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The Good and Bad of Living in a Tax Haven

Zug - Living in a Tax Haven
Every now and then, an article pops up talking about Zug, the tax haven, and how wonderful it is. It is wonderful, but along with the positives there are negatives.

Positives about Living in Zug

Zug is very international so you can get away with not speaking German. I knew none when I arrived here, and I had enough stresses to deal with that it was nice not having a problem with the language. (There was still a problem with understanding signs and notices, but people helped us translate those.) Now, I am able to understand most German, but sometimes still require a little help from Google Translator...

There are a lot of very rich people here in Zug. Certain amenities and a certain quality of life are expected: It is very clean. The schools are good - international and public. There are a lot of activities for kids, including English speaking kids. There are tons of parks and kid friendly swimming areas to keep the little ones happy.

Zug - Living in a Tax Haven
About 10% of the land is a nature reserve. Zugerberg is a great place for everybody. It is a common place for hiking, cook outs, and paragliding. There are 622 km of hiking trails. Lake Zug, on the other hand, is popular for boating, sailing, and swimming.

Zug - Living in a Tax Haven
There are no less than 593 farms in the canton of Zug, so you can get a lot of local milk, fruits, and vegetables. Also, Zug is famous for its cherries.

Negatives about Living in Zug

Many people like how Zug is so small, but it also causes problems. Since it is such an attractive place for businesses, and the population is increasing, housing prices are increasing as well. The prices are getting so high that even some Swiss people are being pushed away.

Cranes are a constant on the Zug skyline because of all of the expansions. New businesses and new housing developments are being built all of the time:

Zug - Living in a Tax Haven
The housing market is really very competitive. I have a small place within walking distance to the big shopping area and only a five minute walk to the train station. I searched for an apartment every single day for months to find this place. Then, one morning, my apartment-to-be popped up and I called instantly. There was a viewing at 11 AM that morning and six other people had already inquired about the property. I was the lucky one.

Apart from real estate, the job market is very tough as well. I have been looking for work for a while, which has been very difficult. Due to its role in the global commodities industry, Zug attracts very skilled workers. This makes it even more difficult for me since I had just started my career and put it on hold to raise my son. Now, the fact that I have not worked for a few years is holding me back. A recruiter said that I could not get a position because I did not have recent office experience.

Another problem with Zug being a small town is that it is a small town. Some people like that, but sometimes I don’t like getting stuck chatting at the grocery store for a long time. Don’t get me wrong: I like people, but I also like my alone time. Maybe I am being grumpy, but sometimes I would rather just get back home to my couch and be a reclusive writer...

Perspectives on Living in Zug


An American expat, mom, people watcher, and "The Sound of Music" enthusiast who loves to "climb every mountain" in her spare time.


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