Visitor Family/Friends

Overview

Every applicant, including children/infants, has to submit his/her Schengen visa application in person and by appointment only on their appointment date, which needs to be booked online (see Schedule an Appointment) by the applicant.

For Non EU citizens who are not sure whether a Schengen visa is required to travel to the Schengen Area, please click Do I need a visa? to find out.

Applicants, who intend to travel to visit and stay with family/friends legally residing in Switzerland, need to apply as Visitor Family/Friends.

Eligibility

Applicant must at least meet the following criteria in order to be eligible to submit a Schengen visa application:

  1. holding a valid passport/travel document
  2. holding a valid UK residence permit. In case applicant holds a short stay visa for the UK, a C type visa (see example here), then applicant needs to apply for a Schengen visa from his/her residence country.
  3. applying for a short stay visa: Tourist (including Minors), Visitor Family/Friends, Business, EEA/EU and Swiss national family member or Airport Transit

Visa Fees

  • Visa Category

Visa fee (in Euro)

Visa fee (in GBP)

VFS Service fee (in GBP)

Tourism/Visitor Family & Friends/Conference

60

53

26.39

Business

60

53

26.39

Airport Transit

60

53

26.39

Nationals of countries with a visa facilitation agreement with the European Union: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bosnia – Herzegovina,  Georgia, Moldova, Russian Federation and Serbia

35

31

26.39

Children between 6 and 12 years old

35

31

26.39

Children less than 6 years old

0

0

26.39

EXEMPTION VISA FEES

Organised groups of school pupils/students accompanied by teachers on study/educational trip; only applicable if applicants have a formal invitation from an educational institution in Switzerland.

0

0

26.39

(scientific) researchers from third countries

0

0

26.39

Representatives of non-profit organisations (up to 25 years old) actively participating in conferences/events (sports, cultural or educational) organised by non-profit organisations.

0

0

26.39

Applicable visa fee, in Pound Sterling (£), is as per the current exchange rate and may be subject to change without notice.

VFS service fee (inclusive of VAT) is charged per visa application, in addition to the applicable visa fee.

All fees can be paid by cash (except in Manchester, Cardiff and Edinburgh), Credit/Debit card or Postal Orders in the name of “Switzerland Visa Application Centre”.

Cheque payments and direct bank transfers are not accepted.

All fees are non-refundable.

Documents Required

For complete list of Family visit category documents, please click here


Note – where it is stated that documents/letters should be original, please note that such items must be hand-signed and signatures must not be digital, scanned or photocopied.


Note – Proof of relationship must be provided (Original and copy of marriage certificate) if you are applying as a family where the spouse is depended on the main applicant.


Note – All Visa Applicants must have a Passport that is not older than 10 Years as of the date of return from your scheduled trip. This also applies to passports issued more than 10 years ago that have since been extended. In this case you must obtain a new passport before making your application.


Photo Specifications


Please provide 2 recent colour photographs (not more than 6 months old) of yourself, meeting the following requirements:

  • Taken against a light (white or off-white) background so that features are distinguishable and contrast against the background.
  • Clear quality and with the face in focus
  • Full face: non-smiling, no sunglasses, no hat/cap or any head covering, unless the applicant wears such items because of his/her religious belief or ethnic background
  • Printed on normal photographic paper (camera print)
  • Photograph attached (paper clipped) to the Visa Application Form

If the photographs presented do not meet these requirements (see examples here), then the visa application will be considered incomplete and applicant will be asked to take new photographs in the photo booth in the visa application centre.

 

Processing Time

Every applicant can submit his/her Schengen visa application up to 3 months before the intended travel date to the Schengen Area.

The mimimum processing time of a visa application is 7 working days, so applicants are advised to leave enough time - between the appointment date and travel date - for the Mission to process their visa application; no guarantees can be given on the visa application’s return date as delays may occur.

For certain nationalities (see list here) the visa application needs consultation from the other Schengen countries and therefore the minimum processing time takes 14 working days.

In order to avoid any delays in the visa application process, it is paramount that the visa application is complete and its documents submitted are as per the Mission’s requirements (see Documents Required for the different visa categories).

Applicants also need to be aware that, especially during busy season around Easter, Summer holidays (July and August) and Christmas, the appointments (see Schedule an Appointment) are being booked very quickly as the Mission only processes a fixed amount of visa applications on a daily basis.  

Furthermore applicants need to consider that VFS/Mission’s closures and holidays (see Public Holidays/Closures) may extend the visa application processing time.

Therefore VFS recommends all applicants:

  1. to book their appointment as soon as they know they’ll be travelling
  2. to ensure that their visa application’s documentation meets the Mission’s requirements
  3. to leave enough processing time for the Mission

Applicants submitting their visa application in our satellite centre in Manchester, Edinburgh or Cardiff, need to calculate 2 extra days to their minimum processing time as their visa application will first be dispatched to the VFS London office, from where it is forwarded to the Mission in London the following day.

The Mission may always request for additional information/documents or invite applicants for an interview during the visa application process and this may cause delays in the visa process, which applicants accept responsibility for.

Application Form

For Switzerland every applicant needs to provide a signed printout from an online Schengen visa application form (VAF).

 

Therefore each applicant first needs to complete and then print the online Schengen visa application form as follows:

 

  1. Click Schengen Visa Application form (PDF format in English/German)
  2. Duly complete VAF (as per the passport’s details)
  3. Select File in Menu bar
  4. Select Print & confirm Printing

Once the completed Schengen visa application form has been printed, then applicant needs to finish the remaining steps:

 

  1. Sign the completed visa application form in the designated places (1st signature at no.37, 2nd signature right under the disclaimer at the end of the VAF and 3rd signature at the bottom of complementary page to the visa application)
  2. Bring the signed visa application form with the supporting documents on his/her appointment day (see Schedule an Appointment).