Food & Lodging on the Trail
Lodging: There are several lodging options on the Alpine Pass Route. Although many trails in Switzerland have a hut to hut system, very few stages on the Alpine Pass Route have mountain huts. However there are many farms in more remote sections that rent out rooms and provide food to trekkers. Lodging ranges from hostels in some towns, houses with rooms for rent, hotels, chalet's, pensions, inn's, and campgrounds (typically on the outskirts of town). Staying in quaint family run lodges with unique regional Swiss architecture & having home made, hearty Swiss food cooked by a welcoming family is an unforgettable experience.
Although wild camping is technically illegal in Switzerland, you can always ask a local land owner or farmer if you can camp in his field. Just remember to not have camp fires and leave no trace.
Costs: Lodging & food, like most things in Switzerland are expensive. Prices for budget accommodation typically run 70-80 Swiss Francs for a double room, typically with bath/shower in the hallway. These prices increase in the more popular sections. Dorm accommodation can be found in some towns with connected kitchens for around 75 Swiss Francs including breakfast. Lodging in popular sections of the Bernese Oberland typically are the most expensive.
Food: Like most things, food costs more in Switzerland, especially meals at restaurants which can be up to nearly double what you might pay at home. Food, especially when dining in restaurants in smaller towns, is quite expensive (unless having pizza, burgers, or Falafel) as you will typically pay almost double what you would pay for the same meal at home. You can always find casual dining where you can purchase a burger for around 13-15 Swiss Francs, however a meal of Rosti (Potato, Egg, Cheese, Meat scramble) with a side of vegetables will run you around 16-21 Swiss Francs. We found going to Co-Op (Grocery Stores) or local butcher's and cheese vendors to purchase cured meats, veggies, bread, and chocolate saved us a lot more money then eating out for every meal. When picking lodging, see if your hotel or hostel has a kitchen where you can cook meals. For two people, including lodging plan on spending around 150-200 Swiss Francs minimum per day including all meals, lodging, and a post bus ride.
Here is a couple of good blogs/websites about lodging recommendations on the trail: