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-   -   Driving License conversion problem (https://www.englishforum.ch/transportation-driving/269956-driving-license-conversion-problem.html)

zigg 13.05.2017 21:52

Driving License conversion problem
 
Hey guys, I have this little big problem with my driving license conversion, and I thought maybe someone knows something to help me out.

So the problem I have is that i tried to change my driving license that I got in my own country for the swiss one, but apparently you need to get your driving licence 12 months before entering switzerland and before getting your residence (something that I havent seen anywhere on the Ch website). I thought in a foolish way that it would be fine to do my license in my own country during the summer vacation after 2 years of living in Switzerland and afterwards converting it to the Swiss one(thinking it would be easier with the language and what not).

But now after sending them all the documents and forms that i filled and including the original driving licence, they decided to keep the original license and making me do the whole driving school once again but in Switzerland.

My question is, has it happened to someone else as well?. And if yes, do I have to redo the Swiss driving school again or just the tests (theoretical and practical).

Thank you

roegner 13.05.2017 21:55

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by zigg (Post 2785866)
Hey guys, I have this little big problem with my driving license conversion, and I thought maybe someone knows something to help me out.

So the problem I have is that i tried to change my driving license that I got in my own country for the swiss one, but apparently you need to get your driving licence 12 months before entering switzerland and before getting your residence (something that I havent seen anywhere on the Ch website). I thought in a foolish way that it would be fine to do my license in my own country during the summer vacation after 2 years of living in Switzerland and afterwards converting it to the Swiss one(thinking it would be easier with the language and what not).

But now after sending them all the documents and forms that i filled and including the original driving licence, they decided to keep the original license and making me do the whole driving school once again but in Switzerland.

My question is, has it happened to someone else as well?. And if yes, do I have to redo the Swiss driving school again or just the tests (theoretical and practical).

Thank you

Yes, that is normal and yes, the driving licence done during the summer holidays is not valid here.

zigg 13.05.2017 22:04

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by roegner (Post 2785867)
Yes, that is normal and yes, the driving licence done during the summer holidays is not valid here.

Thank you for the fast reply,
One more question if its ok. Is it possible to do the exams without doing the whole driving school? Since in most European countries it is kind of mandatory.

Thank you

roegner 13.05.2017 22:07

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
No idea, sorry.

It is in a lot of countries that you cannot just pop over to your home country, get your driving licence and convert it.

zigg 13.05.2017 22:09

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Thank you for the reply

Anjela 13.05.2017 22:10

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by zigg (Post 2785868)
Thank you for the fast reply,
One more question if its ok. Is it possible to do the exams without doing the whole driving school? Since in most European countries it is kind of mandatory.

Thank you

You'll have to do the lot, including your First Aid Certificate, etc.

About thirty years ago I'd started taking lessons with a view to exchanging my newly acquired UK licence for a swiss one, but they changed the rules before I'd finished. It's not a new rule by any means.

PS; Part of the problem was apparently people from countries such as India buying licences back in their home countries for a few hundred francs without having a clue how to drive, and then simply swapping it for a swiss one.

zigg 13.05.2017 22:12

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
What a bummer, but at least I will get up to date with the swiss rules and what not.
Thank you for the info :)

aSwissInTheUS 13.05.2017 22:37

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by zigg (Post 2785866)
So the problem I have is that i tried to change my driving license that I got in my own country for the swiss one, but apparently you need to get your driving licence 12 months before entering switzerland and before getting your residence (something that I havent seen anywhere on the Ch website). I thought in a foolish way that it would be fine to do my license in my own country during the summer vacation after 2 years of living in Switzerland and afterwards converting it to the Swiss one(thinking it would be easier with the language and what not).

My question is, has it happened to someone else as well?. And if yes, do I have to redo the Swiss driving school again or just the tests (theoretical and practical).

You don not need to have your license for more than 12 months before registering as a residence. But, you would only get a provisional one valid for two years. In this two years you must two driving courses, have no major traffic infractions, and a BAC of max 0.01%.

Any driving license from aboard while beeing a Swiss resident can not be converted into a Swiss one.

What do you have do to:

Do the first aid course (Nothelferkurs).
Get the application form from your locals SAN/StVA website: http://www.strassenverkehrsaemter.ch
Get a nice photo of you
Get an sight test at an optometrists/optician (Cost CHF 10 to 20. )
Bring form and proof of first aid course to SAN/StVA or commone office.
Learn for the theory exam http://asa.ch/dienstleistungen/Theoriefragen/
Take
Pass the theory exam.
Do the road awarness course.
Pass the practical exam (no lessons needed).

If you hurryup it can be done in less than a month.

Done. You will get a provisonal license valid for the next three years. During that period you must two driving courses, have no major traffic infractions, and a BAC of max 0.01%.

zigg 13.05.2017 22:43

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by aSwissInTheUS (Post 2785882)
You don not need to have your license for more than 12 months before registering as a residence. But, you would only get a provisional one valid for two years. In this two years you must two driving courses, have no major traffic infractions, and a BAC of max 0.01%.

Any driving license from aboard while beeing a Swiss resident can not be converted into a Swiss one.

What do you have do to:

Do the first aid course (Nothelferkurs).
Get the application form from your locals SAN/StVA website: http://www.strassenverkehrsaemter.ch
Get a nice photo of you
Get an sight test at an optometrists/optician (Cost CHF 10 to 20. )
Bring form and proof of first aid course to SAN/StVA or commone office.
Learn for the theory exam http://asa.ch/dienstleistungen/Theoriefragen/
Take
Pass the theory exam.
Do the road awarness course.
Pass the practical exam (no lessons needed).

If you hurryup it can be done in less than a month.

Done. You will get a provisonal license valid for the next three years. During that period you must two driving courses, have no major traffic infractions, and a BAC of max 0.01%.

Thank you very much for the information, you have been very helpful.

Guest 13.05.2017 22:55

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Out of interest, which country is 'back home'?

Things will of course change for British people post Brexit- and they will probably have to re-take driving licence all over- just as I did in 1970. I did 3 driving licences in just over a year, Swiss car, Swiss motorcycle, the UK car licence - as it was not possible to convert in those pre-EU days.$

Perhaps few here remember the pre-EU days, visas, work permit and job to be found before entering the country, etc, etc,

mkhisg 13.05.2017 22:56

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Did you spend more than three months of holidays when you've obtained your driving licence in your home country? If so, your driving licence could still be converted (at least in Fribourg): http://www.ocn.ch/files/pdf69/2014-1...mbre_20141.pdf

"La compétence éludée devient caduque si le titulaire du permis prouve qu’il était domicilié pendant au moins trois mois, au moment de la délivrance, dans son Etat d’origine."

roegner 13.05.2017 22:58

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by mkhisg (Post 2785887)
Did you spend more than three months of holidays when you've obtained your driving licence in your home country? If so, your driving licence could still be converted (at least in Fribourg): http://www.ocn.ch/files/pdf69/2014-1...mbre_20141.pdf

"La compétence éludée devient caduque si le titulaire du permis prouve qu’il était domicilié pendant au moins trois mois, au moment de la délivrance, dans son Etat d’origine."

Not if OP was still registered here, the magic word is domicilie

zigg 13.05.2017 22:59

Its the wonderful country of Estonia

Only weird thing is that they kept my license and if i want to drive outside Switzerland, I have to send them a form in which I specify how long I'll be away for, so I can send it back o them once back from the trip. And from what i understood, its quite a long process

aSwissInTheUS 13.05.2017 23:06

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by zigg (Post 2785890)
Only weird thing is that they kept my license and if i want to drive outside Switzerland, I have to send them a form in which I specify how long I'll be away for, so I can send it back o them once back from the trip. And from what i understood, its quite a long process

That's the law: Art. 42 Abs. 4 and Art. 45 VZV
https://www.admin.ch/opc/de/classifi...247/index.html

zigg 13.05.2017 23:12

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by aSwissInTheUS (Post 2785892)
That's the law: Art. 42 Abs. 4 and Art. 45 VZV
https://www.admin.ch/opc/de/classifi...247/index.html

Wow, thank you so much for the info. I've been searching for that the whole day :)

aSwissInTheUS 13.05.2017 23:51

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by zigg (Post 2785895)
Wow, thank you so much for the info. I've been searching for that the whole day :)

It is also in this thread:
https://www.englishforum.ch/transpor...s-mark-ii.html

Thanks to your input I made it even beter. :)

zigg 14.05.2017 00:56

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by ohmy (Post 2785913)
Yes the Swiss take away your driving licence when you ask to get the Swiss equivalent. I have always thought this questionable to say the least. This is all part of the permanent control the Swiss Govt wants to have on everything and everybody. Think of the Swiss authorities as very sick control freaks. Of course, money plays a role, everything that puts money in to the coffers of the Swiss economy is a good thing and there is a whole industry around what should be a right but is now the privilege of having your own transportation.

My advice is to forget about getting a driving licence in Switzerland if you are a student, as a student chances are you can perfectly do without it if that's a car that you have in mind. Also maybe you can find a workaround if you can get a moped licence in your own country ?

I can understand why the authorities are the way they are, and even if its a small inconvenience, I'm fine with just doing things by the book (even if sometimes they seem a little odd).

The only reason I even wanted to change the licence was that I will be here for quite some time (never ending school) and since I own a car it would have been nice to do a little bit of Italian shopping :)

Ace1 14.05.2017 02:11

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Out of interest, which country is 'back home'?

Things will of course change for British people post Brexit- and they will probably have to re-take driving licence all over- just as I did in 1970.
Err no, they won't. Agreements about recognising licences are completely independent of the EU, so Brexit, Frexit, or EUdisintegration would have no effect on this whatsoever.

martin959 14.05.2017 03:51

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
As far as I know, if you have an EU drivers license should be a straight swap... but reading here, it looks like you need to had it for more than 1 year :rolleyes:

k_and_e 14.05.2017 09:51

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Out of interest, which country is 'back home'?

Things will of course change for British people post Brexit- and they will probably have to re-take driving licence all over- just as I did in 1970. I did 3 driving licences in just over a year, Swiss car, Swiss motorcycle, the UK car licence - as it was not possible to convert in those pre-EU days.$

Perhaps few here remember the pre-EU days, visas, work permit and job to be found before entering the country, etc, etc,
what nonsense again. driving license conversion rules are not exclusively for EU countries.

aSwissInTheUS 14.05.2017 10:27

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by martin959 (Post 2785939)
As far as I know, if you have an EU drivers license should be a straight swap... but reading here, it looks like you need to had it for more than 1 year :rolleyes:

It is still a straight swap. But you will be treated as what you are: A novice driver which certain restrictions and obligations.

mkhisg 14.05.2017 12:49

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by roegner (Post 2785888)
Not if OP was still registered here, the magic word is domicilie

Nope. It also applies when you are resident/registered in CH. A close friend of mine did it!

roegner 14.05.2017 13:37

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by mkhisg (Post 2786011)
Nope. It also applies when you are resident/registered in CH. A close friend of mine did it!

You are saying you can go abroad, continue to be registered in Switzerland, and get your driving licence abroad?

No, as long as you are registered in Switzerland and then go abroad to get a new licence, this one is not valid in Switzerland.

fatmanfilms 14.05.2017 13:59

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by roegner (Post 2786025)
You are saying you can go abroad, continue to be registered in Switzerland, and get your driving licence abroad?

No, as long as you are registered in Switzerland and then go abroad to get a new licence, this one is not valid in Switzerland.

Since a false declaration would have been made, it's probably not valid anywhere......
Quote:

Originally Posted by roegner (Post 2785888)
Not if OP was still registered here, the magic word is domicilie

But NOT the British meaning of the word.

martin959 14.05.2017 14:30

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by aSwissInTheUS (Post 2785966)
It is still a straight swap. But you will be treated as what you are: A novice driver which certain restrictions and obligations.

For example? I would have to use the L on my back window? :rolleyes:

mkhisg 14.05.2017 15:44

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by roegner (Post 2786025)
You are saying you can go abroad, continue to be registered in Switzerland, and get your driving licence abroad?

No, as long as you are registered in Switzerland and then go abroad to get a new licence, this one is not valid in Switzerland.

You could interpret the law as much as you like. The friend who did it, has converted her driving licence (she had to attend the two additional courses) and she is driving with it in CH! BTW, it's the OCN who told her about that!

Belgianmum 14.05.2017 16:30

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by ohmy (Post 2785913)
Yes the Swiss take away your driving licence when you ask to get the Swiss equivalent. I have always thought this questionable to say the least. This is all part of the permanent control the Swiss Govt wants to have on everything and everybody. Think of the Swiss authorities as very sick control freaks. Of course, money plays a role, everything that puts money in to the coffers of the Swiss economy is a good thing and there is a whole industry around what should be a right but is now the privilege of having your own transportation.

So does every country in the EU. You exchange your licence for the one issued by the country you are resident in, you don't get to hold the two licences simultaneously.

Quote:

Originally Posted by mkhisg (Post 2786047)
You could interpret the law as much as you like. The friend who did it, has converted her driving licence (she had to attend the two additional courses) and she is driving with it in CH! BTW, it's the OCN who told her about that!

The key is the two additional courses. She was treated as a novice driver so could only convert her licence under certain conditions ( taking the additional courses within a certain time frame).

jbn 14.05.2017 16:38

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by ohmy (Post 2785913)
Yes the Swiss take away your driving licence when you ask to get the Swiss equivalent. I have always thought this questionable to say the least. This is all part of the permanent control the Swiss Govt wants to have on everything and everybody. Think of the Swiss authorities as very sick control freaks. Of course, money plays a role, everything that puts money in to the coffers of the Swiss economy is a good thing and there is a whole industry around what should be a right but is now the privilege of having your own transportation.

Easy tiger! When you move to any country and exchange your previous driving licence it will be retained and sent back to the issuing country. It does mean that should you move (back) there you can get the driving license reissued.

Bit less invective against the Swiss please!

mkhisg 14.05.2017 16:39

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Belgianmum (Post 2786053)
So does every country in the EU. You exchange your licence for the one issued by the country you are resident in, you don't get to hold the two licences simultaneously.



The key is the two additional courses. She was treated as a novice driver so could only convert her licence under certain conditions ( taking the additional courses within a certain time frame).

That's correct! She had a 3-year time range to attend the two courses (which do not include any exam)!

Guest 14.05.2017 16:39

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
My Swiss licence was valid for 1 year as a visitor, and only 6 months once resident. Did you ever try then, to swap your licence in pre EU/reciprocal agreements days? Perhaps you were not born ?

And yes, I had to drive with an L - didn't realise that until just before the test- in Walton-on-Thames - MIL made 2 with lipstick on cardboard and tied them to the TR4 with ribbon. The Examiner checked, gave me a funny look but didn't say anything, but passed me - saying 'powerful car, you will be careful out there' - before I had to pull him out of the car as he was huge ;)

You won't believe me of course - but I truly don't care:p

miniMia 14.05.2017 17:53

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Belgianmum (Post 2786053)
So does every country in the EU. You exchange your licence for the one issued by the country you are resident in, you don't get to hold the two licences simultaneously.

Sure you can. I got mine back with a sticker that said 'not valid in Switzerland '
Others on the forum have as well.

Quote:

The key is the two additional courses. She was treated as a novice driver so could only convert her licence under certain conditions ( taking the additional courses within a certain time frame).
But at least she did not have to the exam, the CPR course and the practical lessons. The exam is a huge PITA, particularly in Vaud that has the highest fail rate and the classes are expensive!

miniMia 14.05.2017 17:54

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

could you explain that please. My Swiss licence was valid for 1 year as a visitor, and only 6 months once resident. Did you ever try then, to swap your licence in pre EU/reciprocal agreements days? Perhaps you were not born ?

And yes, I had to drive with an L - didn't realise that until just before the test- in Walton-on-Thames - MIL made 2 with lipstick on cardboard and tied them to the TR4 with ribbon. The Examiner checked, gave me a funny look but didn't say anything, but passed me - saying 'powerful car, you will be careful out there' - before I had to pull him out of the car as he was huge ;)

You won't believe me of course - but I truly don't care:p
That in 1970!!! Things have changed quite a lot since then.

pilatus1 14.05.2017 18:06

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

could you explain that please....

You won't believe me of course - but I truly don't care:p
I believe every word of your DL conversion story.

Telling people that 'of course', 'probably' Brexit will affect UK driver's licenses in CH, is just plain silly. CH isn't even in the EU FFS.

Guest 14.05.2017 18:08

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Yes, Minimia- my post was quite clear, about things having changed since 1970- that was the point, entirely ...


No Pilatus- but it has reciprocal agreements with the EU - which will probably no longer be valid with the UK, post Brexit :rolleyes: - of course this won't affect the reciprocal agreements with other EU countries.

Belgianmum 14.05.2017 18:18

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by miniMia (Post 2786067)
Sure you can. I got mine back with a sticker that said 'not valid in Switzerland '
Others on the forum have as well.
!

Was it an EU licence? My post was only referring to EU licences.
I thought that EU licences were retained and returned to the issuing authorities whereas non EU were returned but with the not valid in Switzerland sticker on them.

fatmanfilms 14.05.2017 19:00

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

could you explain that please. My Swiss licence was valid for 1 year as a visitor, and only 6 months once resident. Did you ever try then, to swap your licence in pre EU/reciprocal agreements days? Perhaps you were not born ?

And yes, I had to drive with an L - didn't realise that until just before the test- in Walton-on-Thames - MIL made 2 with lipstick on cardboard and tied them to the TR4 with ribbon. The Examiner checked, gave me a funny look but didn't say anything, but passed me - saying 'powerful car, you will be careful out there' - before I had to pull him out of the car as he was huge ;)

You won't believe me of course - but I truly don't care:p
Were you really UK resident at the time........
This is presumably before you went as a to the UK as a secretary, then got married & stayed in the UK for 40 years.
Canadians & Americans can swop their licenses as can many other 3rd country citizens.

From your final paragraph you were already married, I call BS to some of your claims.

Guest 14.05.2017 19:19

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
oh I know you do - enjoy.

Yep, got to UK early 1970, just after taking both car and motorcycle licences in CH- Returned to CH late 70 after 6 months assignment with Beechams- had car accident December 1970 in CH, on my way to UK- got married May 71, in a CH hospital. Rejoined OH in London July 71- had to re-take driving licence later in 71. I know you won't believe it - but that is fine, dear.

fatmanfilms 14.05.2017 19:29

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

oh I know you do - enjoy.

Yep, got to UK early 1970, just after taking both car and motorcylce licences in CH. Returned to CH late 70 after 6 months assignment with Beechams- had car accident December 1970 in CH, on my way to UK- got married May 71, in a CH hospital. Rejoined OH in London July 71- had to re-take driving licence later in 71. I know you won't believe it - but that is fine, dear.
So are you saying your Swiss license could not be converted to a UK license, which is different from your UK license not being transferable to CH.

miniMia 14.05.2017 19:34

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Quote:

Yes, Minimia- my post was quite clear, about things having changed since 1970- that was the point, entirely ...


No Pilatus- but it has reciprocal agreements with the EU - which will probably no longer be valid with the UK, post Brexit :rolleyes: - of course this won't affect the reciprocal agreements with other EU countries.
Why would things revert back to how it was in 1970? That's just silly. You don't think they have an updated law they could copy?

Quote:

Originally Posted by Belgianmum (Post 2786075)
Was it an EU licence? My post was onl

y referring to EU licences.
I thought that EU licences were retained and returned to the issuing authorities whereas non EU were returned but with the not valid in Switzerland sticker on them.

Yes. Good point. I skipped over those two letters. :D
Mine was a non EU license.

Guest 14.05.2017 20:04

Re: Driving License conversion problem
 
Simply because they are part of a reciprocal agreement which won't be valid with UK anymore. No-one knows what will happen- but it is possible. It will probably apply to many things re UK, work permits, pensions, reciprocal health agreements, bringing spouses (as my initial work permit was for 6 months- I had to return to CH, and the only way I could come back, was for us to marry, aged 19 and 24) ...who knows?

Just remembered FMF, I have 2 retired Senior cops in GE who could testify if your Lordship requires- and a few in Verbier too (are you still there, pretending you are in Malta?) and a Judge and senior policeman in Valais- if you so desire.

Over and out for a while, ta.


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