How does a consultant with a net income of CHF8,195 live? 

From time to time we ask people in Switzerland to keep a diary of their expenses over a week. The aim is to give our readers abroad an idea of wages, expenses and living costs in Switzerland. Today’s money diary is from a consultant with a net income of CHF8,195 ($8,334.75). 

This content was published on December 23, 2019 - 11:00

Net monthly income

As a consultant with an MBA working almost full-time (90%): about CHF8,195. The salary includes CHF50 towards mobile phone bills. In addition, the company funds my half-fare subscription for public transport. 

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Kai Reusser /


I work for a service company. It is a small firm with 12 staff and we work for different client companies. We always meet on Mondays in our office for internal discussions about customers, recruitment and internal projects. This week I report on a further education project  and after that there is risotto for lunch with mushrooms picked by one of our team colleagues. In the afternoon I have to go and visit a client. As long as there is no snow on the streets, I take the motorbike for city trips. After my client workshop I return home quickly, fetch my sports bag and go to the gym for an hour-long fitness class. Then I go back to the office. For dinner there is leftovers from the weekend – I eat them at my desk in the office. After about two hours, I go home for the day. 

Expenses: CHF20 (sport) 


Today I am picked up at home by car and taken directly to the customer. In the afternoon I am supporting a team colleague in a workshop. As I have to prepare a few things, I go back to the office shortly before lunchtime by bus. For lunch, there are the remains of a couscous salad from the weekend. The workshop ends a little bit earlier than expected, which means I have time to buy coffee capsules before I meet friends for dinner. 

Expenses: CHF2.80 (public transport), CHF96.30 (dinner), CHF31.20 (coffee) 


On Wednesday, I manage for the first time in a long time to get to a fitness class that starts at 6.30 a.m. After that I take the motorbike to visit a customer. As I haven’t had breakfast, I have a milky coffee and a fruit roll from the canteen. At lunchtime I eat in the canteen with a couple of work colleagues. In the course of the afternoon, I go to back to the office to prepare for a workshop on Friday. There is also a team event today. We go and cook together at Kitcheria (a Migros supermarket cooking event). 

Expenses: CHF20 (sport), CHF21.50 (food and drink) 


Thursday is World Usability Day in Rapperswil. I take the train at 7.30 a.m. to Lake Zurich. Networking and lectures are the core of this event. The day is financed by my company because it counts as further education. I spend the evening at home, after a short shopping trip to Migros. 

Expenses: CHF35.90 (shopping) 


On Fridays I am usually at the head office. Today I am preparing client workshops. After three or four hours’ preparation I go to the gym at lunchtime. For lunch, there are leftovers from the night before. Two customers visit in the afternoon to discuss a workshop series. In the evening I go out with a friend to eat venison.  

Expenses: CHF10 (tip at dinner, I was treated to the meal) 

Saturday & Sunday

Today is the annual musical evening in my home village. On my way to eastern Switzerland, I stop off to see my brother, as I have purchased two advent calendars for the twins. I am travelling by train. As I planned the trip a while ago, I got a cheap ticket. After I leave my brother’s I start feeling unwell, so I decide halfway there to go back to Bern instead of travelling home. I buy something to eat on the way back. I spend the rest of the weekend at home to get over the flu.

On the financial side, there are three expenses on Sunday. CHF159 for the contents of a missing parcel, two cheap tickets to the airport for an upcoming holiday, and a train ticket to eastern Switzerland for the following weekend.  

Expenses: CHF5.90 (advent calendars), CHF77.10 (public transport), CHF14.75 (shopping), CHF159 (lost package) 

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