Considering a trip to the land of chocolate and yodeling? Here’s what you need to know about travel to Switzerland with a Green Card.
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Permanent residents of the United States (green card holders) generally may travel to Switzerland for business or tourist purposes without a visa. However, you will need to meet the following requirements:
· You must have a valid passport;
· Your green card must be valid for at least six months beyond your planned stay in Switzerland; and
· You must have proof of sufficient funds for your stay in Switzerland.
Applying for a Swiss Schengen Visa
If you are holder of a Green card, you may apply for a Swiss Schengen visa at the Swiss consulate in your jurisdiction. A green card does not guarantee that you will be issued a visa, however, as consulates may require additional documentation from green card holders Be sure to check with the consulate before you apply.
Applying for a Swiss National Visa
Swiss law requires all U.S. citizens and other nationals of visa-exempt countries* traveling to Switzerland for purposes of business, tourism, or other short-term visits (90 days or less), to have a valid passport.
U.S. citizens do not need a visa for travel to Switzerland for stays of 90 days or less within a 180-day period, provided they hold a valid U.S. passport. However, all other nationals who are not visa-exempt may need to apply for a Swiss National Visa before traveling to Switzerland, regardless of the purpose or length of stay.
If you plan to stay in Switzerland for longer than 90 days or intend to travel there for purposes other than business or tourism (e.g., to study, work, or reside permanently), you will need to apply for the appropriate visa through the Swiss consulate nearest you before your trip. For more information on applying for a Swiss National Visa, please see the following link:
Please note that this guide is for informational purposes only and is subject to change at any time without prior notice. For the most up-to-date information on visas and entry requirements, please consult your nearest Swiss consulate or visit the website of the Swiss Federal Office of Migration.
*Visa-exempt countries include Andorra, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Ecuador, Israel, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico*, Monaco*, New Zealand*, San Marino*, South Korea*, Taiwan** , United States , Uruguay , Vatican City*.
*Citizens of these countries do not require a visa if they are traveling on an official passport for government business**Citizens of Taiwan require an identification card in addition to their passport
Applying for a Swiss Residence Permit
To live in Switzerland as a lawful permanent resident of the United States, you must have a Swiss residence permit. You can apply for a residence permit at your local Swiss embassy or consulate. The first step is to fill out an application form. You will need to provide proof of your identity, proof of your U.S. lawful permanent resident status, and proof of your ties to Switzerland.
When you submit your application, you will also need to pay a fee. After your application is received, the embassy or consulate will review it and may request additional information from you. Once your application is complete, the embassy or consulate will make a decision on your case and notify you of the decision in writing. If your application is approved, you will be issued a residence permit which will allow you to live and work in Switzerland indefinitely.
Applying for a Swiss Work Permit
If you want to work in Switzerland, you will need to apply for a Swiss work permit. The process for applying for a work permit varies depending on your country of citizenship, but generally speaking, you will need to have a job offer from a Swiss employer before you can apply for a work permit. Once you have a job offer, your employer will need to apply for a work permit on your behalf.
In most cases, you will also need to obtain a visa before you can enter Switzerland. Swiss visas are typically valid for 90 days, so if you plan on staying in Switzerland for longer than that, you will need to apply for a longer-term visa. You can find more information about visas and the requirements for obtaining one on the website of the Swiss embassy or consulate in your home country.
Applying for Swiss Citizenship
You may apply for Swiss citizenship if you have been a legal resident of Switzerland for at least 12 years. This period is reduced to 10 years if you are married to a Swiss citizen or if you are a child of a Swiss parent. You must also have knowledge of one of the national languages, be integrated into the Swiss way of life, and have no criminal record. A naturalization ceremony is held once a year in Bern, the capital of Switzerland.
If you have a green card, you can travel to Switzerland for up to 90 days without a visa. If you plan to stay longer, you will need to apply for a residence permit from the Swiss authorities.