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Where can you shop on Sundays in Switzerland during December?

Sandra Sparrowhawk
Sandra Sparrowhawk - [email protected]
Where can you shop on Sundays in Switzerland during December?
Some shops in Switzerland open on Sundays during the Christmas period. Photo by Negative Space from Pexels.

Every year, shoppers in Switzerland can benefit from special holiday opening hours (which include Sundays) in the run-up to Christmas.

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If you’ve lived in Switzerland for a while, you will know that Sundays are known as rest days in the country.

This (sadly) means that most retailers across Switzerland – with the exception of convenience store avec, shops at petrol and train stations as well as ski resorts – shut on Sundays.

However, there is one festive time a year when Swiss shoppers have the unique opportunity to browse for gifts and decorations on a few select Sundays leading up to Christmas.

Here’s where and when you can shop on a Sunday this month.

Bern

The Old City (Altstadt) of Switzerland’s capital has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1983 and its medieval architecture provides the perfect backdrop to get you in the Christmas spirit.

The Old Town’s Sunday sales will be followed by Bern’s official Sunday shopping on December 10th and December 17th from 10am to 6pm.

However, some shops – like LOEB (11am to 6pm) – may have different opening times.

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Zurich

Each year, Zurich’s city centre and shopping malls draw shoppers from across Switzerland to indulge in Sunday shopping in a cosy Christmas atmosphere.

As in previous years, many of its shops will also open their doors to customers on two Sundays this month – though dates and opening times will vary.

Many shops in the city centre, however, will open their doors on December 17th from 11am to 6pm.

You can access a list of all the participating Zurich shops, such as department stores Grieder and Manor, here.

If you’re hoping to shop at Zurich’s popular Glatt shopping centre, then rest assured that the same dates apply. However, Glatt will open its door an hour earlier, at 10am (to 6pm).

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You can also find a breakdown of the various Zurich municipalities and their Sunday opening times for December 2023 here.

Basel

In the Basel area (both Basel-City and Basel-Country), Sunday sales usually take place on the second and fourth Advent – but not this year.

Since the fourth Advent coincides with Christmas Eve – December 24th – most shops in the city have moved their Sunday openings to the third Advent instead.

This means that you’ll be able to hit Basel’s shops, including the St. Jakob-Park, on December 17th from 1pm to 6pm.

Sion

The canton of Valais’ largest city Sion is an underrated shopping address and has its fair share of Sunday shopping opportunities this month.

According to Sion, Commerces et Services, which lists some 150 stores and restaurants in the city, the various establishments will open doors on December 17th from 10am-6pm.

Coop City Sion and Manor will also be open on December 17th from 10am to 6pm.

Moreover, most shops in the city will also stay open on Immaculate Conception (10am-6pm), which is a public holiday in the canton.

Though not everywhere in French-speaking Switzerland will have open shops on Sundays in December, Lausanne has introduced Christmas evening hours.

For 6 evenings (from December 15th-22nd), shoppers are welcome to take advantage of late opening times (until 8pm) to work through their Christmas shopping list.

Ticino

If you just shop better under pressure, there is one shopping centre that will stay open on December 24th: FOXTOWN FACTORY STORES.

On Christmas Eve, the Mendrisio-based factory outlet with more than 160 stores and over 250 prestigious brands will be open from 11am to 5pm.

Thought this may come as a surprise to some, the shopping centre normally operates 7 days a week from 11am to 7pm.

The shopping centre is only a 30min-drive or 15-min train ride from Ticino’s largest city, Lugano.

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