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UPDATED: A step-by-step guide to getting the Swiss Covid certificate

Switzerland has made its Covid-19 health pass available, which will help with travel, nightclubs and events. Here’s how you get it.

UPDATED: A step-by-step guide to getting the Swiss Covid certificate
Switzerland's Covid-19 certificate app up close. Image: FOPH

On Monday, June 7th, Switzerland finally released its Covid-19 certificate, which will provide certain rights and privileges to holders for travel and events. 

The Covid-19 certificate – otherwise known as the Covid-19 pass or the green pass – is available in paper and digital form. 

According to the Swiss government, the pass “provides documentary evidence that you have had a COVID-19 vaccination, have had and recovered from the disease or have tested negative”. 

More information about what the pass allows holders to do can be found at the following link. 

UPDATED: Everything you need to know about the ‘green pass’, Switzerland’s coronavirus immunity card

What is the Covid certificate?

The Covid-19 certificate – otherwise known as the Covid-19 pass or the green pass – is available in paper and digital form. 

According to the Swiss government, the pass “provides documentary evidence that you have had a COVID-19 vaccination, have recovered from the disease or have tested negative”. 

What will the certificate look like? 

The Covid-19 certificate will be issued to you in paper and electronic form, which will either be as a printed out certificate or as a QR code which you can scan into Switzerland’s Covid Certificate App to carry and display from your mobile device. 

While this is a cantonal responsibility, you will generally be given a paper copy of your vaccination certificate while also being sent the electronic version. 

Besides the person’s first and last names, date of birth and a certificate number, the COVID certificate contains details of their COVID-19 vaccination, recovery, or negative PCR or rapid antigen test. 

The heart of the certificate is the QR code. 

In both cases, they will be accompanied by an official government electronic signature to prevent forgery. 

Authorities said holders may also need to show their ID or passport when presenting the certificate

The digital system comprises in particular a storage application (Covid Certificate) and a verification application (Covid Certificate Check), the government said. 

Both apps are available for free. Here is the link for the Apple App store here, and that for Android

Switzerland’s Covid-19 certificate app up close. Image: FOPH

Where can I get the Covid-19 certificate? 

You get the certificate in the place in which you were vaccinated, recovered from the virus or tested negative. 

This means you can get the certificate at any of the following locations: Vaccination centres, medical practices, hospitals, pharmacies, test centres and laboratories. 

If you have already been fully vaccinated and did not receive a QR code, you must contact cantonal authorities to get the certificate. 

If you have recovered from the virus, you will also need to contact your canton. You will need to have had the virus and recovered in the previous six months – and you will need documentary evidence of this. 

READ MORE: How do you prove you’ve recovered from Covid in Switzerland?

For people who test negative, you will be given a certificate. 

Both PCR and antigen tests apply here, although the validity differs. 

A negative PCR test is valid for 72 hours, while a negative antigen test is valid for 48 hours

Self tests are not valid for the certificate.  

While you will get a paper print out with a negative test in most cases, you can also get it displayed on the Covid Certificate App by scanning in your QR code.

The app – which is different to the Swiss Covid tracing app – is available here for Google/Android phones and here for Apple phones.

You can scan the QR code into the app, then it will be recorded there and you can use it as you would the paper slip.

How will this allow me to travel? 

Yes. 

As of Friday, July 9th, Switzerland’s Covid certificate has become a part of the EU travel framework. 

The European Union and Switzerland will recognise each other’s Covid vaccination certificates from Friday, July 9th.

This means you do not need to get an additional app – you can use your Swiss Covid Certificate app to travel in the EU. 

More information about this is available at the following link. 

EXPLAINED: How to use Switzerland’s Covid app when travelling in the EU

Member comments

  1. How can US visitors fully vaccinated with the Moderna vaccine in the US get a Swiss COVID 19 certificate ?We are visiting Switzerland in a week, we would appreciate any help you can provide. Thank you.

    1. Hi,

      We are traveling to Switzerland in a week and had the same question about receiving the Swiss Covid 19 certificate. I was wondering if you ever sorted this out and had a solution you could share?

  2. I’m going to be in Switzerland for a couple of weeks in October. Does anyone know if the NHS app (U.K.), proving I’m doubly vaccinated, will be accepted in cafes, restaurants? I’d be very grateful for any info.

    Thks

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TRAVEL NEWS

The Covid rules you should know if you’re travelling from Switzerland this summer

When it comes to Covid regulations in Switzerland and elsewhere in Europe, the situation is certainly much more relaxed than it was last summer. However, certain countries still maintain rules in regards to vaccinations and masks.

The Covid rules you should know if you're travelling from Switzerland this summer

Months ago, health experts predicted that coronavirus will not be circulating extensively during the summer months and won’t strike us again before the weather turns cold in the fall / winter.

But as it turns out, these forecasts were wrong, as Omicron and its highly contagious sub-variants keep infecting increasing numbers of people across Europe.

In Switzerland, the number of reported contaminations has risen from under 10,000 a week in May to 33,108 registered in a span of seven days on June 28, with officials expecting an explosion in cases as summer progresses.

READ MORE: ‘Over a million people’ in Switzerland could be infected with Covid this summer

What does this mean for international travel?

As of right now (and the situation could change in coming weeks), Switzerland doesn’t require either testing or proof of vaccination upon entry. This is also the situation in many other countries in Europe as well as farther afield.

However, some popular European tourist destinations still (or again) have Covid-related entry regulations in place, as well as rules inside the country.

This is an overview of the places where people who live in Switzerland like to spend their summer holidays:

France

Entry requirements:

For vaccinated persons, full vaccination for at least one week must be proven. The last dose must be less than nine months old. Cured people can travel a week after receiving a single dose.

For recovered people: the positive result of a PCR test more than 11 days old and less than six months.

For non-vaccinated persons: a negative PCR test dated less than 72 hours or an antigen test carried out less than 48 hours before departure. Children under 12 are exempt.

On-site measures:

Wearing a mask on public transport, which has not been required since May 16th, is once again strongly recommended — though not compulsory.

Italy

While proof of vaccination or negative test is not required to enter Italy, there are some mask requirements in place in the country.

From mid-June, Italian government extended the obligation to wear FFP2 masks on public transport until September 30th, except on planes. The surgical mask is also still compulsory from the age of six in health establishments.

Portugal

Proof of full vaccination for at least 14 days is required to enter, with the last dose no older than 270 days ago. Swiss Covid certificates should suffice.

For recovered people, proof of recovery dating from 11 to 180 days before arrival in Portugal is required.

The unvaccinated should have a negative PCR test dated less than 72 hours or an antigen test carried out less than 24 hours before departure.

Children under 12 are exempt from these requirements.

Also, all travellers must fill out a passenger locator card before departure, as well as a form required by the Portuguese health authorities before their departure or during the flight.

On-site measures:

Portugal decided on April 21st to end the obligation to wear a mask indoors. However, masks are still required on public transport, hospitals or retirement homes.

These are the regulation for mainland Portugal; those visiting Madeira, can see the rules in this link.

Spain

Since June 2nd, travellers from a Schengen area (which includes Switzerland) are no longer subject to any health checks upon arrival.

On-site measures:

Spain lifted the requirement to wear a mask indoors on April 20th. The mask is, however, still required from the age of six on public transport, in hospitals and retirement homes. Differences may exist between regions, so consult the websites of individual areas.

Austria

Since May 16th, travel restrictions have been lifted. Nevertheless, an FFP2 mask remains compulsory from the age of six for flights to and from the Vienna region.

On-site measures

FFP2 masks are mandatory from the age of 14 on public transport and in pharmacies in Vienna.

Germany

Since June 1st and until at least August 31st, entry restrictions to Germany have all been suspended.

On-site measures:

No vaccination or testing rules on entry, but restrictions remain in some federal states, so check local websites for more information.

Wearing a mask remains compulsory from the age of six on public transport and in medical establishments. To go to the hospital, an antigen test of less than 24 hours or PCR of less than 48 hours is required.

READ MORE: EU extends Covid travel certificates until 2023

United Kingdom

There are no more Covid restrictions across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, and arrivals no longer need to fill out a Passenger Locator Form before arriving in the UK.

United States

According to the US Embassy in Switzerland, “air travelers to the United States are no longer required to show a negative COVID-19 test result, or documentation of recovery from COVID-19, prior to boarding a flight to the United States”.

However, there are different requirements for different categories of travelers: “all non-U.S.-citizen, nonimmigrant (not a U.S. citizen, U.S. national, lawful permanent resident, or traveling to the United States on an immigrant visa) airline passengers traveling to the United States, must demonstrate proof of vaccination prior to boarding a U.S. bound aircraft”.

If you want to find out what the latest requirements are at your destination, you can do so by checking out the websites of their embassies in Switzerland, or official tourist bodies for each country / region.

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