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Old 28.01.2007, 12:45
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South African in Switzerland

Hi gooner,

Just a quick question...

You are South African, and so is my husband.

We have moved from Dubai ti settle in Cape town, and have been here for the last 5 months to be precise.

We are both not getting jobs, though we are highly qualified, and my husband holds a Swiss passport.

Your inputs,pleae , where would you chooose to live, to raise a child and have a safe life- Switzerland or SA?

I am Indian, and never lived in either places, thought I have travellled extensively. Living and being a tourist are viewed differently.

Your inputs, please.
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Old 28.01.2007, 21:28
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Re: Driver's Licence conversion

Quote:
Hi gooner,

Just a quick question...

You are South African, and so is my husband.

We have moved from Dubai ti settle in Cape town, and have been here for the last 5 months to be precise.

We are both not getting jobs, though we are highly qualified, and my husband holds a Swiss passport.

Your inputs,pleae , where would you chooose to live, to raise a child and have a safe life- Switzerland or SA?

I am Indian, and never lived in either places, thought I have travellled extensively. Living and being a tourist are viewed differently.

Your inputs, please.
Hi Bernie,

That's not a question that can be ultimately anwered. My history is that I left SA when I was 21 to go travelling. I ended up never going back. I lived in the UK for 10 years and spent a couple of years in Sweden.

My issue was that the country changed so much and given that I had "grown up" in the UK, this is where I now had my life, work and friends.

For many years I got depressed everytime I went back, the place seemed so chaotic, which is not essentially a bad thing, but life in Africa is, well, cheap. I could not adjust to the way of life and the numbing of the senses that takes place as a result of the abnormal and outrageous things that happen there on a daily basis. I had become too accustomed to Europe.

I decided that for me personally SA was a great place to visit for holidays and of course see the family.

However, I can't help but feel that there is a certain something to be said for the way of life. I am eternally grateful that I grew up there. The way I grew up gave me a completely different outlook on life and a different set of survival skills. We didn't grow up cosseted or in shopping malls.

I was there in December and I know that if I had to live anywhere in SA it would be in Cape Town, which I view as the top deck of the titanic. You can take that either as the nice place to be or the last place to go down. I was impressed though, it seems the dust is settling and I never sensed the same tension that usually looms dark and heavy. Money is flowing and people seem to be enjoing their lives.

I don't know what it is you do professionally, but I know that I can make more money here than I could in SA. I feel at home in Europe and am enjoying CH, even though it has a severe deficit of chaos, but then if I need some friendly chaos, the airport is not far away.

I don't have children so I can't say. I know that I would be torn between the comfort, safety and organisation of CH and the versatile, free-thinking and individual place that SA is. South African's find more strength in diversity than conformity.

I know that CH is good for me so I choose to stay here. I hope that you can find a way to weigh up your options regarding SA and CH.

If you were to give me an either/or scenario, given your variables (children, stability, security etc) I would go with CH. I don't know what you do professionally, you might be savvy enough to carve out a very good life in either SA or CH.

I would play it safe.

Best of luck to you and I wish you all the best in making your decision.
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Old 31.01.2007, 12:11
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Hi Guys

Hi,

I have been using this website for the last week , but have not introduced myself.

I am an Indian, married to a Swiss , and we presently are living in Capetown, South Africa.

My husband holds a Swiss passport, as both his parents are Swiss, and he has family in Switzerland.

I would appreciate if you could share your inputs with me, on moving to Switzerland.

Cheers!

B.
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  #4  
Old 31.01.2007, 12:14
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Re: Hi Guys

Do you have anything particular in mind (moving companies, switching of driving licence, apartment search etc)?
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Old 31.01.2007, 13:11
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Sa

Quote:
Hi gooner,

Just a quick question...

You are South African, and so is my husband.

Your inputs, please.
Hi Bernie,

I am South African and came to Switzerland two years ago. There is plenty info about life in Switzerland on this forum so I wll not say anything about that.

I love South Africa and South African people, but I plan to stay in Switzerland even though it's going to be an uphill battle to get integrated.

My top reasons for not returning to SA are:

-There is too much crime.
-There is too much bribery and corruption.
-There is no reliable and safe public transport.
-The roads are in superb condition but driving is hazardous due to reckless drivers, minibus taxis, and drunken drivers.
-In places like Johannesburg, high density housing is springing up like mushrooms in some places and the roads are not being upgraded fast enough to accomodate the extra traffic. There is therefore much traffic congestion and driving in those areas is extremely frustrating.
-I cannot earn a decent living in South Africa working for someone else. Switzerland is expensive, but even doing a menial job I have spending power.
-South Africans are still struggling with the damage caused by apartheid despite democracy and an advanced constitution. Reverse-reverse discrimination is the norm and it will be many years before people deal with it properly IMO.

Hope this helps you.

Last edited by Blaze; 31.01.2007 at 13:55. Reason: Edited to add further info
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  #6  
Old 31.01.2007, 13:19
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Re: South African in Switzerland

split from drivers licence thread.
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Old 11.01.2008, 02:00
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Re: Sa

-I cannot earn a decent living in South Africa working for someone else. Switzerland is expensive, but even doing a menial job I have spending power.

Hello there. I'm a year late on this thread, but I seldom have time for the forum these days. As a fellow "menial worker" I just wanted to tell you: there's light at the end of the tunnel for hard workers in this country. I came here from SA with a matric and some varied work experience but not a word of German. I was 28 with a wife and two small children. I could only get work on a building site as a "handlanger" (yes, it's the same in Afrikaans and German,) because I couldn't speak the language and didn't have any recognisable/useful qualifications. That was six years ago. In the interim I've learned the language, done a builder's trade with Swiss federal trade certificate and am now in university (part-time) doing a bachelors degree in civil engineering. Today I run the building site and the same guys who were my "superiors" six years ago now come to me for instructions. I promise you, if you don't allow yourself to drown in all the whinging and whining about the miserable Swiss and concentrate on what you need to do to show them that you're just as good as anyone else, if not better, then you're in the right country to get ahead. Knowledge is power, and if you get stuck in and do the necessary you'll come right, believe me. Actually, considering your initial posting is already a year old, perhaps you've already set your own future in motion, in which case I apologise for the lecture-like reply. It just struck a chord when I read your post...

Of course this is meant for you and others like you and I, not for the IT specialists, accountants, engineers, etc. I know that if you come here as a specialist, especially at the behest of a Swiss company, then you're sitting pretty with plenty of money and paid trips home, etc. I have some acquaintances in that situation, and I'm happy for them, but they sure don't have their fingers on the pulse over here. It must be pretty crap to always feel like an outsider, even if you're able to buy yourself comfort in all the other ways that us humans do.....

Cheers,

A fellow South African.
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Old 17.01.2008, 01:27
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Re: South African in Switzerland

hey Debbie check this place out they may help you and your husband
www.xencore.ch

Good luck
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Old 17.01.2008, 09:12
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Re: South African in Switzerland

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hey Debbie check this place out they may help you and your husband
www.xencore.ch

Good luck
Who's Debbie? And the OP has not been back to this thread for a year.
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Old 20.01.2008, 11:36
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Re: South African in Switzerland

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hey Debbie check this place out they may help you and your husband
www.xencore.ch

Good luck


Hi Alexandria,

Thank you so much...Yes Gooner is right, I have'nt been on this site for over a year.

We are saving up, and hence decide to do the move this year, if either of us get a job....

Thanks for the webiste info...

Regards,

Bernie
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Old 20.01.2008, 11:42
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Re: Sa

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-I cannot earn a decent living in South Africa working for someone else. Switzerland is expensive, but even doing a menial job I have spending power.

Hello there. I'm a year late on this thread, but I seldom have time for the forum these days. As a fellow "menial worker" I just wanted to tell you: there's light at the end of the tunnel for hard workers in this country. I came here from SA with a matric and some varied work experience but not a word of German. I was 28 with a wife and two small children. I could only get work on a building site as a "handlanger" (yes, it's the same in Afrikaans and German,) because I couldn't speak the language and didn't have any recognisable/useful qualifications. That was six years ago. In the interim I've learned the language, done a builder's trade with Swiss federal trade certificate and am now in university (part-time) doing a bachelors degree in civil engineering. Today I run the building site and the same guys who were my "superiors" six years ago now come to me for instructions. I promise you, if you don't allow yourself to drown in all the whinging and whining about the miserable Swiss and concentrate on what you need to do to show them that you're just as good as anyone else, if not better, then you're in the right country to get ahead. Knowledge is power, and if you get stuck in and do the necessary you'll come right, believe me. Actually, considering your initial posting is already a year old, perhaps you've already set your own future in motion, in which case I apologise for the lecture-like reply. It just struck a chord when I read your post...

Of course this is meant for you and others like you and I, not for the IT specialists, accountants, engineers, etc. I know that if you come here as a specialist, especially at the behest of a Swiss company, then you're sitting pretty with plenty of money and paid trips home, etc. I have some acquaintances in that situation, and I'm happy for them, but they sure don't have their fingers on the pulse over here. It must be pretty crap to always feel like an outsider, even if you're able to buy yourself comfort in all the other ways that us humans do.....

Cheers,

A fellow South African.

Hello Shaka,


That was indeed a nice response. Thank you for replying. Yes we were planning to move last year, but we decided it was no sense moving if either of us did not have any job offer. We both have good jobs now and are saving to come to Switzerland. We would ideally like to come in July, but don't have any offers yet. Either we come ona holiday, check out jobs and then go lock , stock and barrel.
Or then justcome to SW and stay for about three months and look for jobs. We are still in our panning phase yet, and you inputs would definitely help.

Thanks,

Bernie
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Old 22.03.2008, 16:53
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Re: South African in Switzerland

Hi Shaka,
Thank you for your reply, albeit a year later. I needed to read a message like yours.............. I am in the process of selling up now and making tracks to Ch shortly. IT is just my daughter and I, but we are excited and wiling to fit in and prove ourselves. I look forward to the challenge and especially the new way of life.

Pnut!

I found this thread by searching moving..... I am wondering which moving company you used, or could refer me to?
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Old 06.11.2011, 14:41
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Re: South African in Switzerland

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I am wondering which moving company you used, or could refer me to?
Hi Pnut,

Geez, I'm terrible! I'm smiling at myself even as I write this. I was a year late then and I'm three years late now!!! Somehow life is just so busy that I hardly ever have time to go onto this forum (even though I did a really quick browse in the early hours last night).

I was doing a search on google right now whenI came across this thread, otherwise it may have been another three years, .

I just had to answer your question though...

We didn't use a moving company.

We sold everything we had at a huge garage sale we held. My 1974 motorcycle and my knife collection as well as a few letters (all things with sentimental value) are still in the care of my best friend in SA, otherwise all I have left there are my life insurance policies and pension funds.

My wife and I had one suitcase each which, besides essential clothing, contained a fork, a sharp kitchen knife, a spoon and a blanket. In her hand-luggage, she had to fit all the things that a woman considers necessary. In my hand-luggage, I carried my lego set (built up from the age of four) for my four-year old son to play with. In his little suitcase he had his clothes, a knife, fork, spoon and blanket. For my six-month-old daughter, I had a suitcase full of baby supplies.

My wife went ahead while I finished off the last few contracts I had and closed my little business. She took the princely sum of CHF 5000 with her, in order to live and find accommodation and jobs. All our other cash was left in our SA bank accounts, enough to pay pensions, policies, etc. for a year.

We came thoroughly, impossibly, committed. We took jobs that half-killed us, put our heads down, smiled, and took it. We took the only flat we were offered, given to us on the condition that we accepted it as is and cleaned, painted and repaired it ourselves (it had been abandoned six months previously by what appeared to have been a thorough pig).

Learning the language and culture was an essential part of survival. There was no turning back. Today we're still in the same industries that we began in, but vastly higher up in the hierarchies of our lines of work. I have to smile privately when a Swiss doesn't recognise my "dialect" and wants to know what part of the country I'm from (strangely enough, they often guess that I'm a Bündner, from Graubünden!), or when a Swiss wants advice on what line of studies to follow in order to get the kind of job I have.

So no, I couldn't have helped you with a moving company, unfortunately. That would have been a bit out of my reach at the time.

I realise that this reply has got nothing to do with what you were asking, but I hope you won't mind me expressing the thoughts that ran through my mind when I saw your question. I have often had such questions or requests for advice from foreigners to Switzerland, and must admit that I am completely unqualified to help, given the circumstances under which I came to this country .

Considering how much time has gone by since you posted your question to me, I'd be really interested to know if you came to Switzerland, and if so, how are you doing? I haven't read through the forum here to see if you are still active, or find out more about what happened with you, but if you have the time and inclination to respond to this post, I'd be keen to know.

Regards,
Shaka.
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Old 06.11.2011, 23:29
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Re: South African in Switzerland

Hello there, I'm a South African but also Swiss and I'm in South Africa now but emigrating home(?) permanently to Zurich next month.

Basichere's not as much crime or people trying to rip you off, the pay is much hially Switzerland is what you'll want. It is superior in almost every way. Everything in Switzerland works like a clock, it's safe, clean, orderly, the tax lower. It also has a better economy and... yeah, Switzerland is great! Those things that other user mentioned about why he/she isn't going back to SA are all true. I always feel like I can't relax in SA like I can in Switzerland because you've always got to be soooo cautious: bad drivers, criminals, con-artists, diseases, getting robbed...

The only point I think that SA would be better is the people. South African people tend to be a little more open and welcoming. Also the issue of you being Indian may go down a little better in SA since SA has a lot of Indian people living in it but if you don't mind not having a lot of fellow ethnic Indians around then just go to Switzerland.
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Old 06.11.2011, 23:39
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Re: South African in Switzerland

having been a farmer in SA, no comparison. Stick with switzerland if you can.

Welcom aboard BTW
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Old 07.11.2011, 00:22
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Re: South African in Switzerland

If you have the opportunity to live in this wonderful country, take it. I'm a South African, married to my lovely Swiss missus, and we have two young kids. For a lifestyle change we moved to SA in 2005 and spent three amazing years in Plettenberg Bay. We made friends who will remain friends forever. Our kids grew up bare-feet with sand between their toes. We partied hard, we golfed, we laughed. But Plettenberg Bay is not the true South Africa. When the world economy decided to go pear-shaped in 2008 we made the decision to move back to Switzerland. Our kids walk to school and we don't imprison ourselves in our home every night like you have to do in the larger cities in South Africa. But every country has its pros and cons. What utterly freaks me out about South Africa is how much of your tax money is wasted by the government on unnecessary upgrades (2 new transatlantic jets for president and deputy, a CHF 50 million refit for the presidential homes, etc etc. Gazillions!!!! ) It's really depressing...
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Old 12.01.2013, 17:32
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Re: South African in Switzerland

I would like to contribute in this thread as well. As an African you may face a lot of questions regarding the integration into Swiss society. Here is a link to the website http://africanswiss.ch/, which is led by African people in Switzerland and they organize different events in order to help better integration of African people in Switzerland.
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Old 08.02.2013, 16:14
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Re: South African in Switzerland

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Here is a link to the website http://africanswiss.ch/, ....
the site have moved to http://iaswiss.ch
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