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On 21 December 2007, Slovenia became a member of the Schengen area. On that date, checks at the internal land and sea borders with EU member states were lifted, and on 30 March the following year, controls at the air borders were also relaxed.

This was an important historic event for our country, as it brought us even closer to Europe. At the same time, by joining Schengen, we took on a very responsible task - to protect the common external border according to Schengen standards on behalf of all member states.

Almost all EU countries are now part of the Schengen area, except Bulgaria, Cyprus, Ireland and Romania. Bulgaria and Romania are still preparing to join the Schengen area. Some non-EU countries have also joined: Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.

Information about the Schengen Area and Schengen Area Countries 

Free movement across internal Schengen borders

The basic idea of the Schengen regime is to guarantee the right to free movement across internal borders. Any EU citizen can travel, work and live in any EU country without special formalities. The Schengen area, a so-called "borderless zone", allows free movement for more than 400 million EU citizens and for nationals of many non-EU countries - business people, tourists, students, researchers and other visitors legally residing in the EU.

Anyone regardless of their nationality can cross internal borders between Schengen countries without border controls at any time and anywhere with a valid document (for Slovenian citizens, an identity card or a passport).

Slovenia has an internal Schengen border with Austria, Italy, Hungary and Croatia. More: Internal Schengen border

More thorough control at the external Schengen borders

A counterbalance to the abolition of internal border checks is more thorough border control at the external Schengen borders, primarily to stop illegal immigration, drug smuggling, trafficking in human beings and other forms of cross-border crime. More: Border crossing points at the external Schengen border

Compensatory measures

In addition to the common rules for checks at the external borders of the Schengen countries, which are implemented at border crossing points and directly affect citizens, cross-border police cooperation, harmonisation of member states' legislation, judicial cooperation in criminal matters, common visa policy, data exchange in the central Schengen Information System, etc., are also very important in the fight against organised crime and for ensuring security in the Schengen area as a whole. These measures are also called compensatory measures, as they "compensate" for the security deficit created by the abolition of internal border checks. For this reason, the Slovenian police have set up police stations for compensatory measures in areas along the internal border or in areas where this is required by the security situation.

To enter and stay in another EU country, you must be in possession of an identity card or a valid passport. The same applies for crossing the external border.

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Slovenia, a New Schengen Member
Slovenia's Five Years in the Schengen Area (2007-2012) 
Internal Schengen border
State border control

Schengen information system (SIS) and the SIRENE National Bureau