COVID-19 - Travelling and quarantine

4. Exemption from quarantine

If you meet the conditions listed below, there is no application to submit. An ex officio exemption applies. Apart from these conditions, you are subject to mandatory quarantine.
Entry restrictions for high-risk countries are still applicable. The State Secretariat for Migration (SEM) is responsible for this matter.

Persons in transit

Are exempted from compulsory quarantine all persons who :

  • have stayed in a State or zone with a high-risk of infection as a transit passenger for less than 24 hours.
    Going to a high-risk area and returning within 24 hours is not considered transit. 
  • only enter Switzerland for the purpose of travelling through it, with the intention and possibility of continuing their journey directly to another country.


Transport activities

Are exempted from compulsory quarantine all persons who, professionally, or in the course of their professionnal occupation in in the field of transport (rail, bus, boat or air) carry travellers across the border and who, for this reason, might have had to stay in a State or zone with a high risk of infection.


Activities of absolute necessity

Persons whose activity is absolutely necessary for the maintenance of the following fields are exempt from compulsory quarantine:

  • the capacity of the health system
  • security and public order
  • the functioning of international institutions and organisations
  • Switzerland's diplomatic and consular relations

An employer must check and certify that an activity is absolutely necessary. A person who is self-employed will himself or herself certify that his or her activity is absolutely necessary.

Examples of activities

  • Police officers, doctors and nurses when they are essential to the functioning of a health system.
  • Private security guards do not have an absolutely compelling activity, unless they carry out delegated sovereign tasks, such as escorting detainees, surveying public buildings, policing public events.

In all cases, teleworking solutions are to be favoured, as far as possible, during the 10 days following entry into Switzerland.


Other compelling professional activities and trips 

Persons who for professional reasons1 enter Switzerland2 or return to Switzerland after coming back from a risk area are exempt from quarantine.

1The compelling nature of the professional motive does not relate to the type of activity carried out, but to the fact that it is imperative that this person carry it out personally, on the spot and without the possibility of postponement, which is the case if he/she has an employment contract, a promise of employment or any other contract requiring a service of this type.

2This applies in particular to holders of a G permit and persons of Swiss nationality residing in France.


Medical reasons and trips

Persons who are exempt from quarantine for compelling medical reasons.

1 Compelling medical reasons exclude comfort or purely aesthetic operations, which may be postponed.


Returning after a sporting, cultural or professional event

Exemption from compulsory quarantine is granted to persons who return to Switzerland after having taken part, generally in a professional capacity, in an event (sports event in a professional context, cultural event, professional congress) provided that their participation and trip took place in accordance with a specific protection plan.

Persons taking part in amateur competitions are, in general, subject to quarantine.


Compliance with preventive measures

Persons returning from a high-risk area and who are exempt from quarantine, or who are granted an exemption for the authorised activity in strict compliance with hygiene and behaviour measures (interpersonal distance or mask), must not engage in other leisure activities, particularly in public areas with high public attendance, and must not multiply contact with friends or other relatives.

If symptoms occur (sore throat, cough - especially dry), shortness of breath, chest pain, fever, sudden loss of smell and/or taste, muscle aches, headaches, general feeling of tiredness, cold, gastrointestinal symptoms (e.g. nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, abdominal pain, skin rashes), people should isolate themselves and get tested.

Dernière modification
26 February 2021
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