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Old 13.04.2021, 11:47
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Zurich Bern commute

A friend of mine lives in Oberengstringen, Zurich and is considering taking up a job in Ostermundigen, Bern. Does anyone do this commute by car? How long would the drive take with normal traffic? I presume driving is a quicker option than going by train.
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Old 13.04.2021, 11:48
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Re: Zurich Bern commute

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A friend of mine lives in Oberengstringen, Zurich and is considering taking up a job in Ostermundigen, Bern. Does anyone do this commute by car? How long would the drive take with normal traffic? I presume driving is a quicker option than going by train.
At what time of day? On the A1 stop n go expect average 2 hours.
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Old 13.04.2021, 11:50
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Re: Zurich Bern commute

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At what time of day?
normal office hours
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Old 13.04.2021, 11:58
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Re: Zurich Bern commute

Personally, I would rent a room. Cheaper in the long run, tax deductible and less hectic driving.
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Old 13.04.2021, 12:01
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Re: Zurich Bern commute

google maps says 1:15 to 1:40 on a weekday if arriving at 8:30 am
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Old 13.04.2021, 12:03
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Re: Zurich Bern commute

No way I would ever do this commute by car ... traffic will be awful and quite fatiguing. There is a little quick train from the main station to the suburb he will be working in ... they are frequent.

I commute from Bern - Zurich by train and it is manageable. Hopefully your friend can do 1-2 days per week from home?
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Old 13.04.2021, 12:09
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Re: Zurich Bern commute

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normal office hours
That doesn't really narrow it down much - normal for whom? but like others I'd expect it to be a stressful drive in both directions. I know much of the route quite well, and there are several stretches of up to 20km where there will _always_ be stop-start traffic, even when it's not busy, and at peak times you can probably factor in up to an hour extra compared with what a satnav would predict/

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Personally, I would rent a room. Cheaper in the long run, tax deductible and less hectic driving.
Well yes, or just take the train.
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Old 13.04.2021, 12:12
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Re: Zurich Bern commute

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No way I would ever do this commute by car ... traffic will be awful and quite fatiguing. There is a little quick train from the main station to the suburb he will be working in ... they are frequent.

I commute from Bern - Zurich by train and it is manageable. Hopefully your friend can do 1-2 days per week from home?
the best time I can find on the SBB site is 1 hour 47 minutes
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Old 13.04.2021, 12:13
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Re: Zurich Bern commute

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That doesn't really narrow it down much - normal for whom?
8am - 16.30 pm
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Old 13.04.2021, 12:14
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Re: Zurich Bern commute

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Personally, I would rent a room. Cheaper in the long run, tax deductible and less hectic driving.
I had no idea it was tax deductible, do you have info on that by chance? Is it possible to go back and refile?

I did that while we were living in Basel and I was working outside of Neuchatel ... if your friend has a family (even just a partner and pets like me), I would not recommend it. I did what I had to do, but those were some of the loneliest moments of my life. I felt like I was simply just living to work and nope nope nope, never again unless absolutely necessary. Also the weirdness of unpacking and packing my suitcase each and every week was quite unsettling.

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the best time I can find on the SBB site is 1 hour 47 minutes
Not bad - I had to do it 5 days a week not too long ago ... I turned out fine. Of course I would choose to work locally if I could ... luckily my work changed their working from home policy and once the pandemic is over, I will only have to do it 2-3 days per week.
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Old 13.04.2021, 12:18
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Re: Zurich Bern commute

I have seen people doing similar kinds of commute by car. Only worked okish by going at odd times, e.g. starting either at 7am or at 11am, leaving at 3pm or at 7pm. The problem is that rush hours have widened a lot.

From Enstringen to the train is not great, whereas one is on the motorway in minutes.
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Old 13.04.2021, 12:20
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Re: Zurich Bern commute

My friend is married with no kids, getting a room in Bern is not desired. She is currently unemployed after 5 months searching so does not want to turn down this offer.
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Old 13.04.2021, 12:21
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Re: Zurich Bern commute

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the best time I can find on the SBB site is 1 hour 47 minutes
Door-to-door, or just from/to the first/final stops?
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Old 13.04.2021, 12:30
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Re: Zurich Bern commute

Ive done Zurich-Bern for several years by train. That was bad enough as even the first class is always packed during the commuting times. No way Id consider it by car. The IC from main station to main station is fine, its the other legs of the trip that wear you out.
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Old 13.04.2021, 12:31
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Re: Zurich Bern commute

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Door-to-door, or just from/to the first/final stops?
first to final stop
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Old 13.04.2021, 12:35
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Re: Zurich Bern commute

I will soon be doing the commute from Zug to Bern since I joined a new company during lockdown. On the few occasions I have had to go into the office its been 1:45 by car (best case) and almost the same by train. Traffic was light because there are just less commuters on the road so I would definitely opt for the train and a 1st class GA.

Perhaps your friend can already negotiate a hybrid WFH schedule where they only need to be in Bern 2-3 days a week. That's what I am hoping to get once we get back to normal. I also have the benefit of flexitime so I don't have to be at my desk at 08:30, which means I can skate around peak train rush hour.
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Old 13.04.2021, 12:40
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Re: Zurich Bern commute

We had a friend who commuted Lausanne - Zurich return by train daily for several years, which is a 2 hour train ride on an IC each way. He had a first class AG and negotiated with his employer that he would spend 50% of his time on the train working, so he did 2 hours of work in total while en route and needed to be in the office for only 6.5. This made his days a bit more bearable, but he said working on the train was also a very effective way to pass the time, and he only "lost" 2 hours per day commuting instead of 4. Depending on the type of work, perhaps this sort of arrangement might be possible for your friend?
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Old 13.04.2021, 12:42
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Re: Zurich Bern commute

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My friend is married with no kids, getting a room in Bern is not desired. She is currently unemployed after 5 months searching so does not want to turn down this offer.
Ever read Tale of Two Cities. It was the best of times...
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Old 13.04.2021, 12:50
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Re: Zurich Bern commute

I have done Ehrendingen(AG)-Solothurn(SO) drive by car 80km one way for 6 months. Then Oftringen(AG)-Ebikon(LU) 60km for 4 months. Both awful waste of time and fuel. Only worked for me Oftringen(AG)-Solothurn(SO) 40km for years and currently few times per week Oftringen(AG)-Turgi(AG) 40km which is OK. My wife travels the same route every day Oftringen(AG)-Baden(AG) 40km stretch.

That’s why we moved to the middle of Switzerland and near the motorway to minimize the traffic. It seems like I will be doing for 12 months Oftringen(AG)-Rotkreuz(ZG) and probably swear again. Thinking of buying electric vehicle.

If your friend has a chance to move I wouldn’t think twice.

BTW: My friend is going to do Baden(AG)-Bern(BE) 100km one way driving next month and he will tell me how things go.
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Old 13.04.2021, 12:54
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Re: Zurich Bern commute

Train or car I can't say, though personally I'd go with the train. However, before asking if you can WFH, work on train etc, I'd go into the office each day for 3 months so you really get to know your boss and colleagues and get your feet firmly established under the table.

Then you can broach the subject, maybe ask colleagues what they think etc. As an employer I'd want to see how you work in the office first and then maybe they will even offer you the chance to WFH with out you having to ask.
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