No Billag: Swiss People Like Taxes

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No Billag: Swiss People Like Taxes

Yesterday, the Swiss people were voting on several objects. The No-Billag initiative was one of them, as I mentioned earlier. This initiative wanted to remove the Billag tax. This tax supports the Swiss TV and Radio services. This tax is currently around 450 CHF. But the government will reduce the tax next year to 365 CHF. Unfortunately, the Swiss citizens strongly refused the initiative :(

I have to say that I am quite disappointed in my fellow citizens today. It seems like people like to pay inconsiderate taxes. Thus, we will still have to pay this tax. The only upside is that the tax will be less expensive next year. But that is still a tax I am paying for nothing I am using.

The Billag Tax

There is a BIG problem with this tax. There are two parts to the tax, one part for the radio and one part for the television. If you have a car, you need to pay the radio tax even if you never listen to the radio. I never listen to the radio. If you have a television or access to the internet, you need to pay the TV tax even if you never watch TV. Again, I never watch TV.

Moreover, this tax is only to pay for Swiss radio and TV services. So if you have a TV and only watch foreign TV network, you still have to pay the tax to finance Swiss TV networks. This makes no sense at all and the Swiss should have refused the initiative yesterday. Now, we need to pay this tax for a long time again for no reason.

To sum up, I will have to pay 365 CHF each year for Radio and TV services that I never use.

There is one slight possibility that I recently came across. When I first registered to this terrible tax, they told me that having internet was enough to need to pay the tax. But, looking at the official conditions, you need to have an account on an online TV service to pay the tax. Thus, I am going to ask them to remove me from the TV tax and pay only for the radio tax. This should at least save me some money. I am even inclined to remove my radio from my car to not pay the tax anymore. But that is a bit extreme.

Update: Unfortunately, it turns out that it not possible anymore to not pay the television tax. Now, everybody has to pay the damn Billag tax.

What do you think about Billag? What did you vote?

Mr. The Poor Swiss

Mr. The Poor Swiss is the author behind thepoorswiss.com. In 2017, he realized that he was falling into the trap of lifestyle inflation. He decided to cut on his expenses and increase his income. This blog is relating his story and findings. In 2019, he is saving more than 50% of his income. He made it a goal to reach Financial Independence. You can send Mr. The Poor Swiss a message here.