CASTRIES, St Lucia, Thursday May 28, 2015 – Nationals of Dominica, Grenada, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines and Trinidad & Tobago no longer need a visa to travel to most European countries.

The visa-free travel to 26 countries of the Schengen area comes with the signing of a short-stay visa waiver agreement with the European Union (EU) on the margins of the EU-African Caribbean and Pacific Ministerial meeting in Brussels.

The agreement benefits a total of 19 nations in the Caribbean, Pacific, and the Middle East.

It allows travel to Schengen area countries for a stay of up to 90 days within any six-month period, without requiring a visa, as long as the purpose of the visit is not to carry out a paid activity.

The Schengen area comprises 22 European countries in the European Union and four non-EU member states that make up the European Free Trade Association (EFTA) that have abolished control at their common borders to encourage free movement of goods, information, money and people, plus four non-EU member states.

Those countries are: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, and Sweden, as well as EFTA’s Norway, Iceland, Switzerland and Lichtenstein.