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Switzerland - Parking
Zurich has a blue zone system which allows parking with a permit disc (Parkscheibe) which can be bought from a post office. The disc has a dial and arrow which must be used to indicate the time at which you parked, starting at the nearest number or half-number after your exact time of arrival. If you are staying all day you can save money with a day permit (Tagesbewilligun), which currently costs CHF 15 and can be bought at the Traffic Office (Dienstabteilung Verkehr), at police stations in Zurich, or online by credit card payment. If you are a resident you can apply for a residential parking permit (Anwohnerparkkarte) for the zone in which you live. This will be registered to your name and address, and will grant you unlimited parking in that zone only. At time of writing the cost of a resident parking permit in Zurich is CHF 240 per year. Contact the Traffic Office to obtain a permit. While you are waiting for a full permit you can buy a temporary permit (provisorische Parkkarte) from the Registration Office (Personenmeldeamt). This will allow you 45 days of parking. However, if you have moved to the area, within 14 days of your arrival you should visit the Zurich Road Traffic Office (Strassenverkehrsamt des Kantons Zürich) to have your vehicle registration document updated to your new address. Only then will you be able to upgrade to a permanent residential parking permit. If you are only resident during the working week you can also obtain a permit and should contact the Traffic Office to supply them with the necessary information. See the Zurich City Police website for parking permit application forms and to purchase certain permits online. There are a number of public car parks around Zurich but these can be expensive.
Some accommodation will include an allocated parking space and this will be reflected in the rent. Another alternative is to rent a private space or a garage.
Disabled drivers have extended rights to park but should always check local regulations as these may vary. In general, you will be allowed to park in no-parking zones for up to 2 hours, and in time-limited parking zones for up to 6 hours. You can obtain a parking permit specifically for disabled persons from the local Traffic Office and should always display this alongside any other applicable permit for the zone. An EU blue badge for disabled drivers will be recognised in Switzerland, although you are advised to accompany it with a written translation explaining its use. See http://www.myhandicap.com/disabled-parking-eu.html for example text in German, French and Italian. Other disabled parking badges that have been formally recognised as entitling the bearer to reciprocal rights abroad are those of Australia, Canada, the United States, New Zealand, Japan and Korea. However, bear in mind that local police may not be accustomed to seeing these badges, and if you are staying for any length of time in Switzerland it may be worthwhile to obtain a Swiss permit. In some places you will find allocated spaces for disabled drivers and these will be marked with a wheelchair symbol.
Zurich City Police: parking permit applications
Stadt Zürich Polizeidepartement, Bahnhofquai 3, Amtshaus I, CH 8001 Zürich
Tel: 044 411 71 17
Fondation des Parkings
Geneva blue zone residential parking permit information and application form
Fondation des Parkings, Carrefour de l'Etoile 1, Case Postale 1775, CH 1211 Genève 26
Tel: 022 827 44 90
Les parkings publics en Ville de Genève: information on car parks in Geneva
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