Red and orange payment slips to be replaced by QR code bills in Switzerland

Red and orange payment slips to be replaced by QR code bills in Switzerland

From September 30, 2022, red and orange invoices will no longer be used to process payments at Swiss banks. Here’s how the change will affect financial transactions in Switzerland and more information about the QR-bills that will replace the old system.

Swiss orange and red payment slips to be phased out by September, 2022

For expats living in Switzerland, a red or orange payment slip is a very regular sight. Since the orange invoice's introduction in 2001, they have been used by international companies, health insurance providers and entrepreneurs for invoices and bills between themselves, customers and other companies. Now, orange (payment request with a reference number) and red (payment request without a reference number) slips will be replaced by new Swiss QR-bills.

Since the introduction of the QR code bill in Switzerland in June 2020, many companies have been making the switch so that payments can be made automatically on the internet and through apps on mobile phones. Between then and April 2022, all the major Swiss banks have agreed to completely replace the older coloured slips with QR code bills by September 30, 2022.

Why are Swiss banks switching to QR code bills and invoices?

For consumers, according to UBS, QR-bills allow you to:

  • Scan the QR code with your smartphone, computer, or printer to automatically fill in a payment request, instead of having to manually type in the account and reference number
  • Standardise invoices into one type of bill
  • Allow for easier integration with banking apps

It is hoped that the new automated system will make banking faster and more user-friendly for customers and businesses.

Things you need to know about Swiss QR-bills

For many residents of Switzerland, the switch to QR-based invoices may feel like a step into the unknown. To help you along, here are some of the most common questions about Swiss QR-bills.

Do I have to do my banking online with the new QR-bills?

QR-bills do not have to be paid online. They can still be paid at banks, some ATMs and branches of the postal service. This is perhaps unsurprising as according to UBS, 15 percent of bills in Switzerland are still paid in cash at the post office.

What if I cannot scan a Swiss QR code invoice?

If you do not have a way to scan a QR-bill, it can still be filled out manually. The bill still contains all the relevant information required to fill in the form yourself.

What happens to my standing orders in Switzerland after September 30?

If you receive a regular standing order from a company that still sends orange and red payment slips, UBS recommends that you ask for a new QR-bill and use it to restart or continue the standing order. Be sure to do this before the official switch on September 30 or you may miss a payment.

Companies are encouraged to conclude all orange and red slip payments and make the switch to QR-bills before August 31, 2022, to allow their customers extra time to settle their invoices.

QR-bills set to streamline banking in Switzerland

The QR code bill represents the biggest shift in how people pay their bills in Switzerland since the orange payment slip was introduced. While the QR-bill represents an advance in how banking and finance are done in Switzerland, many will still need to time adjust. Those who are in need of further information are encouraged to contact their bank for more details.

Jan de Boer


Jan de Boer

Jan studied in York and Sheffield in the UK, obtaining a master's in broadcast journalism and a bachelor's in history. He has worked as a radio DJ, TV presenter, and...

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