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Old 01.07.2011, 12:26
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How do you get a Swiss credit card?

Hi folks,
I started a new IT contract job here in Switzerland, my agent kindly opened a bank account with Credit Suisse on day one, I have a Maestro card from them which is absolutely hopeless, and my application for a credit card was turned down by Suisse, even after my agent made my contract a perm one. I have a generous income and feel I can't do any purchases online including plane tickets. Does anyone know any loop holes in the system. Would hate to convert to sterling and use UK credit cards - waste too much on exchanges. Why can't they just stick a visa logo on their debit cards like in UK..
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Old 01.07.2011, 12:29
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Re: How do you get a Swiss credit card?

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Hi folks,
I started a new IT contract job here in Switzerland, my agent kindly opened a bank account with Credit Suisse on day one, I have a Maestro card from them which is absolutely hopeless, and my application for a credit card was turned down by Suisse, even after my agent made my contract a perm one. I have a generous income and feel I can't do any purchases online including plane tickets. Does anyone know any loop holes in the system. Would hate to convert to sterling and use UK credit cards - waste too much on exchanges. Why can't they just stick a visa logo on their debit cards like in UK..
Did you go for a credit card or amex.
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Old 01.07.2011, 12:33
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Re: How do you get a Swiss credit card?

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Did you go for a credit card or amex.
I believe they applied for a credit card (I think a Mastercard)
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Old 01.07.2011, 12:40
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Re: How do you get a Swiss credit card?

I just dealt with Amex. Credit Suisse handles all the Amex stuff just here in Switzerland. In my case I already have an Amex in the States. They can't just issue, they have to get a credit report from Amex in US then can issue. That's what they suggested. If you do have it log on to get the app and there is a spot to enter your UK number. Hope it helps!
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Old 01.07.2011, 12:44
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Re: How do you get a Swiss credit card?

Thank you - I have a UK AmEx which I never used before. So hopefully I can apply online on Credit Suisse site and get one? Then again not sure if some of these cheap online airlines accept AmEx. Worth a go though..
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Old 01.07.2011, 12:48
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Re: How do you get a Swiss credit card?

You can get a VISA pre-paid credit card from Credit Suisse, or from the SBB with a "Halb Tax card". No credit rating is needed, you just load it up and spend it. Much cheaper with the airline charges as well.
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Old 01.07.2011, 12:54
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Re: How do you get a Swiss credit card?

And more places in CH will take it than will take Amex.

Q - Why are company credit cards always Amex, when so few places take it?
A- Because so few places take it.
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Old 01.07.2011, 12:58
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Re: How do you get a Swiss credit card?

Can I just walk into a SBB office (trains right?) and apply for one of these prepaids there? Do they have a surcharge - I mean is the money you put in same as the money you get out?
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Old 01.07.2011, 13:36
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Re: How do you get a Swiss credit card?

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Can I just walk into a SBB office (trains right?) and apply for one of these prepaids there?
Yes just go to one of the counters with your passport and Swiss permit. You must buy the "Half Fare card" http://www.sbb.ch/en/travelcards-and...ravelcard.html

You have to apply for the card, but the card will arrive in about a week.

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Do they have a surcharge - I mean is the money you put in same as the money you get out?
I think you pay about 5% when you put the money on the card, but there are no annual fees. It is still better than no card.
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Old 01.07.2011, 13:40
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Re: How do you get a Swiss credit card?

I had the same problem as OP.... CS turned down my application, so did Post finance... but I didn't give up and finally UBS gave me one

I'd suggest you go to UBS -- they can even offer you a kind of debit card if your application doesn't go through... so basically you keep X amount of money in your credit card account and use the credit card like that.
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Old 01.07.2011, 14:00
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Re: How do you get a Swiss credit card?

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And more places in CH will take it than will take Amex.

Q - Why are company credit cards always Amex, when so few places take it?
A- Because so few places take it.
LOL!!!

Dinners card, anyone?
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Old 01.07.2011, 14:02
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Re: How do you get a Swiss credit card?

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And more places in CH will take it than will take Amex.

Q - Why are company credit cards always Amex, when so few places take it?
A- Because so few places take it.

It's because Amex don't charge the purchaser (your company who pays the bills) but do charge the vendor. Good for company credit cards, but "bad" for vendors which is why so many of them don't take it...
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Old 01.07.2011, 14:03
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Re: How do you get a Swiss credit card?

UBS offered me a credit card before I'd even applied for one. All I needed was to give them a copy of my contract. I found them very helpful
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Old 01.07.2011, 15:00
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Re: How do you get a Swiss credit card?

Well I went first to open a bank account with UBS on my first day here, they turned me down (as I had a hotel address in red district area of town - noisy neighbors ) and the agent made a few phone calls - took me across the street to Credit Suisse - and bingo had a bank account on day 1- but no credit card. I may give UBS another try, now that I have a descent address, although this prepaid idea sounds good but don't fancy 5% on top each time I load up the card
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Old 01.07.2011, 15:49
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Re: How do you get a Swiss credit card?

I have a normal, not prepaid credit card from SBB. Works fine, been never turned down in any country I've travelled to. And I don't pay any charges on it. Hope that helps.

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Can I just walk into a SBB office (trains right?) and apply for one of these prepaids there? Do they have a surcharge - I mean is the money you put in same as the money you get out?
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Old 01.07.2011, 16:50
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Re: How do you get a Swiss credit card?

If you have a personal relationship with your banker simply ask them for a letter of reference. This is how I got my SBB Visa credit card approved, no more questions asked.
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Old 01.07.2011, 17:22
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Re: How do you get a Swiss credit card?

Try the membercard from ticketcorner (there is one with credit card from
mastercard).
Applied last year for it, been in switzerland since Nov. 2008, no problem at all to get the credit card, got one from viseca.
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Old 01.07.2011, 17:25
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Re: How do you get a Swiss credit card?

UBS wouldn't issue me a credit card till I got the residence permit in the post and showed it to them, also true for getting a mobile phone contract.
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Old 01.07.2011, 17:43
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Re: How do you get a Swiss credit card?

Try one of the kantonalbanks, I've found they are much friendlier than UBS, CS etc
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Old 01.07.2011, 17:50
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Re: How do you get a Swiss credit card?

I also got a credit card when I bought my halbtax card from the SBB. ( not a "prepaid" debit card.) BUying the train card was actually discounted when sigingon for the credit card
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