Zurich on a budget!

Zurich on a budget? You may think IMPOSSIBLE!

Zurich is known to be one of the most expensive cities in the world and as we all have witnessed it, ‘cheap’ is definitely not the word of the day! But, here is the good news – it is possible, especially in the summer when the city is booming with activities and incentives.

Here is our guide to a cheaper Zurich – please keep in mind that ‘cheap’ in Zurich is very relative and subjective! So don’t try to compare this guide to any other cities you know of 🙂

This guide is for everyone – Tourists and Locals alike.


City access

If you live here and haven’t had the chance to fully explore the city, or have friends visitingZurichCard is your answer. The card will give you temporary access to all buses, trains, trams and boats (2nd class).

The card will also give you free or reduced admission to most of the museums in the city, discounts at selected stores and restaurants and fun activities. For the complete price and discounts list, click here.

SBB deals

Once in a while, check in with SBB about their on-going or special deals.

Zurich on wheels

Explore the city on 2 wheels for free! Bikes can be picked up at specific locations with the presentation of a valid ID and a deposit of CHF20. For exact pick-up locations, click here.

Photo: Andrea Monica Hug
Styleride Zurich. Photo: Andrea Monica Hug

Free Concerts

Get your groove on every Wednesday evening until September 3rd at the Baeckeranlage Park.  For the list of events, click here.


I must admit that I still get shocked at prices when dining. A simple curry which would normally cost $10 in the States goes for CHF25-30 here!

But there are ways to eat for less.

Groupon/ Deindeal: great Apps to find on-going local deals on restaurants. I have seldom been disappointed by their offerings. (but there is always a surprise!)

Katzentisch a restaurant concierge platform in Zürich, with exclusive dining offers at the best restaurants in town. Every day, their restaurant partners upload offers onto their website, and as of 3pm you can book a table for 2 for that evening.  To make it even more enticing, the reservation comes with a little surprise 🙂

Photography @Katzentisch.ch

Tibits / Hiltl: Vegetarian – pay as you eat, by the weight.

Photography @Hiltl

Visit a local Backerei (bakery) or any of your favorites ones (ex: Babu’s, Backerei Conditorei Confiserie Pfyl, Globus), and indulge in their Zopf bread. Then go to any local market, get the filling that you like for your bread, take it all to the closest lake and enjoy a nice, relaxing picnic!

Photography @Meetup


Who doesn’t like to feel good and look good?  Unfortunately as most of us have experienced the painful way, beauty treatments are so expensive in Zurich that getting your hair or mani/pedi done is a real treat not to take for granted!

I have good news for you! I have found a couple of amazing salons which will not break your bank and make you feel like a million bucks 🙂


My all time favorite is Yasin Coiffeur. Turkish salon which understands color, and curly / thick hair. They give the best blow outs which last forever and their rates are ridiculously competitive! Some of them only speak their native language but not to worry, they will deliver! Having said that, I wouldn’t ask for complicated or modern hair cuts. I would stick to basic cuts, trims, color, highlights and blowdry. And they also do threading!

Mani / Pedi

Who wants to spend CHF200 on a mani/pedi? Definitely not I! I know you get a personalized service and customer satisfaction is guaranteed. But still…

I have found a place for quick and inexpensive services – Beauty Space.  I would say that their prices are almost comparable as the ones in the States. And as far as I know, the quality is up to part.

Photography @myfashionlife.com


In one of my previous posts, I shared my amazing find – the Dolder Grand Spa!

I am obsessed with spas, especially luxury ones, but sadly cannot afford to go very often because it can get expensive, especially at the Dolder Grand where everything is charged separately, including the Spa amenities (which are usually included with the treatment).

But again, when there is a will, there is a way and here it is! The Dolder Grand offers a Spa lunch break special from Monday to Friday, 11am to 2pm, for only CHF190! The price includes a treatment (massage or facial), the Spa and a delicious lunch.

How can you go wrong with this?



Featured image by Emirates Holiday.

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