Possibly moving to Zurich. What's it like??!!

(8 Posts)
littlegreenbag Thu 05-Jun-14 15:19:58

Basically, I'm trying to figure out whether I would be insane to move to Zurich with my family! I'm a junior academic and may be offered a job there (currently being interviewed etc). I know the lab and the job is GREAT, I've also visited Zurich before and really loved it, and I could picture myself living there, but I have a few concerns...

... Is it really as expensive as people say? Where can I get a idea of what the rent would be for a two bed place?

What's the expat community like? Is it easy to meet other people?

What's childcare like? I have a toddler, would e most likely be going to nursery or people use childminders? Where I live in the UK waiting lists are huge for nurseries, is that the same in CH?

I have many more questions but I don't even know where to start really.

Talk to me about living in Zurich, please!

LIZS Thu 05-Jun-14 15:38:49

Is it really as expensive as people say? Where can I get a idea of what the rent would be for a two bed place? yes and some ! www.homegate.ch/en and www.immo.ch/en are the equivalent of Rightmove. Be careful how they describe the rooms, a 2- room apartment is not 2 bedrooms , they include the living room etc. Areas are very variable and you might want to take advice of local colleagues. Anywhere near the lake commands a premium and the East coast is more expensive that then West.

What's the expat community like? Is it easy to meet other people? yes , there are online forums (see below) and opportunities to meet up at language courses etc

What's childcare like? I have a toddler, would e most likely be going to nursery or people use childminders? Where I live in the UK waiting lists are huge for nurseries, is that the same in CH? Childcare is less regulated than in UK. There are child-minders (tagesmutter) but daycare is common. Again very expensive and some will have lists.

https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/Expats-in-Zurich/info
https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/Expat-Moms-In-Switzerland/info
www.englishforum.ch/other-general/332-expats-zurich-full-swissies.html

WallyBantersJunkBox Thu 05-Jun-14 19:13:34

I'd recommend www.comparis.ch as you can work out roughly how much tax you would pay depending on the area you live, and also to price up Health Care insurance, liability insurance etc.

But yes it is expensive for some basic items - visit some Swiss supermarket websites to compare prices - Coop.ch, Migros, Aldi Suisse etc.

littlegreenbag Fri 06-Jun-14 07:25:24

Thank you bothso much for your replies, I'll have a look at those websites!

schokolade Sun 08-Jun-14 17:07:16

I'm a postdoc in Zurich littlegreenbag. I love it!

You can look here for some rent prices - the city centre is eye watering, but there are some nice places with good transport a little further out.

I have a 4 month old DD, so am just starting out with experiences with childcare. If you're at ETH/University of Zurich then the on-site creche facilities are highly sought after with ridiculous waiting lists. I've been on the list for them for nearly a year and haven't once been informed of a place coming up. But, there are other, non-university based, solutions I think.

littlegreenbag Sun 08-Jun-14 19:05:19

Thanks schokolade! Can I ask whether you moved to Zurich for this job or whether you already lived there? And if you moved there specifically for the job, did you bring a partner and did they manage to find a job?
One of the major questions is whether my (non-german speaking!) husband will be able to find work!
What sort of childcare have you decided upon for your DD?
Sorry about all the questions!

schokolade Mon 09-Jun-14 08:40:01

I moved to Zurich for the job. My DH is also an academic, so no issues finding a job for him. What area is your DH working in? All the non German speaking partners I know have jobs, but most are academics or ski instructors. Novartis etc in Basel are good choices, although a one hour commute if you live in Zurich. It's a good idea to learn some german if possible - all legal documents must be in one of the Swiss languages. So that includes work/house contracts and the like.

Our DD will be going to a nursery. I've been impressed with the high standard of care in all the ones we've looked at. It's quite expensive at about 150 francs per day, but they seem to do loads with the kids . I don't personally know anyone with a nanny. My boss said usually people with 3+ DC use them because it makes financial sense.

Feel free to ask me any questions! I'm happy to be more specific about locations etc if you'd like to
pm me smile

schokolade Mon 09-Jun-14 08:59:40

Also, your DH can keep an eye on jobs he would be suited to in Zurich using this website. You can get a list of suitable jobs from any industry emailed to you each week (change the website to English at the top right).

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