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Old 05.01.2007, 13:22
Flash74 Flash74 is offline
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Re: London or Zurich

I moved to Zurich/Zug about 2 months ago from London. As has already been pointed out, I would say that knowing the local language makes a big difference as to how you will fit in and enjoy where you stay. I speak no German. The working language at the bank I work at is English but I find some people to be obstructive when I ask them for something in English. When a colleague asks them in Swiss German, they couldn't be more helpful. If you only speak English, I would say life is easier in London.

London is also better to start your career IMO. The guy who hired me here told me after I started that he was suspicious of why anyone would move to Zurich from London considering the current pay levels for people in London (in IT). He is Swiss. He was only convinced by the fact that I had a girlfriend in Switzerland. There is a difference in working culture. In London, you will, generally, work longer hours. However, this is not exclusively the case, as I'm working harder in Zurich. In my case, I got about the same as I was getting in London, but the fall in the Swiss Franc recently means that I'm a little bit behind what I got in London.

I paid about the same tax in the UK as I do in Zurich as I could operate through an offshore company in the UK. I'm going to move to Zug, which should mean I'll pay a little less.

London is more culturally diverse. You are more likely to find other Armenians in London than in Zurich. I've met a huge number of people from Beirut in London. I notice that Zurich is lacking in this regard. Shopping is way better in London, if you know where to look.

Note that these observations are only based on 2 months of living in Zurich and 5 years of living in London, so perhaps I'm a little biased. All in all, I'm missing London but I'll stick it out a bit longer here due to the specific nature of the job I have which could lead to big things. I'll reassess in 3 months time when my contract is up.

Cheers
Flash
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