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Old May 3rd, 2014, 03:34 PM   #10281
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I really don't know if this belongs here but since it's a border I'll post it

Border crossing Zadar (for boats, ships...)
http://abload.de/img/_20140503_135901u3cj3.jpg
it belongs here, but posting Street View images is not a big deal.

here is the real stuff:





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Old May 3rd, 2014, 04:07 PM   #10282
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I remeber that until few years ago it was very difficult to spot Serbian, Bosnian, Macedonian or Albanian plates in Italy. Now there are many of them, probably because they no longer need visas for EU. Even Montenegro appears from time to time but zero Kosovo.
I remember that around 2002 I was on the holyday in Bibione and we were trying to spot plates of as many as possible foreign countries. One day we saw a very old and rusty van with a BIH oval. I had no clue from what country it was, initially I though Belarus until I looked online. In any Western country it would be almost impossible to see vehicles of that age and bad shape used to transport goods, but it was just 7 years after the terrible war ended there.
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In real life, electronic toll collection was first introduced in Bergen, Norway in 1986, and well into the 21th century many countries still struggle to implement it.
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Old May 3rd, 2014, 04:07 PM   #10283
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I actually had a photo from the sign which says "Granicni prijelaz Zadar" but I couldn't find it. If I find this pic I'll post it.
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Old May 3rd, 2014, 05:33 PM   #10284
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Originally Posted by italystf View Post
I remeber that until few years ago it was very difficult to spot Serbian, Bosnian, Macedonian or Albanian plates in Italy. Now there are many of them, probably because they no longer need visas for EU. Even Montenegro appears from time to time but zero Kosovo.
I remember that around 2002 I was on the holyday in Bibione and we were trying to spot plates of as many as possible foreign countries. One day we saw a very old and rusty van with a BIH oval. I had no clue from what country it was, initially I though Belarus until I looked online. In any Western country it would be almost impossible to see vehicles of that age and bad shape used to transport goods, but it was just 7 years after the terrible war ended there.
Indeed, but situation has changed. I have noticed 6 passenger cars (excluding lorries) with Serbian plates past 2 days.

But the most increase of foreign cars I have noticed in last years is related to Ukraine. Have not seen so many Ukrainian vehicles since I remember as I saw last year.
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Old May 3rd, 2014, 07:01 PM   #10285
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In 2009 I was crossing from Croatia to Bosnia and remember a Serbian-plated car at the border crossing. The police literally took this car apart. But it might not have been due to Serbian plates.
There are certain models they pick for that, somehow some car models seem to be more used for smuggling or are simply stolen vehicles. I don't remember which one exactly I think BMW, driving on it into Slovenia was (is?) always a hassle. Also don't forget that Croatian motorway through Slavonia goes practically by the Bosnian border so people from Republika Srpska and Serbia use it to travel between them. It adds some time at the border but reduces a lot in driving.

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I've got another question: Before 5-8 years ago, it was indeed hard to spot a car with Yugoslav licence plates in Croatia or Slovenia and vice versa. Was it like this due to some kind of fear? Or the people used to travel to "hostile" countries incognito?
There was a visa requirement for Slovenia. As for Croatia there were many incidents with broken windshields. But then again on every incident comes thousands of cars that had no problems at all, yet the press doesn't report on that.

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And I am always curious about the situation at border crossings. Did not the Croatian officer look unkindly at you when you handed him Serbian/Yugoslav passport?
No. My feeling is that they have strict orders to behave. I've never experienced any attitude from Croatian border police (which is odd as I've seen attitude from their colleagues in every other country including Serbia, maybe except Russia, they didn't seem to care about anything even to be rude), but yes in 2004 I remember many many people in Zagreb looking in awe at Serbian plates. There was no rudeness or reactions, at least not while driving, but just a lot of people staring
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Old May 3rd, 2014, 07:02 PM   #10286
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So does anyone know whose responsibility is the passport and customs control for ships and yachts arriving to Monaco? There are souvenir stamps for tourists in Monaco, but what about people arriving on ship from outside Schengen whose first stop is Monaco?
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Old May 4th, 2014, 01:46 AM   #10287
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So does anyone know whose responsibility is the passport and customs control for ships and yachts arriving to Monaco? There are souvenir stamps for tourists in Monaco, but what about people arriving on ship from outside Schengen whose first stop is Monaco?
The French deal with it, as far as I'm aware. Monaco doesn't care who enters, but as they have a completely open border with France, it makes sense for the French to conduct immigration controls.

From what little information I have on the subject, the Monaco authorities guard the border, but if someone presents themselves for immigration clearance, then the French Police aux Frontieres deal with it.

I suppose the amount of non-EU nationals entering Schengen in Monaco is so low that there's absolutely no point in them training immigration police when it can be easily done by the French.

I still don't understand why Andorra doesn't join Schengen though.
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Old May 4th, 2014, 02:16 AM   #10288
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I still don't understand why Andorra doesn't join Schengen though.
An interesting situation there with the non-Schengen Andorra - a trap for single-entry Schengen visa holders who just quickly hop the border as tourists and then would need another Schengen visa to re-enter into the EU.

I guess the country - having a low crime rate - wants to uphold autonomous controls of its borders, while Schengen membership would prohibit systematic controls of persons at the border.
That said, entry "controls" of tourists often consist of just waving them through. Already, Andorra does not require a visa for citizens of any country, relying on the "filters" applied by France and Spain (practically the only two countries you can enter Andorra from).
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Old May 4th, 2014, 10:24 AM   #10289
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In the Andorran border there are barely controls. Only goods are controlled. I have never been asked to show my ID in both directions.

By the way, it is enough with an EU ID card instead of passport to enter. People is so used that in any hotel or site where it is compulsory to show it (or to pay with a credit card) they will ask you for the ID card instead of the passport
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Old May 4th, 2014, 11:05 AM   #10290
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I rather wonder if there's not pressure on Andorra to stay out of Schengen so that Spain can continue to apply heavy customs checks at the border. They would be prohibited from continuing that if the police controls were dropped.

It's a little known fact, but as far as I know, citizens of Andorra, San Marino, Vatican City and Monaco can use the EU lines at border controls.

I wonder if anyone has ever successfully obtained a Spanish or French entry stamp at the Andorran border?
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Old May 4th, 2014, 11:35 AM   #10291
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Bijača [A1], BiH - Nova Sela [A10], HR

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Old May 4th, 2014, 12:35 PM   #10292
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Not much traffic
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Old May 4th, 2014, 02:47 PM   #10293
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I think there'll be forever just hardly any traffic. The A10 in Croatia is mostly driven by locals and both GP Nova Sela and Bijača is almost empty everytime.
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Old May 4th, 2014, 02:51 PM   #10294
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It will probably increase after they extend A1 to M17. Right now it begins at some local road and most people don't update their GPSs.
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Old May 4th, 2014, 03:38 PM   #10295
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I rather wonder if there's not pressure on Andorra to stay out of Schengen so that Spain can continue to apply heavy customs checks at the border. They would be prohibited from continuing that if the police controls were dropped.
Schengen is no hindrance to custom checks; Switzerland is continuing to apply them at its borders as a non-EU Schengen member. In practice, they also use the "customs check" to check the papers of suspicious persons (and not only goods). Especially, they like to have a closer look at Eastern Bloc vehicles and their passengers.

The EU, as well, applies customs controls to those coming from Switzerland, but this is far less thoroughly performed, as most goods are less expensive in the EU.
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Old May 4th, 2014, 04:25 PM   #10296
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Customs still continue to stop and check people and vehicles randomly even within Schengen borders. Especially in and around France and Germany.
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Old May 4th, 2014, 10:49 PM   #10297
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Schengen is no hindrance to custom checks; Switzerland is continuing to apply them at its borders as a non-EU Schengen member. In practice, they also use the "customs check" to check the papers of suspicious persons (and not only goods). Especially, they like to have a closer look at Eastern Bloc vehicles and their passengers.

The EU, as well, applies customs controls to those coming from Switzerland, but this is far less thoroughly performed, as most goods are less expensive in the EU.
The controls with Switzerland are far less intensive than they used to be, however. There would be absolutely no way that the EU would allow the Spanish the ability to carry out the comprehensive and systematic checks that they do on the Andorran border.

The EU Customs checks with Switzerland are an utter joke. A friend of mine spotted a hell of a deal on a TV in Geneva - no idea why, but the same TV would have been about 300 Euro more expensive in France. He bought it, reclaimed the VAT from the Swiss and ended up around 400 Euro better off as a result.

A cursory check by the French would have picked up on the fact that he should have paid EU VAT on it, but they were nowhere to be seen.

Of course, Customs controls can still be carried out, but it would require the Spanish to move to an intelligence-based system rather than a systematic system. They already got their hands slapped over their behaviour at La Jonquera, and they're being forced to implement changes at Gibraltar (let's not discuss those changes... ).

I've always thought that having Customs borders wasn't compatible with Schengen borders. It just doesn't make sense to have a frontier that can be crossed anywhere at any time along with having a Customs border that requires you to make some sort of declaration when crossing.

I asked the Swiss a while ago about how it worked in practice, and they replied saying that Customs officers were now able to operate freely anywhere in the country, so there was no longer a Customs line at the border, but the obligation to pay duties on imported goods still existed. As a result, the Customs in Switzerland theoretically don't operate between the border line and the relevant Customs office.
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Old May 4th, 2014, 10:59 PM   #10298
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Indeed, but situation has changed. I have noticed 6 passenger cars (excluding lorries) with Serbian plates past 2 days.

But the most increase of foreign cars I have noticed in last years is related to Ukraine. Have not seen so many Ukrainian vehicles since I remember as I saw last year.
At first I misread your post and thought you'd seen an increase since the start of the crisis: people getting out. Have you seen or heard anything about that?
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Old May 4th, 2014, 11:44 PM   #10299
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At first I misread your post and thought you'd seen an increase since the start of the crisis: people getting out. Have you seen or heard anything about that?
I can't tell you properly. The factual sentence based on my objective observations without taking the Ukrainian crisis into account is: It is much easy to spot a Ukrainian car on a road (at least in central Europe) than ever.

As for the crisis: The Ministry of Defence along with The Ministry of Internal Affairs has reported no increased number of Ukrainian citizens passing through Slovak border.
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Old May 5th, 2014, 12:32 AM   #10300
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Originally Posted by Eulanthe View Post
I rather wonder if there's not pressure on Andorra to stay out of Schengen so that Spain can continue to apply heavy customs checks at the border. They would be prohibited from continuing that if the police controls were dropped.

It's a little known fact, but as far as I know, citizens of Andorra, San Marino, Vatican City and Monaco can use the EU lines at border controls.

I wonder if anyone has ever successfully obtained a Spanish or French entry stamp at the Andorran border?

It is matter of opinion but...

Andorra has a very easy situation to "close" the country. It is not usual but I read about a crime made inside the country and as long as they were pretty sure there weren't more criminals involved than one person who was arrested, nobody could take off the country. They called both customs and (I think that for five hours) nobody could enter or exit Andorra. They just need to close two border passes and nobody exit (OK, you can go walking around mountains but it is very easy to focus in that area because nobody walk somewhere and you can go to Os de Civis but if you are going to remain in Spain walking around the mountains... but easily to be found.



Furthermore, you could erase passport controls but goods controls would remain. Even within Spain you have goods controls because taxes. For instance, if you come from Canary islands to anywhere in Spain you may go to "goods to declare" depending the amount of things you have. It is not usual because people just carry one bag in the plane... but for ferries controls are more exhaustive.



About stamps... I really do not know. Everytime I've been there I've gone with my ID card (and there are more Spanish ID cards in Andorra than Andorran ones and I would state that also French ID cards... and a lot of Portuguese). This is, they are very used to see European ID cards and citizens are used to go without passport as well as you know there is no problem there with ID card (and in 30 km you've crossed the whole country and arrived to a new one within the EU)
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