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Communications (Telephone, Internet, TV, Post)

Zurich - Communications (Telephone, Internet, TV, Post)


Telecommunications providers in Switzerland offer a range of services – some companies offer bundled internet and fixed telephone line services, while others offer cable TV and mobile phone subscriptions, and so on. Swisscom offers special packages for cable TV, internet, fixed and mobile phone subscriptions. Call 0800 800 800 (toll-free) for fixed telephone line, internet and Bluewin TV. Call 0800 55 64 64 for mobile services. Cablecom. Cablecom offers internet, telephony – internet-based telephone calls, and cable TV services. Call toll-free at 0800 66 08 00 for German-speaking assistance to subscribe to Cablecom's internet, phone and Cable TV services. There are many foreign language programs from international programs such as BBC, CNN and CNBC, along with children and sports channels. Contact numbers for French and Italian speaking operators are available on the website. Orange offers mobile and internet (including wireless) subscription services. Call customer care at 0800 700 700. Sunrise is another mobile phone and internet service provider. To compare prices and packages, you may wish to use the www.comparis.ch website.


Television

The PAL system is used for televisions in Switzerland. Switzerland's television broadcasters are beginning to switch from analog to digital broadcasting – every home television will need to be digital-ready or have a set-up box to receive digital broadcasting.

Televisions or radios brought into Switzerland from your home country will be subject to authorization by the local authorities, and usually there is a fee to be paid each month.

There are four local channels in Zurich: Swiss-German SF-DS and SF2, Swiss French TSR and Swiss Italian TSI. There are also private local channels (up to 40 channels) available via a cable company. Additional fees apply. Regional Television programs via cable include programs from Australia, the UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Portugal and the US.

Some channels broadcast shows in two languages – if your TV has a dual sound stereo system, it is possible for you to switch languages.


Telephones

The area code for Zurich is 044 or 043 (in combination with the country code just 44 or 43). Take note that some information services numbers are chargeable.

To set up a new telephone line, you will need to pay a deposit fee and have the necessary documents (e.g. residence permit). Call Swisscom for more details on setting up a new telephone line. Swisscom is the only operator that can set up fixed telephone lines. For actual telephone usage, you are free to choose other service providers. Every telephone is capable of making IDD (international dial direct) calls.


Postal services

Swiss Post (postal services) is the national postal company for all postal services. The post office network is dense throughout Zurich. The main post office is at Sihlpost near the Main Station (Kasernenstrasse 95/97), and its opening hours are Mondays through Fridays, 630am to 1030pm, 630am to 8pm on Saturdays and 10am to 1030pm on Sundays. (Tel: 0848 84 84 42). There are post offices located conveniently throughout Zurich. The general opening hours of all other post offices are Mondays through Fridays 730am to 6pm and from 730am to 11am on Saturdays. Take note that the smaller post offices may close during lunchtime, or have different operating hours. Swiss Post handles a wide range of delivery and financial services.

Many bills are paid by postal payment slips (Elinzahlungsschein). You can choose to pay bills directly at the counter of a post office, or arrange for a payment order with your bank or through your own postal account that you can open at any post office. Payment by check is not commonly used in Switzerland. For more information about Swiss Post's financial or postal services, visit their website at www.swisspost.ch.


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