Visas and identity documents
Practical information relating to travel documents and visas: Federal Office for Migration www.bfm.admin.ch.
For any other questions relating to passports, identity cards and visas required for your trip, please contact your travel agency, the airline concerned or the Swiss Airport Police (PSI) directly.
The Airport is unable to provide you with this information.
Temporary Swiss passports
Swiss travellers can obtain a temporary passport valid solely for the duration of one journey.
- Delivery time:
- 1 hour (issued on the day before departure at the earliest)
- Issued by the International Security Police (PSI) at the Airport (Arrivals level), visa service.
- CHF 150.- payable in cash.
- the recipient must be a Swiss national,
- apply in person,
- provide supporting documents for the journey and an identity document,
- for a temporary passport for a minor, the presence of both parents and the minor concerned is required,
- Photo taken on site by the PSI.
- tél. +4122 427 58 30.
A temporary passport will not be issued if you have forgotten your passport at home.
Travel in Europe
For Europeans travelling in Europe, an identity card is normally sufficient. However, some airlines require passports for certain destinations. It is therefore preferable to ask the airline concerned for information directly.
Travelling to the United States
Foreign travellers wishing to travel to the United States under the Visa Waiver Program are now subject to additional security control conditions of. All passengers concerned wishing to travel to the United States under the Visa Waiver Program must apply for authorization in the 72 hours preceding their flight, using the following procedure: https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov/
Travelling to Canada
To travel to Canada, most travellers need the following:
- a valid electronic travel authorisation (ETA),
- a valid visitor visa,
- an appropriate identification document, such as a passport.
Please visit the website of the Government of Canada: www.cic.gc.ca/english/visit/apply-how.asp
Beijing 72-hour visa-free transit policy
Since 2013, Beijing offers 72-hour visa-free transit for foreign visitors with third-country visas and transit at Beijing.
Foreign visitors, who hold passports issued by the countries on the 72-hour Visa-free Transit Policy List and stay in Beijing for transit for up to 72 hours, could apply for a visa-free transit stay in China at the immigration inspection authority at Beijing Capital International Airport.
According to the regulations of Ministry of Public Security of the People's Republic of China, foreign visitors who meet all the following requirements could apply for the visa-free transit:
- Holding valid airline tickets with 72-hour validation and making transit through Beijing Capital International Airport to the third country
- Qualified for the entry requirements of their third destination country
- Holding passports issued by the one of the 51 listed countries*
> More information
* List of countries: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Russia, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Romania, Ukraine, Serbia , Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, Macedonia, Albania, the United States, Canada, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Chile, Australia, New Zealand, South Korea, Japan, Singapore, Brunei, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar.
Minors: Border crossing / Police check
A minor must present valid identity papers (identity card or passport). For a minor travelling alone, particularly one who is not an airline's direct responsibility under a UM (Unaccompanied Minor) procedure, it is strongly recommended that parents contact the authorities to draw up a "parental authorisation".
This official document, issued to a minor child in addition to identity papers, may be required by the authorities of some countries on entering or leaving their territory. Please ask the embassies or consulates concerned for information.
For example: Spain asks systematically for a "Parental authorisation", even where there is a UM (Unaccompanied Minors) procedure in place.
Request for the "Parental Authorisation" for Geneva residents:
- Financial Police Service
Ch. de la Gravière 5, tél. +4122 427 52 30
open non-stop Monday-Friday from 09:00 to 16:00.
Fee CHF 20.-
For residents of other regions, please ask the relevant cantonal or departmental authorities for information.
Acceptance of a minor on board a plane depends on the airline.
In general, an unaccompanied child is accepted on board between the ages of 5 and 12, subject to the UM (Unaccompanied Minors) procedure applied directly by the airline. From the age of 12 onward, a child is considered to be an adult by most airlines. These conditions can differ according to airlines.
For example: easyJet does not accept unaccompanied minors.
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For any further information concerning the acceptance of minors and the UM (Unaccompanied Minors) procedure, please ask the airline concerned directly.