Interior Ministry Answers 10 Most Commonly Asked Border Questions

Total Croatia News

June the 13th, 2020 – the Croatian Interior Ministry (MUP) has provided answers to the most commonly asked questions by those wishing to cross Croatia’s borders in the confusing coronavirus era.

Earlier this week I went on a truly fascinating tour of the Croatian border control system, after the Interior Ministry granted my media request to do a feature story on the whole border procedure, especially how the new form was speeding up the system. It was a fascinating tour, which you can read about in full here.

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I was particularly interested to meet the team answering all the tourist emails at the official email address provided, and I was more than a little surprised to learn that in a tourism county with a national tourist board, 20 regional tourist board, 319 local tourist boards, a Ministry of Tourism and a tourism sector of the Chamber of Economy, all the questions are being answered by…

… the Croatian police. 

The team answering the emails are incredibly dedicated. With some 28,000 emails to answer at the time of my visit, they pulled in police departments all over the country, so it is quite possible that your email asking about flights to Split might be answered by the police in Osijek. A crazy situation, and I offered TCN help if the police were interested. 

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Firstly I showed the team the TCN travel update, and invited them to either send the link or paste the relevant info. 

They were having trouble with foreign language enquiries, so I showed the travel update in 24 languages.

And finally, we compared notes on FAQs when I showed them the Viber community, Total Croatia Travel INFO.

I suggested that they send me the top 10 most-asked questions with answers, and then we would translate and share, in the hope this would reduce the email flow. Am grateful to Lauren Simmonds for the translation – you can see the questions and answers below. 

Here are few other things I learned and would recommend. 

1. If your questions is tourism-related and not regarding procedures to enter the country, you should contact the Croatian National Tourist Board instead – [email protected]. They are generally very responsive. 

2. If you want your question answered quicker, make it as easy as possible for the police to answer it. People are sending their questions in Hungarian, Portuguese and many other languages. The police can comfortably deal with queries in English, German and Croatian. Anything else will lead to a delay. 

3. EVERY foreigner entering Croatia is advised to fill in the form. The reason is that the border crossing experience is then reduced to just 30 seconds (one scan of the passport). If not, a lot of the accommodation and contact details need to be filled in manually. I saw the system in action close up – it works superbly. 

4. Please read the comprehensive FAQ provided by the Interior Ministry before sending your email request. Apart from not overburdening the system, you will probably find your answer quicker.

Here are the questions and their answers in full:

1. I’m a citizen of Bosnia and Herzegovina, can I transit through the Republic of Croatia? I’m arriving by plane which will land at the Franjo Tuđman International Airport in Zagreb and I’d then travel by bus to Bosnia and Herzegovina. May I do that? Or can my friend from Banja Luka come for me?

Transit through the Republic of Croatia when returning to your home country is allowed, however, your friend will not be allowed to enter the Republic of Croatia because he isn’t allowed to enter for the stated purpose.

2. I’m a German citizen, can I enter the Republic of Croatia as a tourist, and if so, what documents do I need to show?

Citizens of 10 member states of the European Union (Czech Republic, Hungary, Austria, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovenia, Germany and Slovakia) don’t have to provide any reason for their entry when entering the Republic of Croatia, they can enter the country under the same conditions as before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, but still with epidemiological controls in place, and with the obligation to comply with the general and special recommendations of the Croatian Institute of Public Health. Foreigners who have an authorised stay (legal residence) in these countries can also enter the Republic of Croatia without proving their reason for entry, but they must show their residence permits.

To reduce congestion at border crossings and shorten the waiting times when crossing borders, we recommend foreign nationals who intend to stay in the Republic of Croatia to submit their data in advance via the website People who don’t submit their details in advance via this application will still be able to do all this at the border crossing when entering Croatia, but that will imply a longer waiting time and in a separate lane.

3. Do I need a COVID 19 test for entry/transit into the Republic of Croatia and do I need to go into self-isolation when in the Republic of Croatia?

A COVID-19 test is not required to enter the Republic of Croatia. When entering the Republic of Croatia, there is no need for self-isolation now, but persons must adhere to the general and special recommendations and instructions issued by the Croatian Institute of Public Health.

4. I’m a foreigner, but I would be visiting my parents/brother, etc. Can I do that?

For family members of a Croatian citizen who don’t hold Croatian citizenship (meaning they hold the citizenship of a EU/EEA country or that of a third country), entry is allowed with proof of kinship (a birth certificate, a marriage certificate, or a certified declaration of cohabitation).

5. I’m a foreigner, but I’m in an relationship with a Croatian citizen (engaged to one), can I enter the Republic of Croatia to visit him or her?

You will be allowed to enter the Republic of Croatia if you show a certified statement at the Croatian border that you’re in this type of relationship with a Croatian national and that you intend to get married.

6. I’m coming to Croatia on business, what do I need to enter, and can my wife come as well?

You will be allowed to enter if you have an invitation letter from an economic operator from Croatia or another type of confirmation of your economic interest in the Republic of Croatia, or if you’re the owner of an economic entity in the Republic of Croatia. Your wife can come with you if she is also listed in the invitation letter, and if you’re the owner of an economic entity, entry is allowed but you must present a marriage certificate.

7. In Croatia, I have a scheduled check-up/medical procedure/operation, and I’m a citizen of a third country. What do I need to provide in order to enter?

You will be allowed to enter the Republic of Croatia if you show a certificate at the border that you have an appointment for a check-up, medical procedure, etc in a healthcare institution in the Republic of Croatia.

8. I live in Switzerland, I paid for a holiday on Korcula. What do I need to enter Croatia?

Foreign nationals who have proof of paid accommodation or a reservation for an apartment/hotel, a lease agreement for a camp, the reservation of a plot in a camp, the rental of a tourist boat or sailboat, or paid or arranged tours in the Republic of Croatia, as well as in the entire other spectrum of tourist activities, are allowed to enter the Republic of Croatia.

When entering the country, it is necessary to show the confirmation of you having booked tourist accommodation. To reduce congestion at border crossings and shorten the waiting times, we recommend foreign citizens who intend to stay in the Republic of Croatia to submit their data in advance via the website

Passengers who don’t submit their details in advance through the aforementioned application will still be able to do all of this at the border when entering the Republic of Croatia, but it will take longer and they’ll need to wait in a separate lane.

9. I need to transit through Croatia to Bosnia and Herzegovina, but along the way I’d be stopping at a friend’s house in Rijeka. Is that allowed?

After entering the Republic of Croatia, you must leave the territory of the Republic of Croatia by the shortest route without unnecessary hanging around and performing other tasks because you have no justifiable reason to enter the Republic of Croatia, you’re only allowed transit.

10. I come from the United Kingdom and have a house in Zadar. I’d be bringing two friends with me, will they be allowed to enter?

Foreigners who own property in the Republic of Croatia and their immediate family members are allowed to enter with proof of ownership of property and proof of kinship. Friends will not be allowed to enter because they are not eligible to enter for this purpose. They will be allowed to enter if they have a confirmation of having booked tourist accommodation in Croatia.

For the latest travel info, bookmark our main travel info article, which is updated daily

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Translation by Lauren Simmonds.


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