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Old 27.08.2011, 19:03
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Moving from US to Switzerland in October. (Ticino) Hello!

Hello.

I'm new to the forum as I've recently been offered a job by an American company based in Switzerland. Pending approval of my work permit, I will soon be living in the beautiful canton of Ticino.

I've only lived outside the US for 3 months in college as part of a study abroad in France and know this will be a big move!

I've spent most of my Swiss time in Geneva and speak a little French but will need to learn Italian. It seems almost all of the info available about Swiss life is based on the French and German speaking areas of the country.

Any advice for someone moving to Ticino?

Also, the company will pay to move my furniture. Any general advice on making such a big move? What do other people wish they knew before moving?

Is it foolish to bring a queen sized American bed? Are there any good/bad moving companies? Is it easy to buy used furniture?

About me, my interests include winter sports, yoga, poetry/literature, skateboarding, gardening, home design & fashion.

Thanks for reading!
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Old 27.08.2011, 19:14
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Re: Moving from US to Switzerland in October. (Ticino) Hello!

Used furniture is easy, there are several places in and around Lugano for that (even 27" TVs for CHF 30!), kitchen appliances, dishes, etc. as well.

Queen sized bed is fine, I have a king, no problem to find sheets (though it's brobably worth bringing some.

Best way to learn Italian is to have a significant other who only speaks Italian!

Tom
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Old 27.08.2011, 19:52
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Re: Moving from US to Switzerland in October. (Ticino) Hello!

Thanks Tom! Appreciate it. My hire happened fast so I'm sorting a lot quickly.

One additional question. In the US I spend around 35% of my income on housing.

Is this reasonable in Ticino? I've heard cost of food etc. it quite higher than in the US and don't want to end up stressed at the end of the month.

Thanks!
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Old 27.08.2011, 19:54
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Re: Moving from US to Switzerland in October. (Ticino) Hello!

Welcome to CH! I haven't spent as much time as I'd like in Tessin, but I am sure you are gonna love it. Hope the move goes well.
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Old 27.08.2011, 20:23
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Re: Moving from US to Switzerland in October. (Ticino) Hello!

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Thanks Tom! Appreciate it. My hire happened fast so I'm sorting a lot quickly.

One additional question. In the US I spend around 35% of my income on housing.

Is this reasonable in Ticino? I've heard cost of food etc. it quite higher than in the US and don't want to end up stressed at the end of the month.

Thanks!
Well, Lugano's close to Italy, so you can always do food shopping there.

Housing here is a lot less than up north, 1/2 - 2/3 the price, depending on what you want.

How many rooms are you looking for, what kind of area (city, country, etc.)?

Do you plan on having a car/motorcycle/other?

Tom
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Old 28.08.2011, 00:57
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Re: Moving from US to Switzerland in October. (Ticino) Hello!

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Thanks Tom! Appreciate it. My hire happened fast so I'm sorting a lot quickly.

One additional question. In the US I spend around 35% of my income on housing.

Is this reasonable in Ticino? I've heard cost of food etc. it quite higher than in the US and don't want to end up stressed at the end of the month.

Thanks!
Hi and welcome,

I moved to Lugano from the US earlier this year.

Rent is about the same as in a major US city. There are a lot of sites for finding housing, which you can find by searching the forum. I used comparis.ch (and their iPad app in particular) when I was looking several months ago. You'll also need to provide typically 3 months' rent as a deposit, so save up.

Food is about twice what it costs in the US, more if you eat a lot of meat. M-Budget and Prix Garantie will become your friends. It is cheaper in Italy, but since I don't have a car, I don't shop there often.

Hope your move goes well and let us know when you get here.
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Old 22.09.2011, 15:11
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Re: Moving from US to Switzerland in October. (Ticino) Hello!

Car: A lot will depend on whether you have a car or not. We moved here from Los Angeles about 4 years ago and decided not to get a car. There are some down sides, but the public transport is so good that we are glad we did it (save a ton of money that way).

Rent: Yes, about the same as a big U.S. city. Prices also can vary drastically for seemingly no reason, so be aware of that when you are looking. Also, if you do not have a car, live close to a bus line - it is imperative.

Shopping: Not sure where you are coming from, but Lugano has a small-town mentality (perhaps it's all of Switzerland). Everything closes early (6:30 PM) and there is no shopping on Sunday. We travel to Pointe Tresa (Italy) by train every once in a while to get much cheaper groceries (the produce is better, too). Also, there are 3 different grocery store chains, each carry different brands. So if you like something particular from each (which is almost guaranteed), you end up going to 3 different stores to do your shopping.

Eating out: There is not a lot of choice. But there is an abundance of Pizza and Pasta. A couple Mexican places, a couple of Chinese and a Thai take out. I have yet to find the Indian place. There is also an English/Irish pub up by the university so when you are homesick to eaves drop on an English conversation you can run up there and have a Guinness.

Medical Insurance: Another thing that surprised us when getting here was insurance. It is not paid for by the company. I have never encountered that before, so I hadn't bothered to ask. Also, it is compulsory. You have to have insurance. So, expect to pay about 250-500 francs per month per person depending on your deductible and other additional benefits.

Cell Phone: Very expensive compared to the U.S. Swisscom has good coverage, and you can get your DSL / TV / Cell all on one convenient bill. But you can also checkout Orange/Sunrise as they have various plans, too.

Yoga: There is a couple of yoga places in town. One just opened up called Yoga Roof (I think) it is downtown. A couple of English instructors there (my wife subs occasionally).

Hope this helps - feel free to drop me a line if you have any specific questions!

Sven
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Old 30.09.2011, 05:43
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Re: Moving from US to Switzerland in October. (Ticino) Hello!

Thanks everyone! I will have a car so I think that will help. Glad to hear there are a few familiar options for food, even though I'm really looking forward to the pizza and pasta.

Are there Options for cool, second hand furniture? I love Leboncoin.fr and craigslist for furniture and wonder if there is anything like it in Switzerland.

Thanks again!
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Old 30.09.2011, 06:54
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Re: Moving from US to Switzerland in October. (Ticino) Hello!

I would not count on Ticino' thai or mex or japanese restaurants to feel tasty nor familiar.. mc Donald will fit the bill better. bUT the local food will be fab, pizza and pasta galore... But also risotti done properly, osso buco as thay should be, fabulous wines (make sure you look up local grotto restaurants, litle hole in the wall of gastronomy), not to mention the lakes region of Italy, with all its great fishes, and the Venezie, for food wine and sighseeing!
Enjoy! And yes, an italian girlfriend would improve your learnong the language by 300%...
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Old 03.10.2011, 10:07
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Re: Moving from US to Switzerland in October. (Ticino) Hello!

Hello,
I have lived in Tessin since 1995. I live in Locarno. Now I am studding the English language and I am searching the people who could correct my texts. I could explain the grammar of the Italian language.
Have a nice day

Last edited by 22 yards; 15.10.2011 at 19:05. Reason: Personal details removed per Forum policy
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