Detachment at CERN

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Formalities at Nikhef

  • Talk to PZ to inform them and get information. Verhuiskosten, detacheringsvergoeding, huurkosten, extra verzekering, voorschotten, ...
  • if you want: unregister from the gemeente Amsterdam at your 'stadsdeelkantoor' (check whether this is a smart thing to do or not, this depends on several 'things')

Formalities at CERN

Assuming you already registered at CERN (eg. you have a CERN card etc.) but not for permanent stay .

  • fill in Users' Check List on EDH
  • for Swiss card: apply at Users' Office, (no photos needed, they take your CERN picture). You can pick it up ~2 weeks later there.
  • for French card: bring 7 photos to Users' Office



It might be smart to book the CERN hostel for a period. Expensive, though easy to start from... GHI/CERN market seems to have the best offers. Go to regies in person to see what they have available (and keep track of the offers on internet). When visiting houses, don't be surprised > 40 people show up. When visiting, take copies of the needed paperwork with you. I spend ~ 1.5 weeks full time searching (resulting in 8 subscriptions at different regies and a chaotic spreadsheet) before getting a contract offer. Be nice to the people ;-)


  • passport
  • attestation de functions: the Swiss card (you got already via CERN)
  • attestation office de non poursuites: some kind of prove you do not have any debts in Geneva Office des poursuites Rue du Stand 46 (open till 15u30) CHF 17,-
  • statement from CERN saying you are a user at CERN and paid (CERN is a magic word). Can get this at the Users' Office. (At the Users' office they claim you can get it yourselve from as well...)
  • copy of your 3 last salary payments -> a statement from Nikhef PZ about your salary will do
  • deposit:
    • get a normal bank account at UBS (need to go to Users' Office first to be able to open an account) and then you can get a special 'deposit' account
    • Swiss caution expensive form of loaning money


some regies

Be patient...

good experiences

not so good experiences
Need a cosignataire/garant: someone with Permis de Sejour B/C/L living in Switzerland. Might try a CERN fellow (Permis de Sejours D), not sure this will be accepted. Don't try if you don't have someone to sign, waste of time.

no opinion


no experience... probably: get a car


This is information about how to bring your (Dutch) car to CERN and drive it legally... Decide where you are going to life first. You need an adress in France or Switzerland to start any procedure. For help on the issue there is the Human Resources and the folks at building 33 (above the micro-cosmos) are very helpful.


Once you have an adress, you will have to go to customs at the border (near entrace B) and import your car. With the forms you get, you can then go to building 33 and they will tell you what to do next before you can go to the office in Geneva to order the Swiss plates (it involves getting a controle technique and insurance). Details can be found here. Parking in Geneva is a pain. There are white zones with meter, white zones without and blue zones. For an overview of rules and regulations go to Parkings. If you life in the city, you can apply for a macaron, see here.


Once you have an adress and the French card, you can go directly to building 33 and order the green plates. At the moment they will take about 8 weeks.

Random tips to make life easy

  • Get a bank account at UBS if you are staying in Switzerland
  • Pinnen with Dutch pinpas costs money in Switzerland (~ EUR 1.82)
  • Yallo for cheap prepaid mobile phone cards at the CERN shop
  • Cartabonus/Unireso card for public transport
  • Free public transport ticket at luggage pick up hall on the left exit
  • They actually have a lot of information here: Human Resources Departement
  • Free wireless internet at the airport above the duty free shop. ESSID: "hidden"
  • First 2 months of internet (and bluewinTV, 160 TV channels) from Swisscom are free. If you need short term internet, sign the contract and bring back the stuff after 2 months.
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