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What do I need to drive in Switzerland?

Compulsory items include:

Recommended items:

What documents do you need to carry?

  • A full UK driving licence.(photo card and paper counterpart. If you don’t have a photo license carry your passport or obtain an International Driving Permit)
  • Evidence of motor insurance – third party cover is compulsory, we recommend a Green Card.
  • The vehicle’s registration document or a Vehicle on Hire Certificate – originals not photocopies.
  • Motorway tolls are charged and you must obtain a tax disc at the border or from the Swiss Centre in the UK on 00800 100 20030)

Useful driving information

  • You must be 18 or over to drive in Switzerland
  • Wearing a seatbelt is compulsory, the same as the UK
  • Motorway tolls are charged and you must obtain a tax disc at the border or from the Swiss Centre in the UK on 00800 100 20030)
  • Vehicles over 3.5 tonnes are taxed on all roads. This includes caravans. You can pay the tax for 1 day, 10 days, 1 month or a year.
  • You can’t use radar detection devices for speed cameras.
  • Children under 12 and under 150cm should be secured with restraints meeting ECE regulation 44).
  • Drivers who wear glasses must carry a spare pair in the vehicle
  • During the day and outside urban areas you must sound your horn when approaching a sharp turn and visibility is limited. At night you must flash your lights.
  • Pedestrians have the right of way and expect vehicles to stop. They will just step into the road so please be vigilant and aware that you must stop.
  • Snow tyres are required by law, but you can receive a fine if you slow down traffic and don’t have them fitted.
  • If you are part of an accident but don’t phone the Police you must fill in a European Accident Statement Form.
  • You must use dipped headlights in all tunnels or a fine can be imposed. We recommend that you use dipped headlights during the day.
  • Motorcyclists should also use dipped headlights during the day.
  • Hitchhiking is illegal on motorways and major roads.

Switzerland road and motorway speed limits

Police treat speeding very seriously, we advise all drivers to know the speed limits for roads while driving in Switzerland.

  • Urban areas: 50 km/h
  • Open Road: 80 km/h
  • Motorways: 120 km/h (80 km/h if towing a trailer or weigh more that 3.5 tonnes)

When travelling on a motorway the minimum speed limit is 60 km/h.

Towing of cars on a motor is only allowed up to the next junction and a maximum speed of 40 km/h

Drink-drive alcohol limits

  • Normal drivers: 0.05 mg / 100 ml of blood
  • Professional drivers of passenger vehicles cannot drink while driving or within 6 hours of starting their shift.

If you have a blood level exceeding 0.05 mg you will face penalties of heavy fines, imprisonment and a ban from driving in Switzerland.

Emergency numbers

If you need to contact the emergency services you’ll need to dial or 112.


Whilst we endeavour to keep this information updated, the rules and regulations related to driving in Europe may change without notice and this information may contain technical inaccuracies. We cannot be held responsible for information which may become out of date or liability for incorrect information.

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