connect, grow & thrive.

Getting connected to telecom services

When moving to a new home, people are usually anxious to get all their telecom services up and running and often will become frustrated as the telephone, cable TV and internet providers will not give them a contract until shown an official residence permit (Ausländernausweis).

  • Swisscom now offers you the possibility to order all your network services prior to even arriving in the country. You can write to them at their relocation desk and within 30 minutes they will get back to you to see how they can best help you.

All they will need is for either the order to come through a relocation company or proof of your employment by a local company and a copy of your passport.

Swisscom is the biggest telecom provider with the government being a major stakeholder, this means that they have the best mobile coverage; they are also installing fiber optic cables in all homes for free for a faster internet connection. They do offer a good selection of English channels but not all of them (Upc-Cablecom has a bigger choice).

  • Salt (formelly) Orange asks to see the permits but they will accept a letter from the canton stating that the applicant is about to receive his or her visa… they have good support service offering a choice of languages when you call up and they did write back to me within 24 hours.
  • Upc-Cablecom call service is in German so will make customer service a little bit difficult if you haven’t mastered Schiller’s language yet, and despite several attempts, I am still waiting to hear back from them as to what their requirements are; presumably they also need to see your residence permit.
  • Sunrise requires to see the residence permits.

Locally the Electricity and Water Supplier EWL is now offering television, internet and telephone services and they don’t need to see any papers, they even offer to install fibre optic cables in your home if it isn’t already there.

Charlie Hartmann is the managing director of the Livingin organisation which focuses on helping international residents connect, grow and thrive in Switzerland.