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  #561  
Old 06.02.2012, 23:43
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Re: Absurd Swiss prices

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I was talking about Switzerland.

Not Ticino.
Ah, but here in the capital city, Zurich, wait staff often have to work past your bedtime. Talking of which...
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  #562  
Old 07.02.2012, 09:16
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Re: Absurd Swiss prices

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I was talking about Switzerland.

Not Ticino.
And I am speaking of Switzerland, not "Svizzera interna" (which means all the non-Italian/Rumantsch speaking bits, not just Innerschweiz)

Tom
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  #563  
Old 07.02.2012, 12:08
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Re: Absurd Swiss prices

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A head of department (MD level) for a fancy bank once told me she earned less than the cleaners in her office. All depends on perspective, I guess.
And those cleaners' bonuses are awesome.
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  #564  
Old 20.02.2012, 14:21
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Re: Absurd Swiss prices

Switzerland is in a state of hyper-inflation. The bank secret is being eroded more and more week by week. If the western financial system collapses, the Swiss frank will go right down the hole with it. The politicians are hiding a great deal as to the state of the economy and Swiss financial reserves....beware..peace
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  #565  
Old 20.02.2012, 14:30
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Re: Absurd Swiss prices

Yeah, I read all about that in my tealeaves this morning, or was it the chemtrails?
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  #566  
Old 20.02.2012, 14:45
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Re: Absurd Swiss prices

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Yeah, I read all about that in my tealeaves this morning, or was it the chemtrails?
You got chemtrails in your tea? Bloody Swiss and their overpriced "tea".
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  #567  
Old 20.02.2012, 14:51
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Re: Absurd Swiss prices

Swiss quality, chemtrails free with every bag.
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Old 20.02.2012, 15:14
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Re: Absurd Swiss prices

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Switzerland is in a state of hyper-inflation.
Hyper inflation?

Any kind of inflation at all?

Isn't it inflation when prices go UP, and not DOWN as they are doing here?

Tom
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Old 20.02.2012, 16:08
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Re: Absurd Swiss prices

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Ah, but here in the capital city, Zurich, wait staff often have to work past your bedtime. Talking of which...
I always thought Bern was the Capital...
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  #570  
Old 20.02.2012, 18:10
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Re: Absurd Swiss prices

Well that's not entirely true about Swiss... I have many Swiss friends and many of them prefer to shop in Switzerland ... My friend tells me that if Swiss will shop outside then it will hurt their economy...and definitely it will impact overall economy of the country...on a lareger scale..
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  #571  
Old 20.02.2012, 18:45
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Re: Absurd Swiss prices

Switzerland has nice price surprises too.

When we were moving over from the UK, we tried unsuccessfully to buy a new Samsung TV before we left. It was on sale for £699 but having left it late, we couldn't find one in stock anywhere. Once here, we looked at driving to France or Germany to buy the same model. At the last minute I checked the local Swiss price and was shocked to find it on sale for 725 CHF - well below the £699 we tried to pay before we left. I hadn't even bothered to check before then as I just presumed it would be way more expensive.

One of my work colleagues recently found that he could buy an iPad here for about the same as it would have cost in the US.
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Old 20.02.2012, 19:00
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Re: Absurd Swiss prices

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Switzerland has nice price surprises too.

When we were moving over from the UK, we tried unsuccessfully to buy a new Samsung TV before we left. It was on sale for £699 but having left it late, we couldn't find one in stock anywhere. Once here, we looked at driving to France or Germany to buy the same model. At the last minute I checked the local Swiss price and was shocked to find it on sale for 725 CHF - well below the £699 we tried to pay before we left. I hadn't even bothered to check before then as I just presumed it would be way more expensive.

One of my work colleagues recently found that he could buy an iPad here for about the same as it would have cost in the US.
Electronics are often cheaper in Switzerland. The margins tend to be (relatively) small, and the VAT is much lower.
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  #573  
Old 21.02.2012, 00:37
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Re: Absurd Swiss prices

The rule of thumb is that electronics and most electrical items, petrol, bottled water and milk are usually cheaper in Switzerland than in neighbouring countries. For everything else, get thee to Germany!
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  #574  
Old 22.02.2012, 04:01
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Re: Absurd Swiss prices

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The rule of thumb is that electronics and most electrical items, petrol, bottled water and milk are usually cheaper in Switzerland than in neighbouring countries. For everything else, get thee to Germany!
Or get thee to America. I hate Swiss prices.
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  #575  
Old 22.02.2012, 05:41
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Re: Absurd Swiss prices

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Or get thee to America. I hate Swiss prices.
Trouble is, we want Swiss salaries and American or UK prices.

I've largely given up moaning about the cost of goods here. No one put a gun to my head and made me move. I earn roughly 50% more here than I did in the UK (and I earned a pretty good salary there), so I just remind myself of this when I'm wandering round the supermarket.

The people to feel sorry for are the tourists or the immigrants in their first few weeks. They are paying Swiss prices with dollars and British pounds. But if you're buying Swiss goods with a Swiss salary, you should be OK. It's the constant converting of prices to pounds and dollars that's the mistake. If we don't factor in the bigger salaries, it's not comparing like with like.
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  #576  
Old 22.02.2012, 07:13
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Re: Absurd Swiss prices

Having lived in Switzerland for quite a while, I'm used to Swiss prices, but it doesn't mean I like it...

I view Swiss prices as coming in two categories: justifiably higher than the EU and unjustifiably higher than the EU.

In the former category I would put meat from local butchers, locally sourced (happy and humanely raised animals make for tasty meat - although if more people would demand more than just the prime cuts prices would come down as more of the animal would be used) and fruit, veg and cheese direct from the farmer (fresher and cheaper than the chain supermarkets, albeit still higher than in the EU). Furthermore, by buying direct more money goes to the farmers and local businesses.

In the "unjustifiably higher" price I would include anything that is mass produced in a non Swiss factory and widely distributed. I can't see ANY justification for such huge price differentials to the EU. The old story about high salaries is no longer as believable as in the 80s (for example, anyone who has recently had a car fixed just across the border will see that the German garage's labour charges per hour are not that far off a Swiss garage's labour costs).

The real culprits as other posters have pointed out, are the middlemen with their excessive mark-ups, a cosy situation for some. Internet and cross-border shopping help redress this (which is why various obstacles exist to truly free market Internet and cross border shopping)

I would argue that many of the EF are in a privileged position in regards to circumventing absurd Swiss prices, either due to having a job that pays extremely well, being able to travel frequently for work (and hence shop when abroad) or live close enough to Germany or France to easily cross the border to shop (or any combination of these). The ones that have none of these advantages are being shamelessly milked by the middlemen and their protectionist policies.

Whilst it is unrealistic to expect EU prices in CH, smaller markups and margins would benefit the Swiss consumer. I'd accept buying, say, an electronic Gizmo for 120CHF in Switzerland as opposed to 105 CHF (or thereabouts) for the same Gizmo in Germany. I STRONGLY object to paying 120CHF for the Gizmo in Switzerland when it costs only 40CHF in Germany.

Paradoxically, in terms of percentage of income, true luxury goods (e.g. Rolexes, high spec cars, etc.) are cheaper than in many places.

What should we do? Support the local butcher and farmer, avoid wherever possible the chains and comparison shop, comparison shop, comparison shop... (Mr Internet is your friend!)

Last edited by TrainDoctor; 22.02.2012 at 10:04.
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  #577  
Old 22.02.2012, 10:36
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Re: Absurd Swiss prices

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It's the constant converting of prices to pounds and dollars that's the mistake.
Mistake? That's the fun!

Being British, I miss being able to gripe about the weather so much, so paying CHF4.40 for a box of Digestives or CHF2.80 for a tin of Heinz baked beans keeps me moaning along nicely.

Yesterday, I paid CHF28 for a packet of Strepsils and nasal spay!
I'm spitting feathers!
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  #578  
Old 22.02.2012, 10:41
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Re: Absurd Swiss prices

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Or get thee to America. I hate Swiss prices.
stay there or if you've already moved here go back...
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  #579  
Old 22.02.2012, 11:46
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Re: Absurd Swiss prices

In the Swiss consumer magazine this month is an interesting article about fruit and vegetable importing and the relevant duties, which vary during the seasons.

http://www.beobachter.ch/natur/natue...se-der-tomate/

In the first example, with simple Ramati tomatoes, the price paid in the Milan wholesale market is Sfr 1.80. After handling fees, transport (30 Rappen / Kilo), import duties (10 Rappen / Kilo), and more handling fees the tomatoes arrive at the Swiss wholesale market, for sale at Sfr 3.30 per kilo (Notice: 40 Rappen for transport and Swiss import tax, Sfr 1.10 for the middle men). The shops add at least another 40%, and the resulting winter price is a minimum of Sfr 4.60 per kilo.

Another interesting point is that the import duties vary with the season. The Swiss farmers' associations are in constant contact with the government departments (Schweizerischen Zentralstelle für Gemüsebau und Spezialkulturen), and when the Swiss farmers cannot deliver tomatoes in winter, the import duties are minimal. In Spring and Autumn the farmers inform the government of the pending harvests and import tax is partially raised. But during the summer months the tomato import duty is fully raised to protect the home producers. Hence why I have to pay Sfr 7,00 for half ripe tomatoes in the middle of summer, when in France and Italy they are almost giving them away.

There are also some strange loopholes. The tariffs were set in the fifties, before we had Romesco brocolli, or cherry tomatoes, or Abate pears, and these escaped any recognition, and consequently these are always heavily taxed.
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Old 22.02.2012, 11:55
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Re: Absurd Swiss prices

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In the Swiss consumer magazine this month is an interesting article about fruit and vegetable importing and the relevant duties, which vary during the seasons.

http://www.beobachter.ch/natur/natue...se-der-tomate/

In the first example, with simple Ramati tomatoes, the price paid in the Milan wholesale market is Sfr 1.80. After handling fees, transport (30 Rappen / Kilo), import duties (10 Rappen / Kilo), and more handling fees the tomatoes arrive at the Swiss wholesale market, for sale at Sfr 3.30 per kilo (Notice: 40 Rappen for transport and Swiss import tax, Sfr 1.10 for the middle men). The shops add at least another 40%, and the resulting winter price is a minimum of Sfr 4.60 per kilo.

Another interesting point is that the import duties vary with the season. The Swiss farmers' associations are in constant contact with the government departments (Schweizerischen Zentralstelle für Gemüsebau und Spezialkulturen), and when the Swiss farmers cannot deliver tomatoes in winter, the import duties are minimal. In Spring and Autumn the farmers inform the government of the pending harvests and import tax is partially raised. But during the summer months the tomato import duty is fully raised to protect the home producers. Hence why I have to pay Sfr 7,00 for half ripe tomatoes in the middle of summer, when in France and Italy they are almost giving them away.

There are also some strange loopholes. The tariffs were set in the fifties, before we had Romesco brocolli, or cherry tomatoes, or Abate pears, and these escaped any recognition, and consequently these are always heavily taxed.
The only flaw is, that fruits and veggies are not procurred that way (in a wholesale market)...only certain fish is bought like that, if at all. Supermarkets purchase their goods directly from the producers and therefore, the price per unit be it ton, kg, unit of sales is considerably lower and so is the markup. 2 main detrimental factors which drive prices up are low purchasing quantities and bad negotiating skills. Since Switzerland is such a tiny market (compared to its neighbors North, South and West), Swiss buyers are usually last to get to allocate their quantities, which shows in the quality of products. That is why you get better fruits/veggies in Germany, Italy and France.
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