Switzerland is one of the most consistently beautiful places I’ve ever traveled, as in it’s beautiful everywhere in the country no matter where you go. This is just one of the things that made me fall in love with this happy little country. To read about the other things I loved about Switzerland click here. But Switzerland is also inconveniently one of the most expensive places in the world to travel. This is the give and take. It’s not easy to visit Switzerland on a budget, and that puts it out of reach for a lot of people. But if you’re really keen to visit Switzerland on a budget, I have some tips and tricks that will help you to make it happen!
How to Visit Switzerland on a Budget
Limit Your Train Travel
The train travel in Switzerland is notoriously fantastic in terms of speed, efficiency, and availability. But it can also get expensive if you’re traveling around to different cities or towns every day. Try to just pick a few destinations within Switzerland and explore those more thoroughly!
Take a Hike
The Swiss Alps are made incredibly accessible by trains, trams, lifts, and gondolas. But these mountain-scaling transportation methods are also pricey. Try hiking up to the mountains where you want to check out the view instead. It will take you longer but you’ll definitely appreciate the views more when you’ve earned them.
Skip the Hotels
Hotels are the most expensive form of accommodation when you’re in Switzerland. Instead try staying at hostels when you’re in the cities. And try camping or staying in the alpine huts when you’re in the mountains! For some travelers, these are the normal ways to travel anyway, but if these are new to you then you should know that Switzerland is among the most civilized places to give this a try for the first time.
Utilize the Grocery Stores
Even if you don’t have a kitchen available to cook in when you’re in Switzerland, you can still use the grocery store to shop for breakfast and lunch foods. Then you only have to splurge for one meal a day in the restaurants!
Change Your Money to Swiss Francs
A lot of businesses will accept Euros. But you will almost always be paying more when you do this. You’ll get a better exchange rate if you change your money for Swiss Francs at a bank. This won’t be so much money to break the bank but it will help you save a bit and stay on budget!
Research the Swiss Pass
There are a few different Swiss Pass options available, which can get you free or discounted access to the trains, gondolas, and attractions. The Swiss Pass isn’t cheap by any means, but it may be worthwhile for you if you will use it enough during your trip. Therefore I recommend that you do a little research and calculation. Map out where you plan to go and what you plan to do, then look at what each piece of that trip will cost by itself and with the Swiss Pass. Then you can look at how much you would save with the Swiss Pass and see if it’s worth it!
Plan Your Own Trip
For a lot of different places in the world that you may travel, it makes sense to book an organized tour with a tour guide. Depending on your comfort level and experience traveling, this may apply to more countries than others. But in Switzerland, just about anyone can get by without an organized tour and guide. The hotels are abundant, the trains are accessible, and there’s a wealth of information for planning your trip on the Swiss tourism website. Plus the country is very safe and has a well-established tourism industry, making it a breeze for even the beginner traveler to manage!