Explained: What are Schengen visas and what benefits do they offer for travellers?

·1-min read

The European Union has decided to fully suspend a 2007 agreement that was meant to give preferential treatment to visa applications made by Russian nationals.

The decision was in response to the invasion of Ukraine and comes after a strong push from Eastern European countries, who denounced the contradiction between the war and the arrival of Russian tourists looking for warm and cosy European destinations.

The suspension of the agreement will affect the issuance of so-called Schengen visas, which enables travel across the entire passport-free Schengen area.

Schengen currently covers more than four million square kilometres, stretching across 22 EU countries together with Iceland, Norway, Liechtenstein and Switzerland.

Watch the video above to learn more about Schengen visas.