Services – Off-limits Car Repairs: You Should Know – Kassensturz Espresso

SERVICES – Off-Border Car Repairs: You Should Know – Kassensturz Espresso – SRF

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Car repairs abroad must be reported to customs.

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Not only food, but also repair work is cheaper abroad. Therefore, many Swiss who live near the border drive their cars through customs for repair or service work. The movie “Kassensturz” tells you what to look for.

If you want to repair your car abroad, you may be interested in the following:

The trip abroad

Return to Switzerland with the repaired car

  • The same regulations apply to importing a repaired car as to normal travel, i.e. when buying groceries abroad, for example.
  • Repairs must be reported to Swiss Customs without being requested. Submit an invoice for repair. It should state: the type, weight and value of the parts fitted and labor costs.
  • Items attached abroad are subject to customs duties (according to the tariff list)
  • Work carried out abroad and materials are also subject to VAT (from 300 francs: 8 percent).


  • Invoices (materials and labor) with a maximum total value of 300 francs.
  • Consumables (oil, fuel, cooling water, antifreeze, etc.)
  • Warranty repairs

Accident or malfunction abroad

  • If your car must be towed from abroad to Switzerland, this is tax-free as long as no repairs are made.
  • If the car is repaired, the same applies here: the repair must be reported to Swiss customs with the corresponding invoice. Import is exempt from customs duties. VAT must be paid on the value of overseas assembled parts and labor costs.

Some tips at the end

  • Prepare your ID for the customs officer
  • Before crossing the border, ask your garage dealer for an itemized invoice and have it ready at customs.
  • Report your repair without a request; Otherwise threaten heavy fines.
  • Exact customs regulations are also printed on the back of your vehicle registration document.
  • Want to know if the repair abroad is worth it? over hereThe link opens in a new windowOpen in browser You will find the possibility of calculating Swiss customs duties for vehicle repairs.
  • Detailed information about importing goods is also available via the “Travel & Goods” smartphone app. Read and hear more about this in the Espresso Contribution.

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