Children, other useful information

Public transport – Children

In Switzerland, public transport is free for children aged 0 to 6. Any child aged 6 to 16, with or without a residency permit, can buy a “carte Junior” (junior card) or a “carte Enfant accompagné” (accompanied child card) and travel for free on CFF trains and on TPG buses and trams if they are travelling with one adult who has purchased a ticket. Cards are availables at the train station. You will need to bring a valid ID that shows the child’s date of birth. The card costs 30.- CHF per child.

  • Carte Junior“: children who are travelling with one of their parents who has purchased a ticket
  • Carte Enfant accompagné“: children who are travelling an accompanying adult who has purchased a ticket

Caution: if the child has a “carte Junior” but is not with one of his/her parents or if he/she has a “carte Enfant accompagné” but is not with an accompanying adult with a purchased ticket, the child has to purchase a half-price ticket.

Parents with small children (0-4 years old)

Do you have children under the age of 4? Are you looking for a place to go play with them, and meet other parents? Are you looking for information and advice on your child’s education or health? These addresses are open to all parents and their children regardless of legal status, and will welcome you for free, without an appointment and without any judgement:

  • Espace parents-enfants
    10 Rue du Temple, 1201 Genève
    Tel: 022 418 99 12
    Lunch is provided free of charge.
  • Le Cerf-volant
    82 Boulevard Carl-Vogt, 1205 Genève
    Tel: 022 329 58 90
  • Le “99”, accueil parents-enfants Charmilles
    99 Rue de Lyon, 1203 Genève
    Tel: 022 418 95 99
    Closed during school holidays.
  • ‘Bientôt à l’école’ : Free activities for children who are starting school (songs, games, stories in French, meeting future classmates).
    Secteur Saint-Jean/Charmilles : Espace enfants-parents – « Le 99 »
    Secteur Servette/Petit-Saconnex : Espace enfants-parents – La Récréation
    Secteur Pâquis/Sécheron : Ludothèque des Pâquis
    Secteur Plainpalais/Jonction : Espace enfants-parents – Fleur de Sel

There are other places for parents and children in the City of Geneva and in other areas (Onex, Versoix, Bernex, Meyrin, etc.). For more information, you can download the brochure (in French) by the Bureau de l’intégration des étrangers here.

Public libraries

Geneva’s public libraries (visit their website in French or download the leaflet in English) offer many services: books in various languages, international press, multimedia ressources, but also activities for children, cultural activities, or simply a calm place to study or relax.

These services are almost always free,  and are available to everyone (with or without a residency permit). The program of activities offered by the public library network is available at CCSI and on their website under the category agenda. Most neighbourhoods have a public library, find out where the nearest one is for you (list of addresses and opening hours here).

Good to know:

  • Any person residing in Geneva can register at the public library and access books and services.
  • You just need to go to the desk at one of the libraries and show your ID or passport.
  • You can borrow books for free.

Neighborhood centres (maison de quartier)

“Maisons de quartier” are neighborhood centres for residents of the area. They offer all kinds of activities and services: language and cooking courses, activities for children (also during school holidays) or for adults, or projects to make life better in the neighborhood. It is often possible to rent a room or a venue for a party or a meeting.

Maisons de quartier are open to everyone in the neighborhood, without any distinction or discrimination. Activities are often very reasonably priced. A list of “maisons de quartier” is available here or at reception at CCSI, find out where the nearest one to you is!

Culture – “20 ans – 20 francs” card

Are you living in Geneva and under the age of 21? You can purchase a card to benefit from reduced prices for cultural activities. The “20 ans – 20 francs” card allows you to pay less to borrow CDs and DVDs in libraries, or for tickets to:

  • theatres
  • museums
  • movies
  • shows
  • concerts
  • festivals

For more information, visit the website (in French):

To buy the card online or for a list of places that sell it. You can request the “20 ans – 20 francs” card simply by presenting your ID or passport. A residency permit is not required.

Good to know: you can visit almost all museums for free on the first Sunday of the month!

If you have any questions, please ask us next time you visit CCSI!