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Can I stay in France if I land in Zurich?

2 posts
Can I stay in France if I land in Zurich?

Hi. We will be travelling to Swizterland from Malaysia at the end of November. Part of our trip will include staying around Basel. Can we stay in St Louis, France instead without any additional travel documents?

If we rent a car in Zurich do we need special permission or documentation to cross over and stay in France?

Thanks in advance

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3 replies to this topic
Destination Expert
for Switzerland, Kiev
Level Contributor
4,686 posts
26 reviews
1. Re: Can I stay in France if I land in Zurich?

For crossing the borders - within Schengen zone countries (including France, Germany, Switzerland) ID-checks are not allowed (at least in theory), at some places you might even not notice that you are crossing a country border.

But Switzerland is not part of EU customs union (France, Germany, Italy, Austria ....), so border crossings are subject to customs regulations (no problem with personal belongings, restrictions for commercial goods, especially alcoholic beverages, tobacco, food).

Crossing those borders with a rental car from Switzerland is not a problem for drivers that are not EU-residents - but check car rental companies conditions, some have restrictions mainly for expensive cars (to Italy, southern France, E and SE Europe).

Just: any reason to use a rental car? Basel is least to say not car friendly, and using public transport to St-Louis and most of Basel area is much more convenient. Especially late November with (very small) chances for bad weather with slippery roads due to low temperatures and precipitations.

Edited: 18 September 2018, 12:20
2 posts
2. Re: Can I stay in France if I land in Zurich?

Many thanks for your reply. Just what I needed to know.

We will be staying in Basel for 3 days only and will be using it as base to go to nearby cities like Bern and maybe Strasbourg. My mother can't really walk very far and we are worried she will not do well going in and out of trains and buses etc.

The rest of our time in Switzerland will be by rail. 🙂

Edited: 19 September 2018, 14:55
Canton of Valais...
Destination Expert
for Switzerland
Level Contributor
43,146 posts
201 reviews
3. Re: Can I stay in France if I land in Zurich?

St Louis is connected to the Basel local transport system. I do not think you need a car...

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