Everything that changes in Switzerland in July 2022
Same-sex marriage, new rules for cars, and music festivals: this is what's in store for Switzerland in July.
Same-sex couples can marry at last
After Switzerland voted to legalise same-sex marriage in a nationwide referendum on September 26th, 2021, the new law will enter into force on July 1st.
Gay couples will also be able to convert their registered partnership — which did not provide the same rights as marriage, including for obtaining citizenship and the joint adoption of children — will suffice to convert a current partnership.
Sessions with psychologists will be reimbursed by health insurance
Until now, Swiss basic insurance (KVG / LaMal) only covered mental health and treatment provided by psychiatrists.
But starting on July 1st, the cost of counselling offered by licensed psychologists will also be refunded, after agreement on hourly rates was reached between the association of psychologists and groups which determine medical rates.
New rules for electronic voting: pilot tests
Cantons will again be able to carry out electronic voting trials from July 1st.
The Federal Council has set July 1st as the entry into force of the new rules.
Electronic voting has been in the trial phase since 2004. Fifteen cantons have already created the necessary legal bases and conducted more than 300 successful tests.
Electronic voting will only be accessible to part of the population — 30 percent of the cantonal electorate and 10 percent of the Swiss electorate as a whole.
Installing solar panels will become easier
Some solar installations on facades, dams or noise barriers can more easily be built from July 1st, as the Federal Council removed prior administrative obstacles to these actions.. The granting of authorisations for these structures may be accelerated and the conditions relaxed.
It will therefore be easier to set up such installations on a dam lake in an alpine environment or on a less sensitive part of the territory. There will no longer be a need for authorisation to install solar panels on roofs.
Swiss vehicles to be equipped with black boxes
Black boxes will be mandatory for new types of passenger cars and vans from July 1st, after the entry into force of a UN regulation.
The new regulation aims to allow significant progress in gathering data on road accidents and vehicle safety, according to the UN Economic Commission for Europe.
Thanks to the new device, investigators will be able to reconstruct an accident from five seconds before and until the vehicle is immobilised.
Summer holidays begin
Depending on the canton, almost all schoolchildren in Switzerland will start their summer break between July 4th and 11th. You can find out the date in each canton here.
However, getting to and from your holiday destination by air may not be all that relaxing: airports in Switzerland and throughout Europe are expecting huge crowds and chaos as travel is picking up after two years of Covid restrictions.
There will also be delays and disruptions due to some previously scheduled flights being cancelled.
Passengers are advised to contact their airline to find out if their flight is affected.
Switzerland's famous jazz and rock festivals
July is the month when two world-famous music festivals take place annually in Switzerland.
The first, Montreux Jazz, begins on July 1st and goes through July 16th in Montreux, an old town located in Vaud on the shores of Lake Geneva, where Freddy Mercury, frontman of Queen once lived and worked.
This year's line-up includes stars like Diana Ross, Herbie Hancock, and John Legend, among others.
The second music event, the Paléo Festival in Nyon, also in canton Vaud, will take place (after missing 2020 and 2021due to Covid) from July 19th to 24th, and feature world-class perfprmers like Sting, KISS, and dozen others.