In this introductory contribution to this special issue of TESG, we want to question the usual way of conceptualising places and borders in the debate about transnationalism. We argue, that in studies of transnationalism, on the one hand the idea of nation-states as spatial containers is overcome, but on the other hand also reproduces the same spatial containers. Instead we suggest the use of the term ‘trans-world’ to avoid any connotation suggesting spatial containers. In this framework, places and borders are instead seen as multi-dimensional and dynamic concepts which can be applied to almost any kind of relationships transgressing and reconfiguring borders and places at all scales. The papers which follow this introduction show how in particular situations and contexts, these transgressing and reconfiguring activities can be conceptualised in very different ways.