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Q&A: Switzerland’s most searched questions in 2021 answered

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Q&A: Switzerland’s most searched questions in 2021 answered
What questions do the Swiss want answered? Photo by Kai Wenzel on Unsplash

Google’s yearly trends ranked the top ten questions internet users in Switzerland asked in 2021. Here are the answers.


Each year, search engine company Google releases its GoogleTrends results, which shows the most googled terms in each country over a particular year.

READ MORE: What did Switzerland google in 2021?

While this year the most searched term was Euro 2021 - reflective of the Swiss Nati’s excellent progression at this year’s tournament - the most asked questions also shed some light on both Switzerland and what kind of year 2021 was. 

Rather than just listing the top questions, we thought we’d take the time to answer each of them. We’ve decided to stick to the ‘how’ questions and we’ve only really answered questions we are capable of answering. 


1. How long is a PCR test valid for? 

Switzerland’s Federal Office of Public Health has set the validity of a PCR test at 72 hours. 

If you get a PCR test for the purposes of the Covid certificate, for instance, then you will have a valid Covid certificate for 72 hours after you completed the test. 

The same goes for Switzerland’s entry requirements as at mid-December 2021, which require a PCR test on entry. 

2. How many cantons does Switzerland have?


Röstigraben: The invisible barrier separating Switzerland

3. How long does Covid take? 

While this question could be more specific, we will assume it refers to the duration of Covid sickness, rather than how long it takes for the virus to infect someone or how long it takes to get from one side of the room to the other. 

There is no correct answer to this question, given that for some people a Covid infection has no symptoms but in others the symptoms last more than a year. 

The period however that people are infectious is shorter and is usually believed to be somewhere between seven and 14 days. 

4. How many inhabitants does Switzerland have?

According to the most up-to-date figures from the Federal Statistical Office, Switzerland had 8,717,105 people as at the end of the third quarter in 2021. 

As we wrote in early December, 38 percent of Swiss residents have a ‘migration background’. 

READ MORE: Nearly 40 percent of Swiss residents have ‘migration background’


5. How long is an antigen test valid for? 

A natural follow on from question one, this question has been in the news lately when Switzerland changed the validity of an antigen test from 48 hours to 24 hours for the purpose of the Covid certificate. 

6. How old is Ronaldo? 

Not very Swiss at all, but still an important question. 

Cristiano Ronaldo dos Santos Aveiro - better known as Cristiano Ronaldo or just Ronaldo - is 36 and will turn 37 on February 5th, 1985. 

Ronaldo Luís Nazário de Lima - better known as Brazilian Ronaldo, chubby Ronaldo or just Ronaldo - turned 45 on the 18th of September. 

7. How many Swiss are vaccinated? 

As at mid-December, 5,768,830 (66.2 percent) are fully vaccinated against Covid-19 in Switzerland. 

8. How much does a Covid test cost? 

Prices of tests vary throughout Switzerland, but a PCR test for people without symptoms costs around 180 francs and a rapid  antigen test about 50 francs.

READ MORE: Switzerland’s new testing rules: How much travelling abroad now costs

9. How many people are there in the world? 

There are currently 7.9 billion people in the world. 

10. How many weeks are there in a year? 


Are these the only questions that were asked in 2021? 

In addition to the top ten ‘how’ questions, Google also releases the top ‘what’ questions of the year. 

Some of these questions are impossible for a news platform to answer, while they appear to be much more random than those listed above. 

This year, the first place went to ‘What am I cooking today?’ which is a question we really aren’t qualified to answer. 

The second - ‘what should I do about a urinary tract infection (UTI)? - is one for your doctor.

The third ‘what does Hollywood mean?’ might be a simple geographical question, or it might be one that The Eagles tried to answer a long time ago. 

In fourth place was ‘what is the Pentecost?’ and in fifth was ‘what is a mellotron?’ 

Google's complete Switzerland trend report for 2021 can be viewed here. 


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