Useful Informations for newcomers to the DPNC

This page is gathering all sorts of useful infos for newcomers to the DPNC at Geneva University. Feel free to modify the information below if it becomes obsolete or to add new items.

CFF demi-tarif (half-price card for trains)

If you have to travel by train, the university reimburses the equivalent of the demi-tarif, i.e. 50% of the bill. To profit from this rebate, you need the demi-tarif card. As new PhD students need to go to Lausanne for the 3ème cycle courses, they get the demi-tarif paid by the university, for as long as they need to attend the lectures. Ask tica about it.

TPG Abonnement (yearly bus pass)

The university offers deals on the price of yearly passes for Geneva buses (and the region). On top of the discount you get when buying it at the uni (which is ~100 CHF), you are given an extra 200 CHF on your next pay check. The instructions and order form can be found here:

If you already have a TPG abo and want to profit from this deal, you don't have to wait for your current abo to finish. You can cancel your current abo at the TPG agencies and they will reimburse you the unused portion.

Health Insurance

You are required by Swiss law to carry health insurance, called "LAMal". There are many Swiss health care companies out there, such as Groupe Mutuel, Sanitas, Assura - check with for a reasonable comparison of Swiss providers. There are also "international" companies that can sometimes provide the same coverage for much less, like SwissCare and GoldenCare. These typically have limitations on who can be covered but it's worth checking, the difference could be hundreds of CHF per month. If you live in France, Alptis is all you need, and it's fairly cheap in comparison with the swiss insurances.


The university offers opportunities to recycle unusual items that you could not do elsewhere:

  • Cell phones (through a charitable donation to Terre des Hommes foundation, where they are either repaired and given to citizens of poorer countries or recycled for their materials): you can drop your old cell phone e.g. at the reception of the Pavillion des Isotopes or at the loge of the Ecole de Physique. More info at
  • CDs and floppy disks: You can bring your old unusable CDs or floppy disks to the Division Informatique (Uni-Dufour, 1st or 2nd floor - not sure...) and drop them in a cardboard box outside of their office (ask to the counter in case of doubt about the box).
  • Sagex (Styrofoam): large piece of styrofoam, normally used in packaging, can be recycled at the DPNC. Drop them in the transparent plastic box, just outside of tica's office on the second floor. Styrofoam from food containers cannot be recycled there.

More info on the other products which are not mentionned here, for specific buildings, at .

Latest update:
-- AndreeRobichaudVeronneau - 28-Oct-2010

This topic: Main > UniGeUsefulInfos
Topic revision: r6 - 2010-10-28 - AndreeRobichaudVeronneau
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