ck’s busy, Muffti’s busy, TheMiddle’s still around, and the rest is probably getting their party outfits ready for the Heebonism event (the one time I’m not going to NYC during my break *pout*). But I’ve promised ck to post more to (try to) fill the gap, so let’s see….

Alright, since I myself may not travel this time around, here are some travel news for you:

The day before yesterday, new states officially joined the Schengen Agreement states. What does this mean for travellers? Generally, if you travel within the Schengen states, you just need to apply for a visa for the country that is your main destination. If you’re a US or Canadian citizen, usually your regular passport will suffice to enter any of the Schengen states. Furthermore, there will be no ID controls anymore at borders between the old and the new Schengen states, air travel border control between those states is predicted to end in 2008. Note, in many European states adolescents and adults are expected to carry some form of ID (ID card or passport) on them all the time when outside their premises. Also, you may still be subject to customs searches, and certain items that are legal to obtain in one state are illegal to possess in other states.

The members of the Schengen Agreement currently are (countries set off in green are members of the Euro Zone): Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithunia, Luxembourg, Malta (member of the Eurozone from 1 January 2008 on), the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, and Sweden. San Marino’s got an open border with Italy (prize question: where’s San Marino?), Monaco is treated as if it were a part of France, and Vatican City has got an open border with Italy. Switzerland and Liechtenstein have got a common open border, but neither is part of the Schengen states yet, so individual visa regulations apply. Andorra is not a Schengen state either, and while ID controls are still carried out on its borders, a valid visa to any Schengen will usually suffice to enter.

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