switzerland tourist visa

Switzerland Tourist Visa - Definitive Guide

Known as one of the most beautiful countries in the world, the nation is known for the Swiss Alps, the stunning lakes, as well as the urban cities. The Switzerland tourist visa lets you enter the country and enjoy its appealing beauty. Attractions such as the Matterhorn, the Rhine Falls, the Albula/Bernina Railway Line, the Swiss canyons, and so on are sure to take your breath away. 

What is Switzerland Tourist Visa?

Also known as the Switzerland Schengen tourist visa, this is a permit that is required to enter the Swiss confederation for the purpose of tourism. Similar to visas for other Schengen nations, these are a type of short term C permit and is valid for a duration of 90 days in a 180-day period. It can be issued for a different number of entries such as a single entry, double entry, as well as multiple entries.

How to Apply for Switzerland Tourist Visa?

 The applications for the Switzerland tourist visa from India is done through VACs (Visa Application Center). The application, however, is done offline. Before starting the Switzerland tourist visa application, ensure that you check if you are eligible for the tourist category. After that, you may proceed with the application as follows - 

  1. Obtain all the documents as per the document checklist for the tourist permit. 
  2. Visit the website of the VAC, or the Embassy of Switzerland and download the Schengen application form. 
  3. Fill in the application form with all the relevant details and then print it. You must mention the purpose of your visit as ‘tourism’.
  4. Proceed to book your appointment at the VAC. You can do this by visiting the online portal of the VAC.
  5. Visit the respective VAC with the documents, completed application form, and the fees. You will also have to submit your biometrics here. 

Keep in mind that if you have submitted your biometrics for a Schengen visa in the past 5 years, you do not have to submit them again. In that case, you may send your application through a third party, provided that they carry a letter of authorization signed by you. 

Also, note that you must submit only genuine documents and correct information. Providing fake documents or incorrect information can lead to visa rejection. 

Eligibility for Switzerland Tourist Visa

To be able to apply for a tourist permit, you must meet the following conditions - 

  • You must be in your home country while applying in the country. If you are residing in a residence permit in another nation, you can apply it to the embassy over there. 
  • You must possess a passport valid for at least 6 months from the date of travel.
  • Your only purpose of the visit has to be to take part in tourism-related activities.
  • You must have sufficient funds to cover your stay in Switzerland.
  • You must apply for the permit only if -
    1. Switzerland is your only destination, or
    2. Switzerland is one of your multiple Schengen destinations -  in which case you will be spending the majority of the time here, or, 
    3. Switzerland is your port of entry.

Documents Required for Switzerland Tourist Visa

As per the Switzerland tourist visa requirements for Indian citizens, the following are the list of documents you must submit at the VAC - 

  • A valid passport- 
    1. It must contain at least 2 blank pages.
    2. It should not be older than 10 years.
    3. It should be valid for at least 6 months from the date of travel.
    4. Old passports, if any, are to be attached.
  • A covering letter - 
    1. This must include the applicant's details.
    2. It should clearly mention the source of funds.
    3. It should clearly state the purpose of tourism, and the duration of the visit.
    4. It should be signed by the applicant and addressed to the Embassy of Switzerland.
  1. Flight reservation for round trip
  2. Proof of accommodation - hotel bookings/invitation to stay/residence bookings, etc 
  3. Medical travel insurance coverage up to at least 30000 Euros
  • Proof of occupation - 

Proof of occupation such as employment letter, Copy of business license, etc.

  • Financial documents -

Financial documents such as bank statements of the past 3 months, Passbook copy, ITR, etc.

Photo Specification for Switzerland Tourist Visa

  • Dimensions: 35mm X 45mm
  • Colour: Coloured
  • Head must occupy the central position
  • Must be captured within the last 3 months
  • Background: Solid, plain white or grey
  • 80% face coverage
  • Neutral expression
  • Glasses: Non-thick framed and prescription glasses
  • Headgears - only for religious reasons
  • Facial hair - permitted

Processing Time for Switzerland Tourist Visa

The processing time for the Swiss tourist visa application is dependent on the validity of the visa,  the number of applications at the embassy, as well as your previous travel history. Normally, it takes around 7-10 working days to process your application. However, this can sometimes take much longer, and as a result, it is suggested that you apply for a visa well in advance. 

Switzerland Tourist Visa Fees

The application fees for this Swiss tourist permit is dependent upon the currency exchange rates, as well as the embassy decision. Along with the application fee, there will be biometric charges, delivery charges, as well as any service charges levied by the VAC. As a result, you must check the exact fees before starting the application.

Entry Stay Duration Validity Fees
Multiple entry Normal 90 days 3 months 6390.0
Multiple entry Normal 90 days 3 months 6390.0
Multiple entry Normal 90 days 3 months 6390.0
Multiple entry Normal 90 days 3 months 6390.0

After Submission

Once you have submitted the application for the tourist visa, it is then processed at the Embassy of Switzerland. Even though you have submitted it at a VAC, they will then forward it to the embassy in New Delhi. Note that the VAC has no control over the processing. They are only in charge of handling the administrative part of the application.  

Once the visa is approved, you can pick up the passport directly from the VAC, or you can have the VAC deliver it to you for an additional delivery charge. 

How to Check Visa Status?

You can do the Switzerland tourist visa status tracking by clicking here an entering your reference number and date of birth. You may also check your status by contacting your travel agency and have them track it for you. 

When you have this visa

While you are travelling on this permit, you must keep in mind the following factors - 

  • Keep in mind the expiry date, the duration of stay, as well as the number of entries mentioned on the visa sticker. You must follow these during your travel.
  • Carry all the travel documents while travelling. You will be denied entry into Switzerland without this. 
  • Ensure that you travel to Switzerland within 6 months of the visa issue date, or as mentioned in the Schengen sticker. After this date, your permit will become invalid and you will not be able to enter the country. 
  • While you are travelling within the Swiss confederate, ensure that you always carry a copy of your travel documents with you. 
  • While you are on a tourist permit, you cannot take part in paid work for a Swiss company or establishment.  
  • You will not be able to extend the tourist visa under any normal conditions
  • Being a Schengen permit, you can move freely within the Schengen zone with the tourist visa. 

Frequently Asked Questions

How Can I Extend My Switzerland Schengen Tourist Visa?

As per the regulations, It is not possible to extend the Swiss tourist permit under normal conditions as it is a Schengen short term category. However, in certain cases such as a Force Majeure, or other humanitarian reasons, you may be granted an extension. In all other cases, you must not try to extend the visa and must leave the country before expiry. 

How much bank balance is required for getting a Switzerland Schengen Tourist Visa?

As per the regulations, there is no exact amount of funds you must possess in order to get a Swiss tourist visa. As per the requirements, you must show that you have a steady and stable bank account and that you have enough money to support your expenses in Switzerland. Depending on the applied stay duration, you must have enough funds for the entire duration. These include expenses such as food, accommodation, travel, etc. 

After Expiring My Switzerland Tourist permit, How Long Can I Stay?

After you have expired the tourist permit, you are not supposed to stay back in the country for any amount of time. As per the laws, you must leave the country before the exact expiry date. Staying back in Switzerland after this period is considered illegal, and can get you deported, and in some other cases even be banned from entering the Schengen region again.

What is the Medical Test for a Switzerland Schengen Tourist Visa?

Since the Swiss tourist visa is issued only for a short duration of fewer than 90 days, there are no mandatory medical test requirements. The long term categories may require medical tests as per the individual type. Either way, it is recommended that you get a health checkup before travelling to a new country. 

Can I Convert My Switzerland Schengen Tourist Visa into a Work Visa?

No, it is not possible to convert a Schengen tourist category permits into another type. You are also not allowed to take part in paid work while you are on this permit. You can, however,  take part in unpaid voluntary work. If you do require to work, you must apply for a Switzerland work visa once you are back in your home country.  

Can I Travel other Schengen and European country on Switzerland Tourist permit?

Yes, you are permitted to travel to other Schengen countries on this. Being a founding member of the Schengen, Switzerland participates in a visa-free agreement with other Schengen countries. You can, however, travel to only the European countries that are also a part of the Schengen. However, there are a few non-European countries that allow you to enter them with a Schengen visa. Eg:- Croatia. 

How many days before the trip should I apply for a Switzerland Tourist permit?

Normally, the processing time taken by the embassy is around 7-10 working days. This, however, is excluding the transit time for the application to reach the embassy. Applications made at the VAC in New Delhi will be sent to the Embassy the next working day. Although, applications to other VACs across the country can take longer to reach the embassy. As a result, you must apply with a sufficient buffer time of at least 15 working days. Also, note that you cannot make the application before more than 3 months of the intended travel date.

 

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