Horses - Temporary importation

If you wish to use the temporary admission procedure, the owner of the horse must be resident or domiciled abroad. Exceptions are only possible for a small number of intended uses (see paragraph 3 Directive 10-60 (PDF, 1 MB, 01.01.2019)).

Horses that come to Switzerland for the following intended uses can be declared using a customs declaration for temporary admission ZAVV.

  • possible sale
  • tests, trials
  • sporting events
  • riding excursions or holidays
  • dressage, training, education, breeding, horse shoeing, veterinary treatment, pasturage and accommodation

With a ZAVV you must secure customs duties at the higher out-of-quota tariff rate. The lower quota tariff (QT) is sufficient for certain intended uses.

If you are resident or domiciled abroad and personally use your horse, you can also use the ATA Carnet for the following intended uses:

  • tests, trials
  • sporting events
  • riding excursions or holidays
  • Dressage, training, education, breeding, horse shoeing, veterinary treatment, pasturage and accommodation

If you are resident abroad and wish to use your horse for cross-border riding excursions, you can request an authorisation for simplified border crossing. This allows you the possibility to cross the border at points between border crossings. You must always return the animal abroad within three days. You must present the horse when the authorisation is issued and secure the import duties (see also form 19.82 (PDF, 225 kB, 11.12.2018)).

The following documents must be presented to the customs office at the time of declaration:

  • customs declaration (ZAVV, ATA Carnet)
  • equine passport
  • documents proving that the purpose requested actually applies (e.g. schooling or training contracts)
  • documents certifying the value

If you do not re-export the horse before the expiry date, you must pay customs duties at the higher out-of-quota tariff rate. This also applies should you make undue use of the temporary admission procedure or not comply with other procedure requirements (e.g. specifying an incorrect intended use, user or owner).

Further information on the temporary use of horses can be found in Directive 10-60 (temporary admission procedure) (PDF, 1 MB, 01.01.2019).

If the requirements for the temporary admission procedure are not fulfilled, you must declare your horse for permanent importation into Switzerland (release for free circulation). You can find further information at Horses, Permanent importation.

Please note the customs office opening hours for the declaration (customs clearance). Declarations can be made from Monday to Friday during assessment hours; some customs offices are also open on Saturday mornings. The detailed opening hours are available in the list of customs offices.

 
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