One of the wealthiest and happiest places in the world to live and work. For nationals, but for immigrants too. Why are the Swiss happy? A high GDP, high life expectancy and freedom may have something to do with it. Or it might be due to the clean and beautiful surroundings that locals get to enjoy every day, even in the bigger cities. 

The public transport is great, people are polite to foreigners and each other, nature is everywhere and the Swiss actually get out there to enjoy it. Clean water comes straight from the ground and you can find little, public fountains to drink from everywhere. Most of the food is organic, fresh and local and there is a large variety of local cheese. 

Working in Switzerland, you generally enjoy four to five weeks of paid holiday a year and that is just one of the many benefits workers in the country benefit from. There is universal health care and for your daily dose of mental health and happiness: chocolate. People in Switzerland speak many languages. English and Swiss German of course, but depending on where you are Italian, French and German are also widely spoken. 

Immigrants from EU-25 and EFTA countries are free to move to Switzerland and work there, but if they wish to work in the country for a period longer than three months a residence permit is required. Special rules apply for citizens from Bulgaria, Romania and Croatia. 

Here are some of the ways to live in the Switzerland if you are a citizen of a non-EEA/EFTA country:

Work visa

Expats from other countries must submit an application through their employer to the immigration or labour authorities. They will also have to apply for a visa separately. Swiss companies are only allowed to hire a third country national if they are unable to find a local for the position that needs to be filled. 

Investment

  • If you invest a minimum of CHF 1,000,000 in a small to medium company in the canton (area) where you wish to live, you can get residency in Switzerland .  You need to be under the age of 55 and a non-EEA citizen.

Through Family

  • If your spouse is a citizen or permanent resident of Switzerland, you are probably eligible for residency. Please note that your status of spouse needs to be legally recognised in this country.
  • See the citizenship section below for more information on residency or citizenship based on descent.

Here are some of the ways to get citizenship in Switzerland:

  • If one or both of your parents were citizens when you were born, you are probably also a citizen.
  • If your spouse is a citizen, you can apply for citizenship after 3 years of marriage and 5 years of residency in Switzerland.  If you live abroad, you can apply for citizenship after being married to a Swiss national for 6 years however proving that you have close ties to Switzerland.  Please note that your status of spouse needs to be legally recognised in this country.

The passport for Switzerland allows you to travel to 159 countries without a visa.

Its global rank is 19.

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