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It's a very known fact that Switzerland is a very expensive destination, but don't let that stop you.
On my travels in Switzerland this summer I found 5 ways you can save money while traveling on Switzerland:)
I don't normally do money saving tips, but I really loved Switzerland and think it's such a shame if money is the reason you don't go, that's why I've put this together, hope it helps and shows that there are always ways to make your travel dreams come true some way or other:)
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Buy a Swiss Travel Pass, it is good on all trains, buses, and you get 50% off on cable cars and cog rail. Shop at the Co-Ops or Migros Market for Muesli and Yogurt for breakfast, make a salad for dinner with chicken and buy the local bread in the bakery - really good for dinner. This way you can eat for 25-40 per day for two people. You can always pick up fruit, energy bars, bread for lunch.
There is an option of tell passes which allows you to use the buses, the trains, cable cars, trams any number of times for a specified number of days. In 2016, I took a tell pass of five days which costed around 230 CHF but of great value
I lived in zurich for 2 years and yes its the most expensive country but its a paradise, My best advice is plan your trip in off season there will be discount in train's up to 70% and hotels up to 50-70%.
So fahren Sie doch nach Österreich - und Sie werden sehen, auch dort werden Sie Ihr Geld los! Austria ist nicht switzerland, ja vienna ist sehenswert, - und auch nicht viel billiger. Ich fahre nicht in ein Land, um zu sparen, aber BERN, THUN, GENF, LUZERN etc.sind auch sehenswert!! Und ich fühle mich in der Schweiz sicherer - und Österreich hat nicht einen einzigen 4.000er-Gipfel, die Schweiz 47!!!! und viel mehr Seen als Österreich,! Und die Freundlichkeit in der Schweiz ist echt - und nicht gespielt ......
Thank you so much for the tips — both in the video and in the comment section! I had a question about your fifth tip: Taking the cable car up and walking down. Which peaks would you recommend that have beautiful vistas and scenic hikes back down (that aren't too grueling). My family and my parents are planning a trip out there and we enjoy walking but I also don't want it to be a 4-5 hour hike either. Ideally it should be 2 hours or less. Would love suggestions if anyone has any.
Also, which peak, cable car, and hiking combination did you show in your video?
Some tipps from a local expat:
- never stay in hotels. While the cost may look reasonable, food will kill your budget. Go rather for an apartment with a kitchen and cook by yourself. You will save restaurant costs which are typically 120 CHF/meal for a family of four.
- Pic-nic for lunch by buying sandwiches or bread and cheese at local supermarkets. The most affordable are Denner, Aldi and Lidl. Always plan/pack your meals ahead in the morning so that you don't end up having to spend 20CHF for a simple pizza at lunch.
- I personally would not recommend taking the trains if you are more than 2 people as it's very expensive. Take your car or rent one and you will enjoy much more flexibility when traveling in the mountains. Be aware that parking may be challenging in cities and even villages so always stay at places that offer free parking.
I just saw your video after making mine about travelling in Switzerland. We specialise in slow travel, so we stayed for a couple of weeks in Aubonne, a small town by Lake Geneva. Generally, supermarkets are the cheapest places to shop. Even a loaf of bread in a bakery will cost you much more. A croissant in a bakery is about 1 CHF. The reason prices are higher in Switzerland is primarily the much higher disposable income. Anyway, if your viewers are interested in our recent report, please check out https://youtu.be/OKmOKzuoIsE BTW, the Persian cat at the start is only a few seconds of comic relief...
shitzerland is a fuckign rort! I went ther and camp. It cost more to camp in shitzerland than for hotel in Paris! In frenc Alp, poelple ride bicycle. In swis alp, they rid Harley! WTF!? Th swiss are tobelerole eating robot bankers!! Best mone y saving tip... avoid shitzerlands! OVERRATED and EXPENSIVE! France is prettier!
I hope you talked about to visit August next year, or you will visit us nearby. The 1th of August is our national day, and some cities and region celebrate it at the 31th of July. So try to visit our county at those dates and get a nice first impression with that event and fireworks, perhaps in front of the mountains.
Let's get started. You will mostly arrive at Zürich, perhaps at Basel. Depending on your jetlag and time you will arrive, I would stay 1 - 2 days at one of those cities. Both have a nice old town, and a lot of history and culture to explore. If you would like to visit Basel, I would offer you a "private tour" to explain you our country and the city itself. And be warned, if we talk about "cities", those are meant at swiss sizes. Our biggest city Zürich has almost 400'000 citizens, Basel not even 170'000. Yes, we're a small country :)
Ok, we have Zürich and/or Basel. The next would be Bern and/or Luzern. Bern is something like our capital city, and Luzern is the most visited city in switzerland. Both are great, and both are worth a day to spend. And I didn't mention Genf/Geneva yet, but perhaps you should keep that for your second visit. Or you like to travel with our trains, what is an experience for itself. For that, I would recommend this video, so you have a background to decide what you would like to see: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0OjheJ-nXnY
We have the cities. Time to see some mountains. Depending where you are now (in Bern or Luzern), the mountains are just one or two hours away. But first let us end the discussion about the cities, so we know how much time you have left or do you have any other plans or special wishes :)
Ok, so far it sounds like you would be ready to go, more or less. The last information I need is, how much are you interested in cultur, or is there anything specific what you would like to see? Are you for example in art, would you like to visit museums or not, are you more into nature, more into buildings?
Right now it's sounds like the "classical" touristic tour.
Switzerland is very expensive but very beautiful!
Wallis and Graubunden two most beautiful Kanton-Region one must visit.
Sometimes they make reduce prices for Saas Fee or Zermatt mostly during winter ski season. Cheese bread milk yogurt about the same as Italy. Gasoline is cheaper some sport ski brand clothes are sometimes a bit cheaper than Italy. If you travel with little money don't go to Switzerland. I am Italian I live not too far from the border.
My family and I are going to Switzerland in july. We have been there twice before, and everybody always says "Oh! It's so expensive in Switzerland!" But that is not always true! Yes, most of the peaks are very expensive to visit, but you can save a lot of money none the less. We always book our stay by homeaway or airbnb - this booking included a "tourist card" which means free busses in the region and a lot of discounts! We always book a place with a full kitchen, so we can make our meals at home (eating out IS expensive!) We go there by car (we live in Denmark), and on the way we stock up on groceries in Germany. On this trip we also include a trip to the Rhein Falls - which is close to the German border, so we can stock up on groceries again. I have been checking the prices for various attractions beforehand and have picked out things to do, that will not rip us off. This means we are not going to Top of Europe, but to view Mont Blanc instead (it's half the price!)
Good video! I couldn't have done better. I think to save money on food, buy a big bag of potatoes and bake them over a fire or if you are in a hostel, in the oven and share some butter with friends. If that doesn't work, then buy a bag of groceries in a neighboring country, if you are coming in by land. And for transport, why not use Eurolines or Flixbus? And why not camp with a tent? Or stay in Basel and go into Germany to visit the supermarket or eat in a restaurant. I'm an American. If I got it wrong, some European is welcome to correct me.
Great tips. I would add, don't drink coffee because it is three times the price of coffee in Italy. Since you acknowledged that the food is better in France and Italy, one may ponder wether or not Trentino would give one great peaks, great food and more at 1/2 the price. That said Switzerland does seem to get snow sooner than Italy so your advice is good to those looking for skiing opportunities early or late in the season. Oh, and if you are driving through Switzerland to Italy, Top off your tank in Switzerland, because petrol is one thing that costs less there than in Italy.
... Espresso-Vergleich Schweiz-Italien, hmmmm.... haben Sie schon mal einen Expresso am Markusplatz getrunken?? Es kommt immer drauf an, wo man einen Kaffee zu sich nimmt, ich habe in der Schweiz an vielen Plätzen schon günstiger Kaffee getrunken als z.B. in Österreich....
Hi. We are Swiss and go to Italy any time we can just to eat!! Not only is Italian cuisine the best in the world (in my humble opinion) but it is really a holiday to pay Italian prices. :-) One thing that nobody mentioned however, is that while Switzerland is much more expensive than many other countries, we also have higher salaries, so it is logical. P.S A cup of coffee is generally around CHF 3.50 (at least in the pizzerias and local restaurants) you pay more as the standing of the restaurant increases. Going to Italy in October...yum yum!!
Here my travel tip towards people, looking forward to a week (or longuer) stay in the Bernese Alps (south of canton Berne): buy a "regional pass" - Bernese Oberland. The train-, cablecar-, ... -cost will be lower if you could travel for 4, 6,8 or 10 days (in following up). The region where this card is avaible, is enormes ! Only after 2 mountains visited, it's already possible you gaine (imagine you wouldn't have bought this card).
Helpful information maria. thanks. the 4th point was cheap accomodation. i cud not clearly get what places u told which were local . can u suggest some more places and how to contact them. can u mail me at [email protected] if i miss it out here.
Be nice if this country would let tourists know that you need to have your car lights on during the day. Got nailed for 35 Euros. You have to pay cash on the spot.
There are no signs indicating this anywhere, at the borders or anywhere on the street.
Even when you drive in Hungary you are constantly made aware of this as signs are everywhere reminding people they have a car lights on during the day.
Funny thing, seems that the Swiss don't even know their laws as we saw many without the car lights on. And, all those pulled over by the police had foreign plates.
Not only that, the police officer was ignorant. He said you should know the laws before entering a country, Austria has a law he said, you need to pay when driving on the Autobahn (we had Austrian license plates). We didn't quite get what toll roads in Austria had to do with the lights on law in Switzerland.
One thing though is that you are made aware that you need to pay for driving on the Autobahns in Austria by SIGNS everywhere. It's kind of like speed limit signs, without them you don't know what the speed limit is. Could be I just gave the Swiss an idea for a new income source.
After this experience we drove through Switzerland without spending a cent there.
So be careful and study all the laws before entering Switzerland.
We were later told that since Switzerland's economical problems, the Franc, and decline in over border shopping, the Swiss are trying to make money in other ways.
Kind of reminded me of Mexico, parked in a spot where parking was allowed and when we returned to the car there was a "No Parking" sign hung on a hook screwed into the post and a police officer standing by the car with a ticket in hand. Here of course it was pay the ticket to the guy across the street in the tow truck or go to jail.
Oops, maybe I just gave the Swiss another idea.
The train tip is absolutely not true, swiss train fees, are calculated by the territory you pass by, so in "zones" the more zones you pass the more expensive the ticket gets. if you want to travel long distance, or a lot, ask for abos, tourist pass, or a day pass, from a certain distance on this, will be the cheaper alternative, and you can travel worry-free with bus, train, and even ships.
If you are flying into Basel and want to get to a single destination, buy your ticket from bahn.com. This is the German Trains website. You set your start point as Freiburg rather than Basel : Example Freiburg to Interlaken Ost is Eur 19.90. Buying from Swiss railways it is Eur 51.89. That's for exactly the same train. (Standard adult price with no discount cards).
I have used Swiss pass for 15 days along with my sisters summer 2016, wondering if it was as good as renting a car and pumping gas in it or cheaper. Please enlighten me, I am planning to go again there, we usually go everywhere there.
As swiss, I don't know the exact price you paid for the swiss pass, it really depend on how much you travel and how much you use it, with the pass you can use bus, train and ships, which of course with the car would take of more gas because you need to surround the lakes or mountains. So I can't tell in general if you would have saved money, I think it depends on what you plan, if you planning on traveling to one point , like a campsite in Lugano and stay there, then the car is the better alternative, but if you want to travel free, the train is better, because it's always also a little dilemma here to find good parking spaces, they also can cost quite a bit in the city while bus stops are everywhere, allowing you to go not as populated off routes of hiking trips. also the car will limit you to return to the exact spot you left the car, for hiking you can't walk down another route, or to the next village, with the rail apss you can without worry. So it really depends on your type of holiday you ar eplanning on doing here. hope that helped you
I would rather not go to travel like this because you feel like a rat there. What is satisfaction if you go around towns and drink water from tap?? Caffe and restaurants are part of every culture if you can not afford it there better do not go. i visited Switzerland many times it is jewish country and everithing is extremely expensive. I can afford it but it is no satosfaction to pay everithig 3-4 times more than in other countries.
Irgendwie geht sich das mit den Prozenten nicht aus... Früher überwogen die Protestanten, heute die Katholiken, aber nicht in dem Ausmaß..... Ja, ich bin jedes mal bei meinen Schweizurlauben fasziniert, wie das dort funktioniert, mit der Religions- und Sprachenvielfalt.....
I'm Swiss and I consider it crazy to drink bottled water in Switzerland. Our tab water is amazing! No use to buy water, that's just stupid on so many levels... Why produce more plastic waste if you can get awesome water for free? Get a glass bottle and refill it, instead of supporting Nestlé. Thank you. You can even ask for tab water in all restaurants/cafés as long as you order something else too. This is a normal thing here, we all drink tab water.
Swiss resident population over 15 years of age by religion (percentages), 2014 
- Roman Catholic
- Protestant Reformed
- Christian Orthodox
- other Christs
- other faith community
* Of these, 42% believe in a god / higher power, 32% as atheists, 25% as agnostics
actually swiss people usually walk uphill and take the cable car down.. you may think it is easier down but actually its not. if you keep on walking a steep path down for several hours you will know what I mean..
tip 2 is realy important!! 1. water is always drinkable in switzerland from EVERY tap unless it is clearly marked that it isnt (but that barely exists) and 2. little water bottles are horribly expensive. if you have to buy (i dont know why this could be the case) then go to regular supermarkets and not to little street shops they are usualy more expensive..
regional trains are not cheaper.. in fact all kinds of public transport is exactly the same prize. the prize only depends on the distance ou are traveling not on the speed and not on the media.. go to www.sbb.ch and buy supersaver-tickets.. or just hitchhike its is safe and for free..
no no, Switzerland is not expensive at all... it is actually quite good if you want to work and live in the country, even someone with a low paying job(relatively low paying for Switzerland's standards of course) can drive around and have fun and prepare food from stuff bought from the supermarket without feeling like they spent a fortune, to someone from the US or UK it might seem expensive in Switzerland but most countries around the world also feel the US and UK to be a lot more expensive than their own home countries. I hope you understand what I am trying to say.
buy the coop tageskarte. it costs 49 CHF but it allows you to travel for free by train, bus & ship everywhere is Swiss. Also, it gives you free access on some of the cog trains and cable cars
Check for the Happy hour/free access day in museums. Usually at the beginning of the month or end of the day the entry is free.
Good job thanks for your great tips. once I went there with OceanAir Travels.. Superb guide, they will make sure you’ll enjoy your trip, help you make treasurable memories, and make you feel at home in their country.
Make sure to check out special deals and discounts with your personal Visitor's Card when staying in the Interlaken holiday region: free travel on public transport in the Interlaken area, up to 50% off excursion tickets. Check out https://www.campinginterlaken.ch/en/offers-deals-jungfrau-region for more information!
Many restaurants offer 2-course lunch menues for reasonable prices. Make sure to buy a SBB »Junior Travel Card« for your children age 6-16 (CHF 30.00 - one year free travel on all public transport in Switzerland when accompanied by a parent).
Awesome video. My wife and I are planning to go to Italy for a month in June 2018, and were debating on whether or not to go to Switzerland. I think now we will definitely go. We're traveling economically everywhere. A month is a long time, so saving money is a must. Thanks, I just stumbled onto your videos. I'm glad I did.
That's fantastic, I hope you go and that you have a great trip the whole month, both Italy and Switzerland are great countries, hope you found some usable info in my tuscany videos too if that's where you are going:) Have a reat weekend:)
issit worth it to buy the swiss pass for 200+ chf? i will be there for 4 days. I just saw a saver day pass. its not that ex. Please reply. Also can you suggest a good place to hike during end of december? i will be staying near interlaken(havnt decided but probably around there)
Hi Maria. I live in Chocolate Country ( ha ha) and I would avoid August for sure...sooooo many tourists - I tried to go up to Gruyere the other day and I couldn't even get up the hill because of the traffic. August is the same. September is great - many less tourists and a bit cooler. Nothing worse than seeing a beautiful landscape with sweat running off your brow! ;-)
Good tips and i found them out myself on my last vacation in Switzerland. I agree with Daniel, even the salads were expensive however at the END OF THE DAY most supermarkets had their 50% stickers sticked on it to sell end of date goods. I transformed my car into a ultra mini camper. In Switzerland it's allowed to sleep in your car almost everywhere with the same rules as campers. Almost all public toilets have warm water to wash yourself.
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