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Old 13.09.2011, 15:33
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Moving to Fribourg

Hi Guys,

I am in the process of securing a job in Fribourg. I am Irish and just need know a few things before making an informed decision before aceepting and I was hoping you could help:

1. What is the area of Fribourg like? I know it is not as cosmopolitan as Zurich but is there much night life around the town? and is there much of an ex-pat community, say irish and british?

2. Is Fribourg the best area to live in while working there? seeing that I am single and 32. For tax purposes I know each canton varies. Or would living in Bern or Lausanne be better?

3. What is the language barrier like, I would be coming with very limited French and no german. Is English widely spoken. I would intend to start learning French straight away.

Cheers for your help

Thanks
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Old 14.09.2011, 00:01
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Re: Moving to Fribourg

Ahoy hoy & welcome.

1. I found the area boring for someone under 30. Though there is a university in the centre of town.

2. Bern has a bigger city feel and I feel it is more cosmopolitan. Therefore, I commute in from Bern every morning. My boss told me taxes would be lower if I lived in FR but I decided to pay the premium.

3. On one side of the Sarine, they speak French. The other German. French is the predominant language here.

Good luck your move.
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Old 14.09.2011, 02:36
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Re: Moving to Fribourg

there is absolutely nothing to do nightlife wise. few bars here and there and yes you can go out but you are not gonna see big names (They all come to Bulle believe it or not)

taxes are just lower for average salaries

English....erhhhh the people around here are called the Gruyeriens and well they are like the parisiennes . very different yet VERY swiss and most people here I noticed do not speak a lick of English. unless they feel like it and want to

only happening part would be Zurich and around there. not much in the French part really (clubbing wise) for jobs you need likely French AND German (English a plus).
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Old 14.09.2011, 07:36
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Re: Moving to Fribourg

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Hi Guys,

I am in the process of securing a job in Fribourg. I am Irish and just need know a few things before making an informed decision before aceepting and I was hoping you could help:

1. What is the area of Fribourg like? I know it is not as cosmopolitan as Zurich but is there much night life around the town? and is there much of an ex-pat community, say irish and british?
The town is a little quiet TBH. Most Brits/Irish/Aussies are to be found in Paddy Reilly's Irish pub on Grand Place. It would be the place to start if you want to meet fellow Anglophones and there is a often a good crowd for big sporting occasions.

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2. Is Fribourg the best area to live in while working there? seeing that I am single and 32. For tax purposes I know each canton varies. Or would living in Bern or Lausanne be better?
For immediate acccess to town, yes. But the neighbouring communes such as Villars-sur-Glāne, Givisiez and Grange Paccots are only a sort busride away and have lower local taxes (well, VsG does anyway)

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3. What is the language barrier like, I would be coming with very limited French and no german. Is English widely spoken. I would intend to start learning French straight away.
The town itself is predominantly French speaking, but you'll hear Swiss German quite a lot too, as well as Portuguese, Turkish, Serbo-croat and Albanian . Many people will not speak English, unless you really push them.

On a personal note, I've lived in and around Fribourg for the last 15 years and love it. Just a short bus-ride or car journey out of town and your are in some beautiful countryside and only 25 mins from the Fribourg prealps for skiing, hiking and MTBing etc.
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Old 14.09.2011, 10:02
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Re: Moving to Fribourg

I agree with Paddy's take on things.

You might as well live in the Fribourg area ..... in Bern you'll need Swiss German (although English is more widely spoken - but not enough that you wont need to speak native).

Lausanne is probably too much of an unnecessary commute for the possibly few advantages it may offer.

In general, many young people have a knowledge of English, but with the older ones, that you'll normally deal with in the world of officialdom, it really is hit and miss (mainly the latter).

The night life can be sometimes hectic and exiting, though .... but you'll need to learn how to Jass, first.
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Old 14.09.2011, 14:27
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Re: Moving to Fribourg

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1. What is the area of Fribourg like? I know it is not as cosmopolitan as Zurich but is there much night life around the town? and is there much of an ex-pat community, say irish and british?
Fribourg is a university town, much like Galway, with 15,000 students or so descending on the place during term time (ie now) which means that during the summer it's fairly quiet but otherwise there is often live music and dj's in the majority of bars during the weekend and some weekdays. There's also a couple of small concert venues (think Whelans in Dublin) where smaller names have been known to come. No real clubs as such here, for that you need to go to Bulle which is a shortish trip on the motorway.

Films are generally dubbed in french (or german) in the main cinema but the smaller one often does films in the original langauge with subtitles in french and german.

Regarding an ex-pat community, PaddyG is more in the loop on that one but as he says the local "Irish" pub is the place to be. I guess I'm just to well integrated haha

Fribourg town itself I find to be fairly safe (though coming from Dublin that's not too difficult) and it doesn't take long to get out of the city and into the surrounding countryside if that's your thing.

Overall it has a small city feel to it which is after all what it is.

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2. Is Fribourg the best area to live in while working there? seeing that I am single and 32. For tax purposes I know each canton varies. Or would living in Bern or Lausanne be better?
For tax purposes I have no idea.

As I said it is a student town so many people would be in their early to mid twenties though that's not to say that there aren't older people around as well. I've no idea what you are looking for (if anything) but the Swiss really aren't too hung up on age differences in my experience, either for relationships or something else.

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3. What is the language barrier like, I would be coming with very limited French and no german. Is English widely spoken. I would intend to start learning French straight away.
French is predominantly spoken (as has been pointed out already) and in the city itself you won't need german at all. If you were to head north you'd come to (swiss)german speaking villages and the the south french.

Bars are generally staffed by the university students and therefore english wouldn't be a problem in the majority of cases (many swiss spend time in english speaking countries for a few months). Shops etc would be more hit and miss with english as you'd run into the older swiss or non english speaking foreigners.

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there is absolutely nothing to do nightlife wise. few bars here and there -snip-

English....erhhhh the people around here are called the Gruyeriens and well they are like the parisiennes . very different yet VERY swiss and most people here I noticed do not speak a lick of English. unless they feel like it and want to

for jobs you need likely French AND German (English a plus)
Personally I find that there are plenty of bars in Fribourg and that's before counting the bistro's.

Regarding the people and English. There are so many students in Fribourg (from all over) that English is, while not widely spoken, definitely understood. I don't find the people in Fribourg to be overly Swiss either but I mainly interact with the students and younger population (since I am a student myself with a Swiss girlfriend and work in a bar ). I guess the surrounding villages could be more "Swiss".

Personally speaking, coming from Dublin it took a little getting used to the smaller city way but now I absolutely love living here.
If you decide to move here then feel free to give me a shout and I'd be happy to show you around the place.
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Old 14.09.2011, 17:19
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Re: Moving to Fribourg

Cheers guys for the feedback.

I am from Dublin myself so will be interesting to see the change.

Just have to wait for everything to be finalised now
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Old 14.09.2011, 18:58
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Re: Moving to Fribourg

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Personally I find that there are plenty of bars in Fribourg and that's before counting the bistro's.

Regarding the people and English. There are so many students in Fribourg (from all over) that English is, while not widely spoken, definitely understood. I don't find the people in Fribourg to be overly Swiss either but I mainly interact with the students and younger population (since I am a student myself with a Swiss girlfriend and work in a bar ). I guess the surrounding villages could be more "Swiss".

Personally speaking, coming from Dublin it took a little getting used to the smaller city way but now I absolutely love living here.
If you decide to move here then feel free to give me a shout and I'd be happy to show you around the place.
haha looks like we are in the same situation (Swiss gf and working in the bar (although I quit a while back)) and being in Bulle with the Uni I speak English a lot, but you notice when they are gone that English goes with them so it seems. as for the bars you cannot compare nightlife here in CH to anywhere else in the world i find; To me it is mostly the non Swiss harassing every single girl they can, the Swiss fighting those guys and you are out of money cause of the cost (this is clubbing , not barhopping really) bars can be fun and are more my thing in any case.
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Old 15.09.2011, 12:29
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Re: Moving to Fribourg

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haha looks like we are in the same situation (Swiss gf and working in the bar (although I quit a while back)) and being in Bulle with the Uni I speak English a lot, but you notice when they are gone that English goes with them so it seems. as for the bars you cannot compare nightlife here in CH to anywhere else in the world i find; To me it is mostly the non Swiss harassing every single girl they can, the Swiss fighting those guys and you are out of money cause of the cost (this is clubbing , not barhopping really) bars can be fun and are more my thing in any case.
English does disappear during the summer months a good bit (not completely though in my experience, though that might just be because my gf's friends all (almost) speak english (with one in particular forcing me to speak it haha).

I have noticed the harassment of females but no more than in any other country that I've visited and by no means mainly by foreigners though when you consider the foreign population vs swiss population numbers it may be a bit higher...anyway.

I've never really been a clubber (though have done my share) so I can't really compare on that front but the fact that I've never even thought about going to one in Switzerland speaks volumes in itself
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