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Olten, Switzerland

By Betsy Burlingame

Last updated on Sep 21, 2022

Summary: People describe Olten, Switzerland as a small, charming city with a friendly atmosphere. Expats love the city's convenient location, close proximity to Zurich and Basel, and its easy access to the rest of Switzerland. The weather in Olten is generally mild, with temperatures ranging from the mid-30s to the mid-60s Fahrenheit. The average cost of living for an expat is estimated to be around $2,500 per month. The cost of a one bedroom apartment is around $1,000 per month, while a two bedroom apartment is around $1,400 per month. The approximate population of Olten is around 17,000 people.

What do I need to know before moving to Olten?

When we asked people what advice they would give someone preparing to move to Olten, they said:

"Keep in mind: - There is no free choice of school for your children, unless you are willing and able to pay for (expensive) private schools. Your children will usually go to school in the quarter you live. If you have specific school preferences for your kids, take this into consideration in the neighborhood choice. - Not only property prices vary highly between city and countryside, and between the various cantons. Also taxes and costs for (mandatory!) health insurance may vary a lot. Example: the canton of Zug may sound very attractive at first sight, because of the extremely low taxes. You'll quickly find out that this is (more than) compensated by prices for housing. Check out tax and health insurance rates at www.comparis.ch," said another expat in Olten.

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How do I find a place to live in Olten?

We asked expats how they chose their neighborhood and found a place to live. They answered:

"www.immoscout.ch is a good website to find houses/apartments, both for sale and for rent. When you consider to buy a house: - may be a good idea as mortgage interest rates are low - keep in mind that a bank will not give mortgages for more than 80% of the value of the house. You need to finance the rest of the house yourself - check which legal conditions you must oblige when buying property. In particular, try to organise your work/stay permit before you buy, as this will make buying conditions easier and cheaper," said another expat in Olten.

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What is the average cost of housing in Olten?

If you are thinking about moving to Olten, cost of living in probably a key consideration. Expats commented about the cost of housing:

"Property is expensive, whether you buy or rent. In the cities of Zurich, Geneva, Basel and Bern, prices can be astronomic," said another expat in Olten.

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What should I bring when moving to Olten?

People living in Olten were asked what three things they wish they had brought and three they wish they had left behind. They wrote:

"No particular things for myself - as I have a Swiss wife, she could very well prepare me for moving to and living in Switzerland. - There are no real needs to bring to Switzerland. Anything you need is available here as well. - Don't bring washing machines, tumblers, kitchen appliances, as they usually belong to / come with the house or apartment that you buy or rent. Moving these things is very unusual in Switzerland. - When you bring electrical equipment: check plugs and voltage. Swiss electricity comes at 230V/50Hz and plugs and sockets are of type "J", which means that any plug of type "C" or "J" will fit into a Swiss socket, and any other plug won't. - Switzerland is expensive. In particular, medicins, health care and body care products are very expensive. Many Swiss buy them abroad (in Germany) whenever possible. - Switzerland has the best public transport system of Europe, and one of the best of the world. Living without car may be very well possible for you in Switzerland - consider this when you plan to import a car," said another expat in Olten.

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About the Author

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.

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