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  #141  
Old 31.12.2009, 14:43
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Re: Cultural differences between Switzerland and your own country

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I would be very interested in hearing about differences between Nordic countries (Sweden, Denmark, Iceland, but more important Finland and Norway) and Switzerland.
Sweden/Norway: I don't know his last name
Switzerland: I don't know his first name

Sweden: If you have a traffic accident it's the governments fault for building a bad road.
Norway: If you have an accident it's your own fault, obviously you shouldn't drive if you're the kind of person who have accidents.
Switzerland: A nice stretch, time to speed up and gain some microseconds. *FLASH*

Sweden/Norway: Call any government office. Tell them your personal id number, get help.
Switzerland: Call the amt for this or that. Learn which documents are needed. Obtain said documents (all could be easily made in word/photoshop). Go to the office. Show them to someone who watches them carefully and treats the papers like if they actually had any value. Get help.

Sweden: Impress your friends with how cheap you found something, thereby giving them the impression that you're street smart and know your way around.
Norway: Impress your friends by telling them how expensive things you have bought, obviously you are successful!
Switzerland: Buy expensive things but don't mention it, the insiders will know.

Sweden: Rules are guidelines and can be broken if you accept the punishment (you will get a punishment but it could be worth it).
Switzerland: What do you mean calculating the punishment and deciding whether to follow the rule or not? Rules are rules !

Sweden: Pay with cash and feel guilty for endangering the shop assistent (by increasing the amount of cash in the store)
Switzerland: Cash is king

Sweden: Make a decision. Do it. See if someone complains, deal with it then.
Switzerland: Propose a decision. Be told to wait until someone (not relevant) is included in the process. Book the meeting two weeks from now. Discuss and learn that the people not relevant for the discussion couldnt care less. Reach consensus and make the decision originally proposed.

Sweden: A bad decision is better than no decision
Switzerland: We must have all the information before we can decide.

Sweden: Don't take the elevator if someone is in it already. Pretend you are sporty and run up the stairs, feel a bit good about yourself because you're sportier (and take better care of yourself by integrating exercising in your daily lafe) than the person in the elevator.
Switzerland: Go in to the eleveator and say "Grüezi" with a smile. Say "schöne tag" when exiting.

Sweden: "It's soo much traffic, I had to wait for 20 minutes!"
Norway: "Soo much traffic, I could see one more car the whole way"
Switzerland: Wait for 1 hour to move 30 km, don't complain.
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  #142  
Old 31.12.2009, 17:50
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Re: Cultural differences between Switzerland and your own country

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you still can find you car at the same place, but you'll have a fine because it's forbidden to let the car at this place....

it can be a combination :
- a parking fine as it was detected by police in the wrong place
- the car stolen AFTER police was around
- a fine for having left the car with keys in place
- and the insurance company reducing their payment due to above
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  #143  
Old 10.02.2010, 23:30
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Re: Cultural differences between Switzerland and your own country

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CH. It was snowing yesterday. I went to France for dinner. Took me 20 minutes there and back. Excellent dinner.
UK. It was snowing yesterday. Nobody got to France. They spent 12 hours stranded in a tunnel. Nobody got dinner.
20 min there and back. Did you go to McDonald's?
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  #144  
Old 10.02.2010, 23:44
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Re: Cultural differences between Switzerland and your own country

CH: For anything: Let's be on time, let's plan and let's get it right the first time.

PT: For anything: Don't worry everybody's late, let's wing it, I'm sure it will turn out OK
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  #145  
Old 11.02.2010, 06:15
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Re: Cultural differences between Switzerland and your own country

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UK:Cars Stop to let someone cross, pull out of turning ( Get a thank you )

CH: NO thanks for the above ( Fking Rude )

UK:Open a door and again get a Thank You

CH:Open a door and people walk straight past ( again Fking Rude )

If this is true, than I am a Brit, and two thirds of people here are British as well.



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UK: in the bus/train you need to get off but someone is sitting next to you - you only need to say "sorry" - the person next to you stands up straight away to let you out - you say thanks
CH: "sorry.." - the person next to you simply moves his/her legs closer to the seat - and you still say "thanks" but with a different intonation because focused in an acrobatic move..
IT: no one will ever sit next to you!
You ought to see that "acrobatic move" as a part of your fitness training

and your ability to succeed as you nice success





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Ex-Yugoslavia: Taxi drivers will be glad to take you with a crying baby sitting on your lap all the way to hospital and will charge you half the usual fare.

Switzerland: Taxi drivers will refuse to let you into the car because you did not call a day before alerting them that you would need an age-appropriate car seat for the baby.

Ex-Yugoslavia: Trams and buses drive over the speed limit. Several trams or buses will get to one stop at a time. The stop will always be placed after the traffic light to make the traffic more fluid.

Switzerland: Trams and buses drive slowly and carefully. They make sure that only one vehicle is at a stop at a time. The stop will always be placed before the traffic light, so it will make not much difference whether you walk to the next stop or stay on the bus.

Ex-Yugoslavia: A war will break out every now and then.

Switzerland: Will host most our peace talks.

<> Many of your taxi-drivers from ex-Yugoslavia now work in Zurich
and most of them are really splendid

<> Most Swiss have realized already in school that NOT to have a war breaking out is NOT YOUR success but your luck, and that mediating for others in sh....t successfully is good business

Last edited by Wollishofener; 11.02.2010 at 06:40.
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  #146  
Old 22.05.2010, 02:25
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Re: Cultural differences between Switzerland and your own country

Ohh.. should I start with the big list? Okay here we go with the ones I see most of the Time:

Peru: Call a Peruvian friend, Let's go to the movies Today?. Yes, sure let's go! ( we are always on the move)

Switzerland : Call a Swiss friend, Let's go to the movies Today? What?. Today?.. Sorry I already have plans.. Maybe we go in a month? ( in a month in best luck)

Peru: Many people eat Guinea Pig..I mean, it is a national food.

Switzerland: Guinea Pig is a pet :-) and probably in most of the countries in the world!

Peru: Let's go for Party means , drinking, lots of dancing until next day, with friends around.. just enjoying it...


Switzerland: Let's go to Party means drink drink drink.. maybe but really maybeee a lil dancing.. --> go home.

Peru: Oh suddenly you felt like eating something.. whatever it can be.. you'll always find a store or restaurant opened.. and it is just located maybe around the corner? :-) I miss that sooo bad


Switzerland: Are u hungry suddenly?.. hmm well I really hope you can find someting oppened around .. poor !

Peru: You meet a peruvian, talk a little bit and they would like to be your friend.. just easy.. without problems.

Switzerland: You meet a swiss and you need to do a lot.. but reallyyy a lottt for their friendship..!!

I'll continue as soon as I see more details around hehe

Roxana

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  #147  
Old 22.05.2010, 04:45
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Re: Cultural differences between Switzerland and your own country

I'm lucky enough not to have my "own country".

Interesting to read what other people have posted anyway!
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  #148  
Old 14.05.2016, 17:56
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Re: Cultural differences between Switzerland and your own country

My list, Russia-Switzerland:

RU: Hospitality is sacred. If you are having lunch, and someone drops by (a neighbor to ask for milk because they ran out of it, etc.), you offer them your food. They agree or decline. If they decline, you offer again, in case they declined out of shyness.
CH: If you are having lunch, and someone drops by, that someone immediately feels very bad for disturbing you at lunch, apologizes and quickly leaves. If the matter is very urgent, they talk to you about it, while you continue eating, and you don't offer them the food. Every time this happens before my eyes, my Russian heart breaks. This would be sooo rude in Russia!

RU: If you go to someone's birthday party, you buy a nice gift, but don't bring food with you (maybe a bottle of wine or a cake if that's part of your gift). The host meets the guests with a table full of meals and drinks.
CH: If you go to someone's birthday party, you buy a modest present (or even no present at all), but bring a lot of food and drinks so that the host doesn't have to provide that for everyone.

RU: Everyone lives in apartments; very few people (mostly villagers) live in houses. Even rich people live in apartments, just their apartments are bigger, more centrally located and have cool design. However, many families have "dachas" - simple summer houses in the countryside where they go on weekends in summer to make barbecue, grow vegetables / herbs and relax.
CH: Younger people rent apartments, but everyone tries to buy a house with mortgage as they get older & have children.

RU: If you want to rent an apartment, you will be asked what your job is, but no one will ask you to prove it by showing your job contract and no one will ask you about your salary. You may be denied only if you say that you are "unemployed" or that you work in a strip club (but you can always lie, and no one will check, as I said). However, there is a different kind of discrimination: a lot of renters are racist and want only "Slavs" as their tenants. This is very sad. A friend of mine, an American, was looking for a cheap apartment in Moscow and people rejected him, because they thought he was an American spy (!!!) "because why else would an American want a cheap apartment?"........
CH: Apartment owners don't discriminate by race, but they do discriminate by job / salary. Not only will they ask you to tell them your salary and add a scan of your job contract to your application (WTF?!!), if your salary IN THEIR OPINION is not enough to pay for that apartment, they will reject your application. (How do they know how much I spend on food? Maybe I inherited money and have savings? This is soooo annoying)

RU: If a girl has make-up on, that usually includes eye makeup + lipstick. If she has to choose one, most likely she will choose lipstick.
CH: Here most girls wear mascara & eyeliner / eyeshadow, but no lipstick (even on very special occasions)

RU: Everyone has a washing machine in their apartment (usually in the bathroom or kitchen). If an apartment for rent doesn't have a washing machine inside, the renter will offer a considerable discount. Sharing a washing machine with neighbors is unheard of.
CH: Washing machines are shared by a whole house. People have to add themselves to a timetable. In some houses, you can only do laundry at a specific time once in two weeks. (How can they plan their laundry so well?)

RU: When you drink, you have to say toasts. Toast is not one word, like in most countries. The famous "Na Zdorovye" IS NOT A RUSSIAN TOAST, it is Polish and Czech, but not Russian (please stop believing this because of Hollywood movies!). Toasts in Russia are always different and are suited for the occasion. For example, if you just met after not seeing each other for a while, you drink "for the meeting"; if it's someone's birthday, you drink for the birthday boy/girl; etc. Also, you will get praise if you say a long toast. It can include a wise saying; a famous quote; a good story; etc. The more to the South of Russia you go, the longer are the toasts. In the Caucasus mountains, toasts can be up to 15 minutes long.
CH: You just say "Prost". The only important thing is to establish eye contact when saying that.
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  #149  
Old 30.06.2016, 16:33
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Re: Cultural differences between Switzerland and your own country

I am also from Russia. The thing that you need to make a TERMIN for everything and especially for meeting friends is the most annoying here for me...
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  #150  
Old 30.06.2016, 16:36
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Re: Cultural differences between Switzerland and your own country

We at least drive on the correct side of the road! And like cheese!
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  #151  
Old 03.07.2016, 08:49
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Re: Cultural differences between Switzerland and your own country

The hospitality in daily encounters, as mentioned above, really is important back home...while here the Pestalozzian spirit left, I think. Depends. But it is generally known that poorer cultures are more likely to share the little they have than wealthier cultures. Small gestures, random acts of kindness and good will count a lot.

Humor. I miss that...humility, random kindness and humor. No, good mood is not suspicious. Good mood is....good mood.

Can-do attitude, ambitious aspirations and achievements in young generations. I miss that incredibly. I just read some high school kids back home developed a revolutionary radioactivity reading machine, a couple of patents in there, CERN just got if off them right away. That kind of brainiac, home-made DIY stuff I really miss. Brothers who were doing science in their bedroom, experiments and putting together weird machines. They put together their own PCs from scratch...etc etc. I think overabundance, wealth sometimes kills curiosity, improvisation, resourcefulness and affects the quality of learning.

And tight knit caring families..I know quite a few lonely local older folks here. Back home you put yourself on your own feet and by the time you are 20-25 you start thinking about how to care for those who raised you. Return.

When I am home I miss infrastructure we have here..all people picking up mess after themselves. Food is not worshipped here, people are active, move more. I am Swiss in that aspect, always been.

There is no better, no worse - the cultural, ethnic and other differences are lovely to observe and notice..Na zdraví.
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Last edited by MusicChick; 03.07.2016 at 10:35.
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