Having made the daunting decision to move to Switzerland, the next stage is to decide how, and with Hamiltons, our removals to Switzerland team can help you, and all your possessions, get there safely. Take advantage of our expert knowledge, years of experience and tailored removals to Switzerland services for all or just part of your move, whether it’s domestic, corporate or commercial.
If you’ve decided to take one or more of your valuable vehicles with you, Hamiltons have specialist vehicles with ramps to look after your car, motorbike, boat, jet skis, quad bikes and even farm machinery. Removals to Switzerland and importing vehicles to Switzerland are easier with Hamiltons.
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A Guide to Importing Your Car Into Switzerland
It’s always tricky finding out the right forms and information needed to import a car into a European country, and of course they all have their own rules. Switzerland is no different. If your vehicle has been owned for more than 6 months and is for personal use, you can import it without paying any duty and only have to make sure you complete a clearance request on arrival in Switzerland.
If you have owned your vehicle for less than 6 months, then import duty will have to be paid. Either way, you will always have to notify the Swiss customs as soon as any of your vehicles arrive in Switzerland.
Along with the forms, notifications and clearance request, you will also need to provide a number of both personal and vehicle documents. This includes your insurance, logbook and emissions test certificate, but you will also need full technical information on the car, and the 13.20 customs form. As well as these you will be asked to provide a receipt, proof of the vehicle’s origin, proof of your identity - in theory you should already have your passport with you - and your driving license.
The next step is to register for Swiss number plates, and you will have to do this within the first 12 months of your stay. You should receive the necessary forms from the Road Traffic Office (Services des Automobiles et de la Navigation) within the first month, after Customs have completed the report required for the technical inspection.
Your car must pass this technical inspection, or ‘Contrôle Technique du Véhicule’ within the first year, and the Motor Registration Office in your canton, or region, will provide you with all the information you need.
Getting your car into Switzerland is a lot easier through either Geneva or Basel, as most of the other smaller entry points need prior notice to process any importation, and this simply adds to the list of things to remember. Don’t forget, details can always change so please make sure you check with the relevant authorities before you move - of course, Hamiltons are the experts on removals to Switzerland, so why not get us to help.
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Driving in Switzerland - A Guide to Swiss Roads
Switzerland has a dense road network, which has an excellent standard of maintenance thanks to the high level of investment, including over 1,800 km of motorway. Its position as a transit country linking Northern and Southern Europe means that it suffers from a large amount of freight traffic and, during the holiday season, the trucks are joined by holidaymakers in cars and caravans.
Car ownership is still on the increase, despite the success of the Mobility Car Sharing Scheme, launched over 15 years ago. The scheme now offers over 2,600 vehicles in 1,340 stations around Switzerland and links up with similar schemes in Austria and Germany. Customers can pre-book a vehicle for periods from 1 hour to a number of days, and it releases you from the commitments of full time vehicle ownership.
Switzerland has a low tolerance for law breaking - on-the-spot fines are common, the Police may request that any driver undergo a breath test or, indeed, a drugs test at any time, and speeding fines are severe.
Unleaded and Diesel are commonly available, but Leaded is not, and there are only eight LPG outlets in the country. Some of the automatic pumps struggle to recognise UK PINs, so it’s always advisable to check with your card issuer. Dipped headlights are recommended during the day for all vehicles, and motorcyclists must wear a helmet.
To drive in Switzerland, road users must buy and clearly display a vehicle sticker, known locally as a ‘vignette’, which currently costs CHF40. The fine for not displaying one is the cost plus CHF100. Theyare available before you leave the UK, from customs offices, or service stations and garages throughout the country.
Snow chains are compulsory in some areas, usually indicated by appropriate signage, and every vehicle must be equipped with a warning triangle, kept within easy reach - not in the boot. Alpine winters can provide a challenge to even the most experienced driver, and checking road conditions is always advised before departing.
Speed limits are similar to those in the rest of Europe, 50kmh (31mph) in built up areas, 80kmh (49mph) in other areas while semi-motorways have a limit of 100kmh (62mph), and on motorways it’s 120kmh (74mph). And, don’t forget to drive on the right!
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