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Old August 10th, 2010, 11:14 PM   #3381
Attus
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And some buses. Both picture were shot in Aachen, Germany. These seem to be local buses, but I suppose all of you can identify the Belgian and Dutch license plates. Actually both buses have a destination in their own side of the border but both can be used even inside Aachen with a local tariff.
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Old August 10th, 2010, 11:25 PM   #3382
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Damn, what you've experienced is pretty weird.
I do the trip between Milan and Lugano via Chiasso dozens times per year, but I never had to quit the train.
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Old August 10th, 2010, 11:29 PM   #3383
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TohrAlkimista View Post
Damn, what you've experienced is pretty weird.
I do the trip between Milan and Lugano via Chiasso dozens times per year, but I never had to quit the train.
Did you take EuroCity? In regional trains custom check can't be done in the train, since the last domestic stop is only few minutes before the border station.
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Old August 10th, 2010, 11:59 PM   #3384
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Conor View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by TohrAlkimista View Post
Thank you!
Now a silly question: you said there is not any sign to know you have crossed UK and ROI, but is there the typical EU sign in ROI, when you just left NI?
No problem

And to answer your follow up question, there are not EU signs on either sides of the border, which is quite strange.
Because of the political situation. border areas in Northern Ireland tend to be more nationalist (pro-united Ireland) in general, so even acknowledging that it's a different country is an issue. So even the EU stars with UK likely wouldn't last long. You do sometimes see county borders marked though (particularly, Fermanagh). Other than that the only way to tell you've crossed the border is some often quite subtle differences (yellow verge markings, kilometres on roadsigns, bilingual in the republic, etc...). Occasionally you'll see reminders to drive on the left too (!)

The UK and Ireland have very relaxed border controls anyway, it's like a mini-Schengen, even if it's not technically legally one. For example flights from the Republic to the UK are treated as domestic ones (however it doesn't always work the same in reverse, everyone goes through the same passport control in Dublin Airport regardless, there can be random checks by the Garda on coaches crossing the border from Northern Ireland, etc.).

The old joke used to be that you knew it was NI when the roads were good. If anything it's arguably completely reversed nowadays...

Of course back when tensions were higher (up to the early 90s) the border was quite strictly controlled and many minor crossings were blown up or blocked off. Some of which still haven't been restored.

-edit- slightly more precise version of Conor's link showing the yellow-dashed lines change to a solid white one at the cross-border N1/A1
http://www.google.com/maps?ie=UTF8&t...,1.352692&z=10

and the irish side http://www.google.com/maps?ie=UTF8&t...,1.352692&z=10

Last edited by dizee; August 11th, 2010 at 12:10 AM.
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Old August 11th, 2010, 01:09 AM   #3385
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Conor View Post
No problem

And to answer your follow up question, there are not EU signs on either sides of the border, which is quite strange.
Thank you again! Yup, that's pretty strange.

P.S.
I just noticed something weird in the last link you put.
There is a kind of window-less building in the middle of nowhere.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dizee View Post
Because of the political situation. border areas in Northern Ireland tend to be more nationalist (pro-united Ireland) in general, so even acknowledging that it's a different country is an issue. So even the EU stars with UK likely wouldn't last long. You do sometimes see county borders marked though (particularly, Fermanagh). Other than that the only way to tell you've crossed the border is some often quite subtle differences (yellow verge markings, kilometres on roadsigns, bilingual in the republic, etc...). Occasionally you'll see reminders to drive on the left too (!)

The UK and Ireland have very relaxed border controls anyway, it's like a mini-Schengen, even if it's not technically legally one. For example flights from the Republic to the UK are treated as domestic ones (however it doesn't always work the same in reverse, everyone goes through the same passport control in Dublin Airport regardless, there can be random checks by the Garda on coaches crossing the border from Northern Ireland, etc.).

The old joke used to be that you knew it was NI when the roads were good. If anything it's arguably completely reversed nowadays...

Of course back when tensions were higher (up to the early 90s) the border was quite strictly controlled and many minor crossings were blown up or blocked off. Some of which still haven't been restored.

-edit- slightly more precise version of Conor's link showing the yellow-dashed lines change to a solid white one at the cross-border N1/A1
http://www.google.com/maps?ie=UTF8&t...,1.352692&z=10

and the irish side http://www.google.com/maps?ie=UTF8&t...,1.352692&z=10
Thank you, very detailed answer.
I hoped there were more EU signs in Ireland, at least more than in NI.
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Old August 11th, 2010, 01:13 AM   #3386
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Attus View Post
Did you take EuroCity? In regional trains custom check can't be done in the train, since the last domestic stop is only few minutes before the border station.
Uhm, interesting.
I never took local trains to Como via Chiasso, so I do not know.

But that sounds still a bit silly to me.
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Old August 11th, 2010, 07:28 PM   #3387
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dizee View Post

The UK and Ireland have very relaxed border controls anyway, it's like a mini-Schengen, even if it's not technically legally one. For example flights from the Republic to the UK are treated as domestic ones (however it doesn't always work the same in reverse, everyone goes through the same passport control in Dublin Airport regardless, there can be random checks by the Garda on coaches crossing the border from Northern Ireland, etc.).
It seems to me like an incomplete Schengen, which can cause some difficulties. For instance, you can be let into the UK on a visa (if you are non EU/Commonwealth) but not be allowed into Ireland. It is only a problem if you get caught but there appears to be no way of passing Irish immigration from the UK unless you fly into an international airport. This means it is impossible to plan a trip entering GB or even NI and subsequently leaving ROI unless you can travel freely in both.
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Old August 12th, 2010, 10:55 PM   #3388
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It seems to me like an incomplete Schengen, which can cause some difficulties. For instance, you can be let into the UK on a visa (if you are non EU/Commonwealth) but not be allowed into Ireland. It is only a problem if you get caught but there appears to be no way of passing Irish immigration from the UK unless you fly into an international airport. This means it is impossible to plan a trip entering GB or even NI and subsequently leaving ROI unless you can travel freely in both.
Yeah, strictly speaking the so-called Common Travel Area is only for British and Irish citizens. Although it seems like if you don't need a visa it kind of de facto works too. Anyway the visa requirements are broadly similar. Just it's not officially legislated for like Schengen, so if you need a visa best idea is to get one for both countries beforehand. Needlessly messy.

Of course Ireland would be happy to join the Schengen area, but if we do and the UK doesn't it means controlling the Northern Irish border. Which would be a backwards step, so we're stuck.
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Old August 13th, 2010, 03:52 PM   #3389
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Attus View Post
I know it is a little bit off topic but you talked a lot about trains and buses so now I put some pictures here:
Regional trains from Bellinzona - Lugano (SUI) to Como (ITA) have a stop at Chiasso which is the border station between the two nations (trains usually do not stop right at the state border but the neighbor countries select a border station, in this case Chiasso is actually in Switzerland).
Passangers must leave the train and follow a yellow line inside the station building.
There is a custom office there for railway passangers. Normally officers do not stop you passing the office but there is a policeman and if someone tries to pass the office having a large bag, s/he will be asked to stop, I suppose.
At the end you arrive to another train, standing at the very same platform, this one goes on and takes you to your destination.
Quote:
Originally Posted by TohrAlkimista View Post
Damn, what you've experienced is pretty weird.
I do the trip between Milan and Lugano via Chiasso dozens times per year, but I never had to quit the train.
Usually there is no need to change trains there, and trains stop in Chiasso like in any other station and cross the border. There are no regular border checks (only some random checks occur).

Train change is temporary: the trains used between Lugano and Como are built to run on two different types of electric current, 15 kV AC for Switzerland and 3 kV DC for Italy. As technicians have found a problem in the 3 kV DC equipment of some (but not all) of these trains until September passengers will have to change train in Chiasso. The trains are sent to the workshops to have their 3 kV equipment repaired, when all the trains will be repaired there will again be a direct service without change in Chiasso.
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Old August 13th, 2010, 04:20 PM   #3390
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Train change is temporary
At first sight I thought some similar thing as well (now one single train of TILO runs up and down between Chiasso and Albate) but this sign and the fact that passangers did not walked in the platform but throughthe custom office although the other trainset was waiting in the other end of the same platform confused me.

Last edited by Attus; August 13th, 2010 at 04:22 PM. Reason: Typos corrected
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Old August 13th, 2010, 07:11 PM   #3391
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This division is probably also useful to avoid confusion during rush hour, as the trains arrive in the station together. So the two flows don't meet each other (even if the number of passengers in August is not that big to cause confusion).
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Old August 15th, 2010, 07:02 PM   #3392
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PL / D Świecko / Frankfurt

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Old August 16th, 2010, 04:34 AM   #3393
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Here's the Canada/US border in Wild Horse, Alberta / Dead Horse, Montana. We reached it by traveling south from the Trans-Canada Highway along Alberta Highway 41. Approaching the border. Both border stations are surrounded by trees on the otherwise open, widswept prairie (steppe). On the way there, we passed the infamous NO SERVICE OR RESIDENCES NEXT 134 km sign. If you broke down on this road in the winter, you'd probably die.

Just before the crossing, the road runs parallel to the border for a while. The actual border is the wire fence on the right. The Canadian inspection station is just ahead, then the road makes a right-angle turn across the line, and the US inspection station is just beyond.
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Old August 18th, 2010, 06:16 PM   #3394
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Algerian - Moroccan borders, Morocco begins with the trees at the bottom.





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Old August 18th, 2010, 06:27 PM   #3395
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What's the point of building the motorway all the way to the border?
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Old August 18th, 2010, 06:37 PM   #3396
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In the hope Morocco will do the same.
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Old August 18th, 2010, 06:40 PM   #3397
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Thank you, YorkTown. That is the most weird road I have ever seen.

But is that the border between Algeria and - let's say - the old Morocco, or between Algeria and Western Sahara?
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Old August 18th, 2010, 07:02 PM   #3398
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Border LV-EST Ainazi-Ikla

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Old August 18th, 2010, 07:12 PM   #3399
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChrisZwolle View Post
In the hope Morocco will do the same.
We will! But the border is closed! No crossing!

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Thank you, YorkTown. That is the most weird road I have ever seen.

But is that the border between Algeria and - let's say - the old Morocco, or between Algeria and Western Sahara?
Between Algeria and Morocco!
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Old August 18th, 2010, 07:38 PM   #3400
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Between Algeria and Morocco!
Merci beaucoup.
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