Shouldn't there be a page for the European Union as well? Since some things, such as the currency, are common to most (if not all) EU countries, it would seem like a good idea to put this information in a single page, which would then be linked to from each country page. -Timo
I guess I can see this, but I'm not really sure. I mean, why would a European Union page be different from a "SEATO" page, or a "West African Monetary Union" page? I realize that it's important for Europeans, but what about for travelers? My experience in Europe, as a traveler, has had very limited contact with the EU. Besides the euro, what information do you think would go on a European Union page? I'm not saying not to do it -- I'm just wondering what relevance the EU has to everyday travelers. -- Evan 14:04, 7 Nov 2003 (PST)
Okay, maybe an EU page is not necessary at this stage. I think that as the integration goes forward, having such a page could become useful in the future, but that will take time. But maybe just a Euro page then? -Timo
Evan, I disagree with you. There are some travel related infos that are the same for all (or most) EU countries, e.g. currency (in 12 countries), traffic rules and signs, migration, visum and toll stuff, and for sure some others that don't come into my mind right now. So the EU is not to compare with the "SEATO" or "West African Monetary Union", since there are much more common things than just the currency. -- Hansm 01:40, 2003 Nov 11 (PST)
OK, that sounds fine. What kind of article would it be, though? A travel topic? A continental section? I'm having a hard time fitting my head around how it would work. But, hey, let's start it and see where we go. One last thing: it's important to remember that Wikitravel articles need to be guides. What does European Union do for the traveler? Would anyone ever print out European Union and put it in their back pocket to carry around? Or are we just excited that we know some facts (the European Union is composed of these countries, the currency in most of the countries is the euro, the capital of the EU is in Brussels, the EU was founded in this year, dah dah dah) and want to write them down? We're not a general knowledge collection site, but a travel guide site. -- Evan 06:34, 11 Nov 2003 (PST)
Well, indeed, the EU doesn't fit into the Geographical Hierarchy. I'd propose to handle it similar to a coutry article, but it will remain something special that doen't fit into any template form. The use of that page would rather be to work as a target to witch the EU coutry pages could link the same way as different coutry pages link to the same phrasebook or what ever. So, the EU page need not to be listed on the Europe page since it is no actual country. -- Hansm 06:29, 2003 Nov 12 (PST)
How do I get to Prague?
So right now you can't get to any of the Eastern European destinations from the Europe page-- Prague, Budapest, etc. I know the whole "Eastern" vs "Central" Europe thing is a can of worms, but we gotta do something with it. I have to say I've never heard "Central Europe" used to describe these places, thought I get that it's a PR/image issue. But we do call Bombay Bombay because that's what the majority of travellers are going to look for, can't we do the same with this? I'd say it would be a good point to include in the Understand section of course... Majnoona 21:27, 29 Feb 2004 (EST)
Table of European Union Membership, Schengen, Euro
I am not certain that changing the layout of the Country section of this article is a good idea. I have seen something similar and think this is almost boardering on a copyright violation. See WikiPedia:Economy of Europe for a similar table. Could someone explain why it should not be reverted to what it was previously. -- Huttite 20:57, 3 Jan 2005 (EST)
I don't think it's a copyvio -- he appears to be updating the info as he looks it up. On the other hand, the old list was in standard region-template form (a simple list) which is easier to print out. -- Colin 21:28, 3 Jan 2005 (EST)
Bugger! - has been reverted just now by the professor. I wonder if he has read this? I didn't want to do that just yet as I could see the page was being actively updated and there were other edit in the history too. I wonder what will happen now? -- Huttite 22:04, 3 Jan 2005 (EST)
Reverted back to Tobias' version until the Prof explains himself. I'm not sure the new table formatting is particularly useful, but I don't think it's actively harmful either. Jpatokal 22:11, 3 Jan 2005 (EST)
There was talk about setting up EU-page and whether this is usefull for travellers. I do not know. But currency and Schengen-info should be usefull. The text above the list says there are countries in EU some in Schnengen, some SChengen not in EU ... Having a table is easier. That we do not have this for other continents is obvious. They do not have this ;-) Tobias Conradi 22:21, 3 Jan 2005 (EST)
Just a formal note.
Ten new members of EU are party of Schengen Agreement. Just not all rules apply yet.
Member States already apply common rules in these areas under the Schengen agreements. These intergovernmental
agreements have been incorporated into the European Union following the entry into force of the Amsterdam
Treaty and now form part of the Community acquis to be adopted by the applicant countries. However, most of
the Schengen acquis will not be applied to the new Member States as soon as they join but later, once this has
been specifically decided by the Council. This is the aim of the plan of action for adopting the Schengen
criteria on the basis of a realistic timetable for implementing the Schengen Agreement.
The efforts in matters of exterior relations are principally directed at expansion while taking account of the
extent of the task and the time limit provided.The ten new Member States (Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland,
the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Slovenia, Malta, Cyprus) should have integrated the Union’s entire
acquis in the field of justice and home affairs by 1 May 2004, the date the treaties of accession signed 16
April 2003 come into force. However, certain provisions concerning the Schengen acquis will not apply, in
particular those concerning the connection of the ten new States to the Schengen Information System and the
dismantling of internal border controls.
(See: ) Up to your decision if the article needs slight rewording.
--JanSlupski 16:51, 26 Jan 2005 (EST)
"Likewise, a visa granted for any Schengen Agreement signatory country is valid in all other countries that signed and implemented the treaty."
Since when? Do you have a source for that? Last time I inquired (November 2004), that wasn't true in every case. Some visa are only valid for the country that granted it.
If your visa is from a country fully applying the Schengen rules, it automatically allows you to travel to the other
Schengen countries as well. (...) You may need a national visa to visit Ireland, the United Kingdom and the new member states.
Some new member states accept Schengen visas or Schengen residence permits so check with their consulates.
If we say European Russia, I feel that we should say European Turkey as well. Portion of Turkey that lays in Europe is relativelly small.
--JanSlupski 17:09, 21 Mar 2005 (EST)
I do not agree. The leftmost column is meant to host country names, and there is no country as "European Turkey". It is true that in geographical terms, Turkey has divisions in Europe and Asia, but it is a country as a whole in the context of this page (travel / transportation). The facts and figures concerning this country in this context do not just apply to a region, but the whole of it (Turkey as a whole is an official EU applicant, or Turkey as a whole is in the Inter Rail zone G). AtilimGunesBaydin 17:48, 15 Oct 2005 (EDT)
Well, there is no such country as European Russia too. And part of Russia that lays in Europe is far bigger than Turkey. --JanSlupski 17:42, 16 Oct 2005 (EDT)
Sorry, but I do not see your point on this last reply (JanSlupski 17:42, 16 Oct 2005 (EDT)), and its connection to the things I've just stated. And I do not understand why you are comparing the size of a portion of Russia with the size of Turkey. AtilimGunesBaydin 09:24, 17 Oct 2005 (EDT)
I'm talking about consistency. If you object Europen Turkey term, why don't you object and change European Russia (which I believe to be more European than Turkey) too? --JanSlupski 07:54, 18 Oct 2005 (EDT)
1.The EU is an organisation which can expand beyond Europe's boundaries. There are also some countries which are not in the EU (e.g. Switzerland) but are clearly part of Europe. It does not make sense that we use EU membership as the criterian for being part of Europe.Yzerfontein 11:02, 29 Jan 2006 (EST)
2. Istanbul is generally regarded as being the geographic boundary of Europe. It is also generally accepted that part of Turkey is in Europe and part in the middle-east. Yzerfontein 11:02, 29 Jan 2006 (EST)
I believe both "European Russia" and "European Turkey" names are kind of confusing, suggesting that they may be actual country names or the information presented in the other columns may only apply to the part of their land located in Europe. I believe it would be more appropriate and less confusing if we change them to actual country names and specify in the footnote that only some part of them are located in Europe. --386-DX 08:12, 8 January 2007 (EST)
There is no continent of Europe according to my daughters Geography text. It's merely a sub-continent like India. Both Turkey and Russia lie wholey in the continent of Eurasia. Europeans would like to change continental plates, but it won't happen anytime soon. Both Turkey and Russia straddle the European invention of Europe and Asia (actually Eurasia). Get used to facts.
Mediterranean Europe is fine except for the inclusion of Portugal which isn't actually on the Mediterranean Sea. Maybe Southern Europe is more valid. -- Colin Angus Mackay 09:54, 12 Jun 2005 (EDT)
As far as I'm aware, most the the Balkan countries listed here don't consider themselves "Mediterranean" - they are on the Adriatic Sea which, although physically part of the Med, is seen as a a distinct marine area. Portugal, of course, is on the Atlantic Ocean and far from the Med. The only justification for using "Mediterranean" as a description for this area would be that the coutries share a common culture that is distinguished by proximity to the Med region. They don't. I propose Southern Europe, which is geographically accurate. --ManOnABus 03:18, 18 Jul 2005 (EST)
FYI: Croatia has been running ads on European TV for the last year or with the tagline "The Mediterranean as it used to be" ignoring the fact that they are actually on the Adriatic. -- Mark 03:19, 18 Jul 2005 (EDT)
It only applies to passengers flying from an EU airport or from an airport outside the EU to an EU airport on an EU carrier.
We need few clarifications on this (do we know it already? how can we get official info?)
passengers flying from an EU airport: it applies to every carrier, not only EU-based, right? For example, if Aeroflot (which is Russian airline) flies from Athens, these regulations can be applied, am I right?
from an airport outside the EU to an EU airport on an EU carrier: is there any formal definition which carrier should be considered EU in this context? For example, if the same Aeroflot flies from Moscow to Athens, are these rules applicable?
One more thing: can we move the link to official info inside Passenger Rights section instead of very end of the page? I believe it'll make easier for reader to refer to official sources if they need to. --DenisYurkin 08:27, 17 Oct 2005 (EDT)
There is a couple of email adresses on . It would be great if you would contact them. --elgaard 08:31, 17 Oct 2005 (EDT)
I sent email and received a reply; posted both under Talk:Europe/DeniedBoarding. Will extract relevant info later -- or encourage someone to do that before me.
Great, I think you should tell Marina that it is for Wikitravel. Maybe she could even check that what say on WT is correct. --elgaard 08:31, 21 Oct 2005 (EDT)
The french island of Reunion, located east of Madagascar, is also part of Europe.
It is a part of France. Using the USEnglish definition of Europe, it most certainly is not part of Europe. -- Colin 15:29, 24 Oct 2005 (EDT)
The photograph is quite murky. I think it could be edited, so there are clearer differences between the landmass and the sea... 188.8.131.52 13:17, 26 Nov 2005 (EST)
Bulgaria and reorganization.
With all do respect here, this map uses a quite wrongful division of Europe. First thing that comes to my mind - Bulgaria is not in Eastern Europe in the sence you present here. East and West are not what they used to be. East used to mean communist, and West democratic. Even Greece was labled Western Europe under that criteria. But it's time to categorize Europe within cultural and historical limits. If you follow the old criteria then you should put Serbia, Macedonia and all the other ex-communist countries in Eastern Europe too. Historically, culturally and geographically Bulgaria is in Southeastern Europe a.k.a. the Balkans. Serbia and Macedonia don't even have a coastline, they are landlocked!!! Not to mention the Med sea. Bulgaria had Med sea coastline to the south, before it lost it to Greece in WWI. Now the Med is only 30 km away from the south border with Greece.
Second of all, I think the whole map needs to be reorganized. You can not group East and West Med together! They are very different. We need a Balkans or Southeast Europe category (or east Med if you will). Then you also need to put a Baltics cetegory - also different from Eastern Europe in a sence.
I read it so what? You proposed it...but it makes no sence. Bulgaria has very little in common with the East European states. Geographically it is in South Europe. Med sea is like 30 km way from the south border. Used to have Med sea coast till WW1. South Bulgaria has Med climate. Culturally and traditionaly a South Europen state. Part of the Ottoman Empire and so on...name something in favor of placing it as E Europ.
If you drew a line down the middle of Europe, Bulgaria would be in the East. Bulgaria is a former communist country and shares economic, political, linguistic and historical ties with the other Eastern European countries.
If we were doing a travel guide for the 1890s, of course, we'd include Bulgaria in Mediterranean Europe. If we were going to work on some other imaginary travel guides, we could put Bulgaria on Neptune or in Mordor. But we're not doing imaginary what-if travel guides, and we're not here to rewrite history. Travelers are going to be looking for Bulgaria in Eastern Europe, and it should be there when they look. --Evan 15:39, 27 February 2006 (EST)
My friend I want you to tell me base on what do you group the countries here? Serbia and Macedonia have no Med coast and have the same culture and traditions and virtually the same language - Bulgarian and Macedonia are almost the same. Still SR and MK are put into the Med Europe. Following your logic, if we were to prepare a travel guide before 1991, they would be put in Med as part of Yugoslavia. It really makes no sence. I believe that the whole grouping is wrong. There should be a seperate Groups for Balkans and probably Baltics too. Med and East Europe are too broad entities.
History, tradition and culture should play the major role in grouping the states. Grouping a southern country like Bulgaria with a nothern country like Estonia is deceiving: far away, nothing in common, diff climate, tradition and culture. Oh yea they share the same time zone...but so do Egypt and South Africa...lets put them in E Europe too!
Hey! I'm really glad that you are interested in Wikitravel, and in the geographical placement of Bulgaria. Thanks for contributing!
It kindof seems like it's really important to you that Bulgaria not be grouped either with Estonia or with the Balkan countries. OK, cool. Can you try however to make your arguments as much as possible from the point of view of the traveller? As for the rest of us, I think that we should try to imagine that as travellers discover Bulgaria they might well find that they no longer think of it as belonging to some amorphous east, but that it it more like a southern country.
That said the main thing is always the traveller. After all, how do you place the country I live in (Switzerland)? Is it in Western Europe? Central Europe? Southern Europe? The answer depends on who your are. On Wikitravel that is always the same: You are writing as and for the traveller. -- Mark 16:36, 27 February 2006 (EST)
Hey Mark. I make my request base exactly on what a traveller would expect to see in Bulgaria. I say that the whole grouping here is flauly. I certainly would not mind if Bulgaria is put into the BALKANS group (we need to create it first). Actually, I am FOR that. It is the best solution actually. Because Bulgaria is 100% Balkan state. My point is that Bulgaria has very little and sometimes nothing to do with the countries it's grouped with here - diff. culture, history, architecture, tradition, climate, customs and so on. On the other hand, Bulgaria shares alot with the rest of the Balkans - almost identical culture, traditions, climate, history, architecture and so on.Even the languages of the southern Slavs are for most part mutually comprehensible if yr a native speaker of one of them (except probably between Slovene and Bulgarian being the two ends of the language subgroup). My point here is that if one is exploring, let's say ex-Yugoslavia he/she may decide not to cross the border with BG coz it falls into a different region of Europe - a traveller would expect to find something different in Bulgaria, something similar to Russia and the Baltics...but for most part he/she will come accross cultures so close to those of the rest of ex-Yugoslavia that they are hard to distinguish.
Grouping of countries should be done better. I suggest following groups of Europe:
Western Europe (Iberia, UK, France, Germany, Benelux, Swiss, Italy),
Northern Europe (Scandinavia, Iceland, Baltic states),
Central Europe (Poland, Hungary, Czech R, Slovakia, Bulgaria and Romania),
Eastern Europe or CIS (Russia, Ukraine, Belarus and Caucasus),
South Eastern Europe (Balkan countries, Greece). All respect, but Turkey is not part of Europe.
Russia, Caucasus and Turkey appears both on Asia and Europe list. Please consistency!
How Portugal be in one group with Serbia ? Switzerland and Germany in Central Europe ?
Curreny division of countries is misleading travelers. One can not travel from Bulgaria to Estonia with passport or entry visa for Bulgaria, you need to get many visas, but you can travel freely around Central Europe region or Eastern Europe region.
Those people who are expecting similar culture and experience in Portugal, Serbia or Albania might be misleaded. Wikitravel should be updated with realities of the world as well as recent political changes.
Length of visit?
In some section we should have something that explains how long you can stay in Schengen Agreement countries. For example, lets say you're from a country allowed in w/o a visa, you get the 3 month limit. If you've stayed in Spain and your 3 month limit is up, can you go to Morocco for a few days and come back and then your 3 months is reset? I would add this myself but I am not sure of how it works. (Lizz 15:09, 11 July 2006 (EDT))
I think there needs to be a minimum time outside of Schengen, before you can return, but I'm not sure. Maybe someone has more precise info. Jamboo 08:49, 20 March 2008 (EDT)
The limit actually says "3 months in a 6-month period". So it's 3 months in, then minimum 3 months out. This is not always enforced strictly, but in case of over-zealous border controls, you could be barred from Schengen countries for 5 years if you overstay. Chernobyl 13:22, 23 November 2008 (EST)
Colors on the map
If somebody were editing the map, please consider also changing the colors (esp. for Mediterranean Europe). Why not try for example:
Color 1 Color 2 Color 3 Color 4 Color 5
It'd be more readable this way. Or I can do it if there is the map source available somewhere. CandleWithHare 15:11, 20 August 2006 (EDT)
Kissing patterns guide
Up to some time ago, each country had an entry detailing the kissing patternes when greeting: right cheek first in Italy and Corsica, men kiss each other in Italy and Southern France, kiss a girl when introduced to her in Spain but not in Italy, three kisses in Switzerland, four kisses in Paris, and so on... it was useful and interesting, why has it been systematically removed??? 184.108.40.206 08:22, 13 April 2008 (EDT)
Removed from which article? You can click on the History button to see all the changes made to any article. Jpatokal 09:50, 13 April 2008 (EDT)
Anyways, the joke in my comment is based on a motivational chestnut in English: "There is no 'I' in 'team'." The point being that you need to think about the team first, and the self second. (Yes, it's a pretty spooky phrase, isn't it? Destroying the self.)
Anyways, I was taking out the 1st-personisms in EU, and I thought of the phrase, and then I thought: "There is no 'I' in 'wiki'" was funny, because there are a lot of i's in "wiki".
OK. That's the point with good jokes. Stupid reader need an explanation ;-) -- Hansm 01:43, 2003 Dec 7 (PST)
I've included the following in the article about Germany:
Germany is a member of the European Union and the Schengen Agreement. European visa policy will be covered in the article about the EU. In brief, a visa to any other signatory state of the Schengen Agreement is valid in Germany too. No visa is required for citizens of other EU member states, and those of some selected nations with whom the European Union or Germany have special treaties. Inquire at your travel agent or call the local consulate or embassy of Germany.
Also, there are no border controls between Germany and other Schengen Agreement nations, making travel less complicated.
If you replace Germany with $localcountry and edit the bit about EU membership, this may make a good paragraph to include in all EU and/or Schengen Agreement signatory countries. Before we spread it out, however, someone else should have a look and edit it. -- Nils 14:59, 13 Apr 2004 (EDT)
I'm not 100% sure about this, but I think border controls are still not completely out of the question. I think that sometimes there are between France and Belgium to limit drug trafficking. But I'd like some other opinion about this. Akubra 15:35, 13 Apr 2004 (EDT)
Border controls have indeed gone from borders between Schengen countries. The Schengen countries are the 15 EU member states except the UK and Republic of Ireland, plus Norway and Iceland. The UK and Republic have their own free movement treaty along similar lines for travel between the two states. Professorbiscuit
OK, I must have confused it with the (supposed) Franco-Belgian police cooperation in border areas. Akubra 15:54, 13 Apr 2004 (EDT)
Don't confuse "no border controls" with "not allowed to make controls". Of course the police can stop you and search your car for drugs if they follow established legal procedure. Also, for example, on my recent flight from Paris to Frankfurt the airline checked passports as a "security measure" when boarding the plane. But that is general paranoia, and since the tickets are for a specific person I guess it's their right to see if you really are who you claim to be. Anyway, the point is, there are no border controls that really warrant such a name. So is the paragraph as it stands okay? -- Nils 01:04, 14 Apr 2004 (EDT)
The Schengen agreement is made to lift the compulsory borders controls and mostly to have a single visa stamp for nationals of non EU countries. This is why for instance a Brazilian national can enter Portugal with a Schengen visa, travel freely to France, but cannot enter the non-Schengen UK.
It does not mean that borders may never be checked. There are often border controls between Schengen countries: Spain/Portugal, Spain/France, Belgium/France. If you travel by train from Germany to Holland, you may have a passport control done by Dutch border policemen, while the train is crossing the German/Dutch border without stopping. This is meant to look for criminals, illegals and drug trafficking.
Also, the Schengen visa is valid for traveling, not for emigration. Ex: An Argentine living legally in Spain, with a valid residence/working permit, is allowed to travel through all the other Schengen countries but cannot work in Schengen countries other than Spain.
I don't think we can say that only Greek Cyprus is a member state. Officially, the whole of Cyprus is. Of course, practically, as a result of the recent referendum, it's a complete other thing. That's why I included the note. It's the same as in Wikipedia, but those are my exact words (I'm still Dhum Dhum there). Akubra 15:58, 3 May 2004 (EDT)
Yes, I agree with that. Remember, though, that we're a tourist guide not a political encyclopedia, so therefore this article discusses about the effect of the EU on travellers. And that effect (EU laws) only apply to Greek Cyprus. But, anyway, we also need to be politically-correct, and I agree that the best way of doing this is listing Cyprus as a member state, and then including the note. That way, we get the "best of both worlds". Ronline 20:06, 3 May 2004 (EDT)
EU Eurozone and Shengen
So we've got three groups -- European Union, countries that use the Euro, and the Schengen Agreement countries that have some sort of common visa setup. They overlap heavily, of course, but my understanding is that no two are exactly the same. UK is in EU but does not use Euro, Norway is in Schengen but not an EU member, and so on.
Do we need three maps? Or one map showing how they overlap? Or maybe a table, countries down the left and three columns for status?
I created an HTML table for this data, see User talk:Pashley/Playpen. Is it up to date? I just took data from existing article. Is there a better way? Wiki table? Or can someone do a map? If there's nothing better, maybe move the table into the article? Pashley 10:11, 1 January 2008 (EST)
I think it might now be up to date. I did a little web searching, found various countries joined Schengen Jan 1 2008, so table is now more up to date than the article. Pashley 10:33, 3 January 2008 (EST)
No comment, so I added the table in the "understand" section.Pashley 08:19, 22 January 2008 (EST)
I'd actually like to merge the European Union article back into Europe -- at the moment there's really heavy overlap. Jpatokal 22:26, 17 April 2008 (EDT)
No objection at all to removing the overlap. I'm not sure if the best way to do that is put all the details in the Europe article, or have then on a separate page that Europe links to. Pashley 02:47, 18 April 2008 (EDT)
Re "cents" vs "cent", Wikipedia quotes that For English language texts, however, there is a recommendation from the Directorate-General for Translation, the EU's translation service, that the natural plurals 'euros' and 'cents' should be used in non-legal documents intended for the general public. See wikipedia:Linguistic issues concerning the euro. Jpatokal 22:25, 17 April 2008 (EDT)
What underlies the regional classification of the Europe map. Appears quite POV to me. Is it possible to at least specify a reference where the grouping in this way has been taken from? 220.127.116.11 18:32, 8 July 2008 (EDT)
I just rolled back a change by an anonymous user whose explanation was "Removed map, which was factually inaccurate". We certainly need a map and I see nothing obviously inaccurate, except perhaps that the projection used makes Norway look far larger than Italy, but then I'm no expert on Europe. Can the remover, or others, please comment here? Pashley 13:49, 18 October 2008 (EDT)
well Norway is 324,220 km 2, Italy 301,230 sq km according to Wikitravel. And it does not look so much larger on the map. elgaard 20:33, 18 October 2008 (EDT)
At the map, Serbia has the color of Eastern Europe. However, in the article it's said to be in Mediterranean Europe. I don't mind which we choose here, but it should at least me consistent. The image also called Serbia "Yugoslavia", which is now incorrect. Globe-trotter 15:11, 22 September 2008 (EDT)
I was just about to mention that one as well. Given Serbia doesn't have a border on the Med. I would consider it more Eastern Europe. In fact, I'd say that for all the former Yugoslavian states given the sea they border is the Adriatic. Nrms 15:16, 22 September 2008 (EDT)
Good points, all, but my judgment would be to put Serbia in Eastern Europe, and keep the other former Yugoslav states in Mediterranean Europe, including the other land-locked one, Macedonia. Jnich99 04:32, 23 September 2008 (EDT)
I think it might be most convienient for travellers to have all these former Yugoslavian states in one region. The UN defines all of them as laying in Mediterranean Europe. Keeping Serbia in Eastern Europe and Macedonia as Mediterranean Europe seems somewhat ambiguous, as both are landlocked. But I changed Serbia to Eastern Europe for now, so it's at least similar to the image. Globe-trotter 07:38, 23 September 2008 (EDT)
Cyprus Schengen agreement
It says in the table that Cyprus has implemented the Schengen agreement. This link  shows that Cyprus did not implement the Schengen agreement. Should it be changed or is there something I am unaware of? Globe-trotter 07:53, 13 October 2008 (EDT)
Searching on "Schengen Cyprus" and reading half a dozen pages, it looks like WP is correct. They're in the process, but not there yet. Quite a fw new countries joined DEc 31 2007, but Cyprus was not one of them. Pashley 13:41, 18 October 2008 (EDT)
² Kosovo (administered by the UN) uses the Euro as its official currency.
I don't see the "2" somewhere, where does it refer to? Globe-trotter 15:06, 31 October 2008 (EDT)
I just added a reference at the "currency" entry for Serbia. Chernobyl 13:09, 23 November 2008 (EST)
Regions? How arbitrary is that?
Why Poland is not Eastern Europe when it is far more eastern than Serbia?
Why Bulgaria is not South Europe and Macedonia is?
What's the point with making the regional classification on the first place?
Does anyone else find that table large, unwieldy and possibly unnecessary? – cacahuatetalk 11:09, 7 February 2009 (EST)
AS we have a regions-list, I indeed don't really see the usefulness of this table... Globe-trotter 11:03, 15 March 2009 (EDT)
The table provides accurate summaries of countries' EU, Schengen, eurozone and timezone statuses, which are not visible from the region list. I could be argued into replacing it with maps showing the same... if they existed. Jpatokal 02:57, 16 March 2009 (EDT)
The thing is Europe is pretty unique, due to the extensive - and chaotic - European integration. So I do think it's pretty essential to have a easy overview over the rail passes, Euro usage and Schengen membership. Though I can't see any reason why visitors need to know when countries joined the European union - other than that I actually like the table. --Stefan (sertmann)Talk 18:48, 19 May 2009 (EDT)
The EU joining years are there mostly so you can see if the country is "in", "recently in", "maybe soon", or "not in the foreseeable future". Somewhat more informative than just a "Y" or "N", I think. Jpatokal 03:58, 20 May 2009 (EDT)
I still think this information could be presented in a better way. Now it's an unreadable big block, I'd rather have prose and table-information at the right side of it. Globe-trotter 14:27, 17 December 2009 (EST)
I now added a map of Euro-countries under the 'Buy' section. That's better than the big table I think. Also maybe we could make a list of countries in a right-side-box. Globe-trotter 14:59, 17 December 2009 (EST)
I've noticed in quite a few European articles, people trying to describe "Chip and PIN" credit cards, which are now required to access certain services. The cards are being variously described in multiple city articles, as some services move towards only accepting these cards. I think we should just standardise on calling them "Chip and PIN", cards. I know it is a bit of a slogan, but at least it means people who don't understand what they are, can go to Wikipedia, or do a google search and find the info pretty quickly. Otherwise if we start describing them as smart cards, etc, people are still going to have difficulty understanding them if they don't know what they are, and will have more difficulty finding info on them. I can't imagine anybody familiar with the cards, not understanding what is meant by Chip and PIN, and certainly everyone in the UK and Ireland would. --inas 20:33, 1 October 2009 (EDT)
Fine with that, though I'd suggest we also allow credit card with chip. it's still completely incomprehensible to me how a system without PIN codes actually work, can people in Australia just stick their card in a ATM and get money? --Stefan (sertmann)Talk 21:06, 1 October 2009 (EDT)
In the U.S. quite a few gas stations want you to enter the zip code of the cardholders address to use the payment at the pump, as they attempt to cope with credit cards without a PIN. It also makes that option not available to international cards. In Australia all credit cards can have a PIN, although not all of them have a Chip yet. You certainly can't use a card in an ATM etc without a PIN, but I haven't seen any applications in Oz that require you to have a Chip yet. --inas 22:12, 1 October 2009 (EDT)
And don't forget the toll roads in France... just pop your Mastercard in and the payment is made without any verification... safe... —The preceding comment was added by 18.104.22.168 (talk • contribs) .
Actually they should be called EMV compliant cards, as is the name of the standard. Their popular name in USA is chip-and-pin, however they may be credit or debit and some countries place extra verification schemes, such last digits of SSN, birthday, ZIP code, etc. It will be nice to have a description about a country specifics, for example in Paris you may only rent a bike with french magnetic card of foreign "chip card". The same applies for 24/7 gas stations, but you not for POS. PS. You can pay without PIN on toll roads, because the operator accepts the refund risk, providing that each sum is small and they keep pictures of the vehicle, so it easy to prove that it was you who used the card.
France with Bénélux?!
I have some difficulties to understand the purpose of considering France+Bénélux as a unique same region?... You might say that France borders Belgium; well that true but France borders also many other countries with more lentgh. Is it about cultural similarities? well, appart Wallonia that can share some geographical and cultural similarities with Nord-pas de Calais region, most of Benelux is defined and dominated by Dutch culture. Dutch culture is a "north sea culture" light years much more similar to northern German's or English's ones than to french one absolutly all aspects (germanic language vs latin language; protestant influences vs catholic ones; "north sea" culture vs mediterranean culture; architecture, food (beer vs wine culture); etc.
For those reasons, the association of Netherlands with France is complelty misleading: is really Amsterdam more in the same region of Europe than Marseille or Corsica? despite having huge cultural divergences the Both countries (France and Netherlands) do not even share a common border; nor a similar geographical position (Netherlands lies just in front of the UK, with a simlilar culture and climate than England; but deeply different with France. Us, french people we consider Netherlands to be northern European country, in the same group than UK, Germany and Scandinavia, but would never thing being part of the same sub-group inside Europe. France might share language with about 40% of Belgium (1/6 on Benelux only), but share almost nothing with Dutch-speaking part of Benelux. France also share it language with a part of Switzerland, but it is no a reason to lump France with central Europe... Geographically and culturally France share much more with Italy or Spain (to which it has its longest borders) than with Netherlands, with which it doesn't share any particular cultural affinity or geographical ensemble (not sharing north sea culture and geographical position; not same climates; not same language and dominant religious traditions!) France would much better reasons to be associated with Italy and Spain (with which it shares similiar language, catholic traditions, bordering the mediterranean sea, historic and cultural links to the roman empire... and long common borders! not with a "distant" northern European country like Netherlands!
France is impossible to group with anything, since it's both a Northern and a Southern European country, both geographical and culturally - so we have it flying around semi separately like now as a compromise. I think by now Wikitravel has indisputably proven that it is impossible to create European regions to everyone's satisfaction, but this one has proven remarkably resilient so I'm very very very very very very much against changing anything. --Stefan (sertmann)talk 21:32, 30 October 2009 (EDT)
Well, France might be geographically more or less between northern and southern Europe but we could quite realistically that culturally it has clearly much more in common with Italy or Spain than with Netherlands, England or Germany: A latin language of course, catholic herency, wine culture, many apects of mentality. It is a "light mediterranean" culture if we could say so; but still more mediterranean than nordic. Only some bordering areas of northern France have more similarities with Benelux (Nord-pas-de-Calais); and areas of the north-east with central Europe (Alsace-Lorraine-Franche Comté). The whole southern half of France is clearly southern European as much as Italy can be, both culturally and geographically. The rest of the country, in the northern Half is a world in itself and not easy to classify; it is geogaphically between northern and southern Europe (same latitude than Switzerland, Austria or southern Germany); linguistically Romance (so more inclined towards south); catholic-based. This northern half of France still has a majority of aspects of mediterranean culture, even if they can sometimes are "lightened" by the contact with some more nordic aspects such as climate, vegetation, or nordic invasions (in Normandy for exemple). Geographically speaking, even if northern half of France is not in southern Europe it is hard to say that it would be in northern Europe; it still is mainly situated a few hundreds of kilometers more south than Benelux or England and doesn't share many aspects of these regions (benelux, Germany of England are heavily densily populated, with large former heavy industry areas (with similar red-brick architecture) when most of the northern half of France is complelty different; much more rural, relatively not densely populated.
I agree than to group France with Netherlands is really without foundations and seems rather unlogical (it would seems as stranger as wanting to group Italy with Germany more than with Spain or France). Netherlands being probably one of the least similar country to France in all western Europe that it might be both culturally, humanly and geographically; and both countries don't even touch... Netherlands has much much much more in common with England and Germany, or even Scandinavia than with France without any doubt in all aspects.
Created a city list from this list, I realise I'm opening a can of patriotic worms here, but I hope the way it's implemented will prevent most of the discussions we've seen with the States, and I think the article needs one. Objections? speak up! --Stefan (sertmann)talk 21:32, 30 October 2009 (EDT)
Hi! I had a closer look on the city list and in general it is fine for me as. I do not like the description of the Cities (e.g. Prague as "mother of cities" I only know Cape Town that labels itself as Mothercity) and maybe international visitors should be not the only criteria as national travel in Europe is significant. There is no particular city in my mind that i would prefer to have on the list but it's good to have the discussion started. jan 06:01, 31 October 2009 (EDT)
I am sure the worms are scurrying as I type Stefan :). This was never going to be easy but I cannot think of a better objective measure than the one you have used. --Burmesedays 06:59, 31 October 2009 (EDT)
Not perfect, but certainly good enough, and it would be really nice to just settle into a quick, comfortable consensus to avoid to much back and forth about something ultimately not very important ;) --PeterTalk 22:44, 1 November 2009 (EST)
I've cut down the history section as I felt it was more suited to a Wikipedia article than containing much of use to the traveller. On opening the Europe article we were met with a page of text, so I wanted to condense things, and this seemed a very good target. Andyfarrell 05:18, 31 October 2009 (EDT)
I'm not sure if I agree with this move. Just saying "Europe's got a lot of history" doesn't cover the information a visitor to Europe should/could be familiar with. Many visitors coming to Europe see its castles, so explaining some about the medieval time I think is important. Also, there are many buildings and city centres from the 17th Century which I think should be mentioned in the History section. Sure, it doesn't have to go into full detail, but I think it shouldn't just be deleted and turned into "yes it has history" and that's it. --globe-trotter 14:17, 9 March 2010 (EST)
And I think Cold War should be briefly mentioned as well. – Vidimian 14:30, 9 March 2010 (EST)
I think the history section of Africa could be taken as a good example. --globe-trotter 15:12, 9 March 2010 (EST)
I was just about to suggest the same. A good history section in a high level region should be fairly brief on the details, but serve as a good introductory outline of the region's history while providing pointers to specific city, region, and other destination articles of especial interest. --PeterTalk 16:54, 9 March 2010 (EST)
Since when is Turkey a part of Europe? --22.214.171.124 10:57, 21 November 2009 (EST)
Since the Byzantine Empire (330AD)? the Ottoman Empire (1299)? Attatürks reforms (1926)? it's admission to The Council of Europe (1949)? UEFA (1954)? OECE (1973)= or since the European Union accepted it as an official membership candidate (2005)? pick one, or look on a map? Or more to the point, because from a travellers perspective it makes more sense to group it with European countries, than with Iran, Iraq and Syria. --Stefan (sertmann)talk 11:35, 21 November 2009 (EST)
Thanks for opening this can of worms. This really is an endless debate, but from a traveller perspective it's most logical to include Turkey in Europe, as it's Mediterranean Coast is most popular, as well as Istanbul. More in common with Mediterranean Greece and Cyprus than with, say, Iraq or Syria. Globe-trotter 11:59, 15 December 2009 (EST)
So I tried a "Other Destinations" list here as well. This is what I got for now:
Strokkur, Iceland - One of Iceland's most famous geysirs, it generally erupts about every 4-8 minutes.
Please some suggestions, which are absolutely missing, which should be removed? I'm not sure about how cool the geyser in Iceland is, maybe we could include something else impressive from Scandinavia (I am really not that well-known in that travel region). I also didn't include structures that are already in the cities list (Eiffel Tower, Aya Sophia, Sagrada Familia, Tower Bridge, Big Ben, Akropolis, Red Square, etc.) Maybe a bit weird is that France is missing. Globe-trotter 18:48, 22 December 2009 (EST)
I'd probably replace Strokkur for the Blue_Lagoon, And I think Białowieża National Park really deserves a mention, probably over Chernobyl - I've been to a large number of European National Parks, and none of them even comes close to the splendour of that magical place. I think the Alps is too vague, and the skiing should get an expanded paragraph in the Do section instead. Getting this right is going to be a tricky endeavour. --Stefan (sertmann)talk 19:05, 22 December 2009 (EST)
I was actually looking for Bialowieza, but I had no idea about the name! And the Blue Lagoon looks awesome as well. Seems like good suggestions. Globe-trotter 19:17, 22 December 2009 (EST)
Now maybe I'm still not happy with the Alps: it's a very popular travel destination, but it's geographically way too large. Maybe Cinque Terre could be replaced with Pompeii. I think the Golden Ring is stunning, but it might as well fit into the itineraries list. Globe-trotter 11:24, 23 December 2009 (EST)
Areas of great nature conservation importance are a weakness throughout Wikitravel and Europe is no exception. La Camargue should be an OD I think but the article is empty. The great Andalucian Biosphere and UNESC0 WHS of Donana National Park has no article at all. Great to see Białowieża on the list though. --Burmesedays 11:53, 23 December 2009 (EST)
I don't think it's bad if the article is in bad quality. That just means we have some work to do :) Globe-trotter 12:36, 23 December 2009 (EST)
Can anyone figure out what is meant by "Western Europe is the largest air hub in the world"? I can't --Stefan (sertmann)talk 19:53, 19 January 2010 (EST)
Some idea's for the tricky issue of a lead image for the Europe article
Mount Elbrus - Europe's highest peak
Trafalgar Sqaure - Most visited site in Europe according to Forbes.
Palace of Europe in Strasbourg (The EU buildings in Bruxelles probably won't work too well)
Vatnajökul National Park - The largest national park in Europe (but probably not very symbolic for the continent)
Hagar Qim, often thought to be the oldest "building" in Europe, if not the world
The Pantheon, thought to be the oldest building in Europe in continuous use.
A high-speed train crossing through some pretty, generic, landscape.
Feel free to add other idea's to the list, I was thinking we could find a consensus for the motif, and then hunt around for some nice pictures of it to nominate. Thoughts?
Most visitors to Europe focus on historical buildings/monuments and we can probably narrow the list to those. Some ideas:
Trafalgar Square, Palace of Westminster, Stonehenge
St Peters, a Venice shot, Rome Colliseum
Sagrada Familia--Burmesedays 19:53, 21 February 2010 (EST)
I think the Eiffel Tower is most iconic for Europe, and also the icon of the most visited country in Europe (and the world). --globe-trotter 20:16, 21 February 2010 (EST)
I'm for some typically small historic building.. stone built, green background, like you can stumble across anywhere across most of Europe. High speed train in landscape background would be nice.. I'm against trying to find the biggest, most visited, most iconic etc.. How can you ever choose between the Colosseum, Eiffel Tower, Westminster palace... ? --inas 20:22, 21 February 2010 (EST)
A generic Tuscany/Costwolds/Provence stone cottage is appealing I agree. My only objection would be that this would not necessarily scream EUROPE as an iconic building would. Which iconic building does not really matter much as long as it is one of the obvious, unmistakable candidates. Eiffel is probably the most obvious icon.--Burmesedays 21:11, 21 February 2010 (EST)
I agree with Ian. The iconic attractions can fill the rest of the article—it would be nice to find something less associated with one part of Europe, more associated with Europe in general. I'm having a hell of a time coming up with good pictures in this vein, though. This one  is nice, a French castle-like château. --PeterTalk 22:12, 21 February 2010 (EST)
That judge ruling is some of the most remarkable I've seen in a long time. What's weird is that Wikipedia hosts pictures to that same tower in the dark at the right of that section, which would mean Wikipedia would breach copyright as well? Too bad, I thought this was a nice way to make the Eiffel Tower stand for all of Europe. --globe-trotter 11:03, 4 June 2010 (EDT)
The ruling is similar to that held for pictures of artwork or pictures of people - you can feature a nighttime picture of the Eiffel Tower as part of the landscape, but you cannot publish a nighttime picture of the tower where it is clearly the subject of the picture. The Wikipedia photos all feature the tower as part of the nighttime Paris skyline. And I agree, this seems to be another case of copyright law gone very wrong. -- Ryan • (talk) • 11:07, 4 June 2010 (EDT)
So this would relate to the images in Loop Art Tour, which are also closed-up zoom images of art? We still feature them there. And would this one be allowed, as it is standing in a larger environment?  --globe-trotter 11:13, 4 June 2010 (EDT)
I've switched back to the castle image for now - even Wikipedia won't publish nighttime images of the Eiffel Tower, and they tend to be much more likely than us to claim fair use rights, so I think it's best we avoid such images here. Please feel free to change this to any other appropriate image if the castle isn't preferable. -- Ryan • (talk) • 11:48, 5 June 2010 (EDT)
Suggest the Scandinavia is replaced with Nordic. Scandinavia usually refers to the Scandinavian penisuala which is only Norway and Sweden, and incorrectly to the Nordic countries as a whole. Nordic would be a better way to describe these countries.
Scandinavia refers to Norway, Sweden and Denmark in the strictist sense, and is used that way in most of Northern Europe. English speakers however, happily slap the label onto the whole of "Nordic Europe", this has been discussed previously here and here. The compromise has been to use Scandinavia since it's a catchier and instantly recognisable name (Whereas nordic Europe is not), but introduce the region as Nordic Europe in the introduction of the article. You are welcome to debate the matter further, but i'd like to point out that there are a number of regular Scandinavian users here, myself included, who has signed onto this compromise, and we are all very much aware of nuances of the term. Stefan (sertmann) 07:01, 23 February 2010 (EST)
Schengen Visa Questions
This circumstances should be explained in the article:
1- If you need a visa to get into the Schengen area, can you apply for it in any embassy of a Schengen country? what about in the border/airport ?
2- For countries like Costa Rica, which do not need a visa to enter the Schengen area, do they get by default (usually) the 3 months stay? Can you get in and out of the Schengen area in the given time? if not, do you have to previously apply for a multiple-entry visa?
Regarding Question 1 - If you are going to stay in just one country, you should apply in that countries embassy. If you will be in several countries but most of the time in a particular one, then you should apply for the visa in that countries' embassy, and last if you plan to just travel around without staying in a same place a long time, then you should apply in the embassy of the country where you arrive... I dont know how much they enforce this.
Regarding question 2- Once you enter the Schengen area, with or without a visa, you are considered to have one. So, if you get a 90 day visa-free, thats the equivalent as having gotten a 90 day visa. Anyways, if you go out of the Schengen area, you dont get the "counter" restarted, just paused. It gets restarted after 6 months.
hey man, thanks for your reply. The only question I still have is regarding people who don't need a visa, and get 3 months of visa-free travel within shengen. My question is: Say I stay 2 months in Schengen, and then I go to Turkey for 1 month, when i come back to the schengen zone, will I still have 1 more month or will I be out of time? Daniel32708 17:46, 1 April 2010 (EDT)
112 emergency number
Could someone add a paragraph on the "112" emergency number (I'm not sure where to put it). In an emergency, you can call 112 for the police/fire brigade/ambulance services in all EU countries and many other European countries (e.g. Switzerland, Iceland, Norway, Turkey, Ukraine etc.) 126.96.36.199 09:14, 2 April 2010 (EDT)