Frequently Asked Questions

General Information


How to book an appointment on TLScontact website?

You can find more detail information on how to take an appointment on TLScontact website here.



Do I need a Schengen visa?

Vietnamese nationals require a Schengen visa to enter Switzerland.

Switzerland is one of the Schengen countries that accepts Vietnamese temporary passports if the Vietnamese citizenship is clearly stated in the document. If you do not travel directly to Switzerland, but through other Schengen Member States, please inquire with these States, if you require a visa from them.

Citizens of some countries are exempted from the requirement for a visa to enter the Schengen Area for a short stay or transit:

  • Nationals of the European Economic Area: the EEA includes the 28 Member States of the European Union as well as Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway.
  • No visa is required for a short stay of less than 3 months as part of a trip for tourist or business purposes (no work allowed) for citizens of some countries (click here for the list).
  • The holders of a blue or red United Nations “laissez-passer” travel document, whatever their nationality, are exempted from short-stay visas for Switzerland.
  • Vietnamese nationals holding a diplomatic passport are exempted from short-stay visas for Switzerland.



 Where can I apply for a visa?

  • If you intend to visit only one Schengen country, you must apply at the Embassy or Consulate of this country.
  • If you intend to visit several Schengen countries, you must apply for a visa at the Embassy or Consulate of the country of your longest stay.
  • If you intend to visit several Schengen countries but do not have a main destination (i.e. the duration of your stay is the same in different countries), you should apply for a visa at the Embassy or Consulate of the country that is your first point of entry.

Visa applications for Switzerland are now received by TLScontact, except for some categories that are still received by the Consulate General of Switzerland in Ho Chi Minh City directly (see Jurisdiction).



How do I apply for a visa?

To apply for a visa, you should first register on this website, and then follow the instructions. For more details about the procedure, please click here.



When should I apply for a visa?

You may only submit your visa application within 90 days before your date of departure. We recommend that you apply at least 15 working days before the date you intend to travel.



What kind of visa do I need to apply for?



 Where can I get a visa application form and is it possible to fill out the visa application form online?

The Schengen visa application form will be provided to you during the registration process and can be filled online.

The paper versions can also be printed from here.



What are the required documents for a visa?

Personalized document lists are available on the Visa types and Documents page of this website for applicants who apply at TLScontact center.



Could the Visa Section request from me to provide additional documents or informations?

Yes, the Consulate General of Switzerland in Ho Chi Minh City may request from you to provide additional documents or information, according to your personal situation.



What are the requirements for insurance?

Due to a regulation of the European Union (Decision 2004/17/CE of December 22nd 2003), there is a requirement to hold a travel insurance, which is a compulsory document.

The travel insurance should be valid for the Schengen area if you apply for a short stay visa.

Your travel insurance must be valid with a minimum cover of €30,000 (or CHF 50,000) in order to face any expenses that may arise in connection with your repatriation for medical reasons, urgent medical attention or emergency hospital treatment. The travel insurance should fully cover the period of your stay in the Schengen Area. The insurance must mention the coverage for repatriation.



How can I collect my passport?

Passports can be collected from Monday to Friday, 09:00 to 17:00 at TLScontact. When your passport is ready to be collected, you will be notified online on your personal account page and by SMS, informing you to come to the TLScontact center with your visa application checklist and the original and a copy of your identity card. If you chose to have your passport returned to you by courier service, it will be sent directly to the address you have specified.



Can TLScontact send me my passport by express mail?

TLScontact offers an express registered mail service, allowing you to receive your passport directly at your home or your office. Please inform us if you wish to use this service when you submit your application at the TLScontact center. If you choose to cancel this service after your application has been submitted, the courier fee cannot be refunded. Recipient address and information for the courier service must be filled in by the applicant or representative during application submission appointment. Once the application has been submitted, no changes can be made to the recipient address and information. We therefore kindly ask you to confirm recipient address and information before the application submission.

You will receive an SMS to inform you when your passport has been sent to you by mail, and can then check the delivery status on EMS website.



 Can someone else pick up my passport for me?

Yes, a representative may retrieve your passport on your behalf provided that they bring:
a) a personal ID document original and copy.
b) a written and signed authorization letter from the applicant following the model set by the Swiss Representation in order to collect the passport. You will find this form here.
c) a passport copy of the applicant attached to the authorization letter.



Can someone else apply for a visa on my behalf?

Starting from 2016, all diplomatic representations of the Schengen member states have to capture the biometric data (finger scans and facial image) of persons applying for a Schengen visa. The data will be kept in the Visa Information System (VIS) for 5 years.

If your finger scans have not been collected yet, personal appearances when applying for a Schengen visa is mandatory with which an appointment has been booked.

If your finger scans were collected within the last 59 months, then you won’t have to give new fingerprints for your next visa application(s) and personal appearance is not necessary. However, you have to provide a copy of your visa sticker issued after 21 November 2016. If you are not sure or do not remember whether your fingerprints have been captured for a Schengen visa within the last 59 months, you have to appear in person.

You will still have to appear in person to give your fingerprints in case the previously collected fingerprints prove to be of insufficient quality.

Personal appearances and fingerprint scan is not necessary for children under the age of 12.

The Swiss representation still reserves the right to ask the applicant to appear for a personal interview after checking his application.



What is the difference between a Schengen visa and a national visa?

A Schengen visa (Type C) is a visa issued by one of the member countries of the Schengen Area and is valid for a short stay, limited to 90 days within any 180 days period, only for Schengen countries.
The decision to receive and issue such visas is made by the consulate of the country of destination. In case of a trip in multiple Schengen countries, the main destination is determined by the duration of the stay.

A national long stay visa (Type D) is only valid for an establishment or a stay of more than 90 days in the country which issued the visa. The national visa allows, however, free travelling throughout the Schengen area as long as the visa is valid.



Closing dates of TLScontact Vietnam

Closing dates in 2017, please click here.