Perched on the northwestern edge of the breathtaking Lake Zurich in north-central Switzerland, Zurich is not only the country's largest city, but also infinitely picturesque and highly popular among ambitious expats.
Zurich is home to one of the world’s largest stock exchanges, and it is the country’s financial engine, but there’s much more to this beautiful Swiss city than commerce. It's safe, has excellent infrastructure and one of the best public transport systems in the world, and the city consistently ranks as one of the best places to live in the world.
Zurich attracts a skilled workforce and is a particularly popular destination for professionals working in the financial services industry. Although money isn't everything, it certainly helps and expats in Zurich earn impressive salaries that are well above the global average.
One of the biggest challenges expats will face, aside from getting there and adapting to the local culture, is finding somewhere to live. There’s a shortage of accommodation in Zurich, so prices and competition for quality rentals are high.
Luckily, the language barrier shouldn’t be much of a problem. English is widely spoken, especially in business circles. That said, Swiss German is the predominant language, and learning at least a few introductory phrases can make a big difference to interactions with locals who are reluctant to engage in English.
There’s plenty to see and do in Zurich. Having long influenced arts and culture, the city pays homage to its history with museums, galleries and theatres. Expats will enjoy strolling along the Limmat River that runs through the city, taking in the sight of boats whisking passengers along and lights glinting off its surface. The medieval Old Town is a rich backdrop for contemporary fashion stores, bookshops, bars, restaurants and clubs.
Overall, Zurich has much to offer expats who can negotiate a good salary to get around its high living costs.