This article has been reviewed and fact-checked by Wego’s editorial team.

Bulgaria and Romania have taken a significant step towards integration with Europe’s Schengen area after a 13-year wait, according to a report by Wego. Despite Austria’s opposition to full membership, citing concerns about irregular migration, both countries have now lifted internal air and sea border controls, marking a symbolic milestone.


The Schengen area, established in 1985, enables over 400 million people within the European Union to move freely without border checks. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen hailed the development as a success, emphasizing the collective effort in building a stronger, more united Europe.

However, the partial integration has left some dissatisfied. Truck drivers, grappling with long queues at land borders, feel overlooked. Romanian transport unions urgently call for action to address the financial burdens caused by extensive delays, with truckers enduring waits of up to three days at times. Bulgarian businesses also express frustration, highlighting that the vast majority of goods are transported by land.

Efforts are underway to address concerns, with Bulgaria aiming for full Schengen membership by year-end and Romania pursuing negotiations on land borders this year.