The Schengen Agreement: A Comprehensive Guide to Europe`s Borderless Travel
The Schengen Agreement is a treaty that was signed in 1985 in Schengen, Luxembourg. It has since become one of the most significant political agreements in European history, revolutionizing the way people travel within Europe.
The agreement abolishes internal border controls between the participating countries, allowing citizens of the Schengen Area to travel freely without passport checks, making it easier for tourists and businesspeople to travel around Europe. The Schengen Area is made up of 26 European countries, including Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland.
The Schengen Agreement is an essential step towards building a united and more efficient Europe, as it allows for the free movement of people and goods across borders, streamlining the travel process for everyone involved.
Facts about the Schengen Agreement
1. The Schengen Agreement was initially signed in 1985 but was not fully implemented until 1995.
2. The agreement is named after the small village of Schengen in Luxembourg, where it was signed.
3. The Schengen Area is home to over 400 million people, making it one of the most significant free movement zones in the world.
4. Despite being part of the European Union, the United Kingdom and Ireland have opted out of the Schengen Agreement.
5. Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, and Romania are not yet members of the Schengen Area, although they are working towards meeting the criteria for membership.
6. The Schengen Agreement requires participating countries to have a high level of border security, including technological systems that collect and store information on people entering and leaving the area.
7. Non-EU citizens are required to have a Schengen visa to enter the Schengen Area, which allows them to stay for up to 90 days within a six-month period.
8. The agreement has faced several challenges in recent years due to the increase in migrants and refugees entering Europe, leading to some countries reintroducing internal border controls.
The Schengen Agreement has revolutionized the way people travel within Europe and is an essential step towards building a united and more efficient Europe. The free movement of people and goods across borders has made it easier for tourists and businesspeople to travel, contributing to economic growth and prosperity. Despite facing challenges in recent years, the Schengen Agreement remains a symbol of European unity and cooperation.