Sunday, 23 December 2007

Taxes and insurances

If I have warbled on about this before, just skip this post ;0)

So I guess many folk have heard the expression that 'You can't escape death and taxes'. But the Swiss tax system is a whole new ball game. There are NINE different types of tax. Yep, nine! There's federal, cantonal and community for a start. I haven't found out yet what most of the others are (try looking here if you feel you must), except for the ninth one, the only one we won't have to pay. The church tax. Since we are not members of any mainstream church, we don't have to pay the tax. But I do wonder what will happen if I feel the need for a moment of quiet contemplation in one of said churches. Will a deep, booming, heavenly voice inform me that my tax return is wrong....?

We have to have health insurance and I have to have accident insurance (Number Guy's employers are obliged to provide his). I am still uncertain about how the service actually works. I think that if one has a discounted policy, one then ends up with a GP-based system a bit like the NHS. Otherwise, one 'simply' makes an appointment with the appropriate doctor/consultant. What I am not sure about is what dies one do about having a 'GP' in that case. After all, there surely must be someone with an overview....? No doubt all will (eventually) become clear. What I do know is that 10% of all costs are payable by the patient. There is also, surprise surprise, an excess on each policy. One can pay bigger monthly fees to have a reduced excess, but if regular use is made of the health service there isn't much to pick and choose - the costs work out pretty much the same.

On the organisation front, I did manage to make quite a dent in the living room tidying last night. But then I decided to wrap Christmas not quite back to stage one, but Could Do Better for sure. I am trying to conserve my stocks of 'essential must haves' - you know, vanilla pods, star anise, baking parchment, rubber glves etc ;0) It isn't that I think I can't get them in Switzerland, obviously. It's just that when I am having a mental breakdown trying to get X, Y, or Z fixed and my Superb Grasp of German has let me down again, I don't want to find myself in a snotty heap, crying because I've run out of something that I don't yet know where to find. Like Marmite. Actually, I've already found out where I can get that - result!

But now that I have mentioned Mental Breakdown...I was lying ib bed this mornig thinking 'Oh f***, it's 3 weeks till we go.Oh f***, it's 3 weeks till we go.Oh f***, it's 3 weeks till we go.'

You know what, it's 3 weeks till we go. Oh f***


  1. All will be well. Do not worry.

    And there are some ingredients that I still have never found in Switzerland. However, we get back to the US often enough. And when people come to visit, they receive requests for things like all-natural peanut butter or vanilla or baking powder (which is a little different here).

  2. For things like spices you're better off mail ordering anyway. We still manage to get better quality spices by mail-ordering from a spice company in San Francisco, shipped to our post office in New York, and shipped over to Scotland with the rest of our US mail. It takes a couple of months, but it's save, sitting in a sealed box in a warehouse.

    I think that you'll end up doing something similar, for those few things that you just can't find. Or, you know, you could ask somebody to go to the store for you here and just drop it in the mail. No big deal.