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Shopping: Are items price controlled centrally ?

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May 31, 2010 - 4:39 AM
When I visited Switzerland 3 years back. I brought a watch at Murren village - first sight I love it. Even though I my feeling tells me high up the mountain, things are naturally more expensive due to logistic etc.

Upon moving on to other city, in Montreaux I saw exactly the same watch retailing at the same price. Likewise for some other souvenirs I kept in sight.

Is my impression right that the merchandise items in Switzerland is more or less price control by some agency or similar ? So anywhere I buy the item, price is the same ? It is something I like to clear up since 3 years ago. Hope someone could help.

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May 31, 2010 - 1:43 PM
Hi MeltyMel and welcome to this forum! I'm not sure if prices are controlled that strictly throughout Switzerland. Specific brands and factories may make this choice. For example, I experienced myself that a Victorinox knife high upon the Pilatus mountain station near Lucerne had the same price as in other shops. I did find price differences though for the exact same Mondaine watch, so I don't think there's one rule applying to all cases.

The two places you mentioned (Mürren and Montreux) are popular tourist spots at which prices may be higher than elsewhere in the country. But then again, these touristy places are of course the locations where you're most likely to find this kind of merchandise.

Prices for products which aren't exactly the same, but comparable (from another brand or manufacturer) can differ a lot. Some supermarkets and larger warehouses offer merchandise items that look a lot like the ones in expensive boutiques, but in fact are cheaper. To give a silly example: mugs with the Swiss flag printed on them are for sale in tourist shops, but sometimes in supermarkets such as Migros and Coop as well - and they can be a lot cheaper there.

I know this is not a conclusive answer to your question, but I hope it clarifies things a bit.
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May 31, 2010 - 8:53 PM
Hi, thank you for the insight. It is indicative enough for me to grab something, well ... something. When buying, utlimately we still need to go by a little senses. Thanks a lot.


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