When you move to Switzerland, you are required to apply for a Swiss driver's licence at the "Strassenverkehrsamt " -  the Cantonal Vehicle Licensing Office. You have 12 months from your date of entry into Switzerland to change your licence, but it is recommended that you do so earlier. You are required to go to the department personally with a photo, your residence permit and your current valid driver's licence.


The Vehicle Licensing Office is also where any car which you purchase has to be registered. In most cases, the garage where you bought your car will deliver take care of this paperwork for you, although you will need to provide proof from your insurance company that you have  liability insurance. Since there are different types of insurance coverage, ask your insurance company for a quote. 


To drive in Switzerland, your vehicle will require an "Autobahn-Vignette" (motorway toll sticker which is placed on the windscreen of your car) for unlimited driving on motorways. This can be purchased at any post office or petrol station and is valid for one calendar year from  January - December, costing CHF 40.
The Cantonal Vehicle Licensing Office can be contacted at:

Hinterbergstrasse 41
6312 Steinhausen

Tel. +41 41 728 47 11
Fax +41 41 728 47 27


Speed limits, alcohol limit

Standard speed limits are 50 kph in built-up areas, 80 kph on country roads and 120 kph on motorways. A special speed limit of 30 kph is being introduced in an increasing number of residential districts. In some streets, so called meeting zones have been defined, where the speed limite is just 20 km/h. In these roads, pedestrians have a general right of way. 
The alcohol limit for drivers is 0.5 o/oo.

Mobility, car sharing

Car sharing is the clever way to be mobile. Whenever you want – without the commitments that owning your own car entails. Mobility has 2'600 vehicles waiting for you at 1'300 stations throughout Switzerland. Around the clock and on a self-service basis. For more information visit the Mobility website here

Parking and Blue Zones

There are two types of public parking spaces: white zones and blue zones. White zone parking spaces have to be paid for at the parking meter. The allowed time is specified on the parking meter, it can vary according to the location of the parking. For the blue zone parking spaces you need a parking disc, on which you will have to indicate the time of arrival. You can get a disc at the post offices or police stations.