Shops in Zurich could be open for longer under new plans announced by the director of tourism. 

New Sunday shopping hours for Zurich considered_0.jpg
Zurich tourism boss considers new Sunday shopping hours. Photo by: Prisma by Dukas/Getty Images

Currently, only stores in petrol stations, at airports and railway stations are permitted to open on Sundays. According to reports from The Local ch, Martin Sturzenegger, CEO of Zurich Tourism, has indicated that a change to these restrictions could appeal to overseas visitors, as for many tourists, shopping is a key part of their holiday experience.

The change could also benefit the local retail sector, which is faced with competition from online shopping and from nearby Germany, where many residents cross the border to make their purchases. Sunday shopping is already available in the Swiss cities of Interlaken and Lucern.

Bahnhofstrasse, Zurich.jpg
Switzerland, Zurich, Bahnhofstrasse. Photo by: Prisma by Dukas/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

There are challenges to the ideas, however, with union boss Markus Bischoff suggesting that the current hours are liberal enough and only larger retailers would benefit from these changes. Feedback from locals has included concerns about commercialisation and reduced standards for retail workers, whereas others have flagged the possibility that new jobs might be created, and the greater flexibility for residents.

The debate continues. For now, though, shops in Zurich are generally open Mon-Fri 9am-8pm, and Sat 9am-5pm. For a retail hit on a Sunday, you’ll need to head to a transit centre.

Explore related stories

The Christmas markets at Nuremberg and Cologne are worth a visit.


Nuremburg vs Cologne: what's the best Christmas market in Germany?

Nov 17, 2023 • 6 min read