Residence permit

After entering Switzerland, all international students are required to register at the registration office of the district in which they are living within 14 days of arrival. To register, you will need a valid travel document, proof of health insurance as well as a confirmation of matriculation from the University of Lucerne. After registration, the residence permit (foreigner‘s identity card) will be issued; this usually takes some weeks.


Step 1: registration at your commune of residence  ("Einwohnerdienste")

The  following documents are required for the registration:

  • A valid passport or ID
  • An admission letter issued by the University of Lucerne
  • A tenancy agreement
  • A copy of your health insurance policy covering your stay in Switzerland
  • Proof of sufficient financial means; this may be a bank statement or (in the case of EU/EFTA students) a letter from your parents or from a guarantor residing in Switzerland confirming they will support you with monthly payments of CHF 1,750 or more
  • Be prepared to pay CHF 40 for the registration (cash or by card)


Step 2: application for a residence permit (Office of Migration)

All international students have to apply for a residence permit for Switzerland; you must send the documents below directly to the migration office of the canton you live in. In certain communities it may be possible to hand in the application for the residence permit directly when registering with the community.

The  following documents are required for the application:

  • Application for a residence permit (Office of Migration of the Canton of Lucerne/Form 6:
  • Confirmation of admission from the University of Lucerne
  • Proof of financial means (e.g. bank statement) or signed letter of guarantee from parents

You will receive an appointment from the migration office to register your biometrical data. Please make sure to attend this appointment.

A few weeks after the appointment, your residence permit will be sent by postal mail directly to your Swiss address (make sure your name is written on the post box).

The residence permit is usually issued for one year. It is extendable for the duration of the study programme. Please note that a new proof of sufficient financial means must be submitted with each application for residence permit extension.

The information on this page is for information purposes only and supplied without liability. The underlying regulations may have changed since the information was last updated. For legally binding information, please consult the website of the residents' registration office in charge.