Disclaimer: The information below is intended to assist conference attendees with their travel arrangements. Each individual traveling to the conference is responsible for researching all requirements necessary for entry to Switzerland specific to his or her case. The Global Risk Forum (GRF Davos) has no influence on an individual's application to a Swiss Embassy or other agency for a visa to travel to Switzerland. GRF Davos is also not responsible for the outcome of an individual's visa application.
There are many different requirements to obtain a Visa to enter Switzerland or other countries. Switzerland is a member state of the Schengen area. Unless otherwise stated on the visa sticker, a visa issued by Switzerland is also valid for the other Schengen states and vice versa.
Please be aware that the application has to be made at the Schengen representation of the country of your main destination. Travellers who spend equal time in several Schengen states are required to apply for the visa at the representation of the country where they enter the Schengen area.
The following states are currently issuing Schengen visas:
Some embassies may request a conference attendee to present a letter from the Conference Secretariat to verify their intentions to attend that specific conference.
Visa applications are currently subject to a greater degree of scrutiny than in the past. Many applicants may be required to appear in person for an interview as a part of the visa process. Applicants affected by these procedures are informed of the need for additional screening at the time they submit their application and are being advised to expect delays. Therefore, attendees should be advised to apply no later than 2 months prior to the conference.
International travellers should register for the conference as early as possible and apply for their visa to enter Switzerland. In general, foreign travellers should apply for their Swiss visa at least 2 to 3 months prior to their travel to the conference.
Obtain a visa letter
To facilitate visa application the conference organizers will supply a letter of invitation to all conference attendees that can be submitted with the visa application. The process of applying for a visa support letter is part of the registration process. To access this Visa letter you must fulfil one of the following conditions:
- Be a Plenary Speaker / Presenter
- Be a Committee member
- Be a registered participant, who has paid his / her registration fee in full
Without receipt of full conference registration and payment no visa letter will be issued.
Embassies & Consulates
To view a list of Swiss Embassies, Consulates, and Diplomatic Missions internationally, please visit the following website: http://www.eda.admin.ch/eda/en/home/reps.html.
The Swiss Federal Office for Migration has set up a web site www.bfm.admin.ch to assist all foreign travellers who need to apply for a visa. This web site is an important resource for travellers attending conferences in Switzerland. In addition to background materials the site provides important information regarding country specific visa requirements, advice regarding possible visa delays, and advice to travellers upon arrival in Switzerland.
Please be aware that visa issuance cannot be guaranteed. Visa decisions are made solely by the Swiss Federal Office for Migration.
Therefore final travel plans or the purchase of non-refundable tickets should not be made until a visa has been issued.
Travel without a visa
Swiss visa policy permits citizens of certain countries to travel to Switzerland without a visa, when they meet certain requirements, under Swiss laws.
Individual visa requests
One of the options above should be appropriate for all conference attendees coming from outside Switzerland. The conference organizers cannot provide individual pre-conference, pre-visa application advice to attendees. Please refer to the official Swiss Government Web sites links above. However, if Switzerland Consulate refuses to accept your application for visa, or denies your application, or tells you personally that you must apply for some other visa in order to travel to the conference, contact the conference organizers immediately. In these instances it may be possible for us to provide you with additional visa advice on a case-by-case basis.
Individual advice will not be provided unless you have been told by a Swiss Consulate that they will not grant a visa, or you have been denied a visa.
Information sheet for entry to Switzerland
- Information sheet for entry to Switzerland
- Visahandbook I (English)
- Visahandbook I (Spanish)
- Overview of ID and visa provisions according to nationality
- Visa Application Forms (available in various languages)
Forms to download and fill in online:
- Schengen visa application form (application and supplementary sheet)
For short-term stays in the Schengen area of up to three months in a six months period for tourist purposes, visits, etc.
PRINT the information provided on this page as a PDF.