Moving to Switzerland

Last updated: September 16, 2019

On this page you will find essential information on what you need to know about moving to Switzerland. From the cost of moving, finding work or what it’s like to live as a Swiss. If you’re interested in finding a removal company that can help you with moving to Switzerland, you can look at our page of A-Z list of moving companies to find removal companies in your area or look at the top 10 international moving companies in the UK and the services they provide.

Living in Switzerland

Moving to a different country can be exciting and open up your eyes to a new culture. However, moving to any place will come with surprises and a degree of culture shock. This article explains some mistakes foreigners make on moving to Switzerland.

This section outlines what you can expect life to be like when moving to Switzerland.

Cost of Living in Switzerland:

If you’re interested in how much it would cost to live in Switzerland, the figures below will give you a good idea:

City scoresCosts per city
CityQuality of lifePurchasing powerSafetyHealth careCost of livingPollution
Bern786493788514
Geneva788479789929
CityCappuccino price1L milk priceOne dozen eggs priceThree room apartment rent
Bern£ 2,91£ 0,97£ 4,31£ 829,58
Geneva£ 3,25£ 1,28£ 4,53£ 3.196,89

Every city is different and has a unique feel and character. So, if you want to discover more, you should take a look at our pages on moving to Bern and Geneva.

Visas:

You don’t require a visa to move to Switzerland. However, you will have to register for work and apply for residence with the Residents Registration Office if you are staying for more than three months. You will have 14 days to do this from when you arrive. You can visit our visas in Switzerland page for more information.

We are not sure how the process of moving to Switzerland will be affected after Brexit as of yet. However, you can read our Moving to Europe After Brexit for some advice on what to prepare for.

Housing:

It is quite challenging to get onto the property ladder in Switzerland as the majority of locals rent out their homes. On average, only about 40% of Swiss nationals buy property, it is more common to house share or sub-let property. So, if you’re moving to Switzerland and are planning on buying or renting a house, here are the main ways you can find housing:

  • Online portals
  • Newspapers
  • Real Estate Agent Brochures

It’s always best to look for housing early on so that you can have a better peace of mind when you start getting busy with the whole moving malarkey. If you would like help in finding out what else you should prepare early on, read our moving abroad page which describes 34 things you should definitely be preparing and when to do them.

Health insurance:

The Swiss healthcare system is regarded as one of the best in the world. However, it isn’t free and it’s important must take out basic health insurance within the first three months of moving to Switzerland. For more information, you can visit the Swiss authorities website.

Moving to Switzerland

Working in Switzerland

With high salaries, excellent working conditions and low unemployment, it’s no wonder working in Switzerland is popular. However, you must apply with a Swiss-style CV and cover letter, so if you’re not sure how to do that, here are some tips on how to write the perfect CV.

Finding Work:

If you are moving to Switzerland for work but don’t have a job yet and are unsure as to where to look, below are some of the main ways that you can do so:

  • The internet: The easiest way to look for work. There are endless websites that can help you look and find a job that fits your skills in the area you are moving to. Most companies post their job vacancies on their own websites. Here are some examples:
  • People: Connecting with people can open up job opportunities that you may not have come across otherwise.
  • Newspapers: The main newspapers with online job search tools include:
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Cost of Moving to Switzerland

Size of HouseholdTimeCost
1 bed flat9-11 days£1,400 – £1,800
3 bed house2-4 days£2,200 – £3,000
5 bed house2-4 days£3,500 – £4,800

Above are some estimated removal costs of moving the entire contents of someone’s home form the London to Geneva by road. These costs are calculated by the removal companies using volume (cubic metres) and the distance. If you want to find out the total volume you want to move, you can use our removal volume calculator. You can also have a look at our international moving costs or container shipping costs pages for more information.

Making your move cheaper

Moving abroad does not only require a lot of time and planning, but it also isn’t cheap. Therefore, it’s wise to make sure you take measures to make your move as inexpensive as possible. Read our cheap removals page for some advice on this.

Furthermore, picking a good removal company is very important in reducing the costs of your move! If you’re not sure how to decide on a removal company, you can look at our guide on choosing the right removal company for you.

Moving to Switzerland to live there

Tips on Moving to Switzerland

Here are some extra tips and advice when you’re in the process of moving to Switzerland:

  • If you are planning on bringing your pet with you abroad, there are some requirements that you need to take care of: your pet will need to right vaccinations and have an EU animal passport. Look at our moving your pets abroad page for more information.
  • Luckily, you can move cars and motorcycles throughout the EU area and Switzerland; however, an import permit will be needed for a tax-free registration of them. If you would like more information, you can visit the tax authorities website on import regulations for your vehicle.
  • If you’re bringing children to Switzerland, you can rest assured that they will enter a high-quality, free education system. Each canton decides the languages taught in the schools and the length of the school day. Most classes are taught in Swiss, which may only be suited to younger children who can pick up languages faster than older kids. Two universities in Switzerland are ranked in the worlds top 15: ETH Zurich and École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne. As the universities are supported by the government, the fees are a lot lower than UK tuition fees.

What Now?

If you’ve decided that moving to Switzerland is for you, now it’s time to request some removal quotes. The best way to do this is to fill out our free online form. This way we match you to the best removal companies that suit your needs and we can save you up to 40% on your move!