I've been planning to live and work in Switzerland for more than 5 years. I've also spent a few weeks or more there every year for about 7 years now. I'm a US citizen so getting a job and visa has been tough to say the least!
I've cashed in a lot of chips and favors but was able to land a job a year ago that opened an office and data center in Zurich (with a little prodding from me).
Yesterday my visa was approved by the Swiss consulate!
It feels good to have a 5 year plan actually work out.
I grew up in Maine and have worked all over the US (IT training and systems administration). I'm currently in Boston.
I should be there by the end of February and am looking forward to getting to meet new people and explore more of the European culture. I know it's not all fluffy bunnies and roses and there will be challenges and much awkwardness in my future.
I'm still really happy to get the opportunity to have new experiences like this.
The following 3 users would like to thank jeremyjnelson for this useful post:
Hey Jeremy! Welcome to EF and soon to Switzerland.
Feel free to search the Forum for any questions that pop up, as it's very likely someone else has asked them before and you can do a little advance research. Hope you enjoy your big adventure. It will be a big change, but I think you're going in with a great optimistic attitude!
Hi Jeremy and glad to hear your planning and hard work paid off. Well done. Hope you enjoy your new life here and I'm sure there are plenty of EF members in Zurich who'll be happy to meet up with you. Check the Social Events section to see what's going on in the area that might interest you.
@sue, the relocation company will set me up for a month or two in a temporary apartment. I've been scanning homegate.ch and other sites and have an idea on the areas I want to live and size/price ranges.
We'll see what is still available when I get over there. That is the next big hurdle.
Download the Comparis application for the iphone/ipad. We found our place through this application. Its great because it aggregates data from almost every real estate website in Switzerland and it allows you to enter very specific criteria to help narrow down the search.
Congrats on making your five year plan work out!!! I cant tell you how many times in the last year people have joined this forum with all manner of wishes and desires to move to Switzerland...and not one of them had a plan. I respect your drive and commitment. Let me know when you get into town...you deserve a beer.
If you want to talk to someone who has been there, done that before the move... Head up to Sunday river and have a beer with my husband. He's volunteering with Sunday river adaptive sport for the winter before heading back to Switzerland.
You need to get back in ski practice anyway if your coming here :-)
Yes, do check out Comparis.ch, not only for real estate, but also lots of good information on moving to Switzerland, insurance and on tax rate comparisons. I found this a great resource when I moved here a couple of years ago.
@patchyderm, my best friend got offered a position there about 8 years ago. I thought it would be a cool opportunity so I suggested he take it. I went over there originally when he first moved to help him look for apartments and explore the city. I fell in love with the place! After visiting a few times I decided that's where I wanted to be.
He is from Cyprus (EU16) and has a PhD from MIT so he had no problem getting there. It wasn't so easy for me!
I also became good friends with some Swiss people from my visits.
At some point I decided that was where I wanted to be. It was hard though to find a job while overseas and in a recession but I kept at it.
Another friend that I used to work at a start-up he created in Boston was working at a new place and asked if I wanted to come on board. I told him I was holding out until I could find a position in Zurich and if they ever opened an office there that I would join. He said there were no plans to open an office in Zurich. About 2 months later he said they opened and office in Zurich and asked if I wanted to join again. I said hell yes!
One of the requirements for a Swiss visa as a US citizen though is that I had to work there for them in the US for a year first. Well my year is up.