Import joys

O beloved affordable shoes, where art thou?

Shopping in Switzerland is not as much fun as one might think. For one thing, my favorite shoe brands here cost two to three times as much as they do in North America. A pair of Clarks loafers runs over $180, my treasured Merrell hikers are in the same range and higher.

No problem, I thought.  I’ll just order on-line.

This has not worked out as happily as I had hoped. While I scored the lovely North American prices, shipping costs tipped near the $40 mark, plus a few extra dollars for the import fees. Ouch. But it was still cheaper than buying locally.

That was until Switzerland’s diligent import bureaucracy caught up with me and plastered another import fee in the neighbourhood of 32 to 45 Swiss Francs on to my cute little purchases.

I am not going to reveal how expensive this has become, because just saying it produces a scorching sensation in my skull. This has not actually helped the Swiss import bureacracy as much as they would like, because I will just stop buying shoes until I find a more fiscal-friendly store, and very likely that will only occur when I’m back in Canada.

Nevertheless, I still love Switzerland. It has so many chocolateries, how could I not?

In other retail news: Here’s a photo of a typical “sale” price sticker in Swiss stores that reads “top price.” I’m sure they mean “best price,” but the first thing our North American brains read is that the store is charging the top/ highest price anywhere. Maybe that is what they mean. After all, this is Switzerland.

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