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Switzerland

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General InformationEdit

High quality networks by all 3 network service providersEdit

Switzerland has 3 GSM-Network providers. Swisscom is leading in coverage and quality but competitors as Sunrise and Orange catching up quickly. Standings according to benchmark tests by "Connect" in December 2013:

SwisscomEdit

Rate: "Very good" (also compared to mobile networks in Germany and Austria), almost 80 % of the network is covered with 4G-service (LTE).

SunriseEdit

When surfing on the internet Sunrise is almost on the same level than Swisscom. Lower quality for voice calling in cities, poor 4G-service (LTE)

OrangeEdit

For voice calling in cities and downloading data with smartphones Orange is on quite the same level than Sunrise. Orange has highest 4G-Coverage of all the providers (> 80 %). But when it comes to voice calling on frequent used highways and extended areas Orange lower data rates might occur.

Alwalys keep in mind that quality of all the 3 providers is in general high compared to European standards: For example in Germany only one company got better rates than the worst Swiss provider.

Best "mix" for visitorsEdit

When visiting Switzerland you should consider to pay attention to several points: How easily you reach the point of sale? Are credit cards accepted? Is there a flatrate/free for voice calling to people at the same mobile network? (this might be extremely handy when you travel together with other people) Is the flatrate bound to a time period (e.g. 1 month) or can you buy another flatrate when exeeding the limit? etc.

ImportantEdit

Before you can use a prepaid service you will need to identify yourself (bring your passport!) and fill in forms at the point of sale. When traveling in Switzerland, people have rated the SBB mobile train app extremely useful: It pulls up different train schedules from and to different stations (even with live tracking).

ORANGE networkEdit

OrangeEdit

Default prefix: 078

Orange sign

Startup costEdit

In an "Orange Center" you will get a Prepay Sim Pack for 10 CHF, including 10 CHF of initial credit. Bring your ID with you for registering.

Orange Internet Everywhere PrePaid for use with laptops: 49 CHF for dongle, includes first 3 days use within first three months.

Orange Internet Everywhere Day for use with laptops: 199 CHF for dongle (or 1 CHF / 24 Month)

Orange Me PrePayEdit

  • Mobile Internet Day = 5 CHF / day, unlimited usage (fair use = 500 MB / month with full bandwidth)
  • Mobile Internet Plus = 5 CHF / month, includes 200 MB, additional Traffic 1 MB = 0,10 CHF
  • Mobile Internet Max =15 CHF / month, includes 1 GB, additional Traffic 1 MB = 0,10 CHF

When topping up your credit you get a free bonus. Amount of bonus depend on the amount of topping up:

  • Refill CHF 10 => get CHF 1 bonus
  • Refill CHF 20 => get CHF 5 bonus
  • Refill CHF 30 => get CHF 10 bonus
  • Refill CHF 50 => get CHF 20 bonus
  • Refill CHF 100 => get CHF 50 bonus

Orange World PrePayEdit

Internet costs are the same as above, but this tariff may serve you better than "Me PrePay" if you plan to phone home as well. Calling into the so-called "focus-countries" (includes Europe, USA, Australia, ...) is way cheaper. When topping up credit you can choose between the boni as described above.

SIM sizesEdit

Both mini SIM and micro SIM available.

TetheringEdit

Yes. Mobile Data and Internet-Tethering APN needs to be changed to "click"

CoverageEdit

According to a test from "connect" (01/2012) Orange is best when it comes to smartphone data. Voice coverage/quality is not a strenght of Orange.

Orange is currently upgrading its GSM netwok with EDGE. Until mid 2012 the big cities should have EDGE and until the end of 2012 EDGE should be available everywhere. Orange plans to install HSPA too. Make sure to check out UMTS/ HSPA+ and LTE coverage of your travel destination beforehand: coverage map

Special featureEdit

  • Useable with no extra roaming costs in Liechtenstein

Coop MobileEdit

Default prefix: 078

Coop mobile logo

Startup costEdit

SIM Card: 15 CHF, includes 15CHF prepaid balance. Bring your ID with you for initial registering

See link for more information (in german).

Voice calls: specialEdit

CoopMobile prepaid customers call for free to all other CoopMobile customers and also to all Orange customers (up to 3'000 minutes per month).

Data feature packsEdit

1 MONTH FOR FREE PROMOTION (500 MB)

The 1-month free trial is included:

  • This option is already activated when buying the SIM-Card.
  • The promotion is limited to data traffic within Switzerland (orange network).
  • If the limit of 500 MB is exceeded you have the following options: Another 500 MB for another month (CHF 9.90) or another 1 GB for another month (CHF 19.90).
  • If you do not acitvate any flatrate data option after 30 days you fall back to the "Surf-by-Day" plan.

CHF 9.90 for surfing 500 MB / month

  • Send a free SMS saying START AUTO500 to the number 5155. The data flatrate will be activated.
  • This data option is valid for one month and will AUTOMATICALLY prolonged.
  • If the limit of 500 MB is exceeded you have the following options: Another 500 MB for another month (CHF 9.90) or another 1 GB for another month (CHF 19.90)
  • The data pack is limited to data traffic within Switzerland (orange network).
  • You must have a prepraid credit of at least CHF 9.90 to activate this option.
  • You can always deactivate the option by sending a free SMS saying "STOP AUTO500" to the number 5155.

CHF 24.90 for surfing 1'500 MB / month

  • Send a free SMS saying START AUTO1500 to the number 5155. The data flatrate will be activated.
  • This data option is valid for one month and will AUTOMATICALLY prolonged.
  • The data pack is limited to data traffic within Switzerland (orange network).
  • You must have a prepraid credit of at least CHF 24.90 to activate this option.
  • You can always deactivate the option by sending a free SMS saying "STOP AUTO1500" to the number 5155.

"Surf-by-Day" (max. CHF 2.-- / day)

  • This rate is the standard rate if no option and no promotion is activated.
  • Day = 00:00 h - 23.59 h
  • Surfing costs CHF 0.30 / MB until you reach the limit of CHF 2.-- a day. There will NOT be more then CHF 2.-- deducted per day. Surfing limit is 33 MB per day with this plan.

See link for more information (in german).

AvailabilityEdit

You can get the SIM at any Coop Supermarkt with Kiosk, Coop City Warenhaus, Coop Bau+Hobby Markt, Fust and Interdiscount. Activation of SIM takes 1 to 2 business days!

SIM sizesEdit

Package comes with mini SIM. Since Mai 2012 the package is compatible with micro SIM too.

TetheringEdit

Yes. Mobile Data and Internet-Tethering APN needs to be changed to "click"

CoverageEdit

Also on Orange's network - Details see in Orange Section

ok.-mobileEdit

Default prefix: 078

Ok logo
ChrisstuderAdded by Chrisstuder

Introduced in December 2010, this is a prepaid product using the Orange network (see above).

More information can be found on ok-mobile.ch. There is also a Facebook "fan page", where many users and some friendly support folks hang out and exchange information, mostly in German.

Startup CostEdit

SIM cards are CHF 15, with an initial balance of CHF 10.

Internet Usage FeesEdit

Internet usage is CHF .10 per 20 KB -or- CHF 7 per month for 300 MB -or- CHF 15 per month for 1 GB.

AvailabilityEdit

Mobiles, SIM cards, and refills are sold through newsagent's chains, in particular "k kiosk" and "Press & Books". These can be found at most train stations, which makes it attractive for travelers. Refill over the Internet doesn't seem possible at this time.

They promise that activation should be done in an hour. You can speed up the process by printing out the registration form at home, fill it out, and bring it to the outlet.


MobilesEdit

In a few larger k kiosk stores you can buy mobiles. Currently there are two types: a simple one for CHF 20, and a smartphone for CHF 100. The smartphone is a ZTE "Blade" Android phone branded as (Orange) San Francisco. It ships with Android 2.1 with some Orange-specific modifications. E.g. the Google Talk client was removed. The mobiles are SIM-locked to the Orange (Switzerland) network for 24 months.

SIM SizesEdit

As far as I know, only standard (large) size SIMs are sold. So bring scissors if you have an iPad.

Internet settingsEdit

  • APN name: click

TetheringEdit

Yes. Mobile Data and Internet-Tethering APN needs to be changed to "click"

CoverageEdit

Also on Orange's network - details see in Orange Section

SUNRISE networkEdit

SunriseEdit

Default prefix: 076

Sunrise-Logo-Artwork
AngerdanAdded by Angerdan

Sunrise freeEdit

19.90 CHF for SIM card. With unlimited surf option for 1 CHF per day (speed is limited to 256 Kbps). Days you don't use your phone for data, voice or sms, there's no charge. To check your balance, dial *121# on your phone and press the call (green) button.

Data options:

Sunrise Surf
  • 7.50 CHF per month; including 250 MB per month
  • to activate: send a SMS with SURF to 5522
  • to cancel: send a SMS with SURF STOP to 5522
Sunrise Surf XL
  • 19.00 CHF per month; including 1 GB per month
  • to activate: send a SMS with SURFXL to 5522
  • to cancel: send a SMS with SURFXL STOP to 5522


The surf option is renewed automatically when the data volume is used up or after one month (which ever occurs first) To find out how much data of the surf option remains, dial *136# on your phone and press the call (green) button.

T@ke Away PrePaidEdit

  • T@ke Away PrePaid - 3 CHF / hour, unlimited usage. Plus 19.90 CHF for the SIM card.
  • T@ke Away basic (12 Months)- 3.50 CHF / day, unlimited usage (without subscription free, they call it a subscription). Drawback of this option is the high initial price: the SIM card is 40 CHF.

LanguageEdit

To change the language, dial *141# on your phone and press the call (green) button.

AvailabilityEdit

Online at sunrise.ch

SIM sizesEdit

mini-SIM (2FF), micro-SIM (3FF) and nano-SIM (4FF) available.

TetheringEdit

Yes.

CoverageEdit

Not yet up to Swisscom in the country side but generally still very good. UMTS speed available depending on your location (best in and around cities. GPRS/EDGE performance poor since only sunrise uses it's GSM 900 frequencies also for UMTS (see http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schweizer_Mobilfunkmarkt#Sunrise). Make sure to check out UMTS coverage of your travel destination beforehand: http://maps.sunrise.ch/coverage.php

LTE coverage (as of 19 june 2013)

Aldi mobileEdit

Default prefix: 076

Aldi-mobile-sign
Sign Aldi-Suisse-mobile

This is a prepaid offer using Sunrise as network.

Startup CostEdit

Starter package costs CHF 19.99 and includes prepaid credit of CHF 20. Bring your ID with you for initial registering.

https://www.aldi-mobile.ch/home.html

Voice calls: specialEdit

AldiMobile prepaid customers call for free to all other AldiMobile customers.

Data feature packsEdit

Surf option "@web": CHF 9.90 for 500 MB/month

  • Send a free SMS saying START SURF 500 to the number 4466. The data flatrate will be activated.
  • This data option is valid for one month and will NOT be automatically prolonged. You will receive a notification SMS after 30 days. If you want to continue to use the data option you will have to send again a free SMS saying START SURF 500 to the number 4466 so that the data option will be activated for another month.
  • The data pack is limited to data traffic within Switzerland (sunrise network).
  • You will receive a notification as soon the limit of 500 MB is reached or when the 30 day-period is going to be finished. Alternatively you can call *147*# to find out your credit.
  • You must have a prepraid credit of at least CHF 9.90 to activate this option.

W A R N I N G : If you exceed the monthly amount of data, there will be CHF 0.10 deducted for every 20 KB (!) from your prepaid credit. (You will be warned in advance by SMS when exceeding the monthly limit.)

Surf option "@web": CHF 14.90 for 1 GB/month

  • Send a free SMS saying START SURF 1000 to the number 4466. The data flatrate will be activated.
  • This data option is valid for one month and will NOT be automatically prolonged. You will receive a notification SMS after 30 days. If you want to continue to use the data option you will have to send again a free SMS saying START SURF 1000 to the number 4466 so that the data option will be activated for another month.
  • The data pack is limited to data traffic within Switzerland (sunrise network).
  • You will receive a notification as soon the limit of 1 GB is reached or when the 30 day-period is going to be finished. Alternatively you can call *147*# to find out your credit.
  • You must have a prepraid credit of at least CHF 14.90 to activate this option.

W A R N I N G : If you exceed the monthly amount of data, there will be CHF 0.10 deducted for every 20 KB (!) from your prepaid credit. (You will be warned in advance by SMS when exceeding the monthly limit.)

Promo Packs (including voice)Edit

Smart50: CHF 15.90 for 500 MB/month + 50 SMS + 50 min. Mobile (CH) + 50 min. fixed lines (CH)

  • Send a free SMS saying SMART50 to the number 4466. The data flatrate will be activated.
  • This data option is valid for one month and will NOT be automatically prolonged. You will receive a notification SMS after 30 days. If you want to continue to use the data option you will have to send again a free SMS saying SMART50 to the number 4466 so that the data option will be activated for another month.
  • The promo pack is limited to traffic within Switzerland.
  • You will receive a notification as soon as one or serveral of the limits (500 MB, 50 SMS, 50 min.) is/are reached or when the 30 day-period is going to be finished. Alternatively you can call *147*# to find out your credit.
  • When exeeding the limit(s) before the end of the 30 day-period you can buy again a (data) option or a promo option for another 30 days.
  • You must have a prepraid credit of at least CHF 15.90 to activate this option.

W A R N I N G : If you exceed the monthly amount of data/sms/voice call minutes, there will be the usual rates as CHF 0.10 for every 20 KB (!) deducted from your prepaid credit. (You will be warned in advance by SMS when exceeding the monthly limit.)

Smart100: CHF 27.90 for 1 GB/month + 100 SMS + 100 min. Mobile (CH) + 100 min. fixed lines (CH)

  • Send a free SMS saying SMART100 to the number 4466. The data flatrate will be activated.
  • This data option is valid for one month and will NOT be automatically prolonged. You will receive a notification SMS after 30 days. If you want to continue to use the data option you will have to send again a free SMS saying SMART50 to the number 4466 so that the data option will be activated for another month.
  • The promo pack is limited to traffic within Switzerland.
  • You will receive a notification as soon as one or serveral of the limits (500 MB, 50 SMS, 50 min.) is/are reached or when the 30 day-period is going to be finished. Alternatively you can call *147*# to find out your credit.
  • When exeeding the limit(s) before the end of the 30 day-period you can buy again a (data) option or a promo option for another 30 days.
  • You must have a prepraid credit of at least CHF 27.90 to activate this option.

W A R N I N G : If you exceed the monthly amount of data/sms/voice call minutes, there will be the usual rates as CHF 0.10 for every 20 KB (!) deducted from your prepaid credit. (You will be warned in advance by SMS when exceeding the monthly limit.)

AvailabilityEdit

Starter packages in all ALDI-SUISSE stores ([1]). Initial set-up after registering can take up to 72 hours.

Refill prepaid credit:

  • Refill cards available in all ALDI-SUISSE stores (CHF 20.-- / CHF 30.-- / CHF 50.--)
  • Online by aldi account manager ([2])
  • SBB (Swiss Railways) ticket dispensers


SIM sizesEdit

mini-SIM (2FF)

Tethering

CoverageEdit

Also on Sunrise network - Warning as in Sunrise Section apply!

YalloEdit

Default prefix: 076

Yallo logo

Startup CostEdit

Starter package costs CHF 20.-- and includes prepaid credit of CHF 20.--- Bring your ID with you for initial registering.

https://www.yallo.ch/kp/dyn/web/pub/home/home.do

Data feature packsEdit

5 CHF for 150 MB / month automatically renewed after 30 days or when 150 Megabyte is reached. 10 CHF for 500 MB / month automatically renewed after 30 days or when 500 Megabyte is reached. 15 CHF for 1 GB / month automatically renewed after 30 days or when 1 Gigabyte is reached.

Very cheap for calling abroad, starting with 0.03 CHF for a minute/fixnet to neighbour countries and many other.

AvailabilityEdit

Can be bought at any Sunrise store or Swiss Post shop

SIM sizesEdit

Available in both micro SIM and standard size

TetheringEdit

CoverageEdit

Also on Sunrise network - Warning as in Sunrise Section apply!


Lebara mobileEdit

Default prefix: 076

8833891106846
LigiAdded by Ligi

The network service provider Sunrise took over Lebara in July 2013.Edit

Startup CostEdit

SIM-Card is free ( https://www.lebara.ch/gratis-sim )

Data feature packsEdit

CHF 4.90 / Month for 130MB ; CHF0.10/MB afterwards ( Surf Tarif )

CHF 14.90 / Month for 1GB full speed - 32Kbit/s afterwards ( Flat Tarif )


Availability

SIM sizesEdit

Tethering

CoverageEdit

It looks like this MVNO uses the Sunrise network (NOT Swisscom). Warning as in Sunrise Section apply!

SWISSCOM networkEdit

SwisscomEdit

Default prefix: 079

Swisscom logo
ChrisstuderAdded by Chrisstuder

See the report Traveling to Switzerland: How to get online?

Default data rateEdit

1 CHF / MB, maximum of 5 CHF / day, see link for details

Data feature packsEdit

There are two price plans to surf: Natel Easy Smart only CHF2 / day, see Natel Easy Smart

  • A day is the 24 hour period from midnight to 23:59 the same day
  • So surfing from your mobile from 2340 until 0020 the next day would incur a charge of CHF 4
  • First SIM card costs CHF 19.90 and has CHF 20 credit
  • Days you do not use the phone for data (or for voice or SMS), there is no charge
  • Unlimited data plan, with max. network speeds (Download: 1Mbit/s, Upload 0,5Mbit/s)

Or

For more network speed, check Natel Data Easy

  • Unlimited data plan, with max. network speeds (Download: 7,2Mbit/s, Upload 2Mbit/s)

For business day visits recommended: Natel Easy BeFree for CHF 4 per day with (Download: 7,2Mbit/s, Upload 2Mbit/s). CHF 3 for calls to all networks in Switzerland. Although a fair usage policy of 2 GB per month is listed the bandwith limitation does not seem to be executed. 

Fair use policyEdit

May reduce speed after 2 GB. More accurate numbers may be found on this german page: link.

AvailabilityEdit

Prepaid cards must be registered in a Swisscom sales outlet. Please take along a valid passport or identity card (a driving licence is not accepted) to register in person.

You can add credit to your SIM card at all major gas stations or using a credit card online at : http://www.swisscom.ch/res/mobile/tarife/aufladen/index.htm

Sim sizesEdit

Mini-SIM, Micro-SIM and Nano-SIM available. SIMs can be exchanged in the shop free of charge, for example to Nano-SIM (iPhone 5/5c/5s).

TetheringEdit

Yes.

CoverageEdit

Probably the best in coverage and quality. coverage map

Prepaid for "iPad"Edit

CHF 19,90 gives you a SIM + CHF 20,- credit. See: http://www.swisscom.ch/res/internet/mobile-unlimited/tarife-ipad/index.htm


NATEL® data easy flex
Option 100 MB (standard) Option 300 MB Option 2 GB
Who is it for? For occasional surfers For daily surfers For frequent surfers
Data volumes 100 MB / calendar day 300 MB / 30 days 2 GB / 30 days
Price 5.- 19.- 39.-

Special featureEdit

  • Useable with no extra roaming costs in Liechtenstein

M-Budget mobileEdit

Default prefix: 0774

M-budget-logo
ChrisstuderAdded by Chrisstuder

Startup CostEdit

SIM-Card costs 19.80 (includes only CHF 15.- prepaid credit!)

http://www.migros.ch/de/supermarkt/m-budget/m-budget-mobile-prepaid.html

Data feature packsEdit

CHF 0.28 / MB (max. CHF 5.00 / day)

currently no flat rate option pack available...

AvailabilityEdit

SIM sizesEdit

TetheringEdit

CoverageEdit

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