Life as an expat: Switzerland

Switzerland sounds promising to many expats; Beautiful sceneries, charming villages, big cities and organized daily life. But how do things work when living in Switzerland as an expat? And is Switzerland good for expats?

Every country comes with some challenges when choosing the expat life, think of administrative obligations, paperwork, local regulations and of course finding the perfect place to stay. On the other hand; Working in Switzerland offers high wages, the country has high quality health care and education and Swiss think of work-life balance as something extremely important.

Discover below what working and living in Switzerland as an expat really feels like.  


How is it to work in Switzerland?

In Switzerland, people work very hard but after hours, Swiss always tend to keep work and private life strictly separated. In addition, they value punctuality and respect against colleagues and executives. The Swiss work culture is characterized by a strong hierarchy.

All those things should be taken into account when thinking about a life as an expat in Switzerland. Does working hard not put you off? Are you not afraid to be flexible and to keep work and private life separate at all costs? Then working as an expat in Switzerland might be the thing for you!


Things are getting real; You decided to take this adventure and go work in Switzerland. Tons of practical arrangements are waiting for you, but we are guiding you step by step through all obligations and 'must-do's'.

One of them is of course finding a convenient place to stay, somewhere you feel at home to make your stay in Switzerland as enjoyable as possible. Below we are happy to discuss housing solutions for expats in Switzerland.

Buying or renting?

Most expats chose to rent a house when going abroad, since their stay is often temporary. You can find lots of temporary rental houses in Switzerland by yourself of with help of your new employer or an expat organization. 

Rental prices in Switzerland are rather high, but luckily the same applies to the wages. 

Are you planning on staying in Switzerland for a longer time? Then you could consider the option of buying a property, although buying a house is really expensive, depending on the region you are looking to make your home away from home. In addition it is rather challenging to buy a house in Switzerland as a foreigner, since you will need a specific residence permit (B or C permit) and it will be very difficult to qualify for a loan.

Furnishing your accommodation

Renting a house or an apartment is one thing, but furnishing it involves many additional costs. For expats, furnishing a house is expensive and not at all cost-efficient since it is only for a limited time. Furnished apartments or houses are more interesting regarding the budget and the short-term solution needed, but they are only available in the larger cities of the country and the demand for these kind of housing solutions is rather high.

That is why finding an appropriate furnished housing solution is hard for foreigners, especially before arriving. Does the furnished apartment meet the housing standards? Are they available at an affordable cost? Means fully furnished really fully equipped? All these things are difficult to rate from a distance. Luckily, Switzerland is a good place when it comes to furniture rental for expats.

Furniture rental for expats

For all reasons mentioned above, renting furniture and electronical devices is the perfect solution for expats. It allows you to choose an appartment or house that fits inside your housing budget and that meets your requirements. Besides that, it allows you to choose a furniture package that matches your style and taste and the style of your temporary home, it prevents the need of buying lots of new furniture and electronic devices to cover just a few months or years and it allows you to look for accommodations to rent that are non-furnished. 

Furniture rental has some major advantages when you need to equip your temporary residence.

  • It offers flexibility since short and long term renting is possible.
  • Furniture packages are available in different styles. Also electronical devices are rentable.
  • Renting furniture offers you the opportunity of enjoying quality products without having to spent a fortune. Next to that, it’s a sustainable solution.


As soon as your housing in Switzerland is arranged, countdown to your new adventure has started. Still, there are some things to take into account or to consider before leaving the country.  

Health insurance
Switzerland is known for high-quality healthcare. Swiss citizens usually have a full health insurance for covering medical costs since health care in Switzerland is rather expensive. Expats are recommended to get complimentary health insurance when moving temporary to Switzerland,.
Bank account
As an inhabitant of Switzerland, you will need a Swiss bank account to arrange all things finance after arriving. You can apply for a bank account before leaving your home country or you can choose to go to a Swiss bank yourself for opening an account upon your arrival. Most bank accounts can be used in the same week after application.
Daily life
Daily life in Switzerland is rather expensive. Public transportation is one of the best, most qualitative and punctual systems in the world, which comes with the necessary costs of course. Also (grocery) shopping in general is expensive in Switzerland, the same applies for going out to restaurants or bars.
Expat life with children
Living abroad with children means making adaptions regarding education. Luckily, the education system in Switzerland is one of the best with in the world. When it comes to health care for children, make sure to arrange a separate health insurance for children.

Hello Switzerland!

See? Deciding to go live as an expat in Switzerland is an amazing experience for your whole family that will come without a doubt with a few challenges. Tend to make your short or long term stay as pleasant as possible by choosing a location and housing where you can feel at home and by preparing your expat adventure beforehand. 

Ready to build your home away from home? In-Lease is happy to be your partner to make your stay in Switzerland as pleasant as possible. 

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