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Traveling in Europe:- Passports and ID cards

There are two distinct areas within the EEA (European Economic Area ).
Mainland Europe (not including San Marino, Monaco and Vatican City), is known as the Schengen area.
Other Countries such as UK, Ireland, Cyprus, Bulgaria and Romania, are not party to the agreement.

When traveling within these contiguous member states that are, party to the Schengen agreement, Passports and ID cards are very unlikely to be needed at boarder crossings, although may still be required for hotel, car hire, police stop and search etc.
EU States not signed up to the Schengen agreement (UK, Ireland, Romania, Bulgaria and Cyprus ) will require that you present valid passports or European national identity card before you can enter the countries.
Although not signed up to the Schengen agreement San Marino, Monaco and Vatican City boarders are not policed.

Non-EU Visitors

You will need a valid passport and in some cases a Visa to enter any of the EU member states, you need only one Schengen visa to enter and travel between the Schengen member states but you may need individual visa for EU countries that are not part of the Schengen agreement and should carry them with you when traveling between the states. Non European national ID cards, driving licence's, etc will not be accepted as valid id.
Important Always ensure that your passport is stamped both when you enter and leave the Schengen Area. Without a valid exit stamp from a previous visit, you could be denied entry the next time you enter the Schengen Area. If you have not obtained an exit stamp when you left th area retain as much documentary proof as possible boarding passes, transport tickets, ATM slips, Hotel Receipts etc to provide evidence of the date you left to the immigration staff.

EU Visitors

It is always best to take a passport or ID card with you when traveling around the passport-free Schengen area. Even though you do not need to show it at the border, there may be other occasions when you need to prove your identity
You should use the separate channels marked 'EEA/EU', where they are available and expect Immigration officers to check your passport or national identity card.
Driving licence's, post, bank or tax cards are not accepted as valid travel documents or proof of identity. The UK National Identity Card and the Identification Card for EEA (European economic area) nationals are no longer valid legal documents.

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