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Switzerland: Student Accommodation - Must read

Student accommodation in Switzerland

Get all the information you need on the best options for housing and accommodation in Switzerland for international students.

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Ranked as one of the happiest countries in the world, you’d think that housing in Switzerland is of a real high quality, right? Guess what? You’re not wrong. The country has a wide range of options available to international students, and should provide you with some kind of online accommodation service to guide you through the university owned options.


Renting university accommodation:

Most universities in Switzerland own some form of student accommodation, which they rent out to their students for significantly cheaper than what the average 1 bedroom flat costs throughout the country. The usual price for a 1 bedroom flat outside of city centres in Switzerland is 1100 CHF per month, in the city centre it’s 1500 CHF a month and in student accommodation the average is somewhere between 500-800 CHF a month. Not hard to see which the cheapest option is, then! These are only rough prices though, so we would urge you to go direct to your university to get exact figures regarding rent.


The institution you are applying to should have a student accommodation service, such as WoVe, which helps provide a living space for those in education in the North-West of Switzerland.


Usually, your swiss student accommodation will provide you with one room in an apartment filled with other students – a great chance to make lifelong friends on your study abroad adventure! You’ll find that most people will be in the same situation as you, looking to meet as many new people as possible. As a result, the first few weeks of term in your student housing can be a very exciting prospect!


If you are looking to bring a family with you when you study, certain universities can help provide private apartments for you. However, this is not common so you will have to check with your university as soon as possible to see if they can help.


Switzerland is rated one of the highest for living standards among European countries, and this can be reflected in a lot of the more modern student accommodation. However, some of the older buildings can be a bit dated. So, if you want friends and family to visit you and be super jealous of your new digs, you have to search long and hard, and be prepared to apply as early as possible.



The options are out there, you just have to find them. If you’re struggling, you may have to look at organising your own accommodation privately.


Renting private accommodation:

If you don’t feel like going into university accommodation, don’t fear! A lot of students in Switzerland decide to go their own way and search for privately run accommodation, or share a flat. A lot of international students will be looking for flatmates, just like you! If you are on the lookout for some flatmates, check out Erasmusu.


Sharing a flat can be a very good option if you already have friends who you know are going to the same university as you, or you are willing to put the time in to find flatmates with a similar social lifestyle to you.


In a shared flat, you often get a lot more ‘living space’ in comparison to living alone, such as a bigger living room and kitchen area. So, get out there and find some friends, to make the most of your study abroad experience!


Each person living in the flat pays for their bedroom, and then you all share the other costs of the house such as bills and internet access. Be aware that some places may include these things in their prices, but some may not – which means you might have to be searching for an internet and TV deal after you sign your contract. For more tips on renting off-campus accommodation, have a look at our guide.


If this gets you excited about studying in Switzerland, get searching for your dream course!



Renting privately allows you to have a bit more freedom in terms of where you live in Switzerland too. If you want to be surrounded by students, then choose the areas closer to university. If you want to be away from the hustle and bustle, then maybe move a bit further from the city centre.


If you look in the right place, renting privately in Switzerland can be actually be a very cheap option as well. Although that will only be the case if you are willing to share your living areas with a lot of people. Even then, it is very rare for it to be cheaper than the university accommodation mentioned above.



Homestays are also an option in Switzerland, with some students considering it a good way to be integrated in Swiss culture and to meet local people. If you live with a Swiss family, you may be more likely to get advice on things to do, it can be very cheap, and it could help improve your language skills.


Tips for getting the best accommodation:

  • Apply early. We really cannot stress how important this is! The earlier you start looking for your accommodation, the more options you will have. Getting a good housing arrangement can really shape your study abroad experience, so don’t leave it until the last minute!
  • Take your time. It is important to start looking early, but that doesn’t mean you sign off on the first house you like the look of! Play the field, make sure you know everything you need to about your property before you sign that contract.
  • Be aware of sending money overseas. Although the idea of moving into your new place as soon as you get off the plane is great, it is worth meeting your landlord first before moving in to the accommodation. Only send money to accredited agents or companies, or landlords who have official bank accounts and have provided a legitimate legal contract that will hold up in court.


Now that you’re fully knowledgeable on student housing in Switzerland, start looking for universities there!