< Back What is the local currency? What denominations does it come in? What is the best way to exchange currency? What are commonly-used forms of payment for everyday purchases (such as groceries)? Will I be able to use my credit card around town? If not, list when I’ll need cash. By what method are bills (such as rent and utilities) paid? What are the requirements for opening a bank account? At what stage of the settling-in process should I open it? Will foreign residents be able to find banking services in their native languages? Are there any restrictions on services for those who are new to your country? What are typical banking hours? Are automatic teller machines (ATMs) available around the clock? Is there any other money information that might help me? What is the local currency? The official currency is the Swiss franc (Schweizer Franken/Franc Suisse) divided into 100 centimes. Swiss francs are shortened either with the official banking name CHF (from the Latin name of the country Confederation Helvetica, CH) or sometimes just Fr. or Sfr. For example, 1 CHF = 1 franc = 100 centimes. ↑ Top What denominations does it come in? Notes: 10, 20, 50, 100, 200, 500, and 1,000. Coins: 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50 ↑ Top What is the best way to exchange currency? The best way to exchange currency is at banks, post offices or at railway stations. ↑ Top What are commonly-used forms of payment for everyday purchases (such as groceries)? The most commonly-used forms of payment for everyday purchases are cash, debit cards and credit cards. Checks are not used in Switzerland. ↑ Top Will I be able to use my credit card around town? If not, list when I’ll need cash. While major credit cards are very popular, there are still many places in Fribourg and the rest of Switzerland that do not accept credit cards, such as newspaper stands and bakeries. Since you can never be too sure which places these are, be sure to carry at least a small amount of cash at all times. For quick withdrawals, a bank or post office will usually have an ATM machine. ↑ Top By what method are bills (such as rent and utilities) paid? Pre-authorized debit is an efficient way of paying gas, water and electricity bills. Your bills are automatically deducted from your bank/post account. The various utility companies can help you with the arrangements. Should you choose not to arrange the automatic debit, you can arrange for a series of one-time payments for each bill. With each bill, you receive a payment slip (bulletin de versement) that you can use to pay it directly at the post office or send it to your bank or post office. The amount will be automatically paid from your account. ↑ Top What are the requirements for opening a bank account? At what stage of the settling-in process should I open it? A bank or post account can be opened at any stage, but the sooner the better. You will need the following: A valid passport A work permit A copy of your work contract A current address of residence A very common way to open an account is to have your monthly salary transferred into the new account; this salary account will be free of bank charges. ↑ Top Will foreign residents be able to find banking services in their native languages? All Swiss banks have employees well-versed in English, as well as other common languages used in Switzerland, such as German, French and Italian. ↑ Top Are there any restrictions on services for those who are new to your country? People holding an L permit may have restricted withdrawal limits and difficulty obtaining a Swiss credit card. ↑ Top What are typical banking hours? 9:00 am. to 12:00 p.m. and 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. They are closed on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays. ↑ Top Are automatic teller machines (ATMs) available around the clock? Yes, you can find ATM machines all around the city, available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. ↑ Top Is there any other money information that might help me? The most common cards in Switzerland are the Maestro Bancomat card and the Post card, which are cards linked to your current bank/post account. These cards are accepted at department stores, supermarkets, gas stations and restaurants. These cards are a good alternative to other cards as there are many places in Switzerland that do not accept credit/debit cards. ↑ Top IMPORTANT NOTE: Crown Relocations has made every effort to present accurate information. However, regulations, rates and other variables are subject to change and Crown Relocations cannot accept responsibility for the errors that might result. Should you have any questions or need additional information, please contact your local Crown representative.