Switzerland introduces electronic vignette

No need to put a sticker on your windscreen or collect them year after year anymore. Photo: Shutterstock

No need to put a sticker on your windscreen or collect them year after year anymore. Photo: Shutterstock

There’s no longer any need to go to the Automobile Club to buy a vignette to drive into or through Switzerland. On 1 August, a bank holiday in Switzerland, the country introduced an electronic vignette at the same price.

To get to Switzerland or to Italy via Switzerland, Luxembourg drivers previously had to either go to the Automobile Club to buy a vignette, or risk wasting time at the Franco-Swiss border to obtain permission.

Since Tuesday 1 August, however, Switzerland has made it possible to switch to electronic vignettes on its website. “Users will be able to choose the form in which they wish to pay the annual fee for the use of national roads. The sales price of CHF 40 and the period of validity (from 1 December of the previous year to 31 January of the following year) will remain unchanged for both types of vignette,” says the Swiss government.

A small additional change: the vignette is no longer associated with a car but with a number plate. This means that anyone who changes vehicle during the year or suffers a broken window will no longer have to buy a new vignette. Nor will car hire companies or car-sharing services have to multiply the number of stickers they issue during the year.

There will be no need to create a user account or enter the details of the purchaser or driver, just the vehicle category, country of registration and licence plate. Payment can be made by credit card or online. The Federal Office of Customs and Border Protection (OFDF) will check possession of a vignette by reading the number plate--an option that must be activated when the vignette is purchased.

The price remains unchanged at 40 Swiss francs or €41.

As soon as sales of “paper” vignettes reach less than 10% of all vignette sales, the Swiss authorities will abolish them.

This article was originally published in Paperjam. It has been translated and edited for Delano.