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Old 22.12.2014, 16:28
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Can I work in Switzerland and be covered by an Australian travel insurance?

I have been looking at insurance prices in Switzerland and it makes me want to cry.

I thought about then instead getting an extended travel insurance through my Aussie insurer and being covered by that. The Organisation for the Swiss Abroad said that it should work but I need to check with the canton specifically. I called the canton I am planning on living in, Basel Stadt, but they didn't answer the phone (and I couldn't leave a number coz I called using the internet) then I tried Basel Land and they said it depends on which gemeind you live in. Because I don't have an apartment to live in yet I can't confirm which one I'll be living in.

Has anyone had similar experiences? Might someone know the answer to this?

And now after reading on the forum - if I do have to get a Swiss insurance I have to backpay to my date of arrival? Even if the rules say within 3 months, and I've been covered by travel insurance until that date? I haven't found that information anywhere in the infos I've been given.. I am kind of hoping I can avoid all this, my job won't be very well paid and I can't really afford such a big amount of my salary to go towards the insurance.. I have decided I'll become a vegetarian, at least I'll save money that way..
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Old 22.12.2014, 16:37
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Re: Can I work in Switzerland and be covered by an Australian travel insurance?

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I have been looking at insurance prices in Switzerland and it makes me want to cry.

I thought about then instead getting an extended travel insurance through my Aussie insurer and being covered by that. The Organisation for the Swiss Abroad said that it should work but I need to check with the canton specifically. I called the canton I am planning on living in, Basel Stadt, but they didn't answer the phone (and I couldn't leave a number coz I called using the internet) then I tried Basel Land and they said it depends on which gemeind you live in. Because I don't have an apartment to live in yet I can't confirm which one I'll be living in.

Has anyone had similar experiences? Might someone know the answer to this?

And now after reading on the forum - if I do have to get a Swiss insurance I have to backpay to my date of arrival? Even if the rules say within 3 months, and I've been covered by travel insurance until that date? I haven't found that information anywhere in the infos I've been given.. I am kind of hoping I can avoid all this, my job won't be very well paid and I can't really afford such a big amount of my salary to go towards the insurance.. I have decided I'll become a vegetarian, at least I'll save money that way..
Your not covered by travel insurance, as your not a tourist. With travel insurance medical bills are usually very small as they only pay for emergency treatment & get you home, unlike medical insurance that will pay the bills until you recover.
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Old 22.12.2014, 16:43
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Re: Can I work in Switzerland and be covered by an Australian travel insurance?

That's where I'm confused because i asked my insurer today and they said they cover me whilst working and the medical coverage is unlimited and not just for emergencies.

I did just find a phone number (at 1.30am finally found something!) and spoke to some office that said because I'm doing an internship and are paid less than a certain amount that I'm eligible for an exemption so maybe that's the way I'll go.

I hope someone else might have had the same experience?
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Old 22.12.2014, 16:49
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Re: Can I work in Switzerland and be covered by an Australian travel insurance?

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That's where I'm confused because i asked my insurer today and they said they cover me whilst working and the medical coverage is unlimited and not just for emergencies.
It doesn't matter. If you're living here you have no choice - you must have Swiss health insurance and your employer must provide accident insurance. This isn't dependent on what your foreign policy says, but is a Swiss requirement, regardless of what else you may have.
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Old 22.12.2014, 16:49
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Re: Can I work in Switzerland and be covered by an Australian travel insurance?

You said , your job is not paid very well, so how much do you earn a month ?
When you are under 4500 sfr per month (gross, before security fees and taxes)
, you get a deduction.
You can save money , when you set your franchise to 2500 sfr per month.


When you are working in switzerland, you need a mandatory health insurance
in switzerland aswell.
When you live in Bale, you don't need a car, can save money at food purchasing ,buying in Germany(Lörrach or Weil) or France( St.Louis).
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Old 22.12.2014, 16:49
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Re: Can I work in Switzerland and be covered by an Australian travel insurance?

I have heard of some people using worldwide health cover (not travel insurance) ,eg BUPA from UK, in CH. But some people also say that the authorities might reject it anyway, I have no idea if it is cheaper though.
Seems to be a bit random whether they will accept non Swiss providers.

A lot of people don't end up paying the 3 month back pay and don't hear back. I hear that even accountants will even advocate this.

Did you look at Assura health insurance? They are the cheapest, ~225CHF, for Basel Stadt, if you use the "family Doctor Model" on the highest excess.

Maybe if your pay is low enough you will get a subsidy from the local government??
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Old 22.12.2014, 16:54
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Re: Can I work in Switzerland and be covered by an Australian travel insurance?

When I arrived in Switzerland in August this year my family and myself were on a 1 year international health insurance cover with Globality Health (Luxembourg company). I took this "temporary" insurance out on a private basis for my transition period from Belgium to Switzerland.

I received a letter within 4 weeks after my arrival in Canton de Vaud asking for proof of health insurance. I sent them my existing health insurance contract (which was far more extensive than the average travel insurance policy) and asked them kindly for an exemption till after expiry of the 1 year contract with Globality Health. I got a rather short reply which can be summed up in one word, i.e. "non".

I managed to get out of my one year policy with Globality Health end October, and took out insurance with Helsana as from 1st of November so that there is no overlap.
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Old 22.12.2014, 17:03
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Re: Can I work in Switzerland and be covered by an Australian travel insurance?

If you are a student in Australia and do an internship here you might benefit from the student insurances. There is Swisscare which have cheap insurance for students, starting from 76CHF per month with 500 CHF franchise. There are also some other ones like CSS Student Care, ScoreStudies. I think that with the last 2 you have to be a student, I am not sure.

I personally had CSS Student Care, but had to change because they no longer were offering it in Canton Vaud.

Hope this helps.
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Old 22.12.2014, 17:06
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Re: Can I work in Switzerland and be covered by an Australian travel insurance?

thanks everyone for your replies.

I am earning considerably less than the minimum but because I'm there for less than a year and not at the beginning of the year (which is when I was informed I'd need to put in application for help or deductions from government) I don't want to count on it. Is this wrong, can I still apply? My info was from a swiss citizen, maybe they could be wrong?

Basel Stadt KVG office directed me to a form that I can fill in asking for an exemption and because my work contract says that I am doing an internship I still count under students or trainees.

My plan is to apply for a shorter time for my insurance policy, get to Switzerand and apply for the exemption and then if they reject it I won't have lost too much money, and if I get it, then I can extend my insurance (I already checked that I could do that in case I stay longer than the 6 month internship and that's all good). Another backup is that because I earn less than that amount I am technically allowed to apply for a student insurance. SO if everything else falls through then I'll try that. madfilip unfortunately I've just finished studying and so I'm not a student here anymore.

Thanks for your help!
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Old 22.12.2014, 17:10
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Re: Can I work in Switzerland and be covered by an Australian travel insurance?

Forget using a foreign non swiss policy. I know of some people in basel that have had bupa accepted by the geminde but when something happened buba said bugger off you need a swiss based policy.
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Old 22.12.2014, 17:12
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Re: Can I work in Switzerland and be covered by an Australian travel insurance?

Best check with Swisscare, you might be still be able to get the STUDENTPASS Switzerland insurance. They say that Interns & au-pairs need to provide the employment contract and the permit B or L. You might still be eligible for it.
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Old 22.12.2014, 17:13
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Re: Can I work in Switzerland and be covered by an Australian travel insurance?

do you think its just Switzerland that's so strict?
I am keen to do this because I spent a year in italy (okay it's easy to fall through the cracks there, they didn't even care where I was living or how much money I had before I moved there ) and used a travel insurance the whole time I was there, but I was studying..
And the price difference between the Swiss one, if I can't get a student one, and what I have to pay for my travel insurance makes it really worth it..
Otherwise I'd be devoting up to a third of my pay to insurance.
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Old 22.12.2014, 17:18
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Re: Can I work in Switzerland and be covered by an Australian travel insurance?

I am not sure about Italy, but Switzerland has a law saying that any person residing in Switzerland for more than 3 months has to have a mandatory health insurance. I know that certain countries can use their home insurance as the mandatory insurance in Switzerland. Some friends from EU countries have done that already. I think you can only do it if you have a temporary contract or you are studying here.
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Old 22.12.2014, 18:47
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Re: Can I work in Switzerland and be covered by an Australian travel insurance?

Will you be in Switzerland as student or as salaried employee ? Situation is different. If you are a student you can get a student insurance. Cost is around CHF 85 per month. If you are working as salaried employee (or as independent, or not working at all) you need to contract for the swiss insurance. Minimal cost is of CHF 180 per month I would say (with highest deductible and restricted choice of practicer).
You cannot chose if you are here for to studying or for working. The swiss state has given to you avisa and a residence permit (or is going to give you a permit). They perfectly know if you got your visa or your residence permit for to study or not!
If you are working as salaried employee you are insured for accident insurance directly to your employer. If your salary is small (under CHF 2000 per month or something like that) you dont need to contract an swiss health insurance. There is a rule saying than if the salary is less than a special amount people dont need to pay for health insurance.
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Old 22.12.2014, 18:55
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Re: Can I work in Switzerland and be covered by an Australian travel insurance?

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do you think its just Switzerland that's so strict?
I am keen to do this because I spent a year in italy (okay it's easy to fall through the cracks there, they didn't even care where I was living or how much money I had before I moved there ) and used a travel insurance the whole time I was there, but I was studying..
And the price difference between the Swiss one, if I can't get a student one, and what I have to pay for my travel insurance makes it really worth it..
Otherwise I'd be devoting up to a third of my pay to insurance.
Italy has state health care… so if you are residing there, you do not need to pay! Same as UK, France etc.
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Old 22.12.2014, 18:57
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Re: Can I work in Switzerland and be covered by an Australian travel insurance?

"Because I don't have an apartment to live in yet I can't confirm which one I'll be living in."

Your official adress in Switzerland is the one you have given when you ask for the visa (if australian need visa) and the one you have (or must) to give to the Basel Stadt authorities (the Gemeinde).
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Old 22.12.2014, 19:43
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Re: Can I work in Switzerland and be covered by an Australian travel insurance?

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"Because I don't have an apartment to live in yet I can't confirm which one I'll be living in."

Your official adress in Switzerland is the one you have given when you ask for the visa (if australian need visa) and the one you have (or must) to give to the Basel Stadt authorities (the Gemeinde).
When you are applying for the visa you can say that you are searching for accommodation and they do not make problems. I know that I had that situation, I needed to apply few months before I came and I still didn't had an accommodation at that point.
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Old 22.12.2014, 19:50
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Re: Can I work in Switzerland and be covered by an Australian travel insurance?

For to ask for the residence permit you must give an adress. Wihout adress no residence permit. Without residence permit no swiss obligatory insurance. Without residence permit and swiss obligatory insurance (there are few exceptions) + more than 3 months of staying here = illegal situation.
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Old 22.12.2014, 20:09
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Re: Can I work in Switzerland and be covered by an Australian travel insurance?

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For to ask for the residence permit you must give an adress. Wihout adress no residence permit. Without residence permit no swiss obligatory insurance. Without residence permit and swiss obligatory insurance (there are few exceptions) + more than 3 months of staying here = illegal situation.
No. For Non-EU citizens, they have to have their permit approved before they can come to Switzerland. Once they are here they can provide an address and the permit will be issued!
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Old 22.12.2014, 20:39
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Re: Can I work in Switzerland and be covered by an Australian travel insurance?

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No. For Non-EU citizens, they have to have their permit approved before they can come to Switzerland. Once they are here they can provide an address and the permit will be issued!
It's what I said. You cannot ask for a residence permit without telling an adress.
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