Visas

Visa for people residing in the Russian Federation and the Republic of Belarus

Important notice:

Dear Applicants,

Since January 2014 only the visa section of the Swiss Embassy is responsible for the treatment of visa applications from people living permanently in the Russian Federation. Please be aware that only requests with Switzerland as main travel target will be accepted! Also be aware that the General Consulate St. Petersburg doesn’t handle any visa requests anymore!

18 October 2013: New rule on calculation of the duration of stay within the Schengen Area

Important changes in the visa application process as of March 31st, 2014, in the Russian Federation

Starting from March 31st, 2014, applications for Schengen visa (categories A & C) with main travel target Switzerland need to be submitted at the counters of an external service provider which will then forward the visa documents for further processing to the Embassy in Moscow. Passports with visa are to be collected at the same office where the documents were submitted earlier. The external service provider is called TLScontact. This service costs around EUR 22.00 per person - in addition to the visa fee that might be due (equivalent payable in RUR).

Website of the company TLScontact

Visa Application Centers for Switzerland - with the exception of Moscow, all jointly used with other countries and have a "Switzerland Desk" - are at your disposal as from 31.03.2014 in the following cities: Moscow, St. Petersburg, Yekaterinburg, Rostov-on-Don, and Novosibirsk. Submission of application is possible from Monday to Friday (except holidays), from 09:00 a.m. to 03:00 p.m., collection of passports from 11:00 a.m. to 04:30 p.m.

In six other locations: Samara, Kasan, Nizhniy Novgorod, Krasnoyarsk, UFA, Vladivostok, other solutions are available as a drop-box and a courier-solution in cooperation with a local courier company. Courier fees (from the location to Moscow and back to the location) are to be paid by the applicants who choose this solution!

Applications for national visa for Switzerland (type D, stay of more than 90 days) need to be submitted even after this date at the counters of the visa section of the Embassy in Moscow.

General information about entering Switzerland and the general section of VBC instructions (Visa and Border control) can be found at the website of the State Secretariat for Migration (SEM) - see link provided in the link box on the right side of this page.

On our website you find information how to obtain a visa at the Embassy of Switzerland in Moscow for people living in the Russian Federation and in the Republic of Belarus.

On February 01, 2011, the Visa Facilitation Agreement between Switzerland and the Russian Federation entered into force. It only concerns Schengen Visa and brings several changes (enumeration not conclusive):

  • Holders of Russian diplomatic passports are entitled to visa-fee travel
  • The visa fee amounts to EUR 35.00 (only applicable to citizens of countries Switzerland concluded a respective agreement: Russian Federation, Moldova, Serbia, as well as Bosnia-Herzegovina)
  • Visas are issued free of charge to certain categories of applicants
  • Certain categories of applicants are entitled of multy entry visas with a validity of up to 5 years
  • Certain categories of applicants are entitled of multy entry visas with a validity between 2 and 5 years, provided certain criteria are met.
  • In case of loss or theft of a travel document with a visa while in Switzerland, a valid identity document or other authorization issued by the Embassy or a Consulate of the Russian Federation in Switzerland entitles to depart without the need of a (new) visa. Condition: the new document must entitle the holder to cross the borders

For the full agreement-text see the website of the State Secretariat for Migration (SEM) - link provided in the link box on the right side of this page. 

Competent representation for the issue of visa: Embassy of Switzerland in Moscow

People residing permanently in the Russian Federation apply for their visas at one of the Visa Application Centers of our Outsourcing-partners TLScontact.

Call Center

To get an appointment at the VAC of our Outsourcing-Partners or for national “D”-visa directly at the visa section of the Swiss Embassy or detailed information please call:

  • Telephone: +7 495 9958512
  • Available Monday to Friday, 09:00 to 12:30 and 13:30 to 18:00

The services of the call center are available from Monday to Friday from 09:00 a.m. to 05:00 p.m. (Moscow time). Calls only cost the normal phone charges. Appointments can also be requested on the website of TLScontact (new external service provider, operating the Visa Application Centers from March 31st, 2014). 

Call Center of the company TLScontact

Visa section of the Embassy of Switzerland in Moscow

Applicants for national visa for Switzerland (Type D, stay of more than 90 days) must submit their documents - with prior appointment - at the visa section of the Embassy. Appointments can be booked through the call centers or directly with the visa section; either by applying in person at the counters, Monday - Friday, 11:15 a.m. - 11:45 a.m. (submission of documents at the same time not possible!) or by sending a fax to +7 495 225 88 36, indicating surname, first name, number of application(s) and phone number and e-mail address for confirming an appointment. Such appointments are subject to availability. Depending on the demand, a waiting period may result.

For applicants who prefer not to submit their documents at a Visa Application Center, but at the visa section of the Embassy in Moscow, a limited number of "slots" are available daily. However, priority is given to applicants who would like to submit an application for a national visa. Requests for appointments are to be made the same way as for national visa (see paragraph above).

Processing of Schengen visa applications (types A & C) at the Embassy will normally take a minimum of three working days. In addition, the time for transport from the Visa Application Centers to the Embassy and back to the centers is to be taken into account. Depending on the distance from Moscow (e.g. from Vladivostok) transport takes a few days. On the website of TLScontact the average time for transport from the different Visa Application Centers to Moscow is mentioned. Missing documents, the need for a personal interview or internal consultations delay the visa process. Applications should therefore be submitted early enough (maximal three month prior the entry date to Switzerland, but at least 2 weeks prior to departure date).

Passports of applicants who submitted their documents at the visa section of the Embassy will be returned earliest on the 3rd working day after submission (not counting day of deposit) and after timely payment of the visa fee from 10:00 to 11:45 a.m. (Monday - Friday, except public holidays).

People intending to visit Switzerland on an invitation from an International Organization (please see the list following the link below) may submit their documents without prior appointment any working day from 09:00 to 11:45 a.m. (Monday - Friday, except public holidays) at the visa section of the Embassy.

Republic of Belarus; valid as of May 25, 2010

Visa applications for a stay of up to 3 months (short stay, Schengen visa, type C: tourism, visit, business) are to be submitted to the Embassy of the Republic of Hungary in Minsk (Belarus, see link), which represents Switzerland there in visa matters in the mentioned categories:

Embassy of the Republic of Hungary
Consular & Visa department
Ul. Platonova 1/b
220034 Minsk
Tel.: +375 17 233 94 16
Fax: +375 17 233 94 17
E-mail: visa.msk@mfa.gov.hu

Embassy of the Republic of Hungary in Minsk

The Embassy of the Republic of Hungary is not competent in the following cases:

  • Short stays in association with a gainful activity (including journalists)
  • Short stays for educational purposes (for example: language courses)
  • Short stays for medical purposes
  • Visa applications of holders of diplomatic, service or special passports, who are not citizens of Belarus
  • Visa applications of holders of ordinary passports who intend to enter Switzerland on official purpose (including the attendance at international conferences), who are not citizens of Belarus
  • Visa applications for traineeship with an international organization, a diplomatic mission, a consular post or a permanent mission based in Switzerland

Further specific restrictions may apply.

These applications need to be submitted at one of the Visa Application Centers in the consular jurisdiction of the Embassy of Switzerland in Moscow, or directly at the visa section of the Embassy (with prior appointment).

People living in the Republic of Belarus who intend to stay longer than 3 months in Switzerland (studies, taking up of residence, family reunion or marriage celebration in Switzerland with taking up of residence - visa category D) or intend do work (even for less than 3 months), have to apply for the respective visa at the Embassy of Switzerland in Moscow.

Consular district/region of Kaliningrad; valid as of June 16th, 2014

Visa applications for a stay of up to 3 months (short stay, Schengen visa, type C: tourism, visit, business) from residents living in the consular district/region of Kaliningrad can also be submitted to the Chancery of the Consular section of the Embassy of the Republic of Latvia in Kaliningrad (see link), which represents Switzerland there in visa matters in the mentioned categories:

Embassy of the Republic of Latvia
Consular section
F. Engelsa 52a
Kaliningrad

Russian Federation

Tel.: +7 (4012) 56 55 01
         +7 (4012) 56 55 03 (answering machine)
Fax: +7 (4012) 56 55 02

E-Mail: chancery.kaliningrad@mfa.gov.lv

Website: Embassy of the Republic of Latvia

The Embassy of the Republic of Latvia is not competent in the following cases:

  • Short-stay visa applications for the purpose of pursuing gainful activities (including chauffeurs and journalists);
  • Short-stay visa applications for medical purposes;
  • Short-stay visa applications lodged by citizens of the following countries: the Democratic Republic of Congo, the State of Eritrea, the Republic of Iraq and the Federal Republic of Somalia;
  • The issuance of visas with limited territorial validity (except when Article 25(3) of the Visa Code is applicable);
  • Short-stay visa applications lodged by holders of diplomatic, service or special passports who are not citizens of the Russian Federation;
  • Short-stay visa applications lodged by holders of ordinary passports who intend to enter Switzerland for official purposes, including participation in international conferences, and who are not citizens of the Russian Federation.

Further specific restrictions may apply.

These applications need to be submitted at one of the Visa Application Centers in the consular jurisdiction of the Embassy of Switzerland in Moscow, or directly at the visa section of the Embassy (with prior appointment).

People living in the consular district/region of Kaliningrad who intend to stay longer than 3 months in Switzerland (studies, taking up of residence, family reunion or marriage celebration in Switzerland with taking up of residence - visa category D) or intend to work (even for less than 3 months), have to apply for the respective visa at the Embassy of Switzerland in Moscow.