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    Currency in Switzerland – Swiss franc CHF

    A practical foreign exchange and currency guide on sending money and travel to Switzerland

     

     

    Travelling to Switzerland

    Switzerland is a well organized and safe country, however it is not cheap. Switzerland is one of the most beautiful places on earth – and beauty has a price! As one of the most expensive countries in Europe, Switzerland is often skipped over by budget travelers. Not only does Switzerland have great rural beauty but also the cities urban edge: capital Bern with its medieval old town and world-class modern art, Germanic Basel and its bold architecture, chic Geneva aside Europe’s largest lake, party-loving Lausanne, tycoon magnet Zug and uber-cool Zürich with its riverside bars, reborn industrial west district and atypical street grit.

    What currency should I use in Switzerland?

    Businesses throughout Switzerland, including most hotels and some restaurants and souvenir shops, will accept payment in euros. Change will be given in Swiss francs at the rate of exchange calculated on the day.

    ATMs,called Bancomats in banks and Postomats in post offices, are widespread and accessible 24 hours. They accept most international bank or credit cards and have multilingual instructions. Your bank or credit-card company will often charge a 1% to 2.5% fee, and there may also be a small charge at the ATM end. Credit cards are widely accepted at hotels, shops and restaurants. EuroCard/MasterCard and Visa are the most popular.

    Tipping is not necessary, given that hotels, restaurants, bars and even some taxis are legally required to include a 15% service charge in bills.

    Change money at banks, airports and nearly every train station until late into the evening. Banks tend to charge about 5% commission; some money-exchange bureaus don’t charge commission at all.

    Car rental can be pricey when you include the cost of fuel. Booking a rail pass helps you plan what you will be spending, and children travel for free. If you intend to travel by train, boat, bus or cable cars, a rail pass will help you save money. Take advantage of the rail pass extras. For example, the Swiss Travel Pass includes free entrance to hundreds of museums and allows free traveling on the most beautiful scenic routes, and some cable cars and cogwheel trains are free instead of discounted.

    Even without a rail pass, traveling is free in some cases if you stay at certain hotels. Booking seats is not required for most trains, so you can save money by not doing so. Budget hotels are available, however top tourist towns are generally quite expensive.

    Do I need a Visa for Switzerland?

    Formalities are minimal when arriving in Switzerland by air, rail or road thanks to the Schengen Agreement, which allows passengers coming from the EU to enter without showing a passport. When arriving from a non-EU country, you’ll need your passport or EU identity card – and visa if required – to clear customs. All non-EU travellers must carry a passport valid for at least three months beyond the planned departure date from Switzerland.

    Switzerland has no explicit entry restrictions based on nationality or previous passport stamps, but citizens of some countries may require a visa. Visas are not required if you hold a passport from the UK, Ireland, the USA, Canada, Australia or New Zealand, whether visiting as a tourist or on business. Citizens of the EU, Norwegians and Icelanders may also enter Switzerland without a visa. A maximum 90-day stay in a 180-day period applies, but passports are rarely stamped.

    Sending Money to Switzerland

    The below comparison table makes it easy to find the best exchange rates and lowest fees when you want to make a Transfer or Spend Swiss franc.

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    What are the property purchase restrictions and fees for foreigners in Switzerland?

    Switzerland’s “Lex Koller Law” (The Swiss Federal Act on Acquisition of Real Estate by Persons Abroad) imposes tough restrictions on house purchases by foreigners not living in the country. The main exception is for holiday homes in some cantons – not including Zurich. Foreigners with residency permits can buy a main residence.

    Notary, land register and title transfer fees vary between cantons, but typically are less than 1 percent of the sale price.

     

     

     

    Swiss franc – Markets & Rates

    Contributing to roughly 5% of the foreign exchange market daily turnover, the Swiss franc (ISO: CHF) is the world’s seventh most traded currency.

    The Swiss franc is traditionally considered Europe’s safe haven currency due to factors including Switzerland’s traditional position as a politically neutral country, its reputation for stability, impressive financial system, historically low inflation and its ability to consistently run a trade surplus. For this reason, the franc is likely to increase in value during periods of economic uncertainty or when global geopolitical risk is elevated, or during bouts of high market volatility.

    To prevent unwanted currency appreciation, between September 2011 and January 2015 the franc’s value was pegged to the euro at a rate of Fr. 1.2. When Switzerland’s central bank unexpectedly abandoned the peg in 2015 it caused significant market turmoil.

    Since 1995, against the world’s reserve currency, the US dollar, the Swiss franc’s lowest valuation came in October 2000 when CHF/USD traded at just 0.5465. Its post-1995 high came in August 2011 at 1.4152.

     

    1 CHF = 1.0864 USD
    Sell CHF  →  Buy USD
    CHF to USD at 1.0861 is just above its 90-day average, range 1.0685-1.0996.
    |
      1 USD = 0.9205 CHF
     
    1-DAY+0.5%
    14-DAYHIGH3d


    In October the CHF/USD pair remains well below 1.09 (it’s 90-Day average) but bounced back from a low of 1.07.

    There was then some reprieve in the risk-off market sentiment helping the Swissie back to the 1.08 level vs the greenback.

    CHF Outlook

    Historic CHF-USD Rates

    CHF/USD wasChangePeriod
    1.0706
    24 Nov 2021
    1.5% 2 Weeks
    1.0910
    09 Sep 2021
    0.4% 90 Days
    1.1252
    08 Dec 2020
    3.4% 1 Year
    0.9848
    09 Dec 2016
    10.3% 5 Years
    1.0844
    11 Dec 2011
    0.2% 10 Years
    0.6079
    13 Dec 2001
    78.7% 20 Years
    CHF/USD change over periods to 08-Dec-2021

     

    The Swiss franc is also the domestic currency in 1 other countries.

     

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