Schengen Area Countries List

Schengen Area, named after “the Schengen Agreement” signifies a zone where 26 different European nations, acknowledged the abolishment of their internal borders with other member nations and outside, for the free and unrestricted movement of people, goods, services, and capital, in harmony with common rules for controlling external borders and fighting criminality by strengthening common judicial system and police cooperation.

Through Schengen Area, borders between European countries are only existent on maps, as  to over 400 million nationals of 26 member countries the freedom of traveling passport check and border control free within and outside the area is guaranteed, as within a single country, since every country share the common travel and movement rights.

Schengen Area

Established 1995
Members
Population 419,392,429
Area 4,312,099 km2 (1,664,911 sq mi)

 
 

 

 

The Schengen Area Member States:

Schengen Visa Countries List

As you see in the list above, the Schengen Area has twenty six (26) member states, twenty two (22) of which fully implement the Schengen Aquis, and four (4) of them – members of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA), implement Schengen Aquis through Specific Agreements related to the Schengen Agreement.

Three (3) of the following European countries are associated members of the Schengen Area but are not members of the European Union: Iceland, Norway, and Switzerland.

Three (3) of the following territories are special members of the European Union and part of the Schengen Area, even that they are located outside the European continent: the Azores, Madeira, and the Canary Islands.

On the other hand, three (3) of the following countries have open their borders with, but are not members of the Schengen Area: Monaco, San Marino, and Vatican City.

There are six (6) more European Union members, that have not yet joined Schengen Area: Ireland and United Kingdom – that still maintain opt-outs and Romania, Bulgaria, Croatia, and Cyprus – that are required to and are seeking to join soon.

The external borders of the Schengen Area reach a distance of 50,000 km long, where 80% of it is comprised of water and 20% of land.

The area counts hundreds of airports and maritime ports, many land crossing points, an area of 4,312,099 million km2, and a population of 419,392,429 million citizens.


Attention! Although most of the Schengen countries are in the European Union, you should not confuse the Schengen area with the EU.

Member states of the EU:

  • Austria (1995)
  • Belgium (1952)
  • Bulgaria (2007)
  • Croatia (2013)
  • Cyprus (2004)
  • Czech Republic (2004)
  • Denmark (1973)
  • Estonia (2004)
  • Finland (1995)
  • France (1952)
  • Germany (1952)
  • Greece (1981)
  • Hungary (2004)
  • Ireland (1973)
  • Italy (1952)
  • Latvia (2004)
  • Lithuania (2004)
  • Luxembourg (1952)
  • Malta (2004)
  • Netherlands (1952)
  • Poland (2004)
  • Portugal (1986)
  • Romania (2007)
  • Slovakia (2004)
  • Slovenia (2004)
  • Spain (1986)
  • Sweden (1995)
  • United Kingdom (1973)

Frequently Asked Questions about Schengen Area/Zone:

What is the Schengen Borders Agreement?

The Schengen Borders Agreement permits people to travel freely within the Schengen area, if the traveler otherwise qualifies to enter the Schengen area, by crossing an official external border during regular hours of operation and obtaining an entry stamp in the passport.

What does EFTA stand for?

EFTA is an association of ten Fair Trade importers in nine European countries (Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, The Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland and the United Kingdom). EFTA was established informally in 1987 by some of the oldest and largest Fair Trade importers. It gained formal status in 1990. EFTA is based in the Netherlands and has Dutch Articles of Association.

How does EFTA differ from EU?

While the EFTA stands for an association of ten Fair Trade importers in nine European countries (Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, The Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland and the United Kingdom), the EU is a group of mostly European countries, (28 to be exact) that participates in the world economy as one economic unit and operates under one official currency, the euro.

For more questions and answers please click Schengen VISA FAQ.