The RYA would be pleased to receive reports of your experiences by email to cruising@rya.org.uk.


The information below is intended to provide answers to questions that come up regularly. It is not intended as a comprehensive guide and it has limited applicability. Please read the countries introduction to ensure that it is appropriate to you. The standard documentation a UK flagged pleasure vessel operating outside UK Territorial Waters should carry is detailed on the paperwork page.

UK Government travel advice

FCDO advice including information on permitted duration of stay and visas for Switzerland: www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/switzerland

 Evidence of competence

For information on the validity of RYA certificates abroad see Evidence of Competence Abroad.

Evidence of competence is required under Swiss law if the vessel has engine power exceeding 6kW or sail area greater than 15m².

A visitor to Switzerland (a person who is residing temporarily in Switzerland) wishing to navigate a foreign (non-Swiss) flagged boat must have an ICC or a national navigation permit which establishes authorisation to navigate that vessel in the vessel's flag state.

A visitor to Switzerland wishing to navigate a Swiss flagged vessel must have an ICC (issued in accordance with Resolution 40) or a national navigation permit.

A Swiss licence is required by anyone who has been living in Switzerland for more than 12 months.  Further information can be obtained from the shipping office of the Kanton in which you are resident. Shipping office details are available at https://www.vks.ch/de/heroes/schifffahrtsaemter.

Standard entry and exit formalities

Switzerland is not an EU Member State but it is part of the European Economic Area (EEA)

Part of the Schengen area.


Signatory to the Regional Arrangement Concerning the Radiotelephone Service on Inland Waterways (RAINWAT). Where a VHF is required or is to be used on the inland waterways of RAINWAT signatory countries, the set must be ATIS enabled and vessels must comply with the requirements of the RAINWAT.