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TRANSPORT

Switzerland promises no increases in public transport costs in 2023

Swiss public transport providers have promised to avoid price increases next year, despite inflationary trends.

A red SBB train in the Swiss city of Aarau, Switzerland

The Alliance Swiss Pass tariff and transport associations indicated they saw inflationary pressure as an opportunity to encourage more people to use public transport. 

2023 will represent the sixth consecutive year where public transport prices will not increase in Switzerland. 

READ MORE: How the cost of living will change in Switzerland in 2022

Consumer prices have risen 1.7 percent in Switzerland since the last increase in public transport costs, while Switzerland’s State Secretariat for Economic Affairs expects a further increase of 1.1 percent until 2023. 

In a statement, Alliance Swiss Pass said they planned to introduce “new, attractive offers” to appeal to those struggling under cost of living pressures. 

One of the major drivers in the spike in the cost of living has been rising oil prices, which has led to significant increases in public transport costs. 

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has placed additional pressure on prices which were already on the rise as a consequence of the Covid pandemic. 

Alliance Swiss Pass makes up around 250 transport companies across Switzerland. 

READ MORE: Where in Switzerland can you find the cheapest fuel?

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UKRAINE

Free transport and calls: How Swiss companies are helping Ukrainians

Swiss companies and organisations a range of changes to help benefit Ukrainian citizens. Here's how.

Free transport and calls: How Swiss companies are helping Ukrainians

Several companies and organisations have announced policy changes in order to help people impacted by the Russian invasion of Ukraine. 

Telecommunications companies Salt, Swisscom and Sunrise UPC each announced they are waiving the costs of calls to and from Ukraine on its network.

“Sunrise UPC’s thoughts are with the Ukrainian people and all those affected”, the company said in a press release.

“In view of this situation, Sunrise UPC will waive in a first step the costs for international mobile calls and fix net calls from Switzerland to Ukraine and from Ukraine to Switzerland with immediate effect and until further notice for residential customers. Roaming calls within the Ukraine and calls from the Ukraine to Switzerland will not be charged”.

The other networks have taken similar steps. 

Sunrise and Swisscom also announced it is stopping the distribution of the TV channels of RT (RussiaToday), a state-controlled television network.

READ MORE: How Switzerland reacted to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine

What about the railways?

Swiss Federal Railways (SBB) are offering free long-distance train journeys to Ukrainian refugees.

SBB will allow people who have fled Ukraine to travel from the border to a certain destination in Switzerland or to cross the country by train.

The company said this move is in line with the decision of the Federal Council to imposing sanctions on Russia, and in agreement with the State Secretariat for Migration (SEM). 

READ MORE: Switzerland to impose sanctions on Russia

The country could take in up to 2,000 Ukrainian refugees, “depending on the evolution of the conflict”, according to SEM.

“Switzerland has the will to show solidarity. An emergency plan is available in the event of major migratory movements”, it added.

Similar announcements have been made by public transport networks in Austria, Germany and Poland, among other countries. 

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