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-   -   Life in Switzerland 2021 (https://www.englishforum.ch/daily-life/304660-life-switzerland-2021-a.html)

kind 18.06.2021 15:10

Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Hi all!
I'm new to the forum and this is my first post here. Pleasure to interact with you all!
I have a specific question. My family (hubby and toddler) and I are currently based in Brussels, Belgium and we are considering a move to Switzerland, specifically french speaking regions like Geneva or Lausanne. I would like to know how you are currently finding living in Switzerland, the good, the bad and the ugly. For example I read threads that say Geneva is going downhill and it is becoming dirty? I'm just after a generalised up to date view on how you are finding your life in Switzerland, what you love about it and what you don't like.
Thank you for your responses in advance.

komsomolez 18.06.2021 15:54

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by kind (Post 3319193)
Hi all!
I'm new to the forum and this is my first post here. Pleasure to interact with you all!
I have a specific question. My family (hubby and toddler) and I are currently based in Brussels, Belgium and we are considering a move to Switzerland, specifically french speaking regions like Geneva or Lausanne. I would like to know how you are currently finding living in Switzerland, the good, the bad and the ugly. For example I read threads that say Geneva is going downhill and it is becoming dirty? I'm just after a generalised up to date view on how you are finding your life in Switzerland, what you love about it and what you don't like.
Thank you for your responses in advance.

Where to start? If you live in Brussels, Geneva will look very sanitary to you.

olygirl 18.06.2021 16:05

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Can't help you with the "Welsche" part of Switzerland but welcome to the forum.

roegner 18.06.2021 16:08

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Welcome. Can‘t help you with the questions, but for sure it can‘t be worse than Brussels? Worked there a longer time ago and wasn‘t too impressed

LtSoftDrink 18.06.2021 16:20

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by kind (Post 3319193)
For example I read threads that say Geneva is going downhill and it is becoming dirty?

Switzerland is lovely once you get used to the strange locals and the entitled foreigners :D

Don’t know about “downhill” and haven’t been to Geneva for years. IMHO it’s the least Swiss and in some places the most squalid local city – which might still be an improvement to Bruxelles ….

HIAO 18.06.2021 16:53

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Geneva has been home to my family for 10 years, and we’re happy.

Some parts are more beautiful than others.

I’ve not lived in Brussels to make an informed comparison.

catandmouse 18.06.2021 17:39

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
I've not lived in Brussels, but visited regularly. I think you'll find Geneva significantly less squalid than Brussels. It's easy to live outside Geneva, though these days prices aren't necessarily lower than in the town. You'll just be living out in smaller communities. Geneva has an excellent public transport system, which these days goes out over the border into France.

MusicChick 18.06.2021 18:16

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
There is no 'ugly' when living in this Francophone neck of the woods.

Welcome to our community and soon to our area. :)

XDr 18.06.2021 18:29

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Bienvenue, kind. Having spent weeks in these over the years (but not lived permanently), my take is that Geneva is experiencing a slow decline in cleanliness and safety with crowding, though there is a good part of perception in this. But much better than Brussels in both, and generally more livable!
On the other hand, get ready for a cost of living shock. See:

https://www.numbeo.com/cost-of-livin...d&city2=Geneva
Lausanne is roughly the same, different employment options perhaps.
So this move mostly makes sense if you can get good job(s) or have your own highly profitable business; or otherwise if you are willing to sacrifice a lot on net income for some improvement in (other) quality of life.

kind 18.06.2021 18:56

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by komsomolez (Post 3319210)
Where to start? If you live in Brussels, Geneva will look very sanitary to you.

Haha, thank you that's what I was trying to find out. I find Brussels rather unsanitary and would hate to move and find the same situation.

kind 18.06.2021 18:58

Quote:

Originally Posted by XDr (Post 3319287)
Bienvenue, kind. Having spent weeks in these over the years (but not lived permanently), my take is that Geneva is experiencing a slow decline in cleanliness and safety with crowding, though there is a good part of perception in this. But much better than Brussels in both, and generally more livable!
On the other hand, get ready for a cost of living shock. See:

https://www.numbeo.com/cost-of-livin...d&city2=Geneva
Lausanne is roughly the same, different employment options perhaps.
So this move mostly makes sense if you can get good job(s) or have your own highly profitable business; or otherwise if you are willing to sacrifice a lot on net income for some improvement in (other) quality of life.

Thank you for the welcome and for your informed reply.
Indeed we do expect the living costs to go up, but for a better quality of life we would be happy to make that trade. Hubby is in IT and I am a medical professional so we have calculated we should be able to make a decent living.

Thank you for your valued input. I'm glad to hear you're still happy living there after 10 years. My main gripes with Brussels are the unsanitary city areas, extremely high taxes and debilitating bureaucracy.

Quote:

Originally Posted by catandmouse (Post 3319266)
I've not lived in Brussels, but visited regularly. I think you'll find Geneva significantly less squalid than Brussels. It's easy to live outside Geneva, though these days prices aren't necessarily lower than in the town. You'll just be living out in smaller communities. Geneva has an excellent public transport system, which these days goes out over the border into France.

Thank you for your valued input. I'm glad to hear you're still happy living there after 10 years. My main gripes with Brussels are the unsanitary city areas, extremely high taxes and debilitating bureaucracy.

Quote:

Originally Posted by HIAO (Post 3319239)
Geneva has been home to my family for 10 years, and we’re happy.

Some parts are more beautiful than others.

I’ve not lived in Brussels to make an informed comparison.

Thank you for your valued input. I'm glad to hear you're still happy living there after 10 years. My main gripes with Brussels are the unsanitary city areas, extremely high taxes and debilitating bureaucracy.

Landers 18.06.2021 19:12

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by XDr (Post 3319287)
or otherwise if you are willing to sacrifice a lot on net income for some improvement in (other) quality of life.

I imagine the tax rate will be a lot less than in Brussels.

HickvonFrick 18.06.2021 19:35

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
I don't know Geneva that well, and for Switzerland it's decidedly high tax, but I do know Brussels well and can only imagine it's a significant step up.

komsomolez 18.06.2021 19:49

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by HickvonFrick (Post 3319306)
I don't know Geneva that well, and for Switzerland it's decidedly high tax, but I do know Brussels well and can only imagine it's a significant step up.

Tax is not that bad in GE.

Polymath 18.06.2021 19:53

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Welcome. You’ll be pleased to hear that the chocolate should be at least as good :D

XDr 18.06.2021 20:06

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Polymath (Post 3319311)
Welcome. You’ll be pleased to hear that the chocolate should be at least as good :D


That is one I disagree upon. Being from neither country, I would say Belgian chocolate is better, if not the best in the world, even if Switzerland has some excellent chocolate (and more industrial stuff). Hate on if you must, or I dare you to some blind chocolate tasting.



As for beer, let us not even start to go there. I don't volunteer for half of that tasting.:msnsick:


But a move should not turn on that, obviously.:msngrin:

komsomolez 18.06.2021 20:07

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Maybe some more thoughts, now that we are between games.

I have lived in Belgium for 1 1/2 years as a student. Found it filthy then, so I guess I would get herpes now when crossing the border. It was fun though, also BXL and the nightlife there. With the exception of the parts towards the Ardennes, I found it incredibly boring from an outdoors perspective.

Switzerland is solid, some may say boring, in a good way. Generally very good purchasing power, amazing landscapes and outdoors opportunities, a very civilized way of life, little conflict (some would say shy of and possibly creepy ways to solve), no crime, rather conservative mindsets unless maybe in the "big cities" (even there I would say). Of course a lot will depend on the individual circumstances, but the general conditions are better than anywhere I else I know

That said, we have enough foreigners here, and they make everything more expensive and take our jobs away. So stay where you are :D

AbFab 18.06.2021 20:18

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
The sun is a bit stronger here…

Polymath 18.06.2021 20:59

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by XDr (Post 3319314)
That is one I disagree upon. Being from neither country, I would say Belgian chocolate is better, if not the best in the world, even if Switzerland has some excellent chocolate (and more industrial stuff). Hate on if you must, or I dare you to some blind chocolate tasting.



As for beer, let us not even start to go there. I don't volunteer for half of that tasting.:msnsick:


But a move should not turn on that, obviously.:msngrin:

Wildlese truffles from Sprüngli are exceptional and I don’t think I ever had better. I am of course open to new experiences and a blind chocolate tasting sounds like a great idea :D

Beer is not even up for discussion. Belgian is far superior.

komsomolez 18.06.2021 21:13

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Polymath (Post 3319324)

Beer is not even up for discussion. Belgian is far superior.

Agree, Belgian beer is slightly less atrocious than Swiss beer.

st2lemans 18.06.2021 21:37

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by komsomolez (Post 3319331)
Agree, Belgian beer is slightly less atrocious than Swiss beer.

Both are far better than German beer. ;)

Tom

komsomolez 18.06.2021 21:49

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by st2lemans (Post 3319334)
Both are far better than German beer. ;)

Tom

I trust you are staying away from American, Swiss and Italian beer - and drink wine from Ticino like a civilized person.

komsomolez 18.06.2021 21:59

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by komsomolez (Post 3319309)
Tax is not that bad in GE.

@Tom not sure what the groan is for. True, for high incomes it becomes worse, but still not crazy.

https://up.picr.de/41448915iy.jpg

HickvonFrick 19.06.2021 00:49

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by komsomolez (Post 3319342)
@Tom not sure what the groan is for. True, for high incomes it becomes worse, but still not crazy.

https://up.picr.de/41448915iy.jpg

I don't how it colours Geneva as lower tax than Aargau (and even properly low tax cantons in central Switzerland). I went on taxjungle and for us AG is Miles lower. I tried with just mine (standard expat, not crazy high) and Frick is still a lot lower than Geneva city. It has BS as similar to AG and that certainly isn't right!

Possibly if you are low income with several kids GE could be better - but if I were in that position I wouldn't want to be paying GE rents and health insurance - Id probably just live in France. If you can afford to actually live there GE seems high.

komsomolez 19.06.2021 07:28

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by HickvonFrick (Post 3319370)
I don't how it colours Geneva as lower tax than Aargau (and even properly low tax cantons in central Switzerland). I went on taxjungle and for us AG is Miles lower. I tried with just mine (standard expat, not crazy high) and Frick is still a lot lower than Geneva city. It has BS as similar to AG and that certainly isn't right!

Possibly if you are low income with several kids GE could be better - but if I were in that position I wouldn't want to be paying GE rents and health insurance - Id probably just live in France. If you can afford to actually live there GE seems high.

The cost of living point is the main one. Often the tax haven /hell argument is a bit of a myth (and I fall for it myself sometimes).

Just double checked on Comparis: For a family with one assumed income of net 140k, 2x 3a and one kid, taxes in Geneva (city) and Frick are almost exactly the same. The higher the income, the worse GE becomes.

But this is all irrelevant without knowing the professional situation of the OP. Maybe they are with some intl org and pay no tax.

Axa 19.06.2021 11:52

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by kind (Post 3319193)
Hi all!
I'm new to the forum and this is my first post here. Pleasure to interact with you all!
I have a specific question. My family (hubby and toddler) and I are currently based in Brussels, Belgium and we are considering a move to Switzerland, specifically french speaking regions like Geneva or Lausanne. I would like to know how you are currently finding living in Switzerland, the good, the bad and the ugly. For example I read threads that say Geneva is going downhill and it is becoming dirty? I'm just after a generalised up to date view on how you are finding your life in Switzerland, what you love about it and what you don't like.
Thank you for your responses in advance.

Life in general in Switzerland? Boredom.

Geneva going downhill and becoming dirty? I guess if you make your best effort to rent precisely next to a social support building you'll might get that impression. But, it has to be a great effort, those buildings are scarce. But it all depends on income. If you come with expat income, you won't rent there, no worries.

What people most worries in Geneva is living below the paths of airplanes arriving to and departing from the airport. The few hours I've spent in Geneva I noticed the airplanes because the city is so silent. If it were a city with a little bit more of noise, you'll never notice the airplanes.

kind 19.06.2021 12:53

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Axa (Post 3319416)
Life in general in Switzerland? Boredom.

Geneva going downhill and becoming dirty? I guess if you make your best effort to rent precisely next to a social support building you'll might get that impression. But, it has to be a great effort, those buildings are scarce. But it all depends on income. If you come with expat income, you won't rent there, no worries.

What people most worries in Geneva is living below the paths of airplanes arriving to and departing from the airport. The few hours I've spent in Geneva I noticed the airplanes because the city is so silent. If it were a city with a little bit more of noise, you'll never notice the airplanes.

Thanks for your reply.

When you say boredom, is it because there is a lack of things to do? For example in Brussels where I live there are lots of bars, restaurants, parks, museums, exhibitions etc. Is there a lack of this in general or just outside the big cities?

HickvonFrick 19.06.2021 13:11

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by kind (Post 3319424)
Thanks for your reply.

When you say boredom, is it because there is a lack of things to do? For example in Brussels where I live there are lots of bars, restaurants, parks, museums, exhibitions etc. Is there a lack of this in general or just outside the big cities?

I would say Switzerland is a country where you have to enjoy the (spectacular) countryside to get the most out of it. Restaurants and bars aren't really Switzerland's strength - very expensive and not the best in my experience. That said I don't really know Geneva and Romandie in general well.

MusicChick 19.06.2021 13:14

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by kind (Post 3319424)
Thanks for your reply.

When you say boredom, is it because there is a lack of things to do? For example in Brussels where I live there are lots of bars, restaurants, parks, museums, exhibitions etc. Is there a lack of this in general or just outside the big cities?

There is a lot to do - the city life you mentioned both in Geneva and Lausanne and other, smaller cities. And a big plus on top of that - diverse outdoorsy life: lake, water sports, hiking, cycling, running, climbing, Jura mountains and the Alps not far away. BBQs, meet ups, social life that is hard to manage because there is too much. It is different than the big cities I lived in, more outside than just clubs and music venues, but it feels healthier. Unless you obsess on chocolate 24/7. :D

Polymath 19.06.2021 13:49

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by MusicChick (Post 3319428)
There is a lot to do - the city life you mentioned both in Geneva and Lausanne and other, smaller cities. And a big plus on top of that - diverse outdoorsy life: lake, water sports, hiking, cycling, running, climbing, Jura mountains and the Alps not far away. BBQs, meet ups, social life that is hard to manage because there is too much. It is different than the big cities I lived in, more outside than just clubs and music venues, but it feels healthier. Unless you obsess on chocolate 24/7. :D

And skiing! :D

MusicChick 19.06.2021 14:18

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Polymath (Post 3319434)
And skiing! :D

Yes! Winter stuff! All the lovely empty vintage, not fashionable black slopes nobody wants to cruise with me :D

Axa 19.06.2021 17:33

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by kind (Post 3319424)
Thanks for your reply.

When you say boredom, is it because there is a lack of things to do? For example in Brussels where I live there are lots of bars, restaurants, parks, museums, exhibitions etc. Is there a lack of this in general or just outside the big cities?

TBH, I injured my right knee in early April while skiing :D Being a bit bored since then because I'm moving again little by little. Desperate to ride the bike again.

Indeed, outside of the relatively large cities you make a tour of the local bars in 1 month and then repeat . At least, restaurants opened once again.

Also a bit influenced by covid19 because Milano is 3 hours away by car, Alsace 1 hour.

AbelAlejandro 19.07.2021 18:23

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by kind (Post 3319193)
Hi all!
I'm new to the forum and this is my first post here. Pleasure to interact with you all!
I have a specific question. My family (hubby and toddler) and I are currently based in Brussels, Belgium and we are considering a move to Switzerland, specifically french speaking regions like Geneva or Lausanne. I would like to know how you are currently finding living in Switzerland, the good, the bad and the ugly. For example I read threads that say Geneva is going downhill and it is becoming dirty? I'm just after a generalised up to date view on how you are finding your life in Switzerland, what you love about it and what you don't like.
Thank you for your responses in advance.

I live across the street from a social support building and a block away from Geneva's train station. According to what I've read on this thread this might be the worst place to live in Switzerland, yet I find it to be cleaner and calmer than most of the cities where I lived in Ireland. I don't know how it fares against Bruxelles but I don't think this town is any worse in any aspect.

Things that I like: high paying jobs, low taxes, great local purchasing power, outstanding transportation network, high percentage of expats, having mountains, rivers and the lake at a stone's throw, the fact there isn't armed military in the train stations, weather, cultural events.

Things I don't like: I'll let you know if I find one

otec 19.07.2021 22:26

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by st2lemans (Post 3319334)
Both are far better than German beer. ;)

Tom

All 3 are worse than Italian beer in Alto Adige

HickvonFrick 19.07.2021 22:51

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
I miss real ale.

HickvonFrick 19.07.2021 22:55

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by AbelAlejandro (Post 3329348)
I live across the street from a social support building and a block away from Geneva's train station. According to what I've read on this thread this might be the worst place to live in Switzerland, yet I find it to be cleaner and calmer than most of the cities where I lived in Ireland. I don't know how it fares against Bruxelles but I don't think this town is any worse in any aspect.

Things that I like: high paying jobs, low taxes, great local purchasing power, outstanding transportation network, high percentage of expats, having mountains, rivers and the lake at a stone's throw, the fact there isn't armed military in the train stations, weather, cultural events.

Things I don't like: I'll let you know if I find one

Great post. Most our little problems are barely relevant in the scheme of things. For all I find Basel to be my least favourite city in Switzerland, it's still better than pretty much everywhere back home as regards liveability.

AbelAlejandro 20.07.2021 11:20

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by HickvonFrick (Post 3329415)
I miss real ale.

I miss session IPA. Can get some Scottish IPA for 4 quid at Coop but it ain't the same.

Polymath 20.07.2021 11:43

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by HickvonFrick (Post 3329415)
I miss real ale.

Ah real ale from cask. I miss this too. It’s been a long time!

otec 20.07.2021 12:33

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Polymath (Post 3329553)
Ah real ale from cask. I miss this too. It’s been a long time!

Cant you buy it at the Irish pub ?

Polymath 20.07.2021 12:49

Re: Life in Switzerland 2021
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by otec (Post 3329565)
Cant you buy it at the Irish pub ?

Unfortunately not. I lived in Ireland for years before moving to Switzerland and never found a single pub that served real ale from cask. The Alehouse in Zürich apparently has one hand pump but it shows as currently not in use on their website :confused:

https://www.alehouse.ch/


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