How Coronavirus Is Impacting Switzerland: Our Response


Like most countries in the world, Switzerland has been affected by Coronavirus. At the time of writing there were over 25,000 cases and 1,000 deaths.

Here’s a simple summary of what has been going on here.

Covid-19 in SwitzerlandAnti coronavirus measures have been in place since March 16 and will be extended to April 26. These measures include a 

  • recommendation to all citizens to stay at home, especially the sick and elderly. 
  • A ban of gatherings of more than 5 people and social distancing at 2meters between people.  
  • The economy has collapsed and the government has brought in measures to support the economy.
  • An extraordinary situation is in place, resulting in a ban on all private and public events and closing bars, restaurants, sports and cultural spaces; only business providing essential goods remain open. Schools are closed nationwide.

Due to this situation, the government can take over certain powers from the 26 Cantons to impose measures. This is a first for Switzerland.  On March 25 Switzerland closed its borders and therefore only Swiss Citizens, swiss residents, those entering the country for professional reasons, and those transiting through can enter the country. The Swiss army has been mobilised to control the borders.

In addition, for the first time the Swiss army is deploying a hospital battalion to support other civilian hospitals; it can welcome 200 patients. To cope with the expected increase in the number of sick people, many cantons have also mobilised civil defence volunteers. 

Major cancelled events have so far included the Geneva International Motor Show and the Baselworld watch fair. Art Basel, originally scheduled for June, has also postponed the fair until September.

All top-flight Swiss football and ice-hockey games have also been called off, as have numerous local social, political and cultural events. The ice hockey World Championship, scheduled to start in Switzerland from May 8, has also been cancelled.

Economics Minister Guy Parmelin has warned that averting a recession will be extremely difficult despite the measures taken. The government said it wanted to help the economy “quickly and unbureaucratically.”

The Swiss stock market has been heavily hit by the panic over the virus.

The tourism and event industries also fear heavy losses. For March and April, Swiss hotels are expecting turnover to fall by up to 90%

As you can imagine the consequences for Typically Swiss Tour have been very bad with several tours being cancelled and no bookings for the summer period. Bookings still exist for mid-summer and time will tell if these tours actually take place. The good news is my product could be one f the lucky ones as and when the crises is over as I give private tours which due to health and safety fears could be more in demand than say, large bus tours.

In any case, Typically Swiss Tours is doing all that it can do to work on marketing so that is ready for the inevitable recovery.

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