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ALaRI Alumni Web-Site

Student life

Students Location
This section includes useful information for international students upon arrival in Lugano. It is an attempt to introduce you to the city of Lugano and its surroundings and assist you with the transition from your home country to Switzerland.


Switzerland is a country located in Central Europe. Please have a look at the following webpages to get a better idea of where Switzerland is located and what it is like to live in Switzerland: Lonely Planet Switzerland and

Ticino and Lugano

Ticino is one of the twenty-six cantons belonging to the Swiss Confederation. The University of Lugano is located in Lugano, even though Lugano is not the capital of Ticino. The capital is called Bellinzona.

University of Lugano

The University of Lugano has its own two websites. There you will find all the information you need about the University, its facilities and so forth: Information about the University of Lugano and Virtual tour around the campus.


The Institute offers adequate computational facilities and provision for students. The Institute is located at the University of Lugano, on the fourth floor of the magnificent University building. It provides a lot of student facilities:

Computer facilities: ALaRI offers adequate computational facilities and makes possible for students with their own laptops to connect to the ALaRI network. The labs are open to ALaRI students 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Library: The ALaRI library includes books on several aspects of embedded systems, electronics and computer science. The campus of the University of Lugano includes reading hall facilities for students who wish to engage in independent or group studies. Languages: Students at the ALaRI Institute can learn foreign languages in the language library which has a collection of books, tapes and CDs to facilitate learning. In the past years, groups of international ALaRI students have organized language tutorials by bringing in private tutors.

Living in Lugano

Living in Lugano is very nice. The climate is very agreeable for Switzerland, with temperatures mostly above the Swiss average.


ALaRI helps you find a suitable accommodation. Student apartments include basic utilities such as electricity, water supply, utensils for the kitchen, closets and some furniture. Apartment complexes include laundry facilities. Tenants of the apartment complex are given their individual laundry schedule, which enables them to do laundry once a week.

It is the student's responsibility to ensure that the University and the ALaRI Institute do not have to face complaints about the apartments.

Normally, three or more ALaRI students live together in one apartment. Students are assigned double rooms and have to share it with another ALaRI student.

Transportation in Lugano

There are public buses and boats at the lake side. ALaRI students living far from the University often use the buses and prefer buying an annual bus pass. There are three bus companies in Lugano. The following webpage helps you to find out which buses are best for you: Bus Companies Lugano.


There are three major supermarket chains in Switzerland: Coop, Migros and Denner. All small towns have one or more of them. These are all fair-sized supermarkets with everything you need. There are even sections with food from all over the world, like Thai, Mexican, Serbian. Most stores offer organic products also. There are many little shops around where you can buy organic and fresh products such as vegetables, meat, cheese, sweets and so forth. In Lugano there is also a market where you can buy fresh food. Such markets exist all over Switzerland and mainly take place once or twice a week.

Swiss Chocolate

As you might have guessed, the Swiss love their chocolates and so do the tourists. Every grocery store has a large chocolate area with every type of chocolate bar you can imagine.


You should take advantage of Italian part of Switzerland and try all amazing kinds of cheese. One of the most well-known Swiss specialities is fondue, and it is made of cheese.

Grocery Bags

In Swiss stores, you are expected to bring a grocery bag with you. However, if you do not have one, you can get one within the store for a small fee.

Opening Hours

Stores are open from Monday to Saturday, normally from 9.00 a.m. to 12.00 a.m. and from 1.30 p.m. to 6.30 p.m. Big supermarkets and stores in the town centers are also open at lunch time. On Saturday, stores close at 6.00 p.m., but usually are open at lunch time. On Thursdays, many stores keep open until 9.00 p.m.

Post Office and Banks

There are couple post offices in Lugano. The biggest one is in center and it is open form 7.30 a.m. untill 6.15 p.m. You can also find your closes one on website Most of the banks are also in the center and they work untill 5.00 p.m. On University there is cash machine.


You can find many interesting activities, and some of them are free. More information you can find on

Night life

In Lugano you can go out at 7.00 p.m. on aperitivo. It is very popular and very good. There are also a lot od night clubs and big casino. During summer there are a lot of happening eveywhere in the town and bar on the lake is open. In September is big fair in center.

Important Telephone Numbers

Ambulance (Lugano Croce verde): 144

Cantonal police: 117

Municipal police: 091 800 81 11

Fire brigade: 118

Helicopter rescue service: 1414

Breakdown service: 140

Telephone counselling service: 143

Lugano water rescue: 091 971 91 21

Poisoning information line: 01 251 51 51

Civic hospital: 091 811 61 11

Italian hospital, Viganello: 091 811 75 11

Cardiocentro (heart related problems): 091 805 31 11

Università della Contact us: ALaRI, University of Lugano Phone: +41.58.666.4706; +41.58.666.4709
Svizzera italiana Via G. Buffi 13, CH 6904 Lugano Fax: +41.58.666.4647