Shipping to Switzerland from UK – FAQs on customs, costs and delivery times

A picture of Switzerland with houses in the foreground and a lake and mountains in the background

Fast, efficient, secure and reliable – our flagship UK-Switzerland-UK freight forwarding service is the go-to option for UK import and export businesses. Working in partnership with our Swiss transport partner, International Forwarding (IFL) offers a UK to Switzerland shipping service with frequent departures.

Here we answer some of the most common questions we’re asked about shipping freight to Switzerland from the UK, and outline 10 service offerings that come with our leading Swiss service.

Article contents

  1. Do I need customs forms for Switzerland?
  2. Exporting to Switzerland from UK – customs requirements
  3. Importing from Switzerland to UK – customs requirements
  4. How much does it cost to send a pallet to Switzerland?
  5. How long will my goods take to reach Switzerland?
  6. What ways are there to get consignments sent to Switzerland?
  7. Can I track my items while in transit?
  8. 10 benefits of shipping to Switzerland with IFL
  9. Request a quote

For quotes and further questions, call +44 (0)1675 434690 or email enquiries@internationalforwarding.co.uk.

Customs and other FAQs on shipping to Switzerland

Customs Clearance Dover
IFL offers clearance services for Swiss road freight through our Dover agent and Birmingham office customs team

Do I need customs forms for Switzerland?

Yes. As Switzerland is a non-EU country, a customs declaration form is required – and this is something we can arrange for you through our customs clearance services. You’ll also need an EORI number to complete the customs paperwork. The UK-Switzerland free trade agreement was put in place in 2019, prior to Brexit, and covers both exports and imports. Essentially, customs control when trading with Switzerland remains the same.

Exporting to Switzerland from UK – customs requirements

For goods below a value of 6000 euros, you should include a declaration of the origin of the goods on your commercial invoice. For higher value consignments, you will need an EUR1 certificate of origin which we can arrange for you. An export entry must be lodged with UK customs, and International Forwarding offers its own customs services to facilitate this. IFL also has Authorised Economic Operator (AEO) accreditation from UK customs which is a kitemark for competency in customs matters. In Switzerland import clearance takes place either at the border or at the premises of our Swiss transport partner.

Importing from Switzerland to UK – customs requirements

An import entry must be lodged with UK customs and, again, our clearance customs service and Dover agent can help handle this and to deal with any customs queries raised while they are in transit via Dover port. 

How much does it cost to send a pallet to Switzerland? 

When shipping pallets to Switzerland, transport costs will depend upon the number of pallets, weight and the sizes (standard pallet size uk can be found here). Our sales team offers highly competitive quotations; attractive rates can also be given for non-palletised goods. Get in touch.

Glob-Sped-AG truck and trailer
Our Swiss transport partner offers excellent network coverage throughout the country

How long will my goods take to reach Switzerland?

IFL operates driver-accompanied road trailers. We offer door-to-door delivery within 48/72 hours, subject to UK and Swiss customs checks. Read more on our Freight to Switzerland page.

What ways are there to get consignments sent to Switzerland?

We can send your goods via road, sea or air. Your choice of transportation for Switzerland shipping, as with all destinations, will depend on how fast you need your goods to get there and different cost options. Our flagship UK-Switzerland-UK road freight service is the most popular option, and we accept either part-load or full-load consignments. We can also consolidate your goods into a single shipment and send using scheduled groupage services – which can be a cheaper option for import-export businesses.

Can I track my items while in transit?

We can inform the consignee when goods are out for delivery – operators usually advise and book these requests in either Switzerland or the UK.

10 benefits of shipping to Switzerland with IFL

When sending goods to Switzerland from UK, there are certain benefits that we can offer as an experienced UK freight forwarder in this market.

1 Very competitive rates

IFL has been sending goods to Switzerland from the UK since 2003 (here’s how it started). Our knowledge and longevity in the Swiss market gives us a competitive edge, especially when it comes to getting the best combination of rates and service on your Switzerland shipping.

2 Frequent departures in both directions

We were one of the first UK freight forwarders to operate a daily direct freight forwarding service to Switzerland. Together with our Swiss transport partner, we offer frequent UK-CH-UK departures, as well as groupage services. Our network coverage across Switzerland is excellent and includes Basel, Zürich, Lucerne, Bern, Lausanne and Geneva. 

3 Guaranteed lead times door to door

Our lead times are highly reliable. This is because our Swiss service is such a smooth process that we experience few delays, unless a trailer is pulled over for customs checks. You can therefore expect your goods to arrive within the quoted time frame.

4 Groupage – 48/72 hours transit

For deliveries that are less urgent, groupage is a cost-effective means of transport. You can choose for your consignments to be consolidated together with other goods and sent on a scheduled service – this reduces overall shipping costs. Our groupage services will still get your UK-Swiss freight there within 48/72 hours, dependent on area.

5 Part-load and full-load consignments

We cater for both full and part loads. Full loads – aka full truckload (FTL) or full container load (FCL) – fill the entire vehicle or container. They are an efficient way to transport freight as you can book a dedicated express vehicle with no need for further collections or drop-offs that may delay your shipment.

Part loads, sometimes referred to as less than truck loads (LTL) or less than container loads (LCL), are loads which do not fill the international vehicle or container space. They are charged by either the gross weight in kilos or the volume in cubic metres, whichever produces the higher revenue to the carrier.

6 Dedicated 24/7 customs clearance operation through our Dover agent

A customs declaration form is required for importing from and exporting to Switzerland from the UK. IFL offers a complete range of inbound UK clearance services and our Dover agent’s clearance services run 24/7. Read more on customs clearance services.

7 Driver-accompanied trailers

Our trailers to Switzerland and mainland Europe are driver-accompanied with the driver and cab staying present during the sea crossing. This provides the fastest possible transit time and secure, reliable delivery by avoiding avoid port delays through faster loading and unloading or through being able to switch ferry services if the booked option is cancelled. 

8 Total control – supplier to consignee

We operate our Swiss service directly and don’t subcontract any part of the transport to third-party carriers. This means that we remain in control of your goods at all time, from collection to delivery, which reduces the risks of loss or damage.

9 EUR 1 Certificate of Origin service

An EUR1 certificate of origin applies to exports from the UK and is required by UK customs for goods with a value of over 6,000 euros. This is so that exporters can claim preferential exporting rates. We can arrange a EUR1 certificate for you through our customs clearance services.

10 All-risks transit insurance effected at competitive rates

Occasionally incidents can occur which may result in an insurance claim. To cover any costs that can’t be recovered from the carrier, we recommend taking out all-risks goods in transit insurance. This isn’t expensive and has only a few exclusions. We can provide you with a competitive quote on all-risks transit insurance.

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Please note: we do not ship personal effects.