Shopping

The high standard of living enjoyed by residents of the canton of Vaud helps to explain the presence of numerous stores selling world-famous, quality goods in the centre of the main towns, notably Lausanne, Vevey and Montreux. Among other things, you'll find most of the major international clothing labels, accessories, optical and electronic goods, books (in various languages) as well as the finest Swiss watches and jewellery. You can also buy local specialities (wines, cheeses, cold meats) and, of course, the legendary Swiss chocolate.

The shopping streets are pleasantly concentrated in downtown areas, in pedestrian areas in some cases, which makes it quicker and easier for you to find what you're looking for.

The rate of value-added tax (VAT), at 8.0%, is one of the lowest in Europe. Most stores accept credit cards and in many cases also payment in euros.

Without doubt, Lausanne is Vaud's shopping capital. You will find the greatest selection of stores of all types in the streets around Place St-François and Place de la Palud: boutiques, specialist outlets, department stores.

Markets are held in most of the towns and villages each Saturday, and sometimes on other days as well. They sell quality fresh products in a picturesque, easily accessible setting, as well as local crafts and bric-à-brac from flea markets.

More details on markets in and around Lausanne

The two main supermarket chains in Switzerland are Migros and Coop. They offer a wide range of everyday products and have numerous stores in all the canton's towns and cities.

Shop opening hours

Monday-Friday 8 or 8.45 am to 6.30 or 7 pm
Saturday  8 or 8.45 am to 6 pm
Sunday  Closed, with exceptions. Shops selling food and everyday goods are open in stations in main towns on Sundays.

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