Schaffhausen, Switzerland

Living in Schaffhausen

Living in Schaffhausen
Checklist before leaving home
  •  Passport (incl. a copy of the page with your photo and personal details)
  •  Visa (if required) – 2 different concepts (D-visa & permit)
  • D-Visa is a visa that is pasted into your passport, and allows you to enter Switzerland and apply for a permit. The permit (most likely L-permit) for education is a plastic card that will be valid until next September, and then you need to apply for a new one.
  • Note: After collecting the visa in your embassy, you will have ca.10 weeks to enter Switzerland and apply for a permit.
  • The permit will cost you around 180CHF (this amount is paid when you received the card physically, not while submitting the docs in the migration office)
  • Note: some countries have strange rules about permanent residency permits (even temporary ones) and you may need to inform your government about your temporary residency permit and foreign bank account.
  • If required at time of entry a negative COVID PCR test/antigen test (make sure you have been tested within the allowed period)
  • Confirmation of Registration at CONSTRUCTOR (received as part of your visa application)
  • Copy of your birth certificate (if available) or marriage certificate
  • European Health Insurance Card (for EU/EFTA citizens)
  • Letter from your health insurance company verifying your coverage, and a detailed documentation of that coverage (for non-EU/EFTA citizens, if applicable—if not, non-EU/EFTA students will apply for insurance in CH)
  • Liability insurance certificate, if you have one
  • Passport photos (can be used for your residence permit, etc.)
  • After Arriving in Schaffhausen — Register at the appropriate city district office, either Schaffhausen or in Neuhausen, (within 14 days of arrival).
  • Take out health insurance within 90 days (after you receive your ID from the migration office) at
  • Swiss Francs or CHF (Please note: Switzerland is not in the EU and although Euros are accepted in some stores, the exchange rate you will receive will not be to your advantage).
  • Consider downloading the app for the Swiss train system
  • Adapters for your devices (220 kV) with the appropriate plugs (compare the picture – the front part of the plugs have to be thin to enter the socket )


After arriving in Switzerland (Zurich Airport)
  • After collecting your luggage, follow the signs to the rail station in the Zurich airport. Take the train from the airport (Zurich Airport ground floor) to Schaffhausen (ca. 1 hour travel time to Schaffhausen).
  • NOTE: you CANNOT purchase a ticket once on board the train. If you travel on Swiss trains without a valid ticket, you will be fined 100 CHF minimum. Do not risk it!
  • If after arriving in Schaffhausen you plan on taking the bus to the Youth Hostel, purchase a ticket from the Zurich train station to “Schaffhausen Schützenhaus” and your ticket will be valid for the entire journey (you cannot purchase a ticket once on board the train unless you have the SBB app).
  • To purchase a ticket in advance and online, go to: 
  •  The S-24 train (direction Thaygen) goes directly to Schaffhausen (without changing trains) every hour on the :57. Please check the train schedule at

If you are staying at the Youth Hostel:

  • Take the bus (or taxi) from the Schaffhausen train station to the Youth Hostel (“Jugendherberge”).
  • Buses 3, 4 & 6 run regularly (every 10 minutes) to the Schaffhausen Youth Hostel. Disembark at the “Schützenhaus” the Youth Hostel is about a 350 meter walk.
  • Address for the Youth Hostel, Randenstrasse 65, 8200 Schaffhausen, Switzerland. or tel: 41-52-625-88-00
hostel Schaffhausen
Registration at the Residency Office or the Einwohnermeldeamt

Regardless of whether you require an entry visa or not--you must have a residence permit for your period of study in Switzerland. You must apply for this in person within 14 days of your arrival at the Citizen’s Registry Office (“Einwohnermeldeamt”) at your new place of residence. You will be asked for:

  • your passport or identity card
  • a copy of your entry authorization
  • your rental contract for accommodation for Constructor apartments—(will be sent to residency office in advance)
  • CHF 20 (registration fee)
  • CHF 65 (EU-countries) / CHF 162 (non-EU countries) (document fee)
  • Copy of birth and/or marriage certificate (if applicable)
  • Your insurance card or information (if you have it)
  • Anmeldeformular Ausländer (for non-EU/EFTA residents) available for download
  • You will then receive an invitation from the Office of Migration
  • At the office of Migration, you will register your biometric data

After a few weeks you will receive your residence permit by post. The decision as to the type of
study permit you receive lies with the Migration Office.

Practical matters


  • Constructor has a relationship with both UBS and Credit Suisse. After you receive your residency permit, you will be able to open a bank account at either of these banks.
  • For more information on this process, please contact Markus Aebi at

Obligatory Health Insurance – Insurance is mandatory in Switzerland

  • We suggest you apply for health insurance as soon as possible after your arrival. Although there are many options for health insurance and we suggest you apply with as this provider has inexpensive and quality products for students (insurance is around 65-85 CHF/month).
Map of Schaffhausen (old town)

tourist map


Download the International students handbook
The International students handbook presents detailed information on how to prepare before and after your arrival to Switzerland. Read more...