are taxed on their income. Tax is levied at the federal, cantonal and communal levels.

    Article written by expat.com

Transports

Train, bus, plane, car rental
  • Switzerland has various means of transport: airplanes, buses, trains, trams, boats, etc, which are easily accessible in most regions.

    Article written by expat.com

Driver's licence

Driving requirements
  • Expatriates can drive in Switzerland with their original driver's license provided they have a less than 12 months stay authorization.

    Article written by expat.com
  • A Californian living in canton St. Gallen describes how she exchanged her U.S. driver's license for a Swiss one. The article includes a helpful guide to understanding the terminology related to German language DMV forms.

    Article written by NYUMandy

Removal

moving, formalities and useful tips
  • You are advised to hire international removal experts if you have decided to move your belongings to Switzerland.

    Article written by expat.com

Communications

Phone line, internet provider, post office
  • The Swiss phone network is highly developed, both in terms of land lines and mobile. Expatriates will have no trouble in keeping in touch with family.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Expatriates in Switzerland can access to different types of Internet connections: narrow band, dial-up, broadband with ADSL and cable.

    Article written by expat.com

Leisure

Sports, leisure and cultural activities
  • Ice hockey is the Swiss national sport. But several other sports including athletics, gymnastics, swimming, tennis, are also very popular.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Discover Switzerland's rich natural, historical and cultural heritage during your leisure time by visiting its national and amusement parks, museums, etc.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Your dog or cat must hold a passport and a health record to be allowed to travel with you to Switzerland. It must also be vaccinated against rabies.

    Article written by expat.com
  • Preprimary education is not compulsory in Switzerland. Its conditions are governed at regional level: each canton has indeed its own education system.

    Article written by expat.com
  • You are required to declare all objects you have in your possession on your arrival in Switzerland. Medication must be accompanied by a prescription.

    Article written by expat.com

Expatriate health insurance in Switzerland

Free advice and quotation service to choose an expat health insurance in Switzerland

Moving to Switzerland

Find tips from professionals about moving to Switzerland

International Wealth Management

Get advice from well-reputed and experienced international wealth managers regarding your financial affairs

Travel insurance in Switzerland

Enjoy stress-free travel to Switzerland