With more direct flights between Latin America and Lisbon and London and the Schengen Visa cancelled for Europe’s stays up to 90 days, Latin American students wanting to study abroad will have an easier life.

Good news for Colombian and Peruvian students and to the whole educational world: visas will no longer be required to enter and stay within the European countries of the Schengen area for short stays up to 90 days.

Rumours have been around for a while but, last week, the European Union (EU) Ambassador in Colombia and the European Council confirmed the decisions.

But there’s more news for those who are going to study abroad and enjoy travelling: late last year, TAP, the Portuguese airline, announced new routes between Lisbon and the Brazilian cities of Manaus and Belem, as well as Bogota and Panama in South America.

Also, direct flights between London and Bogota will be restarted by the Colombian airline Avianca.

These measures are expected to take effect this year, but since an European Union regulation and an agreement with Colombia and Peru are previously needed, there is still no certainty about the dates.

The EU has been committed to strengthen relations with Latin America, as most of its countries have been showing good development results, not only economically but also democratically.

This visa-free measure will apply to the Schengen area – 23 EU countries, plus Iceland, Lichtenstein, Switzerland and Norway – and also to Bulgaria, Cyprus, Croatia and Romania, recently added to the EU.  Note that the United Kingdom and Ireland are not Schengen countries.