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  #621  
Old 19.08.2009, 20:05
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Re: Driver's Licence conversion

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I noticed that at AAA you can get the International "Permit" Drivers License for about $15 US. Would this be a good idea then? Seems to make the process a bit smoother in Switzerland.
If you have an American license, you don't need the international permit. My switch without one was seamless.
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  #622  
Old 19.08.2009, 23:18
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Re: Driver's Licence conversion

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If you have an American license, you don't need the international permit. My switch without one was seamless.

Ok, thanks a ton!
  #623  
Old 21.08.2009, 16:06
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Re: [Drivers licence] Conversion and questions

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Is it possible to get a copy of your Canadian licence? This could be a route to solving this.
Unfortunately, I will have to make a new application for a swiss licence so that I can use my car. Problem; I can't find anyone in Zurich that will give me the first aid course (Nothelferkurs) in English (or French). Can anyone help?
  #624  
Old 24.08.2009, 16:39
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Re: [Drivers licence] Conversion and questions

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Unfortunately, I will have to make a new application for a swiss licence so that I can use my car. Problem; I can't find anyone in Zurich that will give me the first aid course (Nothelferkurs) in English (or French). Can anyone help?
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Old 26.08.2009, 19:49
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Re: [Drivers licence] Conversion and questions

Is the sight test the same standard as the UK or higher?
  #626  
Old 27.08.2009, 12:45
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Re: [Drivers licence] Conversion and questions

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Is the sight test the same standard as the UK or higher?
Not sure anyone but an optician could answer that.
  #627  
Old 27.08.2009, 13:12
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Re: [Drivers licence] Conversion and questions

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Not sure anyone but an optician could answer that.
I had to have a medical for HGV's and the sight test was just reading letters of a wall chart. I would say similar as the UK.
  #628  
Old 24.09.2009, 02:47
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Re: [Drivers licence] Conversion and questions

Just been reading all posts... now my question..

1. Working in Switzerland

2. Still live in UK

3. Rent an apt in Zurich

Will i have to give up my Uk licence to get a Swiss one

Cheers
  #629  
Old 24.09.2009, 09:00
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Re: [Drivers licence] Conversion and questions

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Just been reading all posts... now my question..

1. Working in Switzerland

2. Still live in UK

3. Rent an apt in Zurich

Will i have to give up my Uk licence to get a Swiss one

Cheers
I imagine it depends on whether you have Swiss residency - did you register with the commune where you live and get a permit? - in which case you have a year. Otherwise, if you get stopped for something driving-related after a year, that will be your official entry date and 'bad things' will happen.

And then if you say that it doesn't count because you live in the UK and have spent a large chunk of time there, I expect the tax people in both countries will become very interested.

kodokan
  #630  
Old 24.09.2009, 10:55
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Re: [Drivers licence] Conversion and questions

Of course i have a permit, im working here...

I have been told be friends from US that they got there licence back in post with sticker saying Not Valid in Switzerland and their new swiss one..

Then i read they they take away your licence and send it back to UK.

I will have my car back home and hire cars if im in different parts of country visiting family.

Im just working here...

Its fine to make you have a Swiss licence but to take away your own country one doesnt make sense..
  #631  
Old 24.09.2009, 11:43
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Re: [Drivers licence] Conversion and questions

If you're working here, unless it's for a very short fixed term assignment, like 6 months or so, then in the eyes of the authorities you don't 'live' in the UK. If you're resident here, working here, paying tax here - you live here.

EU people have their old licences taken from them and sent back to the original issuer for cancellation (like the DVLA for the UK) due to some agreement or other. Non-EU keep theirs, as there's no reciprocal agreement with those issuers, but the licence is no longer valid.

You only need one licence to drive pretty much anywhere. You know how you're currently driving in Switzerland with a UK licence? You can do the same in the UK with a Swiss licence, including hiring cars, etc. All the systems seem interlinked anyway - when I got my Swiss licence, on the spot in a matter of minutes, it had all the dates on it when I passed both my car and motorbike tests, information that doesn't appear on my UK licence.

It really does make sense to take away your old licence, in order to keep the records straight as regards fines, penalties, change of address and so on. And if you move back to the UK - officially, that is - then you do the same in reverse, swap your Swiss one for a UK one again. No problems.

And the Swiss one is much nicer than the UK one anyway - no silly paper bit to lose.

kodokan

PS: Just in case you were thinking... I wouldn't recommend 'losing' your UK licence and asking for a new one, then handing in just one copy. It will still be cancelled off the DVLA system and if you hand it over in the UK to traffic cops or try to hire cars, then I can't begin to think of the trouble that might cause. Just take a photocopy for old time's sake!
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  #632  
Old 02.10.2009, 11:46
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Re: [Drivers licence] Conversion and questions

Hello,

I have a US driver's license (California), and want to get it converted to a Swiss one. I heard that if my original license was issued less than 3 years ago, my Swiss one would be provisional, and that I would have to take a few courses (not the driving test, but some theory course?). Apparently this is some recent law?

Now my question is the following: my California license was issued in March 2007. If I wait till March 2010 before getting it converted to a Swiss one, would I avoid the hassle of having to take these courses? I entered Switzerland recently, so I would be well within the 1 year time-limit for license conversion by March 2010.

Any inputs would be most appreciated...
  #633  
Old 06.10.2009, 12:56
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Re: [Drivers licence] Conversion and questions

I took the control test (course de contrôle, www.san.vd.ch) change my ex-Yu driving license to Swiss one on Tuesday and failed. I prepared myself very well for this (spent ~1000 chf for driving practice). Only to add that I am experienced driver (+15 years) I could even say that I have advanced driving skills, and I do not have a single driving accident ever (except being hit on the parking several times ). My driving instructor was completely astonished - he even said that I should write a letter to the head of auto department to ask to remove the person that was driving with me from the driving control tests since he obviously have something like 80-90% rate of negative answers.

The guy who was in the car with me did not really treat me with respect; I can even say that he created a very bad atmosphere. The main mistake I did (I was trapped to do it to put it better) was not allowing the priority of the right side - the rule I know very well and would never do such a thing while driving; we were driving on some cantonal road in the woods, there was no line on the road what so ever and visibility was very bad (high trees near the road) and I was driving like sixty; then I was warned that I would never pass the test (in a very rude manner) if I do not speed up, since the limit was 80 km/h. So I speed up and miss the road coming from my right (actually more like from behind me, a very sharp angle) completely hidden by trees and shade, once again no line whatsoever on the road. If I did not speed up there would maybe be a chance to see it but like this I was tricked into making an eliminatory error.

Even if I take that person off the practical tests it doesn't change anything to me - I still have to take the driving test all over again. This is actually not a problem since I know the theory and I know how to drive but I didn't expect something like this in a country that has so high opinion of itself.

Thanks for listening to my whining.
  #634  
Old 06.10.2009, 20:11
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Re: [Drivers licence] Conversion and questions

Hi , i'm really sorry you didn't pass. My boyfriend also had a bad exerience on his Kontrollfahrt. Like you, he got the impression that the tester was pushing him to make a mistake so he could fail him. The Kontrollfahrt is only supposed to be a quick test. My boyfriend was out for a very long time until he apparently came to close to some bikes. Unfortunately I have come to the conclusion that there are some people out there who still dislike Ex Yugoslavien citizens being in Switzerland. I come from an EU country and have been absolutely disgusted by some of the racist behaviour towards my ex.Yu boyfriend. He had to do the theory and has since passed the full test. It cost him a fortune. He had a much more positive experience doing the test in Zürich than in his Kontrollfahrt in Solothurn.
I wish you luck and don't be disheartened. Stay positive
  #635  
Old 26.10.2009, 11:54
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Re: Driver's Licence conversion Application Form

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http://www.stva.zh.ch/internet/ds/st...aw_auslfa.html

Here's the info you need - except that it is all in German

Bottom line: As a South African you'll need to do a test drive, which must be done within 3 months of your application to change over. Your SA license will be valid for 12 months from the date of your entry in CH, but not after this date.

You'll find the application form for the changeover at the above link. A small tip - you'll be required to have your eyes tested. Fair enough you say... Except that it won't be done at the strassenverkehrsamt! They will make you go off to an optomitrist who will give you the most complex eye test you've ever seen. AFter this, since your licence is valid for the rest of your life you'll never be required to do a test again. So when you are 80 years old and as blind as a bat the strassenverkehrsamt won't want to know... So a good idea is to print the form yourself and get it stamped for the eye test (valid for 2 years) before you hand in your application - it will save you two visits!

As for this reporting yourself to the strassenverkehramt within 7 days - I don't think this is correct. Swiss licenses don't have your address recorded on them, making them kind of useless as an ID document in many situations. If you owned a car you'd have to inform them about it so they could charge you to alter all their silly bits of paper, but I presume you don't own a car.

My advice - wait until your year is almost up, then do this. You might want to enquire as to how long one must normally wait for the test drive.

Hope that helps.
Mark


Hi

I need to get my licence translated to the CH one, as i have been resident to CH for almost a year now. I really need helped on choosing the exact form from the strassenverkehramt website. Can somebody help?

Thanks
  #636  
Old 26.10.2009, 11:58
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Re: Driver's Licence conversion Application Form

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Hi

I need to get my licence translated to the CH one, as i have been resident to CH for almost a year now. I really need helped on choosing the exact form from the strassenverkehramt website. Can somebody help?

Thanks
Try this.

Its the link at the bottom of this page which says

Gesuch um Umtausch eines ausländischen Führerausweises
  #637  
Old 26.10.2009, 14:38
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Re: [Drivers licence] Conversion and questions

Thanks Eire, I'll give this link a whirl. Hopefully I should get my licence and remember to keep driving on the other side of the road!

I just wanted to say that this forum indirectly gives me the much needed support...Thank you Forum.... it also gives my extremely helpful Swiss neighbours a break from being my constant source of translation/assistance/help and SOS!
  #638  
Old 26.10.2009, 15:17
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Re: [Drivers licence] Conversion and questions

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Hello,

I have a US driver's license (California), and want to get it converted to a Swiss one. I heard that if my original license was issued less than 3 years ago, my Swiss one would be provisional, and that I would have to take a few courses (not the driving test, but some theory course?). Apparently this is some recent law?

Now my question is the following: my California license was issued in March 2007. If I wait till March 2010 before getting it converted to a Swiss one, would I avoid the hassle of having to take these courses? I entered Switzerland recently, so I would be well within the 1 year time-limit for license conversion by March 2010.

Any inputs would be most appreciated...
According to the person I talked to at the cantonal auto office, he told me the license has to have been issued three years before you arrived in Switzerland to avoid a provisional status license.

Have you been driving for less than 3 years or did your license get renewed in 2007? I ask, because in Canada we get a renewed license every few years, so when I tried to exchange my license for a Swiss one, they wouldn't do it, as my Canadian license was issued in 2008 and no where on the license does it say when I first started driving. Thankfully, I was able to get a fax from the Canadian DMV stating that I have been licensed to drive since 1994, which was accepted by the cantonal auto office and they finally gave me a Swiss license.

Good luck!
  #639  
Old 27.10.2009, 16:57
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Re: [Drivers licence] Conversion and questions

Hi all,
I changed my British license for a Swiss one. Where is the expiry date on it? I can't see one.

Thanks
  #640  
Old 27.10.2009, 17:01
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Re: [Drivers licence] Conversion and questions

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Hi all,
I changed my British license for a Swiss one. Where is the expiry date on it? I can't see one.

Thanks
I think it's good for life.
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conversion, drive test, driver license, driving, driving in ch, driving licence, driving licence conversion, france, frontalier, geneva, licence, road traffic offices, swiss driving licence, transportation, us lincense




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