Press releases, 16.11.2021

Australian nationals will be allowed to enter Switzerland without a visa from 1 January 2022. The relevant ordinance has been amended accordingly. From the same date, Swiss nationals will get access to the Australian Work and Holiday programme.

Currently, Australian nationals need a visa to enter Switzerland for short stays that involve working or for stays of more than 90 days. As of 1 January 2022, a visa will no longer be required, regardless of the purpose and duration of the stay. At its meeting on 1 October 2021, the Federal Council decided to amend the Ordinance on Entry and the Granting of Visas (EGVO) for this purpose. Switzerland issues between 500 and 800 visas to Australian nationals each year.

The conditions of entry laid down in Swiss legislation and in the Schengen regulations will continue to apply, including the requirement to have the financial means necessary for the stay. Australian nationals also remain subject to the provisions governing the residence of foreign nationals in Switzerland. They require a permit if they plan to stay in Switzerland for more than three months or if they intend to work in Switzerland. They must apply for the permit from the competent authority in their intended place of residence or work before entering Switzerland .

Furthermore, from 1 January 2022, Australia will add Switzerland to the list of States whose nationals are eligible for the Australian Work and Holiday programme. The programme is intended for young adults aged between 18 and 30 who wish to visit Australia for tourist, short-term work and study, and cultural purposes.

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