Poland: Border controls introduced ahead of World Youth Day events

Poland has temporarily suspended its participation in the Schengen agreement as a security measure in the lead-up to the Catholic Church’s World Youth Day later this month.

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What does the change mean? Border controls, including for EU nationals, have been instituted at Polish airports, seaports and land borders. Travelers should be prepared to show valid passports or, in the case of EU nationals, ID cards. Poland has also suspended an agreement that allows residents of Ukraine and the Russian exclave of Kaliningrad Oblast to freely travel up to 50 kilometers into Poland.

  • Implementation time frame: Now through Aug. 2.
  • Who is affected: Anyone traveling to Poland during this time frame.
  • Business impact: No significant impact, but business travelers should expect longer wait times at the border and in airports.
  • Next steps: Travelers should be prepared to show passports or valid ID cards (for EU nationals) when traveling to Poland from now through Aug. 2.

  • Background:
    A number of EU countries have reintroduced border controls as Europe grapples with a refugee crisis and ongoing terrorist threats. Poland instituted the border checks as a temporary measure in the lead-up to last week’s NATO summit and this month’s World Youth Day events, which will be held July 26-31 and include a visit from Pope Francis. The temporary border controls will be lifted by the end of the day on Aug. 2, according to Polish officials.

    BAL Analysis: While the imposition of border controls may cause delays, the measures are temporary and are not expected to cause significant travel disruptions.

    This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group and our network provider located in Poland. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

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