Shipping to Switzerland (symbol image)Shipping to Switzerland (symbol image)Shipping to Switzerland (symbol image)

Transport and shipping to Switzerland

Foreword + facts and figures

Would you like to send goods to Switzerland by ship? We would be happy to explain the various possibilities and special features of the processing. As an EFTA country in the midst of countless EU countries, Switzerland is subject to separate rules and regulations. In contrast to shipping within the member states of the Schengen area (e.B. shipping from Germany to Austria), goods cannot be sent from an EU country to Switzerland "easily". Since Switzerland is not part of the EU customs union, the goods must be declared to customs in advance and, if necessary, taxed + taxed. More on this, but later in detail. First, some important basic information about Switzerland.

Key figures:

  • Area: 41,285 km2
  • Area code: +41
  • Population: about 8.5 million
  • four national languages: german, French, Italian, Rhaeto-Romance

Interesting facts:

  • 71,520 km road transport network, 5,200 km railway tracks
  • Approx. 1,800 tunnels in Switzerland
  • 3 international airports (Zurich, Geneva and Basel)



Sending letters, parcels and parcels to Switzerland

Would you like to send a letter, parcel or parcel to Switzerland? Then you have to attach the appropriate accompanying documents to him. Depending on the value of the consignment, either a customs declaration or an export accompanying document must be drawn up.

Accompanying documents for mailing to Switzerland

Regardless of whether you ship privately or commercially, you must always encase appropriate customs documents with your shipment. The value limit for the creation of the documents is the unit SDR (Special Drawing Rights). This is a unit from the forwarding industry. Depending on the price of the SDR in EUR, the value limit may change.

Up to a value of 300 Special Drawing Rights (currently approx. EUR 370) each consignment must be enclosed with the Customs Content Declaration CN22. It must not be a parcel, but only a German postal letter or a Deutsche Post parcel. The customs declaration CN22 can be downloaded here: Download CN 22 (for filling aid)

If the value of the goods exceeds 300 Special Drawing Rights (currently around EUR 370) or if it is a package, each consignment must be enclosed with the CN23 customs declaration instead. This can be downloaded here: Download CN23 (for filling aid)

Only with a value of more than EUR 1000 must be prepared for a so-called export accompanying document. General information on the export accompanying document can be found on our homepage. Learn more about how to create the ABD for free here: Create an export accompanying document

If they are merchandise, you must always attach a commercial invoice to the letter, parcel or package.

Transport costs for goods coming to Switzerland as a package

Depending on which provider you want to send your package to, there are different costs. The following always applies: the larger the package and the heavier, the more expensive the shipping becomes. You can send a simple shipment of goods for as little as a few euros (for the price overview of Deutsche Post). A parcel can be shipped to Switzerland from approx. 9 EUR. A package will cost you at least 25 EUR when shipping as a private customer via DHL.

Other shipping service providers such as Hermes offer parcel shipping from around 18 EUR (to the Hermes parcel price list).

If you want to ship the package with a courier, the costs will be calculated according to the time required by the courier. In most cases, however, you have to reckon with several hundred euros. In such a case, you are welcome to contact us if necessary and we will offer you our best possible offer (to the contact form).

Shipping to Switzerland by truck Transport / Goods via forwarding to Switzerland

You not only want to send individual parcels to Switzerland, but also plan to send whole pallets, possibly even as special transport to Switzerland? Here, separate regulations apply in comparison to parcel shipping. The documents you need to create are larger. Import duties are higher for the recipient and the preparation of accompanying documents is more demanding.

Accompanying documents for pallet transport to Switzerland

Similar to shipping by package, you must encase certain documents with the shipment. This includes, among other things, a CMR consignment note (this is which is a matter of course. your forwarding agent), an invoice and, if applicable, export documents. Up to a value of EUR 1,000 and a weight of 1,000 kg, the invoice is sufficient as an export document. You will also need a so-called export accompanying document. In some cases, a transit document should be drawn up instead, e.B. if the goods come from a non-EU country, but more on this in the item "4.1 export accompanying document and T1".

Transport costs for goods coming to Switzerland by truck

Shipping of goods by forwarding agent: Switzerland and Liechtenstein as a country of receipt – what costs do you have to expect? Depending on the size and weight of the shipment, shipping to Switzerland is possible for as little as a few hundred euros. However, it is important to inform yourself beforehand about the complete costs incurred. In addition to the pure freight costs of transport to Switzerland, there are also costs for customs clearance. Depending on the Incoterm, import duties such as customs duties and VAT are charged either to the consignor or to the importer. You should not overlook this in the entire cost calculation.

Are you interested in transport to Switzerland by truck and are looking for a reliable yet cheap forwarding company (Germany – Switzerland)? Then contact us, we will be happy to advise you and create a non-binding offer => to the contact form.

Pallet exchange

Caution should be exercised when exchanging pallets, as is known from Germany or other countries: Switzerland is a non-exchange country. This means that if you deliver EURO flat pallets, they are, in a sense, lost. Similar to if you were to ship the goods on disposable pallets, the shipper does not have to hand over the pallets to you again after unloading in an empty state. This should be taken into account when shipping, as EURO pallets are usually more expensive in production and purchasing.

Swiss Toll / Heavy and Heavy Traffic Levy (LSVA)

To travel on Swiss motorways, you need up to a permissible total weight of 3.5 tons. a motorway vignette. This is available for 40 francs as an annual vignette. Daily and monthly vignettes are not available.

The so-called LSVA (load and heavy traffic levy) applies to trucks. This is always due, no matter which roads are used. It depends on the emission level, the total weight and the kilometres driven. General information and tariffs can be found directly on the EZV (Federal Customs Administration) website:

Heavy goods vehicle tax LSVA – General / Tariffs

Driving bans and permits

In Switzerland, trucks with a maximum permissible weight of more than 3.5 tons. a Sunday and night driving ban. This means that trucks must not be moved between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. You can find out more directly on the website of the Federal Office of Transport: Night and Sunday Driving Ban

Customs clearance when shipping to Switzerland

We had already briefly mentioned the documents required for the proper export of goods from Germany. Now we would like to go into more detail on the more complex documents, such as the export accompanying document and the import declaration.

Export accompanying document and T1

An export accompanying document must always be drawn up for the export of goods with a value of more than EUR 1,000 or weighing more than 1,000 kg. A distinction is made between different methods. We have examined these in a different amount for you:

the single-stage procedure

the two-stage process

Detailed information can also be found on the home page. It also explains the intricacies, such as the registration for an EORI number for commercial exports.

If the goods come from a third country and have not yet been imported into the EU, a transit document T1 must be drawn up. This is created .B at the port of Hamburg when goods are to be delivered from China via Germany to Switzerland. Through the transit document, the goods may be officially transported through Germany duty-free. Import duties therefore only have to be paid once: in the country of the final consignee.

Import customs clearance

Import duty must also be carried out with importation into Switzerland. This requires special software with connection to the e-dec program. Import duties vary depending on the type of goods and weight. As a rule, 7.7% VAT is charged on imports of goods. Switzerland is one of the few countries in the world whose customs duties are not based on the value of the goods but on the weight of the goods to be imported.

We are happy to prepare your import customs clearance at a Swiss customs office. Please contact us for this.