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Using the back-to-school allowance card

This page provides information on using the back-to-school allowance card (ARS card).

Who is this procedure intended for?

This procedure is only intended for parents who have received a positive answer from the Social Service to their request for a back-to-school allowance and who have received the ARS card. 

What is the ARS card?

The ARS card is an electronic purchasing card to be used in the network of partner stores in Geneva; the full list is available for download at the bottom of the page.

The card cannot be recharged and can be used in several points of sale (successive payments possible). It can also be used in addition to payment by cash or bank card.

The general conditions can be downloaded at the bottom of the page.

How to obtain the ARS card?

The ARS card can be obtained upon receiving a positive answer from the Social Service after submitting the relevant form and accompanying documents. Beneficiaries receive the card under separate cover. It can be used immediately in partner stores until expiry of its validity.

How much is the back-to-school allowance?

The Social Service will notify beneficiaries of the amount of the back-to-school allowance in writing. Beneficiaries will receive the card under separate cover a few days later. The card will be charged with the total amount of the allowance indicated in the answer (one card per application).

Where to use the ARS Card?

The ARS card can be used in the stores of the partner network listed below (2019 network). You can also download the map of the stores at the bottom of the page.

Important: the ARS card cannot be used for online purchases.
  • Vincenti Guitares: Classical guitar store and workshop established in Geneva since 1979.
  • Itopie informatique: Non-profit cooperative society selling and repairing computers as well as providing sustainable, civic and ethical IT solutions. Itopie promotes free software, encourages the development of the local economy, offers training and promotes sustainability in the world of IT.
  • Réalise: An unsubsidised, non-profit and socially-responsible company founded in Geneva in 1984. Réalise specialises in training through work experience, direct work placements in businesses and subcontracting. Driven by the values of sustainability, it also provides reconditioned IT equipment.
  • Papeterie Wolf: A business founded in 1973 in the Eaux-Vives district which provides advice and know-how to help prepare for the start of the new school year, while also meeting the specific requirements of certain specialised schools. Papeterie Wolf stocks all the supplies children need to go back to school including diaries, pencil cases, pens and other stationery items.
  • Papeterie Brachard: A family stationery store that has been in Geneva since 1839. The stationery store boasts a wide selection of back-to-school supplies, ranging from writing equipment to office accessories.
  • Payot Librairie: A network of local book stores established in Geneva for over 100 years offering a wide selection of books as well as an online book store.
  • Aeschbach Chaussures et Sports: A family business founded in Geneva in 1904, specialising in shoes.
  • Manor Genève (except food and restaurant): A company present in the City of Geneva for more than 50 years offering a wide range of back-to-school materials including stationery, children’s clothing, sports equipment and multimedia goods.
  • Migros Genève: Stores selling back-to-school articles ranging from stationery to children’s clothing.


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Article modifié le 19.05.2020 à 13:54