France or Switzerland

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
davidsorensen32
Posts: 213
Joined: Wed Jul 24, 2013 9:57 am

France or Switzerland

Postby davidsorensen32 » Wed Dec 28, 2016 1:40 am

Folks, we're debating whether to visit France during next summer. Terrorism is of course the big worry given the recent spate of unfortunate incidents. DW is worried that we'd be caught in it or be affected somehow. Hence Switzerland is the fall back option. Anyone have any perspective to share ?

stlutz
Posts: 3572
Joined: Fri Jan 02, 2009 1:08 am

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby stlutz » Wed Dec 28, 2016 1:42 am

Switzerland will be more costly because of the currency.

User avatar
Phineas J. Whoopee
Posts: 5838
Joined: Sun Dec 18, 2011 6:18 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby Phineas J. Whoopee » Wed Dec 28, 2016 1:54 am

davidsorensen32 wrote:Folks, we're debating whether to visit France during next summer. Terrorism is of course the big worry given the recent spate of unfortunate incidents. DW is worried that we'd be caught in it or be affected somehow. Hence Switzerland is the fall back option. Anyone have any perspective to share ?

I understand the emotional reaction to recent terrorist events. Feelings are real feelings.

In point of fact it's almost certainly the case that ordinary transportation, in-country, poses a far higher risk, but that does not make any place more comfortable to visit.

Switzerland has long emphasized neutrality, but I don't think it's immune to terrorist attack. Neither is San Francisco. Nether is Denver. Neither is Yosemite, which brings its own share of risks.

Why do you want, as a couple, to go some place? If you can articulate that, maybe we can suggest more emotionally-comfortable destinations, even if the numerical physical risk is not lower.

That's all I could think of. Hope it helps somehow.

PJW

User avatar
Pajamas
Posts: 882
Joined: Sun Jun 03, 2012 6:32 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby Pajamas » Wed Dec 28, 2016 2:55 am

Seems like we have had a lot of terrorist events in the U.S. There are some countries I would not go to right now (Syria, for instance) but I wouldn't worry so much about France.

normaldude
Posts: 692
Joined: Tue Jan 27, 2009 4:41 am

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby normaldude » Wed Dec 28, 2016 3:05 am

According to the Economist.com's Big Mac index, Switzerland is literally the most expensive place in the world.

Big Mac Cost:

- Switzerland: $6.59

- USA: $5.04

- Euro Area: $4.21

http://www.economist.com/content/big-mac-index

Ari
Posts: 373
Joined: Sat May 23, 2015 6:59 am

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby Ari » Wed Dec 28, 2016 3:15 am

If you are from the US, it seems to me going to France would be safer than staying home.

Valuethinker
Posts: 30520
Joined: Fri May 11, 2007 11:07 am

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby Valuethinker » Wed Dec 28, 2016 5:28 am

davidsorensen32 wrote:Folks, we're debating whether to visit France during next summer. Terrorism is of course the big worry given the recent spate of unfortunate incidents. DW is worried that we'd be caught in it or be affected somehow. Hence Switzerland is the fall back option. Anyone have any perspective to share ?


1. France is on high security alert. That means you are safer-- more cops around, and empowered to act swiftly and violently

2. your chances of being struck by a car are still far, far higher- -especially in Paris where the driving is deranged ;-).

3. You are American. Someone could come into the movie theatre and shoot you, or an enraged ex employee could shoot you at work-- these things are much rarer in Europe, generally.

I would go to France, and not worry about it. If you are worried, I'd avoid big crowd things like Bastille Day (14th July).

tigermilk
Posts: 397
Joined: Thu Aug 15, 2013 9:32 am

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby tigermilk » Wed Dec 28, 2016 6:22 am

Depending on where you want to go in Switzerlan, you could stay in France (and/or Italy, Germany, and Austria) to take advantage of the lower costs and day trip into Switzerland. If the foal of going to Switzerland is the Alps, the Italian and French Alps are just as pleasant. On one work trip to Turin (which, btw, has great food and some fantastic museums, particularly the Egyptian Museum), my wife joined me and we had a wonderful day trip to Aosta in the Italian Alps.

kmox
Posts: 1
Joined: Wed Dec 28, 2016 7:12 am

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby kmox » Wed Dec 28, 2016 7:15 am

Vox has a vacation index, which I've found very useful: http://www.vox.com/a/vacation-index. It shows that France and Switzerland are about equal in terms of value.

rjbraun
Posts: 763
Joined: Sun Sep 09, 2012 8:22 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby rjbraun » Wed Dec 28, 2016 4:49 pm

Not clear to me why Switzerland would be immune to terrorism and such. To the extent these individuals, the terrorists, may be moving around various regions of Europe, Switzerland would certainly seem vulnerable as it is adjacent to countries that have experienced major terrorist activity to date.

In fact, there was an attack on individuals attending prayers at an Islamic Center in Zurich, Switzerland earlier this month. Yes, the article quotes a Swiss official disavowing a terrorist connection, but the shootings also point out that "random" violence can and does happen in different locations.

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/20/world ... .html?_r=0

As far as I know, Switzerland remains among the Schengen countries.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schengen_Agreement

amoose
Posts: 15
Joined: Sun Nov 18, 2007 5:16 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby amoose » Wed Dec 28, 2016 5:05 pm

Terrorism is of course the big worry


I would have absolutely no concerns about visiting France or Switzerland. One of the aims of terrorists is to spread fear (hence the name). They do this by orchestrating terrible events that hit the headlines. But in the grand scheme of things your chances of being involved in any terrorist activity are almost nil. I suspect people are just bad at judging risks, rather like fear of flying (due to fear of crashes, which are also incredibly unlikely).

However perhaps some data would help? I looked up the murder rate in France and the US and the rate is approximately 4 times higher in the US (according to http://www.nationmaster.com/country-inf ... ion-people). So the time you are in France you'll be four times safer than staying at home (at a very broad level). Switzerland has a lower murder rate, so perhaps that is safer for you.

I was in France earlier this year and the number of heavily armed police and army patrols was much higher than I've seen in the past. Whether that is reassuring or concerning is another question.

User avatar
JaneyLH
Posts: 212
Joined: Wed Oct 16, 2013 7:16 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby JaneyLH » Wed Dec 28, 2016 5:31 pm

Think outside the box... how about Hungary or Croatia? Beautiful countries, not as well known as tourist destinations and therefore probably less likely to be targeted by terrorists, great travel bargains. Check out Michelin-starred "Onyx" restaurant in Budapest. Had the most fabulous lunch of my life there for about $25. And that was before the dollar gained strength.

bcjb
Posts: 425
Joined: Wed Aug 21, 2013 7:01 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby bcjb » Wed Dec 28, 2016 5:56 pm

kmox wrote:Vox has a vacation index, which I've found very useful: http://www.vox.com/a/vacation-index. It shows that France and Switzerland are about equal in terms of value.


I don't think that's what it shows. This "vacation index" is relative to the (recent?) past. So, Switzerland and France have become better value at an equal rate. Since Switzerland started off more expensive than France, it still is more expensive now.

dowse
Posts: 209
Joined: Tue Sep 10, 2013 3:10 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby dowse » Wed Dec 28, 2016 6:05 pm

If an Alpine experience is what you're after, consider Chamonix, France. Very close to the Swiss border, but at lower prices. Close enough for day trips into Switzerland. Some phenomenal scenery, activities and dining.

Grt2bOutdoors
Posts: 15391
Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2007 8:20 pm
Location: New York

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby Grt2bOutdoors » Wed Dec 28, 2016 6:36 pm

normaldude wrote:According to the Economist.com's Big Mac index, Switzerland is literally the most expensive place in the world.

Big Mac Cost:

- Switzerland: $6.59

- USA: $5.04

- Euro Area: $4.21

http://www.economist.com/content/big-mac-index


How much is it for ketchup? Last time I was in a European McD's, the cost of a ketchup packet was 0.10 Euro. :shock: Ouch! Why does ketchup cost extra? :o
"Luck is not a strategy" Asking Portfolio Questions

User avatar
Pajamas
Posts: 882
Joined: Sun Jun 03, 2012 6:32 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby Pajamas » Wed Dec 28, 2016 7:26 pm

Valuethinker wrote:I would go to France, and not worry about it. If you are worried, I'd avoid big crowd things like Bastille Day (14th July).


I would recommend the opposite. :beer

July 14th in Paris is fun with the parade and fireworks, military displays, etc., plus the Belgian National Day is July 21st, a week later, with a similar celebration in Brussels (on a more intimate scale) that is lots of fun, too.

Brussels to Paris by train is fast and easy and flying in and out of Brussels plus taking the train round-trip to Paris may even be less expensive than flying in and out of Paris.

grandmacassie
Posts: 131
Joined: Mon Jul 14, 2014 8:50 am

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby grandmacassie » Wed Dec 28, 2016 8:34 pm

Switzerland is wicked expensive.

tj218
Posts: 348
Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2007 6:27 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby tj218 » Wed Dec 28, 2016 8:38 pm

Switzerland is expensive, but not as bad as Iceland, that place is really expensive! We found that stuff like trains and hotels seemed to cost more than in Austria, but food prices seemed to be less expensive than in neighboring Austria.

I have never been to France, but If you are looking for a cultural trip France is probably the better bet. If the trip is for relaxation and outdoors stuff I would go Switzerland. Hiking in the Bernese Oberland is probably one of my top 5 life experiences. The trails are all well maintained and posted, the views...my wife and I can't wait to go back.

On terrorism, any large gatherings of people could potentially be targets in this day & age. But statistically what is the likelihood? You're probably more likely to have a plane difficulty than that. I wouldn't let the fear of terrorism stop you from going to either France or Switzerland.

GerryL
Posts: 1167
Joined: Fri Sep 20, 2013 11:40 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby GerryL » Wed Dec 28, 2016 8:56 pm

I plan to go to France (again) in 2017.
Probably won't go to China -- because of smog.

obgraham
Posts: 769
Joined: Mon Jan 28, 2013 7:30 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby obgraham » Wed Dec 28, 2016 11:27 pm

Depends what you want to see, and whether the cost is a determinant. I think Switzerland is just lovely, mostly because they have stuff I want to see and do. The place is so efficient it makes you ill! France is more of a wild place to me, but they also have loads of stuff to see. You can't go wrong with either.

The worst choice of all: staying home out of fear.

protagonist
Posts: 4464
Joined: Sun Dec 26, 2010 12:47 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby protagonist » Thu Dec 29, 2016 12:08 am

davidsorensen32 wrote:Folks, we're debating whether to visit France during next summer. Terrorism is of course the big worry given the recent spate of unfortunate incidents. DW is worried that we'd be caught in it or be affected somehow. Hence Switzerland is the fall back option. Anyone have any perspective to share ?


France has 66 million people.

234 people in France have been killed by terrorists in the last 18 months.

That works out to an average of about 13 people per month.

If you are using the past as a predictor of the future (which you are: "given the recent spate of unfortunate incidents"). if you spend a month in France, your chances of getting killed in a terrorist attack are approximately 13/66,000,000 or about one in 5, 077,000.

Do you ride a bike? Because the odds of getting killed in a bicycle accident are more than 1000 times greater, so if you are afraid of terrorists in France you should definitely avoid cycling.

Are you afraid of flying? If you are afraid of terrorist attacks in France you shouldn't fly to Europe, period. Because the odds of getting killed in an "air and space transport accident" are about 500 times greater.

Are you afraid of dogs? Because the odds of getting killed by being bitten by a dog are almost 50 times greater, so if you are afraid of terrorists in France you should definitely shy away from dogs.

Go to France. Have fun.

Jeff Albertson
Posts: 300
Joined: Sat Apr 06, 2013 7:11 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby Jeff Albertson » Thu Dec 29, 2016 7:44 am

People are not very good in evaluating risk. from Bill Gate's blog: https://www.gatesnotes.com/Health/Most-Lethal-Animal-Mosquito-Week

Image

mmmodem
Posts: 1041
Joined: Thu May 20, 2010 1:22 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby mmmodem » Thu Dec 29, 2016 11:09 am

I've been to both. France, I've been to three time. Both are lovely countries worth visiting. France by sheer size has a lot more to explore so I've had to go multiple times to see more of it. Switzerland is maddeningly more expensive than France. And France is more expensive than Spain. Doesn't mean you don't go to those countries. There's no reason to convince DW to do anything. Just go to Switzerland now and France for a later trip when she feels it's safer to go.

Elena
Posts: 55
Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2016 5:42 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby Elena » Thu Dec 29, 2016 12:33 pm

Go to both! Set camp in France, and take a couple of days for an excursion to Switzerland. It is a pretty boring country (compared to culturally charged places like Spain and Italy), but you can get a taste of it.
Disclaimer: being from Spain, I am biased, LOL.
Have fun.

User avatar
JupiterJones
Posts: 2424
Joined: Tue Aug 24, 2010 3:25 pm
Location: Nashville, TN

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby JupiterJones » Thu Dec 29, 2016 2:32 pm

obgraham wrote:The worst choice of all: staying home out of fear.


This ^

If I, personally, were to choose between France and Switzerland, I'd go with Switzerland. But that doesn't have anything to do with safety... it's because I've been to both and would simply rather return to Switzerland out of the two. It's an astonishingly beautiful country, and the higher prices are worth it if only for that.

If you tell the average European that you're from the US and are concerned with the dangers of traveling there, they'll probably laugh at you. They see the news reports of the frequent violence that happens right here. They're probably more afraid of coming to the US than you are of going to France! :D

Here's a good recent blog post from Rick Steves on the subject: http://blog.ricksteves.com/blog/berlin- ... -violence/
Stay on target...

radiowave
Posts: 791
Joined: Thu Apr 30, 2015 5:01 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby radiowave » Thu Dec 29, 2016 2:44 pm

My wife and I had a wonderful trip to Zermatt Switzerland last June and then on to a conference in Geneva. Zermatt is a pedestrian oasis in the shadow of the mountains. Immaculately clean, hotel services were some of the best we've encountered. Hiking is world class (you can take the trams up the mountains then hike down). Take a look at TripAdvisor. We went mid June and it was still on the cool side. Yes it was a bit expensive but we had a great deal on a hotel about $170 USD/night and with the Matterhorn view right out our bedroom window. Glad we went, plenty of good memories :)

ACIwi
Posts: 2
Joined: Thu Dec 29, 2016 4:40 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby ACIwi » Thu Dec 29, 2016 4:56 pm

I recently visited both in October 2016 - and to be honest - Switzerland is a little more pricey but WORTH IT.

We were highly disappointed in Paris, France. [OT comments removed by admin LadyGeek]

We stayed in Vevey Switzerland and traveled around the little towns and Swiss Alps around there. It was beautiful. There was also a ferry you could take across the water to Yvoire (a little midevial town in France) and that was a cool experience. Other than food costs - no compaints on Switzerland.

Also in Paris they had tons of military on guard on all the streets everyone. Security is definitely hightened there.

User avatar
VictoriaF
Posts: 16204
Joined: Tue Feb 27, 2007 7:27 am
Location: Black Swan Lake

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby VictoriaF » Tue Jan 10, 2017 6:17 pm

I am planning some travel in the summer of 2017. It's cheaper to get a round trip from DC to Paris, a round trip from Paris to Barcelona, and a night at Charles de Gaulle--than to get a round trip from DC to Barcelona. I suspect that this discrepancy is based on irrational fear and will take advantage of it by spending a few days in France.

Victoria
WINNER of the 2015 Boglehead Contest. | Every joke has a bit of a joke. ... The rest is the truth. (Marat F)

adamthesmythe
Posts: 1185
Joined: Mon Sep 22, 2014 4:47 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby adamthesmythe » Tue Jan 10, 2017 11:15 pm

In the past I have been a regular summer visitor to the Alps. Switzerland is very nice- but it is especially expensive these days. The western part of Austria is similar (although with mountains not quite as high) and is quite a bargain now.

I like the German-speaking side of the Alps more than the French- mainly because the hotel breakfasts are better.

renue74
Posts: 605
Joined: Tue Apr 07, 2015 7:24 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby renue74 » Tue Jan 10, 2017 11:45 pm

France!

I went to Pontresina, Switzerland the summer of 2015 after a 2 week vacation in Italy. I took a scenic train up to Pontresina just to stay the weekend.

When I got off the train, I got lunch...a hamburger, fries and a coke....which cost me $25 in a regular, run of the mill small restaurant. Nothing fancy.

The mountains and glaciers are beautiful...and If you are really interested, I would suggest France and do day trips into Switzerland.

Cruise
Posts: 167
Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2016 7:17 pm

Austria

Postby Cruise » Wed Jan 11, 2017 1:59 am

OP: If between France and Switzerland, Switzerland wins for incredible beauty. A close second has not been mentioned: Western Austria. Like Switzerland, but much less expensive.

traveler90
Posts: 201
Joined: Wed Nov 13, 2013 3:46 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby traveler90 » Wed Jan 11, 2017 2:02 am

A major city in the US is significantly more dangerous than anywhere in France.

BrianMc
Posts: 95
Joined: Sat Feb 07, 2009 9:03 am

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby BrianMc » Wed Jan 11, 2017 2:17 am

normaldude wrote:According to the Economist.com's Big Mac index, Switzerland is literally the most expensive place in the world.

Big Mac Cost:

- Switzerland: $6.59

- USA: $5.04

- Euro Area: $4.21

http://www.economist.com/content/big-mac-index


The Economist folks must have bought their Big Macs in Alaska or Hawaii! :sharebeer :sharebeer

mac808
Posts: 341
Joined: Mon Sep 19, 2011 8:45 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby mac808 » Wed Jan 11, 2017 2:18 am

I've visited Paris 1-2 times a year (usually for business) for the past decade. The most recent visit was the first time I've ever felt uncomfortable / unsafe (and I'm a big dude). Not in all areas, but definitely some that see a lot of tourists. The migrant situation is causing them a lot of problems I think. Not so much terrorism or violent crime but petty crime and vandalism seem to have shot through the roof. It has a grungier feel to it now than it used to. Several local acquaintances told me to avoid public transportation after dark. I know it sounds crazy but that was the feedback. Between the two I would choose Switzerland. Greece is another beautiful country that I absolutely love but it sounds like a bit of a mess and I'm not sure what the reality on the ground is (if anybody has been recently, it would be interesting to hear your experiences).

User avatar
JupiterJones
Posts: 2424
Joined: Tue Aug 24, 2010 3:25 pm
Location: Nashville, TN

Re: Austria

Postby JupiterJones » Wed Jan 11, 2017 11:38 am

Cruise wrote:OP: If between France and Switzerland, Switzerland wins for incredible beauty. A close second has not been mentioned: Western Austria. Like Switzerland, but much less expensive.


Or, as long as we're tossing off less-expensive alternatives, there's Western Slovenia.

It's no Switzerland, but still... You get beautiful Alps, wonderful lakes (most notably this one), quaint countrysides, good local wine, and a surprisingly charming capital city.

Plus the added bonuses of fewer crowds, a small stretch of Adriatic coastline, and even some world-class caves.
Stay on target...

Rupert
Posts: 1716
Joined: Fri Aug 17, 2012 12:01 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby Rupert » Wed Jan 11, 2017 1:02 pm

If your wife is afraid, then you shouldn't go. It doesn't really matter if her fear is rational or not; if she feels it, she feels it. And there are many other places to go in the world. But would she feel better if you avoided, say, Paris and stuck to moral rural areas in France? Alsace, for example, is lovely and borders both Switzerland and Germany.

sunny_socal
Posts: 712
Joined: Tue Mar 24, 2015 4:22 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby sunny_socal » Thu Jan 12, 2017 1:30 am

Rupert wrote:If your wife is afraid, then you shouldn't go. It doesn't really matter if her fear is rational or not; if she feels it, she feels it. And there are many other places to go in the world. But would she feel better if you avoided, say, Paris and stuck to moral rural areas in France? Alsace, for example, is lovely and borders both Switzerland and Germany.


It's an irrational fear. Get a couple cocktails at the airport lounge before you depart and things will be much better :beer

Go on your trip and enjoy it OP! :)

expat
Posts: 720
Joined: Mon Mar 10, 2008 9:07 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby expat » Thu Jan 12, 2017 1:54 am

traveler90 wrote:A major city in the US is significantly more dangerous than anywhere in France.


You aren't looking hard enough.

Valuethinker
Posts: 30520
Joined: Fri May 11, 2007 11:07 am

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby Valuethinker » Thu Jan 12, 2017 5:11 am

expat wrote:
traveler90 wrote:A major city in the US is significantly more dangerous than anywhere in France.


You aren't looking hard enough.


There's bad places in every country.

A bains-lieues though (sp?) i.e. a relatively disconnected immigrant suburb of a major French city is not usually desperate. Yes there may be street crime (plenty of) and the tension can be palpable. But even there, most people are law abiding and trying to get on with the business of life. You see people on the streets.

American slums, though, are scary. In the sense of the desolation, and the reported crimes of violence. Really Detroit, Buffalo and Washington DC are the only places I have been through such "slum" areas but they were all pretty freaky (back in the 80s for NE Washington). When I go to NYC I tend to stick to Manhattan and the yuppie parts of Brooklyn, so of course I don't see East Brooklyn etc. nor the Bronx.

As a tourist in America, you'd have no reason to go to those slums, nor would you in France.

Certainly in a statistical sense, AFAIK every American city of say 1m people or more has a higher murder rate than any French city. Which isn't to say that there are not places in France you should not go.

Valuethinker
Posts: 30520
Joined: Fri May 11, 2007 11:07 am

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby Valuethinker » Thu Jan 12, 2017 5:16 am

BrianMc wrote:
normaldude wrote:According to the Economist.com's Big Mac index, Switzerland is literally the most expensive place in the world.

Big Mac Cost:

- Switzerland: $6.59

- USA: $5.04

- Euro Area: $4.21

http://www.economist.com/content/big-mac-index


The Economist folks must have bought their Big Macs in Alaska or Hawaii! :sharebeer :sharebeer


I am guessing Washington DC or Manhattan?

Valuethinker
Posts: 30520
Joined: Fri May 11, 2007 11:07 am

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby Valuethinker » Thu Jan 12, 2017 5:21 am

Rupert wrote:If your wife is afraid, then you shouldn't go. It doesn't really matter if her fear is rational or not; if she feels it, she feels it. And there are many other places to go in the world. But would she feel better if you avoided, say, Paris and stuck to moral rural areas in France? Alsace, for example, is lovely and borders both Switzerland and Germany.


Fear? Might be rational. Fear of terrorism (as a reason not to go to Paris) is irrational.

It probably is even in Istanbul although we have decided not to do Istanbul this year. And there's certainly political trouble in Istanbul as well, being sprayed in the face with tear gas ain't fun. But, I imagine, as in all such cities, where that takes place is localized.

BTW to be clear about my feelings of terrorism, London *will* be hit. Was on 7/7/05 w 56 dead-- I used to walk by the memorial to the 13 killed when the bomber detonated himself on the top deck of a No 30 bus- -did that walk every day for several years... oh and my Tube station got blown up with 30+ dead. And there have been some serious abortive attacks (car bombs outside West End nightclubs which failed to go off etc.).

This doesn't put me off living in London, nor in feeling quite safe there. My biggest danger here is getting run down by a car. I say that despite a murder taking place within 150' of my front doorstep.

EDIT: I should add. That cafe which got shot up the night of Baltlacan? (sp) One of my close friends, that was her local cafe. She hasn't moved.

Parisians, Londoners, Berliners, we are not running. Any more than New Yorkers did post 9-11. The threat of nuclear terrorism is very real (ask Warren Buffett, Sam Nunn, William Perry and the NTI). But even in a bad terrorism incident (barring that), most of us will live. Enough of us to weep for the dead, give them a decent burial, and move on.

My father survived the Blitz in London. And a V1 buzz bomb (early cruise missile) attack at Paddington Station.

New York, Paris, London, Berlin. These are all great cities. Great cities survive it all: war, plague, terror, riot. Their citizens bury the dead, bind up the wounded, and carry on.

"Aujourd'hui nous sommes tous Americains" ("Today we are all Americans" - Le Monde, week of 11th September 2001).

Rupert
Posts: 1716
Joined: Fri Aug 17, 2012 12:01 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby Rupert » Fri Jan 13, 2017 10:12 am

Valuethinker wrote:
Rupert wrote:If your wife is afraid, then you shouldn't go. It doesn't really matter if her fear is rational or not; if she feels it, she feels it. And there are many other places to go in the world. But would she feel better if you avoided, say, Paris and stuck to moral rural areas in France? Alsace, for example, is lovely and borders both Switzerland and Germany.


Fear? Might be rational. Fear of terrorism (as a reason not to go to Paris) is irrational.

It probably is even in Istanbul although we have decided not to do Istanbul this year. And there's certainly political trouble in Istanbul as well, being sprayed in the face with tear gas ain't fun. But, I imagine, as in all such cities, where that takes place is localized.

BTW to be clear about my feelings of terrorism, London *will* be hit. Was on 7/7/05 w 56 dead-- I used to walk by the memorial to the 13 killed when the bomber detonated himself on the top deck of a No 30 bus- -did that walk every day for several years... oh and my Tube station got blown up with 30+ dead. And there have been some serious abortive attacks (car bombs outside West End nightclubs which failed to go off etc.).

This doesn't put me off living in London, nor in feeling quite safe there. My biggest danger here is getting run down by a car. I say that despite a murder taking place within 150' of my front doorstep.

EDIT: I should add. That cafe which got shot up the night of Baltlacan? (sp) One of my close friends, that was her local cafe. She hasn't moved.

Parisians, Londoners, Berliners, we are not running. Any more than New Yorkers did post 9-11. The threat of nuclear terrorism is very real (ask Warren Buffett, Sam Nunn, William Perry and the NTI). But even in a bad terrorism incident (barring that), most of us will live. Enough of us to weep for the dead, give them a decent burial, and move on.

My father survived the Blitz in London. And a V1 buzz bomb (early cruise missile) attack at Paddington Station.

New York, Paris, London, Berlin. These are all great cities. Great cities survive it all: war, plague, terror, riot. Their citizens bury the dead, bind up the wounded, and carry on.

"Aujourd'hui nous sommes tous Americains" ("Today we are all Americans" - Le Monde, week of 11th September 2001).


I agree that fear of terrorism is irrational. But choosing to avoid a potential vacation destination as a result of your spouse's irrational fear is a completely different thing than choosing to quit your job, uproot your family, and move from your home as a result of an irrational fear. Vacations are supposed to make you happy. Why would you choose a destination where it's likely your spouse will not feel secure and will thus be unhappy? Comparing this decision to a decision to leave London during the Blitz or leave New York after 9/11 is a bit over the top, I think.

User avatar
JupiterJones
Posts: 2424
Joined: Tue Aug 24, 2010 3:25 pm
Location: Nashville, TN

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby JupiterJones » Tue Jan 17, 2017 10:33 am

Rupert wrote:If your wife is afraid, then you shouldn't go. It doesn't really matter if her fear is rational or not; if she feels it, she feels it.


If she feels it, it's a current fear, from where she sits now. It's easy to slip into the trap of fear when it comes to things that are unknown. You only have your vivid, cable-news-fueled imagination to lean on.

If she were to actually go to Paris, I bet she's see how silly that fear is. The sights, the lights, the people... an entire panorama of "business as usual" life going on in front of her. She'd probably have way to much fun to worry about terrorism.

Action cures fear. Inaction feeds it. And two-million-plus Parisians going on about their lives, unafraid, can set a profound example.
Stay on target...

an_asker
Posts: 1382
Joined: Thu Jun 27, 2013 2:15 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby an_asker » Tue Jan 17, 2017 11:06 am

stlutz wrote:Switzerland will be more costly because of the currency.

Huh??!!

We went in summer 2015 when the Swiss Franc was going for $1.08. It is now at $0.98. If currency is the only reason, NOW is the time to visit Switzerland*!

* - we visited Paris when the Euro was $1.26 (it is now $1.05). That said, I would personally still vote for Switzerland over France (though Paris is really nice as well!)

Dick D
Posts: 113
Joined: Sat Jun 16, 2007 8:55 am
Location: Connecticut

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby Dick D » Tue Jan 17, 2017 1:34 pm

We spend two weeks in France this summer. Some of our friends wondered how we could do such a thing with all the talk of terrorism. I told our friends that they need to be more concerned about being shoot in the US than in Europe. We felt perfectly the entire time that we were in France.

Kingtriton10
Posts: 55
Joined: Mon Nov 07, 2016 5:52 pm

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby Kingtriton10 » Tue Jan 17, 2017 2:03 pm

Personally you wouldn't catch me going anywhere near France, especially into any touristy locations. Europe has never appealed to me though, so take it for what its worth... My parents have multiple friends living in France and they're all looking to relocate because of the uptick in crime (Don't shoot the messenger here. This was their words not mine). My parent's weren't impressed whenever they went either. They loved Switzerland and the culture, but pretty much just go to areas in Italy and Germany now. Me... Im more of a Caribbean kinda guy :D

SouthernCPA
Posts: 582
Joined: Wed Sep 23, 2015 10:20 am

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby SouthernCPA » Tue Jan 17, 2017 3:21 pm

I'd go to whichever one you want to see more.

Regarding the terrorism, I felt just as safe in France as I do anywhere. I'm more likely to get shot and killed going to a routine New Orleans Saints game than I am of being impacted directly by terrorism.

We've had terrorist attacks in the US, but it hasn't stopped us from living here, why would Europe be any different? These lone wolf types that are popular now can show up anywhere, so for me I'm going to just keep living my life how I was before. If I don't, then the terrorists won.

toto238
Posts: 1843
Joined: Wed Feb 05, 2014 2:39 am

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby toto238 » Tue Jan 17, 2017 3:40 pm

davidsorensen32 wrote:Folks, we're debating whether to visit France during next summer. Terrorism is of course the big worry given the recent spate of unfortunate incidents. DW is worried that we'd be caught in it or be affected somehow. Hence Switzerland is the fall back option. Anyone have any perspective to share ?


I'm not sure what the best thing is about Switzerland, but their flag is a big plus.

User avatar
VictoriaF
Posts: 16204
Joined: Tue Feb 27, 2007 7:27 am
Location: Black Swan Lake

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby VictoriaF » Tue Jan 17, 2017 7:24 pm

VictoriaF wrote:I am planning some travel in the summer of 2017. It's cheaper to get a round trip from DC to Paris, a round trip from Paris to Barcelona, and a night at Charles de Gaulle--than to get a round trip from DC to Barcelona. I suspect that this discrepancy is based on irrational fear and will take advantage of it by spending a few days in France.

Victoria


I have just booked round-trip flights IAD-CDG for $663. This is very inexpensive for summer travel and I chose to pay cash instead of frequent-flyer points. I'll visit some friends in the North of France before going to Barcelona. Europe is wonderful. Life is marvelous.

Victoria
WINNER of the 2015 Boglehead Contest. | Every joke has a bit of a joke. ... The rest is the truth. (Marat F)

User avatar
JupiterJones
Posts: 2424
Joined: Tue Aug 24, 2010 3:25 pm
Location: Nashville, TN

Re: France or Switzerland

Postby JupiterJones » Wed Jan 18, 2017 9:53 am

toto238 wrote:I'm not sure what the best thing is about Switzerland, but their flag is a big plus.


I see what you did there... :sharebeer
Stay on target...


Return to “Personal Consumer Issues”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: heikejohn1, jonezjoty, MJM, user5027 and 28 guests