Mobility and Exchange Students

Conditions relevant to entering and residing in Switzerland

The conditions relevant to entering and residing in Switzerland depend on your nationality and on whether you are a regular student at the University of Bern or are an exchange student for one to two semesters.

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After entering Switzerland, you must apply for a residence permit at the registration office of the city of Bern (or from the authorities of your residential municipality). The International Office stocks the relevant form.

The fee for the residence permit: approx. CHF 90

Almost all nationals of non-EU/EFTA countries require a visa. Contact the embassy or the Swiss consulate in your own country for information on visa regulations and applying for a visa. Please note that it takes at least eight weeks for a visa to be issued. You cannot study in Switzerland on a tourist visa.

For your visa and/or residence permit, you must prove that you have CHF 1,500 per month at your disposal. Examples of this financial proof: recent bank statement, confirmation from a person who is supporting you financially (with a copy of that person's passport) and/or proof of a grant. 

Upon your arrival you must apply for a residence permit at the registration office of the city of Bern (or from the authorities of your residential municipality). The International Office stocks the relevant form.

If you are not going to live in the city of Bern, please contact the registration office of your residential municipality in Switzerland.

EU/EFTA nationals do not require a visa to study in Switzerland. 

Within two weeks of your arrival, you must go to the registration office of the city of Bern personally.

Registration office of the city of Bern (if you are living in the city of Bern - ZIP codes 3000 - 3027):
Registration Office, Migration and Border Police of the city of Bern
Predigergasse 5
Postfach
3000 Bern 7

Please observe all informationen on the registration formalities of the city of Bern (website in German) and bring the following documents with you:

  • Application form
  • Personal application for residence permit
  • Passport or ID
  • Immatriculation confirmation of the University of Bern
  • Proof of financial means (1,500 CHF per month)
  • Tenancy agreement (copy of sublease contact and main lease contract)
  • 2 passport photographs
  • Fees (approx. CHF 90)
  • Copy of family book (if married)


If you are not going to live in the city of Bern, please contact the registration office of your residential municipality in Switzerland.

Almost all nationals of non-EU/EFTA countries require a visa to study in Switzerland. Contact the diplomatic representation in your country of origin for information on visa regulations and applying for a visa. The visa application procedure usually takes at least eight weeks.

Even if you already have a residence permit of an EU/EFTA country, you still have to apply for a Schengen visa with the purpose of "studying in Switzerland" from the appropriate Swiss diplomatic representation. If you travel into the country on a tourist visa, you will not be given a residence permit and cannot study in Switzerland. A student visa is mandatory. Third-country citizens who are not required to apply for a visa still require the promise of a residence permit.

Within two weeks of your arrival, you must go to the registration office personally.

Registration office of the city of Bern (if you are living in the city of Bern - ZIP codes 3000 - 3027):
Registration Office, Migration and Border Police of the city of Bern
Predigergasse 5
Postfach
3000 Bern 7

Please bring the following documents with you:

  • Passport with visa or promise of residence permit
  • Fees (amount differs according to your nationality)
  • Tenancy agreement (copy of sublease contact and main lease contract)
  • Proof of financial means (1,500 CHF per month)


If you are not going to live in the city of Bern, please contact the registration office of your residential municipality in Switzerland.