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New EU rules come into force for passengers crossing Schengen’s external borders

The EU’s amendment of the Schengen legislation on passport control has come into force, meaning police at airports in the region will now be scanning the passports of all passengers crossing Schengen’s external borders.

Until now, not all passports have needed to be scanned. The new EU rules only apply to passengers who are leaving the Schengen Area, which includes Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden, as well as Iceland, Norway, Liechtenstein and Switzerland.

Those travelling within these countries will not be affected. For example, for those travelling to Barcelona, Paris, Oslo or Aalborg, including all domestic passengers, the rules will remain unchanged and they will not need to go through passport control.

Copenhagen Airport is one airport that will be affected by the change in rules, which is likely to increase passenger processing times.

Henrik Peter Jørgensen, Copenhagen Airport’s vice president for communication, commented, “We’re working closely with the police to do everything we can to help passengers get through as quickly and smoothly as possible. However, we do expect increased waiting times in passport control, so we’re asking passengers traveling out of the Schengen Area to arrive in good time.

“Together with the police, we’ve ensured that we have the necessary officers and service staff to help passengers get through as quickly as possible. We also established four new passport control lanes before the summer and we expect to have four more in place by the end of the year. All the same, we hope that passengers traveling out of the Schengen Area will remain patient.”

Per Fiig, head of Danish National Police’s national center of foreign nationals, added, “The new EU rules are being implemented to improve security for Denmark and are part of stricter border controls. We hope that passengers will appreciate the need for this initiative.”

Written by Kirstie Pickering

October 11, 2017

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