Coronavirus: Entering Switzerland

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic there are special rules for people entering Switzerland. Depending on the type of travel, you might have to fill out a form for incoming travellers, show proof of a negative test and/or go into quarantine.

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These rules apply to all people who are permitted to enter Switzerland. That means they also apply if you are Swiss and returning to Switzerland after being abroad. You will find information on the individual rules and requirements in the relevant sections of this site:


Entry form

The electronic entry form for incoming travellers is available at swissplf.admin.ch. Important: Fill out the form before your entry to Switzerland.

Who has to fill out the entry form?

Almost everyone who enters Switzerland must fill out the entry form. Children can be included on the form of an adult travelling with them. Exeption: If you’re entering from a region on the border with Switzerland you don’t need to fill out the entry form.

When and how can the entry form be filled out?

You can fill out the electronic entry form on a computer or smartphone before or during travel. Once you’ve filled out the form you’ll be emailed a QR code as confirmation. Have this code ready for inspection when you enter Switzerland. If you are controlled you can show the QR code on your smartphone or produce a printed confirmation.

If you are unable to complete the entry form online: You can either ask for the paper version of the form from the staff before boarding the transport. Or you can print out the paper version of the entry form and fill it in.
 

Further information on the entry form

You'll find plenty of information in the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs). For example you'll find information on what to do if you don’t have a seat number or if there are technical problems, about data protection and about the paper version of the form.

Do you have questions that aren’t answer in the FAQs? You can call the infoline for the form for incoming travellers on +41 58 464 44 88 from 6am to 11pm, 7 days a week. You’ll find information on the costs of the call on the Contact information and links page.


Negative test result

You must be able to show proof of a negative coronavirus test in two situations:

  1. If you enter Switzerland by air.
  2. If you have stayed in a country with an increased risk of infection within the ten days before entering Switzerland. In this case you must always be able to show proof of a negative test result, even if you enter Switzerland by bus, rail, car, etc.

Exceptions: Children under age 12 are not subject to the testing requirement and do not need proof of a negative test result. There are other exceptions in addition to this. You’ll find details in the Exemptions from the Testing and Quarantine Requirement section.

In what cases can you fly without proof of a negative test result despite the test requirement? What do you do if the result of the test is positive? You’ll find answers in the frequently asked questions (FAQ). You will find the self-declaration "No way of being tested" under the tab Documents.

Controls of negative test results

If the test requirement also applies to your journey, depending on the type of travel, you must be able to show proof of your negative test result once or twice.

  1. Boarding control – applies only to flights: The airlines will systematically check your test result on boarding. If despite the test requirement you do not show proof of a negative test result, you basically cannot board the aircraft.
  2. Border control – applies to all types of travel: When you enter, customs at the Swiss border will check proof of your negative test result on a random basis. If you cannot show proof of a negative result, you must have a test at your own expense immediately after entering Switzerland.

Type of test and requirements the result must meet

Basically the negative result must be from a PCR test conducted less than 72 hours previously.

Valid from 22 February 2021: If, for example, you are travelling too long or the result of the PCR test is not available quickly enough, a rapid immunological test conducted less than 24 hours previously is also permitted for the boarding check. However, you need the negative result of a PCR test carried out less than 72 hours previously at the latest for the second check that may possibly be carried out at the Swiss border. If you cannot show proof of a negative result at that point, you must have a test at your own expense immediately after entering Switzerland.  


Quarantine for persons arriving in Switzerland

Adults and Children who have spent time in a country or area with an increased risk of infection and then enter Switzerland must go into quarantine. The countries and areas affected are set down in the FOPH list of high-risk countries.  

The mandatory quarantine requirement is governed by the list valid at the moment of entry into Switzerland.  

Check the list that is valid on your entry into Switzerland. Were you in one of the countries or areas on the list at any point in the last 10 days before entry into Switzerland? If so, you are legally required to go into quarantine and report your arrival in Switzerland to the cantonal authorities. Follow the instructions under What to do after entering Switzerland.

Exceptions: Certain people are exempt from the quarantine requirement. You'll find details in the Exemptions from the Testing and Quarantine Requirement section.

The following do not exempt you from the mandatory quarantine requirement or shorten the quarantine period:

  • A negative test result. This is because a negative test result does not completely rule out an infection with the new coronavirus. You will find the biological explanation for this on the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) page.
  • A COVID-19 vaccination. This is because while the vaccination provides protection from the disease, it is not yet clear whether it also prevents you from infecting other people.

What to do after entering Switzerland

  • Upon arrival, go immediately to your home or to other suitable accommodation (e.g. a hotel or holiday apartment). On the way there, keep a minimum distance of 1.5 metres from other people. If you are unable to maintain this distance, we recommend that you wear a mask. Avoid public transport if possible.

  • Report your arrival  to the cantonal authority responsible within two days. Follow the instructions of the cantonal authority.

  • For 10 days after your arrival in Switzerland you must stay in your home or other suitable accommodation without going out. Avoid contact with other people and follow the instructions in the document instructions on quarantine (PDF, 376 kB, 11.02.2021). This document is also available in the languages of the migrant population.

  • From 8 February: There is the possibility of shortening travel quarantine from day 7 onwards. You’ll find information on the Isolation and Quarantine site.


The cantonal authorities are responsible for monitoring quarantine, and they conduct spot checks. Anyone who fails to comply with the quarantine requirement is committing an offence under the Epidemics Act (in German), which can be punished by a fine of up to CHF 10,000.

Continued payment of wages or compensation for loss of earnings?

A check must first be conducted to see whether your employer is obliged to continue paying wages under the terms of your employment contract. The specific assessment of whether your wages are still payable is performed by you and your employer. In the event of a dispute, the courts will probably have to decide.

There are two cases in which an employer is obliged to continue paying wages:

  • If your employer sends you to work in a country or area with an increased risk of infection and you have to go into quarantine upon your return to Switzerland.
  • If you can still work from home despite being in quarantine.

If you are unable to work on account of the quarantine imposed on persons arriving in Switzerland and do not receive wages from your employer, the following applies:

  • You will be entitled to compensation for Covid-related loss of earnings if you have to go into quarantine through no fault of your own. This is the case if, at the time of your departure, your destination was not included on the list of countries and areas with an increased risk of infection and, at the time of your departure, you could not know, based on an official announcement, that your destination would be included on this list during your trip.
  • You will thus have no right to compensation if, at the time of your departure, your destination was on the list of countries and areas with an increased risk of infection. 

Payment of compensation for loss of earnings due to the corona crisis is organised by the OASI compensation offices. You will find further information the OASI/DI Information Centre website (in German, French, Italian) or on the website of the Federal Social Insurance Office (FSIO) (in German, French and Italian).

Members of the same household who have not been abroad

Does someone in your household have to go into quarantine after entering the country? If so, avoid contact with the quarantined person according to the Instructions on quarantine (PDF, 376 kB, 11.02.2021). If all household members follow this advice, you can continue to live your life as normal and do not have to go into quarantine yourself.

The rules on hygiene and social distancing also remain important in this situation.  

FAQs and Infoline

You'll find more information on travel quarantine in the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ).

Do you still have questions that aren’t answered in the FAQs? You can call the infoline for people travelling to Switzerland on +41 58 464 44 88 from 6am to 11pm, 7 days a week. You’ll find information on the costs of the call on the Contact information and links page.

Contact details of the cantonal authorities

Contact the competent cantonal authority within two days of your arrival.


Exemptions from the testing and quarantine requirement

Various people are exempt from the quarantine requirement. You will find a list of all the exceptions in Article 8 of the Covid-19 Ordinance on International Transport Measures (in German, in French, in Italian). They include, for example:

  • People travelling on business for an important reason that cannot be postponed.
  • People travelling for an important medical reason that cannot be postponed.
  • Transit passengers who have spent less than 24 hours in a state or area with an increased risk of infection.
  • People who in the course of their professional activities transport passengers or goods across borders.

Additional information for incoming tourists

On the Measures and Ordinances page you will see what rules and bans apply on a nationwide basis. In other words, these coronavirus-related measures at the very least apply all over Switzerland; the cantons may have stricter measures. This means you should also find out from the canton to which you are travelling what rules apply there.  

Please also observe the distancing and hygiene rules that apply in Switzerland. This is the best way to protect yourself and others from infection with the coronavirus.

Have you started to have symptoms of illness after entering Switzerland? Take them seriously and follow the instruction on the Isolation and Quarantine page.

Last modification 25.02.2021

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Contact

We are unable to respond to enquiries related to COVID-19 in writing.

Please refer instead to our webpages, which are continuously updated.

Under Contacts and links you will find contact information for the FOPH, other federal agencies and the cantons.

Tel.
+41 58 464 44 88

Print contact

https://www.bag.admin.ch/content/bag/en/home/krankheiten/ausbrueche-epidemien-pandemien/aktuelle-ausbrueche-epidemien/novel-cov/empfehlungen-fuer-reisende/quarantaene-einreisende.html