LivingTravelIs Spain in the Schengen zone?

Is Spain in the Schengen zone?

The short answer: yes, Spain is in the Schengen zone. It is also a member of the Eurozone and the European Union. However, it is important to note that these are three separate entities and should not be confused with each other.

What is the Schengen zone?

The Schengen Zone, also known as the Schengen Area, is a group of countries in Europe that do not have internal border controls. This means that a visitor to Spain can cross into France and Portugal and the rest of Europe without having to show a passport at an official border control.

In theory, you could make the 55-hour drive from Faro in southern Portugal to Riksweg in northern Norway without having to show your passport once.

See also:

  • How to get from Spain to Portugal
  • Guide of Trains and Buses to Spain
  • Portugal Tours from Madrid

How long can I stay in the Schengen zone?

The answer to this question depends on your country of origin. Americans can spend 90 days out of every 180 days in the Schengen Zone. After those 90 days have elapsed, you must go to a non-Schengen country or have a valid visa to stay longer.

Citizens of EU countries, even those outside the Schengen Zone, can stay in the area indefinitely without the need for a visa at any time.

Is the Schengen zone the same as the European Union?

The two groups of countries include a lot of overlap, but they are not the same. In his own words, the European Union is a group of 28 nations united by “a single economic and political union”, working together on issues such as the environment, health, security, justice, migration and much more.

There are several non-EU countries in the Schengen Zone and some EU countries that have chosen not to participate in the Schengen agreement. See the full list below.

Do all the countries in the Schengen zone use the euro?

No. There are several EU member countries that are also in the Schengen Zone, but they do not use Europe’s main currency, the euro. For more information on money in Europe, check out our comprehensive guide to the euro, as well as our guide to other European currencies.

Is a visa from Spain valid for the entire Schengen zone?

It usually is, but not always. To be sure, check with the Spanish embassy or consulate that issued your visa.

Can I leave my passport in Spain when I go to Portugal or France?

In theory, it probably could, but it is not advisable to do so. Remember that unless you have a valid residence card, a passport is the main accepted form of identification for non-EU citizens traveling in Europe. Keeping a valid ID at all times is a smart idea, no matter where you are in the world.

Although you are allowed to cross the border between the Schengen countries without going through passport control, you will have to be able to prove that you do, in fact, have the correct visa in case you randomly stop and ask for identification.

During the recent immigration crisis, many countries re-established border controls, although the borders with Spain remained open.

What countries are in the Schengen zone?

The following countries are members of the Schengen agreement:

EU countries in the Schengen zone

  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Hungary
  • Italy
  • Latvia
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • malt
  • Holland (Holland)
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • Spain
  • Sweden

Non-EU countries in the Schengen zone

  • Norway
  • Iceland
  • Swiss
  • Lichtenstein

The following European microstates have opened their borders with the Schengen countries, but are not formally members of the Schengen agreement:

  • Monaco
  • San Marino
  • Vatican City

EU countries that have not yet implemented their Schengen zone commitments

These countries are required to join the Schengen Zone and are working to meet those requirements.

  • Bulgaria
  • Cyprus
  • Romania
  • Croatia

EU countries that have chosen to leave the Schengen zone

These countries have been completely excluded from the Schengen Agreement. You will still need to go through border control and show a valid passport when traveling to one of the following countries from a Schengen country.

  • Ireland
  • UK

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