One of the discussions in Croatia these days surrounds digital nomads. What EXACTLY does Croatia get from digital nomads, especially if they do not have to pay income tax locally with the 12-month permit?
It is a classic Croatian tourism short-term mindset, which has become sadly familiar over the decade I have been writing about the subject.
For me, there are three key wins for Croatia – and they all cost nothing.
1. Permit holders may not pay tax, but they are spending on rent, food, drink, entertainment once they leave their virtual office. Think of them as long-stay tourists if you will. I never heard of anyone here complaining about tourists spending here.
2. The mindset. This, to me, is one of the most exciting aspects of the digital nomad era. People with fresh ideas, different experiences, stimulating lifestyles. If they are moving to Croatia because it is so great, perhaps Croatia has something to offer, rather than the sad path of emigration.
3. The fabulous free promo from digital nomads, clearly in love with this beautiful country. They decided to come, love what they find, and want to tell the world how amazing Croatia is – through blogs, Instagram posts and various other forms of social media. Kind of like the national tourist board’s job if you like. Only better.
This series will focus on the last point, the fantastic free promotion of Croatia by these longer term visitors. TCN is thoroughly enjoying our working partnership with one of the early recipients of the digital nomad permit. Steve Tsentserensky from Ohio. Steve first came to my attention with this fabulous video of Zagreb.
We are big fans of Steve’s work, and we met recently over a beer or three in Zagreb. Steve will be travelling around the country over the next 12 months (actually, we think a little longer) documenting Croatia through his lens. We thought it would make a nice feature on the site, as well as showing how just one nomad with the permit is spreading the word about this beautiful country, so that others may see and come.
And so continues our new series – Croatia through the lens of a Croatian digital nomad permit holder, this time in Stari Grad on Hvar.
You can follow Steve on Instagram, where he picked up over 2,000 new followers recently, after his CNBC News video about the Croatian digital nomad lifestyle went viral. Check it out above..