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FAQ

Please note that the general visa and entry procedure is described in detail in our information sheet:

General information on entry and visa procedures

Do I require a visa?

Please check the visa requirements for your nationality under the following link:
 Overview of ID and visa provisions according to nationality (pdf, 114 Kb)

Schengen visas are valid for Switzerland and all other areas of the Schengen member states (providing nothing to the contrary is noted on the visa).

You are permitted to stay for a maximum of 90 days within any 6 month period.

You have no legal right to a visitor’s visa.

How long does the visa procedure take?   

Due to the large number of applications, it is not possible to provide exact information on how long the procedure will take. However, the procedure usually takes between 6–8 weeks, sometimes longer, depending on the season. We therefore recommend you submit your application as early as possible.

How much does a visa cost?

The cost of submitting an application is EUR 60. An additional EUR 60 is charged for a renewed application following a rejection. This amount does not include processing fees.

Airport transit visa?

For information on airport transit, please check the following link, page 1, point 2.1:
 ID and visa provisions – particularities regardless of nationality (pdf, 92 Kb)

Making an appointment at the Embassy - Submitting/completing a visa application form - Documents required?

Unfortunately, the Federal Office for Migration (FOM) cannot provide any information in this matter. Please contact the Swiss Embassy

Vistor's visa - period of validity?

If you are travelling on a visitor's visa, you may stay in Switzerland for up to 90 days within a period of six continuous months. After this, you must leave the Schengen area and reapply.

You do not have a legal right to a visitor's visa.

Validity of passport?

Please check visa requirements for the appropriate nationality under the following link:
 Overview of ID and visa provisions according to nationality (pdf, 114 Kb)

Your passport must be valid for the entire duration of your stay.

Obtaining a visa during travel abroad?

In general, you have to apply for a visa at the Swiss Embassy responsible for your place of residence, at least two months in advance.

Entry of persons not requiring a visa?

If you enter Switzerland and do not require a visa, you may be questioned by the border police on the purpose of your visit and your financial means. If you do not have sufficient financial means and cannot provide any information on where you will be staying in Switzerland and the purpose of your visit, you may be turned away at the border. One of the conditions of staying in Switzerland is that you have sufficient financial means for the duration of your stay. Sometimes it is useful if you have a personal invitation from your host or if you are collected by the host from the airport. This is not imperative, however.

Entry into Switzerland by stateless persons

For detailed information on entry provisions for stateless persons, please go to our homepage and visit the following link, page 7, point 2.5:
 ID and visa provisions – particularities regardless of nationality (pdf, 92 Kb)

Entry with a Schengen visa?

The agreement with the Schengen member states came into operational force on 12 December 2008.

Schengen visas are accepted in conjunction with a valid travel document for entry into Switzerland. Switzerland now also issues Schengen visas. If not otherwise noted, the Schengen visa is valid for all Schengen member states.

The authority responsible for issuing the visa is the embassy of the country in which you plan your main stay. If you are travelling to various countries, it is the Embassy of the country that you plan to visit first.

It does not matter which airport you arrive at or depart from, providing you stay in the Schengen area. The number of entries applies to the whole of the Schengen area and not just to individual member countries (if not otherwise noted on the visa). Therefore you may travel throughout the whole of the Schengen area on the same visa for the duration of its validity.

Please note that Great Britain and Ireland are not part of the Schengen area and you therefore require separate visas for these two countries.

I have a Schengen residence permit - do I require a visa for Switzerland?

Under the followin link, page 3, point 2.3, you can find a list of the foreign residence permits admitted for a visa-free entry into Switzerland for a maximum stay of 90 days:
 ID and visa provisions – particularities regardless of nationality (pdf, 92 Kb)

Please note that the Schengen Agreement came into force on 12 December 2008. Persons with a valid residence permit from Great Britain, Ireland, Canada or a Green Card from the USA require a visa for Switzerland.

I have a residence permit for GB/Ireland/USA/Canada - do I require a visa for Switzerland/Schengen?

Since the Schengen Agreement came into force on 12 December 2008, persons holding a residence permit from Great Britain, Ireland, Canada or a Green Card from the USA require a visa to enter Switzerland / Schengen area. Applications for a Schengen visa can now also be submitted to a Swiss Embassy.

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