A friend of mine has been to Switzerland recently and has purchased the one-year motorway vignette for 40CHF. Now I'm planning a car trip of my own, so I was thinking I could simply borrow his highway sticker and place it on my own windshield. I've previously removed various stickers from windshields so I know it's possible to do so without damaging the paper. The following questions then arise:

  1. Is it legal to do so?
  2. Could the police even tell you've used a "second-hand" sticker in your car?

UPD: after reading the answers I realized this is clearly against the rules and not worth the hassle. I'll have my friend keep the vignette as a souvenir.

  • Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation has been moved to chat.
    – JonathanReez
    Commented Jul 13, 2017 at 23:48

4 Answers 4



Can the motorway charge sticker be transferred in the event of a change of car?

No. It is forbidden to peel off motorway charge stickers and transfer them to other vehicles. Detached motorway charge stickers are invalid.

Source: Swiss Customs Administration

Also Note:

We and the police check compliance with the obligation to display a motorway charge sticker on motorways.

Anyone using the motorway without a motorway charge sticker is subject to a fine of CHF 200. This applies also if the motorway charge sticker is misused (not affixed correctly or affixed in the wrong place). In addition, a motorway charge sticker must be purchased and correctly affixed to the vehicle.

Forging a motorway charge sticker or using such a sticker leads to a report being filed with the Office of the Attorney General of Switzerland. A fine is likewise imposed if the motorway charge sticker is reused (i.e. used on several vehicles).

Source: Swiss Customs Administration

  1. No, it is definitely not legal. The sticker is also designed to be difficult to remove cleanly (if you look carefully you will see that once it's on the windshield, it's not a simple square but a kind of spiral with many nooks, not at all like a random sticker or even the Austrian motorway vignette) and invalid if not affixed to the windshield.

  2. If you manage to get if off and affix it to another windshield cleanly, they have no way to tell. I know people who have done so and I have heard of various tricks to make removing it easier. But it is more difficult than you think.

  • 2
    And it's even more difficult if you do this again and again, i.e. when giving it back to him after your trip. Commented Jul 13, 2017 at 7:33
  • 6
    The sticker would go unused anyway if I don't take it so even if it doesn't peel off well no loss would be made. I think it should be easy if you use a hot air blower.
    – JonathanReez
    Commented Jul 13, 2017 at 7:37

The other answer already addressed the fact that it's illegal, let me answer your second question:

The sticker is designed in a way that it will be destroyed if you try to remove it. It has a special perforation and is much harder to remove than ordinary car stickers. (See this picture for instance) It is also illegal to use tricks to make it easier to remove such as stick it to a piece of transparent foil or something like that:

Never attach it with adhesive tape or film so that it is easy to remove and transfer to another vehicle. You could be fined several hundred fines if the police catch you.

Note that the sticker is so tricky to remove, that there's a lot of websites online teaching you some very involved techniques of doing it (the sticker will still get destroyed):

What’s the easiest way to remove old vignettes?

The best way is to use a ceramic hob scraper. It’s even easier if you warm the sticker first using a hairdryer. Any adhesive residues can be cleaned off with nail polish remover.

Of course as one of the other answers says, if you do manage to remove it without destroying it, there'll be no way of noticing it.

  • 4
    It's not absolutely impossible, though. I have removed a bunch of them, not to reuse them but to clean windshields, and I did get a few of them undamaged (but many were in fact damaged). I also know people who put minute amounts of hand cream on it to make it easier to remove (and that's much more difficult to see than plastic foil) and a garage where a mechanic bragged about doing it frequently (for clients trading cars).
    – Relaxed
    Commented Jul 13, 2017 at 7:39
  • 24
    A fine of several hundred fines.. that's a pretty severe fine.
    – user13882
    Commented Jul 13, 2017 at 9:12
  • 3
    Fun note: I once had my windshield replaced, and the guys at the garage got the vignette off my old windshield cleanly and had already put it on the new one when I came to pick up the car. Not that I’d asked for it, and back when I applied the vignette, I’d done that on the clean windshield, no tricks involved. I’d also had an Austrian vignette, which they didn’t manage to transfer, as it has more advanced security features.
    – user149408
    Commented Jul 13, 2017 at 20:23
  • 5
    The sign said "Fine for parking here". Since it was fine, I parked there. Commented Jul 13, 2017 at 23:20
  • 2
    I rolled back the last two edits, because the 'several hundred fines' is an error in the original source and not something I copied wrongly, so it should probably stay there.
    – drat
    Commented Jul 14, 2017 at 8:46

900 caught 2012.

Article. 7 Motorway sticker: (i've double checked this translation, i'm a translator)

1 The motorway charge is paid by the purchase of a motorway sticker (sticker).

2 The sticker shall be affixed directly to the vehicle before the use of a national highway subject to the charge.

3 It can only be transmitted with the vehicle.

4 It is no longer valid in the following cases:

a. It is detached from the vehicle after being glued correctly; (notice the semicolon looks like a smiley. perhaps you can glue it with a smidgeon of butter; a little bit way, a little bit woo, you're a geezer)

b. It is detached from its support without being glued directly to the vehicle.

Art. 14 Fines

1 Any person who, contrary to ss. 3 to 5, 7 and 8, intentionally or negligently borrows a national highway subject to the levy at the wheel of a vehicle or uses the vignette in a manner contrary to these provisions shall be liable to a fine of 200 francs.

Use of butter is less of a serious fraud than use of a removable substrate, because the latter is applied forgery, whereas the former is only the use of a bit of butter on the vignette.

you must affix it directly, however, the notion of it being properly glued or not is not discussed in the legal article... The vignette is void if it is removed after having been "PROPERLY STUCK ON" however, they place a semi-colon after that voidance condition; not a full stop; and they do not discuss any scenarios whereby it the vignette is removed after it is not properly glued on.

I will recap: It cannot be transferred between vehicles. It must be stuck directly to the car... It is void if it is removed after having been STUCK CORRECTLY" If it is removed after having being glued incorrectly, using butter, the legal statement is implicit and not explicit, there is room for interpretation.

It's not a crime(delit), it's an infraction of the law(same as speeding), but swiss people with multiple cars and only one vignette find ways to move the vignette from one car to another. there is a 2 month vignette for 40 francs. There are videos about how to unstick them here https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hviCgzS5eAY

the fine may have changed it may be 500fr.

One unfortunate guy was condemned for "falsifiction of government certificates of value" for carefully applying the sticker to another support and moving it: https://www.letemps.ch/suisse/2015/07/23/on-ne-triche-collage-vignette-autoroutiere

in practice this kind of fraud is notoriously common. one guy writes " i apply a thin layer of greasy cream before applying the sticker, so it is very easy to remove, is it legal ? " they put butter too. they don't even know very well themselves if the trick is legal. it's better to do that than carefully applying it to a second sticker and cutting around it.

The number of fraudsters caught every year is in the 100ds..: http://www.tdg.ch/suisse/Les-fraudeurs-rivalisent-d-imagination-pour-la-vignette-/story/16495591

  • If using butter makes it not STCUK CORRECTLY, then it is not affixed to the first car, i.e., the first car can be fined. If it is later stuck to a second car, it is not being glued directly to the vehicle, i.e., the seoncd car can be fined. You may want to add a disclaimer about anything you say that might be taken as legal advice Commented Jul 13, 2017 at 19:16
  • 1
    “there is a 2 month vignette for 40 francs”—iirc 40 Fr was the price I paid for a regular yearly vignette earlier this year, and I’m not aware of Switzerland ever having had vignettes with different validity periods (and I’ve purchased a vignette every year for the last 10–14 years).
    – user149408
    Commented Jul 13, 2017 at 19:47
  • There is indeed no 2 month vignette, you must mix this up with another country. There was the discussion of rising the price to 100 francs and introduce a short term one at 40 francs, but the first one was rejected in a referendum, the second one was rejected by the government.
    – drat
    Commented Jul 14, 2017 at 3:02
  • A bit late, but: Yes, the yearly vignette costs 40Fr, and it is valid for one calender year, plus the december before and january after. This could make it seem as if it's valid for two months, though it is for 14 months. Benefit: Most winter sports tourists can use it for two seasons!
    – sweber
    Commented Jan 12, 2018 at 8:09

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