There are three major mobile phone carriers in Switzerland: Swisscom, Orange and Sunrise.
We've checked their rates on data plans (since we figure that's what you might be most interested in) and they are as follows (the following information is given with absolutely no warranty):
NATEL® easy liberty uno
- data: 1CHF/MB (up to a daily maximum of 5CHF) for data
- calls: to other networks: 0.70CHF/min
- calls: to Swisscom subscribers: 0.80CHF/hour
- SMS: 0.20CHF
NATEL® Easy BeFree
- data: 4CHF/day for data
- calls: 3CHF/day (Switzerland only)
- SMS: 1CHF/day (Switzerland only)
More information at swisscom.ch.
Orange Me PrePay
- data: 2CHF/day
- calls: 0.32CHF/min for calling (Switzerland)
- SMS: 0.10CHF per SMS (also to most European countries)
More information at orange.ch.
- data: 19CHF for 1GB, or 5CHF/day
- calls: call plans have recently changed, so we don't know the rates yet. Please check their website.
More information at sunrise.ch.
Where to buy
There are stores for all three providers at Zurich Airport (opening hours 8am-9pm all week including Sundays).
In Zurich Main Station there are a Sunrise and a Swisscom shop (also open Sundays) and an Orange store right in front of the station (closed Sundays).
For more information, check their websites.
Credit cards & cash
We advise that you always carry some cash (for transport tickets, food, drinks etc) on you, as many places do not accept credit cards or only accept them if the total is above a certain value (commonly 20-30CHF).
Many taxis also do not accept credit cards, so if you need a taxi and only have your credit card on you, ask the driver if he accepts them before you enter the car.