Thursday, June 15, 2006

Living in Switzerland vs. France

Today a fellow blogger who is living in France was curious to know which country I preferred to live in while I spent my time in Europe. She asked me which country did I prefer?

Well I think there is a complex answer to that question and for some of you, it may be interesting knowing why I picked Switzerland over France even though I was living in the Alsace Region and at the border of three countries and not just two.

The pros of living in France :
1. Cheaper food. Geant food chain is great.
You can even get cheap cider everywhere.
2. Restaurants are a lot cheaper.
Sometimes you just need to pay a lot less to eat out.
3. Cheaper rent.
4. Beyond that, there were great paths in Alsace which could bring me all the way to Mulhouse.
5. Cheaper Gas.

The pros of living in Switzerland :
1. Trains actually are on time. You can actually understand and read the time tables and they practically never change and don't have exceptions for Monday, Thursday, Friday and Weekends, including practically no trains running on Sundays in France.
2. Better discounts on train rides in fact.
3. More people willing to speak English to you when you don't speak the language (ie. Swiss German). Je comprends francais mais je parle avec un accent Anglais.
4. More of an expat community around you.
5. You just feel safe where ever you travel.
6. Knowing that your stuff probably won't get touched, if you leave your bag down for a minute to get food in a self-serve restaurant.
7. Actually having clean toilets. (Haha I almost couldn't think of the English spelling.)
8. Knowing you can use Euros and get Swiss Francs in return.
9. People think you just fit in and dress a bit more casual than in France.

Ok - I'm not going to really focus on the cons but you can probably guess them. This is just a quick list of reasons why I enjoyed Switzerland more and why I'd enjoy being back there to live.

Do you have any pros or cons where you live? Maybe you can think of a few other good reasons to live in Switzerland or France to add to me list too.

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