Monday, September 12, 2011

Moving to Geneva

Today we look at moving to Geneva in Switzerland from Cape Town in South Africa. We highlight cost of living and other major differences likely to be experienced in our series of short blogs on moving between different international locations.
In Geneva people speak German, French, Italian and Romansch. In Cape Town people speak 11 official languages including English, Afrikaans, Sesotho, Setswana, Xhosa and Zulu.

Geneva is the capital of the Republic and Canton of Geneva. Cape Town is the provincial capital and primate city of the Western Cape, as well as the legislative capital of South Africa, where the National Parliament and many government offices are situated. Geneva's economy is mainly services oriented. The city has an important and old finance sector, which is specialized in private banking (managing assets of about 1 trillion USD) and financing of international trade. Cape Town is the economic centre of the Western Cape Province, South Africa's second main economic centre and even Africa's third main economic hub city. It serves as the regional manufacturing centre in the Western Cape. It also has the primary harbour and airport in the province.

The overall cost of living rank in Geneva is 3 out of 300 global locations, which equates it with high cost of living locations.  An expatriate moving from Cape Town to Geneva will experience a change in cost of living of 69.9%.
In terms of the hardship people are likely to experience, assessed in global terms, Geneva is ranked as a minimal hardship location with a hardship index of 10% compared to Cape Town with a hardship index of 30% which is a high degree of hardship location.

Source: Cost of Living Geneva Switzerland as at July 2011.