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Visa Requirement and Procedure for Switzerland and France
All persons coming to CERN should obtain all the requisite information in good time on entry requirements applying for Switzerland/France.
It is therefore recommended to submit your visa application at least three months and not later than 21 days, prior to your departure date. The practice is for visas to be issued by the consulate competent for the place of residence, and in some cases a special procedure must be followed.

Users, UPAS, Cooperation Associates and Visiting Scientists, subject to visa restrictions, for Switzerland and/or France, should contact their experiment secretariat at CERN or the Users’ Office, before coming to CERN, for details on how to facilitate requests for a visa. They must have the appropriate documents to work in both countries

  Living in Switzerland Living in France
Short term (maximum of 3 months in any period of 6 months) Invitation letter signed by your Experiment Secretariat at CERN or by any of the persons authorised by CERN Invitation letter signed by your Experiment Secretariat at CERN or by any of the persons authorised by CERN
Convention d’Accueil is also necessary for all nationals from countries outside the European Economic Area. Convention d’Accueil for nationals from countries outside the European Economic Area, signed by your Experiment Secretariat at CERN or by any of the persons authorised by CERN
Go to the Swiss Consulate competent for your usual place of residence to request a multiple-entry Schengen C- type visa1. Go to the French Consulate competent for your usual place of residence to request a multiple-entry Schengen
C- type visa1
.
1 Note: This visa does not allow the holder to reside in the Schengen Area for more than three months within a six-month period, nor to obtain a "titre de séjour". Holders of a short-stay visa must leave the Schengen Area when the visa expires, failing which they may be liable to sanctions (a fine and/or refusal of future visa applications for all Schengen countries).
 
Long stay (stay of more than 3 months) Invitation letter, bearing the words “prise de fonctions au CERN”, signed by your Experiment Secretariat at CERN or by any of the persons authorised by CERN. Invitation letter for a long term visit signed by your Experiment Secretariat at CERN or by any of the persons authorised by CERN.
  Note Verbale for nationals who are not from countries of the European Economic Area or Switzerland, to obtain a visa D with the mention “carte PROMAE à solliciter à l’arrivée”
send it to your Experiment Secretariat at CERN or to any of the persons authorised by CERN.
Go to the Swiss Consulate competent for your usual place of residence to request a multiple-entry long-stay
D- type visa.
N.B. : this visa does not allow the holder to reside in France.
Contact the French Consulate competent for your usual place of residence and request amultiple-entry long-stay D- type visa bearing the words “carte PRO-MAE à solliciter dès l’arrivée”, making reference to CERN’s Note Verbale.
N.B. : this visa does not allow the holder to reside in Switzerland.
  Apply for a French card at the Users’ Office together with the following documents:
- Valid passport
- Valid visa (if necessary) French Visas Government Site
- 4 pictures passport size (35x40 mm)
 
More information on Swiss visas
Swiss visas: Federal Departement of Justice and Police

Introduction of the Visa Information System (VIS)
used to store the biometric data of the visa applicant.

Documents and visa requirements by nationality

Permanent Mission of Switzerland to the United Nations Office and to the other international organisations in Geneva
More information on French visas
French Visas Government Site
 
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