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Old 03.12.2010, 01:57
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Arrived in CH on a one-way ticket with almost no money intending to stay. discuss

Hello. This is my first post. I'm inviting comments on my plan to move to CH in a few weeks. I will be arriving with about chf 150 and a dream.

I've had a Swiss passport since i was twenty years old, though I have only been there once. I do not speak any of the national languages. I'm in my late twenties and have been living in the US for the last ten years. I was born and raised in New Zealand, and so was were my parents, but apparently it was enough that my grandmother was Swiss for me to get a passport when I left NZ in 2000. I renewed it in 2007, so it's valid.

Anyway, I don't like the US, and have no remaining relatives in NZ and only bad memories besides. So I'm moving to Switzerland, and have a few questions for the englishforum community.

1. Since i'm completely broke and have no vertical family left in CH, I will have to avail myself of the welfare system to help get me on my feet. I'm trying to prepare myself for the kind of reaction I'm going to be facing, as I walk into a sozialhilfe office, only speaking english, requesting assistance. What would be the reaction of the average swiss regarding my circumstances? Is welfare support stigmatized? Is it unfathomable that a Swiss citizen could only speak English? Would they tell me to gtfo?

2. How difficult would it be to find a job with no Swiss language skills. Relatedly, which area would be the easiest to get by with only English? Yes, I know I've had my entire life to learn them, but I didn't. I plan on learning at least German, but that will take at least a year to get reasonably competent. I do know some Dutch to help me toward the German end, and my two years of college latin could help as well toward French and Italian (the three genders and complicated syntax of latin would help with the German; it's close relationship with all romance languages should help with French and Italian).

3. Are US college degrees worth anything in CH? I have a BA and a JD. Of course a common law education in CH is of limited use, but would the BA at least be acknowledged? It's from a non prestigous state school.

thanks for reading.
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Old 03.12.2010, 06:20
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Re: Arriving in CH on a one-way ticket with almost no money intending to stay. discus

i dont know the swiss system that well but i cant help thinking that they will be too pleased if you turn up off the plane and expect to live off the state given you've never actually lived here and may question the validity of your passport.

I think you're going to need a lot of luck and help.

Jobs can be acquired with english only but not easily and are usually specialised.

good luck!
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Old 03.12.2010, 06:58
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Re: Arriving in CH on a one-way ticket with almost no money intending to stay. discus

There is help for repatriation, you would be wise to contact the nearest consulate. On your passport it will state what Parish (Gemeinde) your family originate from, this will be the Parish that is financially responsible for you.

You'd save yourself a lot of hassle if you got a plan in action before you left the States.

Good luck.
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Old 03.12.2010, 06:58
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Re: Arriving in CH on a one-way ticket with almost no money intending to stay. discus

You're Swiss, you have a passport. Have you ever worked at all? In order to claim benefits you will need to provide your academic certificates and your recent work record. You will be entitled to some benefits to get you started. The fact that you only speak English is irrelevant with regard to the entitlement. You may find that the welfare office will actually pay for German lessons.

As for finding a job, it will be a question of lots of CV's and being in the right place at the right time.

Good luck and welcome home!


PS: I agree with the post above about contacting the nearest consulate to get first hand information. But I think that in this case it will the community where you choose to live that will be responsible, not the place your family originates from. At least that is the way it was 15 years ago, but things may have changed in the meantime.
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Old 03.12.2010, 07:29
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Re: Arriving in CH on a one-way ticket with almost no money intending to stay. discus

Hopefully others will know more, but you may use google.ch to search for the keywords "Rückkehr in die Schweiz".
E.g.
http://www.eda.admin.ch/eda/de/home/...ut/retaut.html

With the help of Google Translate you should be able to find out a lot.
Community have social help departments. You may e-mail them at the place you want to stay. 150CHF won't let you survive even a couple of days here.
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Old 03.12.2010, 07:36
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Re: Arriving in CH on a one-way ticket with almost no money intending to stay. discus

I think that the only thing you have going for you is that you are young and one day this will be 10 years in the past.

Go to the consulate, you are a CH Passport holder and have a chance. Gonna be a rocky time, keep us informed.
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Old 03.12.2010, 07:46
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150 chf... That won't even cover the basic costs for registration at the gemeinde!

The social assistance covers only what is deemed necessary to survive, and the social housing isn't exactly easy to get into...

You'll have a VERY rough time and they'll all give you a hard time about it, but you'll get some money. Careful though, as they'll likely stipulate that any benefits would become repayable once you are making something.





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Old 03.12.2010, 07:47
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Re: Arriving in CH on a one-way ticket with almost no money intending to stay. discus

Hi and welcome to the forum....

This can be of some help too (in german)

http://www.bj.admin.ch/content/bj/de...wanderung.html

This for a job (for once, it's in english...)

http://www.swissemigration.ch/themen...x.html?lang=en

And I agree with Oldhand, take contact with Swiss Embassy or Consulate



and a last thing : good luck

and as you have a Swiss Passport and depending your age, you will have to think to the Swiss Army ....but I'm not sure how that goes for expatriate coming back in SwissLand

Last edited by Bertrand - Geneva; 03.12.2010 at 07:59.
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Old 03.12.2010, 07:53
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Re: Arriving in CH on a one-way ticket with almost no money intending to stay. discus

I can't help but feel that this isn't for real... As a Swiss, I find it shocking that someone would actually fully intend to live off welfare and seems to think this is perfectly fine. And I reckon any state institutions will feel the same, don't expect them to be of much help at all.
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Old 03.12.2010, 07:55
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Re: Arriving in CH on a one-way ticket with almost no money intending to stay. discus

Good luck fellow kiwi - with only English it's probably better to keep to Zurich - lots of English, more than most CH cities.

But you will 'belong' to one or two cantons - relating to your parents/granparents origin and these Gemindes will be 'responsible' for you!

Best of luck, just as well you have a Swiss passport after the recent 'foreigner' vote!

Jeri
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Old 03.12.2010, 08:09
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Re: Arriving in CH on a one-way ticket with almost no money intending to stay. discus

One of the first things you must do is open up a bank account, say Postfinance ( together with the E-Finance for E-banking ) which does not require an intial deposit. It takes some 2-3 weeks to get the ATM cards and PINs / passwords, and the account number will be needed by Sozialamt to pay you. Provide a friend's address as your initial address.

In order for Sozi to reach you in case public housing is available, pick up a prepaid mobile phone. Register for Kulturlegi, a concession card and TDD for emergency provisions through your social worker.

For a start, inform Sozi that you are keen on Sozial Arbeit ( social work ) programmes, which pay you some CHF300 a month plus transport tickets in which you have access to job / flat seeking, access to a computer and internet together with job counselling and exposure to High / Swiss German. This stint in social work gives you a Zeugnis upon successful completion, which can be added to your job application dossier - some employers value this. Some people in the Social Arbeit workplace may even give you leads to hidden jobs, as well as access to flats not advertised in the open market.

If you have your Heimatschein / Heimatausweis, this certifies the place of residence here in CH who is obliged to take care of you.

Welcome to Switzerland and to the forum.
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Last edited by jrspet; 03.12.2010 at 09:12.
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Old 03.12.2010, 08:09
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Re: Arriving in CH on a one-way ticket with almost no money intending to stay. discus

Crazy!! I dont know anything about you situation but consider a very expensive, cold, different environment where you wont be able to communicate to most of the people...

After 2 days you could end up sleeping in the street, in the middle of winter (freezing to death). If you have a dream to change and come to CH then use thelat motivation to get a job in the us, any job!, live as cheap as possible (rent a room, no car, etc) and in six months you can come in beauriful spring with a few 1000's under your belt. I have no idea for entitlements in CH, i know in Italy and Spain you do get economic help for about a year when you come back, even if you have never lived in the country. But coming with money under your belt (and not a joke like 150chf) will 1. Increase uour chance of success and 2. show yourself as a responsible person to authorities, not raise suspicion, etc. And as stated before, talk to your consulate.

Albeit the above, all my respect for your dreams and having the balls to pursue them to the end, but this has to be done with thought and not in a rash manner.
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Old 03.12.2010, 08:15
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Re: Arriving in CH on a one-way ticket with almost no money intending to stay. discus

Our tax money at work, folks
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Old 03.12.2010, 08:15
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Re: Arriving in CH on a one-way ticket with almost no money intending to stay. discus

The first thing you need to do is join this website:

http://www.couchsurfing.org/


cheers
SC
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Old 03.12.2010, 08:20
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Re: Arriving in CH on a one-way ticket with almost no money intending to stay. discus

Also, if you do choose to delay for a while and work, look for some German lessons of some sort - free, online language community here: www.livemocha.com
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Old 03.12.2010, 08:23
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Re: Arriving in CH on a one-way ticket with almost no money intending to stay. discus

Stay where you are!! With those 150Chf you'll barely get from the airport to where you need to go. Say, with all that education, what are you currently working in the US?
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Old 03.12.2010, 08:24
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Re: Arriving in CH on a one-way ticket with almost no money intending to stay. discus

Quote:
View Post
Stay where you are!! With those 150Chf you'll barely get from the airport to where you need to go. Say, with all that education, what are you currently working in the US?
with a JD i'll take a wild guess that he's 6 figures in debt and currently unemployed.
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Old 03.12.2010, 08:24
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Re: Arriving in CH on a one-way ticket with almost no money intending to stay. discus

Hello

As mentioned above, call up the consulate.

You might also want to contact the Organization for the Swiss Abroad

Or the Sozialversicherungsanstalt of Zurich. The site is in German and I'm not able to find the language button in short time, but write them an email at

info@svazurich.ch


http://www.svazurich.ch/internet/de/home.html


If you intend to land with 150, make a proper research on everything that will help your case.



Good Luck
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Old 03.12.2010, 08:42
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Re: Arriving in CH on a one-way ticket with almost no money intending to stay. discus

Perfect candidate:

You should contact one of those TV programs where people move to a new country.

You cover the two points that all the candidate's have in common.
  1. Don't speak the language !
  2. Be broke !
(sorry - I don't know your reasons. But it is kind of a joke...)
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Old 03.12.2010, 08:53
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Re: Arriving in CH on a one-way ticket with almost no money intending to stay. discus

When you arrive contact the SVP and immediately become a paid member. Then contact a TV/Radio station and tell them your story. Should do wonders for real immigrants in Switzerland.
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