Premise: If you’re already on step 4 you are probably and hopefully convinced that moving to Switzerland is the right choice for you. Great! Now it’s time to get into the real planning! On step 4 we will talk about the ways to find the way to come to Switzerland :). By the way, when I am writing about “ways to come to Switzerland” I mean exclusively legal ways.
The picture above shows a typical wood in northern Switzerland. As you can see, there is plenty of space between the trees. There isn’t a path, but you can still cross the wood. I chose this pic because I think that coming to Switzerland is similar to crossing this wood. There is no road that you simply can follow but there are many ways to cross it. Some of you might will have the chance to choose between many paths and get through the wood very quickly and without much effort. Others will only have one single path and many trees will be on their way. As you cannot see where the wood ends, you will probably bring a map, food, drinks and warm clothes. In other words, you will plan your trip.
Legal opportunities: I will never stop repeating how important it is to plan properly! Get informed about the paths that you can follow according to your personal situation and choose the easiest one. Take into account these points:
- Nationality: your nationality is probably the main thing that is affecting the way you can move to Switzerland. For instance, if you have EU-nationality you will be allowed to move to Switzerland and get a work permit without much effort. For non-EU nationals getting a work permit can be more complicated and some of you will need even a travel visa to entering Switzerland.
- Work/studying permit: it makes a big difference if you want to move to Switzerland to work or just to study. In some cases, you will be allowed to live in Switzerland during your studies but you won’t be allowed to earn money. Make sure that you request the right permit and know your rights.
- Family situation: This point means two things: first, if you have family members that already live in Switzerland you might have some privileges. Second, it makes a big difference if you want to move alone or with the whole family. For example, in some situations you will need to show that you have enough financial reserves to start (with your family) a life in Switzerland.
How to get information: The best way to get reliable information about residence and working permits is always to check official sites:
- Entry, residence & working (admin.ch) The official Swiss governmental homepage (State Secretariat for Migration), which gives a general overview of permits
- Entry and stay in Switzerland – www.ch.ch Ch.ch is a great page from Swiss government, cantons and communes, which explains in a much easier and detailed way everything connected to Switzerland, including permits
- Foreign Representations in Switzerland (admin.ch) Again from the Swiss governmental homepage, you can check the Swiss embassy in your country
- If you are planning to study in Switzerland, you can also check or ask directly the university you choose.
To get an overview you can also check other sites such Youtube, where you will find plenty of videos about the topic. Just be careful that the information you get won’t be always valid and reliable.
Suggestion: Check the permit(s) that most fit(s) for you, write down what the requirements are and where you find those pieces of information (just in case that you have to check them again). Write down the Swiss embassy contacts of your country and other useful official organizations such as your country’s embassy in Switzerland or your country’s governmental homepage. Contact them if you have open questions. After you finish with your little research, write down which permit you need/want and what the prerequisites are.
Go to the next step: How much money?.
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Gerdaknows is not a legal counselor and does not take any responsibilities about the correctness and completeness of the information. Gerdaknows does not tolerate racist, sexist, xenophobic comments, insults, mobbing, etc..