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Import a car in Switzerland

Importing

Is it worthwhile to bring your current vehicle to Switzerland? That’s a complex question, but fortunately, we at autociel are here to help. We have experience importing cars to Switzerland from around the world. Our perspective from inside the country is critical to helping you make the best decision and ensuring your road into Switzerland is smooth.

 

Importing from Europe

It is easy to drive a car across the border into Switzerland but there are some steps you will have to take to import your car properly. Some of the ways we can help include:

  • Providing a quote for the cost of importing and registering your car.
  • Arranging transport and customs clearing.
  • Ordering all the necessary paperwork for the car.
  • Finding out if you qualify to import tax-free.
  • Arranging reduced CO2 fees (if your car is less than 6 months old) with www.co2-exchange.ch.
  • Arranging insurance with the help of our partner company My Swiss Insurance.
  • Arranging compulsory car testing at the government, registration and delivery key in hand.

Important: if you move from the UK with your car is Right Hand Drive (RHD), note that it is difficult to drive a RHD car in Switzerland and quite often the expatriates get not used to it. They then need to sell a RHD car here in Switzerland, where there is almost no market for it. In most instances they will need to sell it back in the UK and have to re-import it, which is not the easiest thing. We recommend not taking your RHD car to Switzerland and if you need to sell it prior to leaving for Switzerland, we are able to provide a quick and easy means of selling your car in the UK. For more information please contact us.

If you qualify to import your car tax free as it is considered as a moving good (you have owned the car for more than 6 months) you have 12 months to register your car under Swiss licence plates, once you arrived in Switzerland. But be careful: often it is your home insurance that is not longer willing to cover your car in Switzerland, so the most important thing is to check with your insurance whether they still cover in Switzerland once you settled in and for how long they do so.

 

Importing from outside Europe

If you’re considering importing your car from outside Europe, it’s important to get all the information first. It can be costly and complicated – and your current vehicle may not even be well adapted to Swiss driving. Ways we can help include:

  • Providing a quote for the cost of importing and registering your car.
  • Arranging customs clearing.
  • Ordering all the necessary paperwork for the car.
  • Finding out if you qualify to import tax-free.
  • Arranging reduced CO2 fees (if your car is less than 6 months old) with www.co2-exchange.ch.
  • Arranging insurance with the help of our partner company My Swiss Insurance.
  • Arranging compulsory car testing at the government, registration and delivery key in hand.

Frequently the SatNav fails to work properly, and sometimes not at all. It's possible to update it, but this can be very complicated and costly. We recommend using a Tom Tom if your system doesn't work properly in Switzerland. Radio Frequencies: only 50% work in Swintzerland. And last but not least, as American cars are different from those in Europe even with European brands, there might be difficulties in servicing and repairing them in Switzerland, as well as in reselling them. We normally recommend selling them at 20% under the market price for comparable cars in Switzerland.

If you qualify for importing your car as part of your moveable goods (i.e. you have owned the car for more than 6 months), in theory you only have 12 months to register your car with Swiss licence plates. This is because 99% of all American insurance companies will refuse to cover your car in Switzerland, meaning that you have to register it as soon as you arrive here.

 

For more information about importing a car, please contact us to arrange for a free consultation and estimate, at your convenience.

 

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