FAQ – Frequently asked questions
- Entry to the Schengen Area / Visa Procedure (38 Kb, pdf)
2. Special information on Schengen
3. Border-crossing / Travel documents
4. For hosts in Switzerland
5. Travelling in the Schengen area with a Swiss residence permit
6. Questions on granted or refused visas
7. Long-term residency in Switzerland (more than 90 days) / Employment in Switzerland
8. Other questions
Essentially, Swiss citizens wishing to enter an EU or EEA member state are required to have a valid travel document (e.g. passport, emergency passport, or ID card). However, it is possible to leave Switzerland on a passport that has expired no more than five years previously:
European Agreement on Regulations governing the Movement of Persons between Member States of the Council of Europe
People who can prove or plausibly demonstrate that they have Swiss citizenship are allowed to exit Switzerland and enter a neighbouring country even if they do not have a valid travel document. The burden of proof rests with the person concerned and parents or other person(s) accompanying children. Proof of Swiss citizenship may be furnished by any appropriate means. The Federal Office for Migration suggests carrying along the following documents to furnish proof of one's citizenship:
- An expired travel document; and for children in particular, an ID card.
- An official document proving the identity and/or citizenship of the holder.
- Children: an extract of the entry of a child's personal data in an official register (e.g. the register of births, marriages, and deaths); if no extract could be issued for lack of time, then the original of the child's birth certificate will also do.
The Federal Office for Migration (FOM) wishes to warn travellers that that some countries may depart from these regulations.
A number of European countries, such as Germany, require people staying on their territory to carry a valid travel document (passport, emergency passport, ID card) at all times. While it may be possible for people to enter and remain in such countries without a travel document, they may become liable to criminal prosecution if they do not carry a valid travel document while staying there.
The Federal Office for Migration strongly suggests always applying for a travel document as soon as possible.
Please note that a number of airline companies will not transport people without valid travel documents. Check transport conditions with your airline.