see ESN Zürich Office for information about our office.



Basic Swiss German

Warning: expressions do vary for different dialects. This is more to give a basic idea how swiss german is. Really learning it is not such an easy thing. To learn German and at a later stage Swiss german check out UZH Sprachzentrum. These are language classes at Uni or ETH for students.

For Starters

  • Hallo/Hoi = hello (informal)
  • Tschüss = bye (informal)
  • Grüezi = hello (formal)
  • Uf wiederluege = see you (formal)
  • Hoi zäme/ Tschüss zäme = hello/goodbye together (informal)
  • Dankä vilmol = thanks a lot
  • Wie häsch?/Wiä gaht's? = How are you? (informal)
  • Merci guät und dir? = I'm fine, thanks and you?
  • Schöns Wuchenend/ Schöne Abig/ Schöne Tag = Have a nice weekend/evening/day

A bit more advanced ;)

  • I het gern drü Stange = I'll get three beer on tap
  • Hey, kunnsch mit in usgang hüt obet? Jo e, aber i kum mit em Velo. = Hey mate, wanna go out tonight? Sure but i'll come by bike.
  • Chasch mer nöd s'Appezeller Fondue, de Chnobli und d' Fläsche Wiiswii us em Chuchichästli geh = Could you hand me the Appenzeller fondue, the garlic and the bottle of white wine out of the kitchen cupboard?
  • Chönd si mer säge wos do zu de nögschte Alphütte goht? = Could you tell me the way to the next alp hut?


Emergency numbers

  • Firefighters: 118
  • Police: 117
  • Ambulance: 144
  • Swiss poisons information centre (for intoxicated people/ animals): 145 (emergency) or 044 251 51 51
  • Swiss poisons information centre (for information only): 044 251 66 66
  • Rega: 1414 (alpine rescue (helicopter))