Starting September 5  the Embajada del Reino de los Países Bajo will begin processing the Schengen visa at the consular offices in Bogota and Cali only.

schengener-abkommen-headerFor residents of Cali this eliminates a trip to Bogota.  The Dutch consulate in Cali will begin processing the Schengen visa to Europe, eliminating a trip to Bogota.

The Embassy reminds the public that they should, either for Bogota or Cali, make an appointment at their website http://www.mfa.nl/bog.

The Dutch consulate in Cali is located on Carrera 39 No 11-161, Acopi-Yumbo.

The news comes a week after Spanish prime minister, Mariao Rajoy, announced that there is the possibility of Colombia not requirigin a visa to travel to the “old world” or at least the countries forming part of the European Union.

The Schengen Agreement led to the creation of Europe’s borderless Schengen Area in 1995. There are 26 countries in Schengen.

Belgium, France, Germany, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal and Spain implemented the agreement in 1995. They were followed by Italy and Austria in 1997, Greece in 2000, and Denmark, Sweden, Finland, Norway and Iceland in 2001. (Norway and Iceland are not in the EU.)  Nine more EU countries joined in 2007, after the EU’s eastward enlargement in 2004. They are: the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Lithuania, Latvia, Malta, Poland, Slovakia and Slovenia.

Switzerland, which is not in the EU, implemented the agreement in December 2008. And in December 2011 tiny Liechtenstein – outside the EU, like its neighbour Switzerland – also joined Schengen.

Andorra and San Marino are not part of Schengen, but they no longer have checks at their borders.

Non-EU nationals can travel to much of Europe with a Schengen visa