Travel Switzerland on a budget
Between train tickets, restaurants and excursions, it is true that visiting Switzerland requires a rather high budget. As a Swiss myself, I find the prices quite often exorbitant. So I don’t dare to imagine for people who don’t live there! So I wanted to create an article explaining how to travel travel Switzerland on a budget.
For many people, “visiting Switzerland” is on their bucket list. Between the snowy peaks, the mountain lakes, the old historical cities, there are so many things to discover. So it was important for me to try and find some tips and advice on how to visit my beautiful country in a slightly more accessible way.
Follow these tips for your next trip to Switzerland. You will see that you will save money and discover that it is possible to visit Switzerland with a small budget.
My best advices to travel Switzerland on a budget
Accommodation in Switzerland
As you may have already noticed, if you have ever been to Switzerland, hotels and hostels are expensive, even very expensive, depending on the destination. Often Airbnb accommodations are cheaper. The couchsurfing platform can also be used, but I must admit that I have no experience with it. Do not hesitate to tell me if you have tried it in Switzerland.
Another solution is camping. There are many of them all over Switzerland. As far as wild camping is concerned, the rules are very very vague in the country. Some cantons have totally forbidden it like Ticino for example and others tolerate it. I leave you a link to the TCS website which groups the restrictions according to the different cantons.
Shop and cook your own meals! A perfect solution to save a few hundred francs during your stay. I recommend you to shop at Migros, Denner, Aldi or Lidl. They are the best for the price.
Drink tap water
A mistake I often observe and that can cost you a lot of money is to buy bottled water. Friends, water in Switzerland is drinkable, even in public fountains! I grant you that some are not. But if it is the case, it is specified on the fountain itself and it remains very rare.
Avoid high seasons
In Switzerland, there are two peaks of visitors. July to August are the warmest months, perfect for hiking, and between December and February during the winter, the ski season. During these periods, the prices are much higher and the number of tourists is at its maximum.
I recommend you to go between April and June or during the fall from September to October.
Use public transport
We are lucky in Switzerland to have a transportation system that works very well and that can take you to the four corners of Switzerland in no time. The Swiss Federal Railways have created several permanent passes that allow you to travel on the entire Swiss network by boat, train, bus or even in some cable cars for free.
I highly recommend it if you plan to travel in Switzerland on a budget. The starting price can seem expensive but it is very quickly profitable. Here is the link to discover this offer!
Take a walk and discover nature
The great thing about Switzerland is that many of the attractions are found in nature. Between the lakes, the mountains and the cities, there are many activities that can be discovered on foot. You can of course take the bus or the cable car to the top of some mountains. But if you want to save a few francs, walk!
Exchange your EUR/USD for Swiss Francs
Although it is possible to pay in almost all stores, restaurants or attractions in EURO/USD, the exchange rate is not really advantageous. Remember to have some Swiss francs with you. Card payments are also very common, except in the mountain huts of course!
Get regional activity passes
In many parts of Switzerland, there are passes that include many activities. Some are included in the tourist tax and you receive them when you check in at the hotel, like the Free Pass in Les Diablerets. Others are not free, like the Jungfrau Travel Pass in the Interlaken area. These may seem expensive at first, but I did the calculations for you: they pay for themselves very quickly if you plan to do several activities at once.
Ask me for advice
Do not hesitate to write me if you have any questions or need help in preparing your trip to Switzerland by email. I also offer a paid service to create personalized itineraries in Switzerland!
I hope you have enjoyed this article and that it has given you many tips for your next trip to Switzerland!