Zurich makes naturalisation free for under 25s

Anyone under the age of 25 will no longer have to pay fees for naturalisation in the Swiss city of Zurich.

Zurich makes naturalisation free for under 25s
A Swiss passport. Photo: Photo by Claudio Schwarz

The fees, previously set at 250 francs, have been waived effective immediately. 

Municipal authorities said on Wednesday that the change was made to encourage people to complete the naturalisation process. 

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“Around a third of the city of Zurich’s population does not have Swiss citizenship rights. This is despite the fact that many foreign residents meet the formal requirements for naturalisation” said the city in a statement. 

“By waiving a fee for foreigners up to 25 years of age, the financial hurdles for naturalisation can be lowered.” 

With approximately 300 people under the age of 25 becoming naturalised in Zurich each year, the policy change is expected to cost the city 75,000 francs. 

The change applies to fees applied at a municipal level.

Fees for naturalisation will continue to apply at a federal and cantonal level. 

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Swiss rail to close ticket counters in Zurich, Bern, Vaud, Ticino and Zug

Switzerland’s Federal Railways (SBB) will be removing the ticket counter from nine stations in the cantons of Zurich, Vaud, Bern, Zug and Ticino

Swiss rail to close ticket counters in Zurich, Bern, Vaud, Ticino and Zug

The SBB made the announcement on Wednesday, saying the decision was made due to a lack of demand. 

Instead, commuters will need to buy tickets from automated machines. 

In the canton of Zurich, the ticket stations in Dietlikon, Hinwil, Kloten, Männedorf and Oberwinterthur will be closed. 

In neighbouring Zug, Cham’s ticket counter will be closed, while the Herzogenbuchsee station in Bern will also go fully automated. 

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In Latin Switzerland, Pully in Vaud and Biasca in Ticino will see their ticket counters closed. 

The SBB told Swiss news outlet Watson that approximately 95 percent of ticket sales are now made via self-service machines or online. 

The advent of navigation apps has meant the need for personal advice on directions and travel has fallen, particularly in smaller areas or stations with lower traffic.