While it's difficult to generalize, the cost of living is comparatively high in Switzerland. But living expenses also vary individually - as a PhD candidate you may prefer less costly living arrangements, whereas a postdoctoral researcher may be more flexible with regard to her or his expenses.
Below you'll find two links, the first leads to a calculation regarding approximate living expenses of a student, the second gives an overview of prices in Zurich in general.
Students benefit from concessions or special student prices in many areas, ranging from museums, cinemas and cultural events to computer stores, hairdressers or waived account fees. Please remember to ask if you're entitled to a student discount in shops, when you make use of services or when buying tickets. It's vital to do so before making a purchase. Just have your student card ready at hand.