Enjoying life instead of working full time – a dream for many people. These folks are living it: The Gabriels, from Root in the Canton of Lucerne, lead a self-determined life featuring part-time employment, and are completely happy with their decision.

Just one out of ten fathers in Switzerland works part time with children under 25 living at home. A Swiss Life study has also shown that men are happier when they work full time.


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That doesn’t impress Metin Yildirim Gabriel. Originally from Turkey, he is happy working four days a week in evening retail at a furniture store. Would he like to return to full time? Not very likely. Now 42 years old, he prefers spending his free time with son Can and wife Raffaela Gabriel – or sleeping, he says with a chuckle.

Raffaela works part time as well, four days a week. A specialist at Swiss customs, she uses her weekly day off for family, to run errands or for herself. Raffaela firmly believes that full-time employment cannot be reconciled with having children – and that time off, family time and “me time” are more important than anything else. When she looks at their finances, it would certainly be nice to have a little more – not least to realise their great dream of a home in Turkey – and yet their joint income is enough to keep them happy. Indeed, Raffaela would like to reduce her hours even more.

The Gabriels understand that working less means vested pension capital. If they look after a couple of details, however, even part-timers can look forward to a self-determined financial future.

It’s totally wonderful, especially for our son. We have plenty of time for him.

The Gabriels


The Gabriel family lives in Root in the Canton of Lucerne. Parents Raffaela and Metin Yildirim have a six-year-old son, Can. They both believe time off, family time and time for themselves are more important than anything else. That’s why they opted for part-time employment: Raffaela Gabriel works four days a week in customs, while her husband Metin Yildirim works the same hours as a salesman at a furniture store.


Are you planning on part-time work as well?

Part-time calculator

Would you like to work part time as well? Find out quickly and easily what impact this would have on your budget and on childcare.

What needs to be borne in mind?

It isn’t impossible to put by money even while working part time. With both private and occupational provisions, you benefit from tax savings: for a self-determined financial future.


Families in the part-time model

Working part time is popular here in Switzerland: more than a third of Swiss employees have consciously chosen not to work full time – mostly because they want to spend time raising their children, taking care of family obligations or pursuing education and training. In our series, young families offer a look at their lives working part time and tell us what the greatest challenges are.

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The Naegeli family: on living as equals in the modern world

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