Romania & Bulgaria Now Schengen Countries (March 31, 2024)

Romania and Bulgaria have joined the EU’s Schengen area today, meaning there are no border checks for those traveling by air or sea from another Schengen country. However, passport or ID checks are still in place for land border traffic from these two countries.

All European Union countries, except Cyprus and Ireland, the latter has a common travel area with the UK, are now part of Schengen + Norway, Iceland, Switzerland, and Liechtenstein (not EU countries).

You can access the EU here.

Here’s an informative map from the EU explaining the Schengen area. It has not yet been updated to include Romania and Bulgaria, which joined today.

Download (PDF, 2.03MB)

EU’s Statement:

The border-free Schengen Area guarantees free movement to more than 425 million EU citizens, along with non-EU nationals living in the EU or visiting the EU as tourists, exchange students or for business purposes (anyone legally present in the EU). Free movement of persons enables every EU citizen to travel, work and live in an EU country without special formalities. Schengen underpins this freedom by enabling citizens to move around the Schengen Area without being subject to border checks.

Today, the Schengen Area encompasses most EU countries, except for Cyprus and Ireland. Bulgaria and Romania became the newest Member States to join the Schengen area as of 31 March 2024, any person crossing the internal air and sea borders will no longer be subject to checks. Nevertheless, a unanimous decision on the lifting of checks on persons at the internal land borders is still expected to be taken by the Council at a later date. Additionally, the non-EU States Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and Liechtenstein also have joined the Schengen Area.


The Free Movement, which encompasses the right to live and work in any EU member state, is a great benefit for any EU citizen, and the Schengen agreement makes it very easy to travel between any countries belonging to it.

There are no border checks, usually, but there are occasionally ID checks that I have encountered at least twice upon landing at Paris Charles-de-Gaulle airport from an intra-Schengen flight (I must have been coming from Amsterdam).

Some airlines still demand to see an “ID” when boarding these intra-Schengen flights, but it is still only a revenue protection feature and not a government-instituted requirement.