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Romania and Bulgaria in the Schengen Area: what are the consequences for travelers?

Romania and Bulgaria in the Schengen Area: what are the consequences for travelers?

This article was originally published on English

Bulgaria and Romania will become part of the Schengen Area from March 31.


On March 31, Romania and Bulgaria will join the Schengen Area, which allows 400 million citizens to move freely between member states.

Both countries have been members of the European Union since 2007 but were not part of the Schengen Area, so travelers still must present their passports upon entry.

In 2024, border controls between the two countries will be simplified.

Do you need a passport to enter Romania and Bulgaria?

when Romania And the Bulgaria If you join the Schengen Area this year, it will be easier for travelers to travel to both countries.

The Interior Ministries announced last December that some border controls would be lifted.

Travelers arriving by plane or boat from other Schengen countries will not need to present their passports upon arrival. This means that passengers on flights, cruises and ferries will not be subject to tests.

On the other hand, if you arrive Romania Or in Bulgaria By car, train or bus, you will still need to carry an ID card, as the rules governing land borders have not yet been established. This situation is due to its veto powerAustria.

A new decision must be taken to set a date for lifting controls on land borders“, the European Council notes on its website.

Which European countries can you enter without a passport?

The last country to join the Schengen Area is Croatia In 2022.

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Every year, 1.25 billion trips take place in this space and 3.5 million people cross the borders of Member States every day.

Not to mention Romania and Bulgaria.Schengen area Includes 27 states. Twenty-three of them belong to the European Union and four are affiliated with the European Free Trade Association: Norway, Iceland, Switzerland and Liechtenstein.

The Schengen Area was created in 1995 after the signing, ten years earlier, of the Schengen Agreement between five member states of the European Economic Community: Germany, Belgium, France, Luxembourg and the Netherlands.

Several other agreements followed until the 2007 expansion, when nine additional countries were incorporated into the free movement zone.

Travelers from outside the EU are advised to remember where they are staying Bulgaria And in Romania It is counted towards the time you spend in the Schengen Area, which cannot exceed 90 days out of 180 days.