May 24, 2020 – TCN launched the Total Croatia Travel INFO Viber community 5 days ago. It has been quite a ride. 10 things I learned since we started.
Last weekend, I called PR guru and champion of orange shoe fashion, Kresimir Macan, suggesting he take me in his Porsche to the main border with Slovenia at Bregana. With information so hard to find, a little first-hand reporting might be useful. MUP were extremely responsive by email with the media permission and very helpful at the border. You can see the realities of life on the Croatian-Slovenian border on May 17 here.
“We have that really good Viber account, Koronavirus.hr for corona updates. Why doesn’t the Ministry of Tourism have the same for the latest travel advice?”
“Why don’t you make your own Viber community?” asked Macan.
“I wouldn’t know where to start.”
Two days later…
I have known Kreso for 6 years. And I have known many who have worked for him. They are some of the brightest minds who go on to do incredible things in the public and private sector. So when he suggested I come to the office and have a chat with his two interns, I knew it would not be just a chat.
After we got over the initial embarrassment that I did not know how to download Viber to my desktop (thanks, kids!), we – or rather they – got to work. In precisely 22 minutes, we were live with my Viber community Total Croatia Travel INFO (and you can join too – but you need to download the app).
Nobody has helped me more in the last 5 years than Macan. He is a controversial chap and a polarising figure (he is the erstwhile Communications Director for current Prime Minister Plelnkovic), but he is a master of his craft. I sat and watched, and within an hour, we had an infographic with the relevant info that people needed to know.
Ann thanks to the generosity of our Viber community, that infographic is now available in 12 languages. There is also a consolidated Croatia travel master article which is updated daily. You can bookmark it here.
It has been quite a ride. 10 random things I learned from the Total Croatia Travel INFO community that I did not know last week. (Let me put a MASSIVE disclaimer here that you should check all info independently with official sources to be 100% sure – all the info looks very credible, but please check before you travel)
1. You can apparently fly from the UK to Croatia before June 15, just not directly.
2. Hungarians REALLY want to come to Croatia
And you are very welcome! About 30% of the chat in the community has been in the Hungarian language. Thanks to the Viber auto-translate feature, we are able to understand and answer their questions where we can, or direct them to the relevant official contact.
To help things along, our little Viber community created a Hungarian version of the infographic.
Many thanks to our community member Mariann Markai for volunteering a Hungarian translation of our May 21 update.
And this cool new feature from Google allows you to be fully updated with the latest in any language you choose. For our Hungarian guests, wecome to Croatia and have a great stay.
3. It seems you can fly from the USA to Croatia if you have the right passport and circumstances
I have no more info on that, but you can always join our Viber community and request more details. You can join here.
4. Different countries have different corona info requirements.
In Croatia, the focus has been on how many cases (zero yesterday) and how many deaths (99 in total). But potential tourists have been asking lots of questions about how many people have been tested in Croatia. You can see full details of that and how Croatia compares on many corona stats here.
5. There is a big need for a clear explanation on quarantine rules and test requirements entering Croatia (none) and returning to the home country.
6. There is a big need for a clear explanation on the border crossing experience.
Who can, who can’t, under which conditions. Are all borders open etc. This was my experience at the Slovenian border on Sunday, May 17.
7. Flight information IS out there, and new flights are being announced.
Source the Total Croatia Travel INFO Viber community via Avioradar.
You can keep up with the latest flight announcements on the TCN latest flights page.
8. While the official information by Croatian authorities has improved MASSIVELY, it is still failing both tourists and the tourist businesses they represent. Sadly.
Here’s why. And I really hope for all of us that this will change as quickly as tomorrow.
9. Community is strong and the quickest way to get the very latest. Build a strong community which respects others and helps out where it can, and there is no need for anything else regarding travel info. Or anything else.
10. I am too old for all this, but I see a massive future for my kids. It has been an incredible few days, and I think we made Croatian travel info a little easier to find.
Join us! Contribute your knowledge, ask your questions, and our community will try to get them answered, or send you to the right place to ask. You can join here (you will need to download the Viber app). Why Viber? I am advised that it is the best platform to allow unlimited numbers in groups and communities. Smart.
For the latest travel info from Croatia, bookmark this article, which will be updated daily.