Frequently Asked Questions

Watchmaker program

  • When does the bench test take place?

    The bench test takes place during the last two weeks of July.

  • What is the registration deadline for the Watchmaker program?

    The registration deadline to the Watchmaker program is March 31st of the year preceding the begenning of the program.

    Example: The program begins in August 2023, the registration deadline will be on March 31st 2022.

  • What is the cost of the Watchmaker program?

    The price of CHF 34'600.- tuition fee includes without accommodation:

    • Tuition, administrative support and expenses
    • Toolkit and theory books of horology
    • Special courses on specific products, visits of factories
    • Resources (infrastructure, tools, machines, movements, spare parts)

    An additional CHF 9'240.- is required as a prepaid financial guarantee by the State of Neuchâtel to ensure domestic needs are covered.

  • What is expected for the bench test?

    The 2-day bench test consist of various elements designed to allow us to become familiar with prospective candidates ant their aptitude for mechanical tasks and related disciplines. 

    It is also an opportunity for candidates to appreciate exactly what the program entails and decide whether it is right for them.

    The emphasis is on identiying strengths and potential and not on passing or failing. English, basic mathematics (equations and rudimentary algebraic operations) and logics are also tested.

    No watchmaking knowledge or previous watchmaking experience is required.

  • What are the prerequisites to apply to the Watchmaker program?
    • To be over 21 years old
    • Have a previous work experience outside the watchmaking field
    • The course is taught in English, which students must be able to write and speak fluently.
    • No watchmaking experience is required

    Condition of admission:

    The candidates must undergo a 2-day test at WOSTEP to ascertain their manual dexterity.

    Please, be aware that this course is very intensive and requires a strong motivation.

Life in Switzerland

  • What are the accommodation possibilities?

    WOSTEP offers participants to courses of 2 weeks and more, the possibility to stay in a students apartment (subject to availability) located close to the school.

    Hotels in Neuchâtel city and surrounding area:

    In or near the centre of the city   
    Hôtel des Arts - Neuchâtel+41 32 727
    Hôtel L'Ecluse - Neuchâtel+41 32 729
    Auberg'Inn - Neuchâtel+41 32 721
    Hôtel L'Aubier - Neuchâtel+41 32 710
    Hôtel Alpes & Lac - Neuchâtel+41 32 723
    Hôtel Beaulac - Neuchâtel+41 32 723
    Near the city - with bus stop nearby   
    Hôtel du Cheval Blanc - St-Blaise +41 32 753 3007
    Hôtel Les Vieux Toits - Hauterive  +41 32 753 4242
  • How to obtain a Swiss visa?

    Please, contact the Swiss Embassy in your country or have a look on the Swiss Confederation internet site: State Secretariat for Migration

Customer Service Watchmaker program

  • What are the differences between the Watchmaker program and the Customer Service Watchmaker program

    Differences between the Customer Service Watchmaker and the Watchmaker programs:

    In summary, the Customer Service Watchmaker program prepares the graduate to carry out servicing of modern mechanical and quartz watches using spare part replacement to return the watch to factory specifications.

    Although there is approximately seven weeks of micro-mechanics, it is not as in-depth as the Watchmaker program.

    The Customer Service Watchmaker program uses these first seven weeks to develop basic manual dexterity through exercises in shaping wood and brass materials.

    The Watchmaker program places a lot of emphasis on making tools and watch components from carbon steel. This involves a deeper understanding of materials and heat treatment processes to give the tools and components the required properties necessary to function. It gives more in-depth training on repair and adjustment in general than the Customer Service Watchmaker program (for example; balance staff replacement, escapement adjustment, hairspring adjustment, dynamic poising procedures, etc).


    In conclusion, both programs prepare graduates for employment in the field of watchmaking.

    A Watchmaker program will potentially give more possibilities on graduation due to the more in-depth content, but many companies today prefer to give training in-house, so the Customer Service Watchmaker program is considered to be a good base for the company to develop graduates on.