Visa, Insurance & Housing
Non-EU students who wish to enter Switzerland must have a valid passport and be in possession of a study visa issued by a Swiss Embassy or Consulate. Please note that a tourist visa does not authorize a student with a foreign passport to study in Switzerland. Applications for a study visa must be submitted to the Swiss Embassy in your home country which is then forwarded to the Cantonal authority in Switzerland. The whole process takes 10 to 12 weeks.
All foreign students (EU & Non-EU) living in Switzerland require a Student B permit.
Switzerland is now part of the Schengen zone which means that once you have a Student B permit , you are allowed to travel to the following countries without a visa: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Norway, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, and Sweden.
Note: Part-time study options are not accepted as sufficient reason by Swiss authorities to grant a study visa for students from outside the EU/Schengen area.
Housing & Accommodation
Short stays & visits – Hotels
For short stays, you have a selection of hotels offering competitive prices between 85 and 150chf per night. We recommend the Moxy hotel because of its close access to public transportation and proximity to the center of town, but you may also wish to view others such as Alpha Palmiers, Ibis Hotel, Continental, Ibis Styles. Please contact the BSL Administration for a discount code for the Moxy hotel if you choose this hotel for your stay.
Accommodation during your studies
As Lausanne is a popular place to study, it can be difficult to find a place to live. To avoid problems in finding accommodation, we strongly suggest you to start your research at least three months before the starting date of your program.
Apartments and Rooms for rent
Below you will find a map of some housing that is available in the area. This information is updated regularly but we can not guarantee accuracy of the availability of the rooms displayed.
Housing Availability Map
Lausanne Tourism provides a list of furnished apartments available in Lausanne and the area updated every month. You can find the list on their website.
We recommend that you download our Practical Housing Guide for tips and hints to help you along the way.
Health insurance is mandatory in Switzerland.
The cost of student health insurance in Switzerland is around 80-120 chf per month, provided you choose an aggregated insurer who works with students. If you do not, you may find yourself paying upwards of 250 chf per month.
Other companies available to get student health insurance rates from are: Swisscare, CSS – Student Care, TradiConsult and Allianz Worldwide.
If you have an obligatory European health insurance scheme in your home country that covers the same medical cost as the basic insurance scheme during your stay in Switzerland, it is possible that you may be exempt from taking out health insurance in Switzerland. You will need to check this with the local commune in which you live in Switzerland.
Upon arrival in Switzerland, a copy of that card must be submitted to the Swiss authorities (OVAM) together with the student permit application. This office will be the only one to be able to issue an exemption from taking out Swiss insurance.
We strongly advise you to contact a Swiss health insurance prior to your move to Switzerland in order to be fully covered in case of accident or illness. Our partner, Evasan SA, offers competitive rates for students living in Switzerland.
Before leaving Switzerland, you must cancel your insurance at least one month before your departure. Please read all cancellation policies carefully.