Saturday, 5 September 2020

CNTB Must Write off Kompas Bankruptcy Debt Due to Mail Error

As Dora Koretic/Novac writes on the 4th of September, 2020, it seems that the Croatian National Tourist Board (HTZ) will have to write off a debt of 14,864 kuna, which it owed the recently bankrupt company Kompas, due to the fact that this organisation failed to file a claim for bankruptcy in time in accordance with the appropriate regulations. The Kompas bankruptcy officially occurred early last year.

Namely, the company Kompas formally and legally went bankrupt on January the 3rd, 2019, and the deadline for filing creditors' claims was prescribed by March the 4th at the latest.

The Kompas bankruptcy debt left to the Croatian National Tourist Board by the collapsed company Kompas referred to the organisation of the tourist fair in Madrid, Spain, and the Croatian National Tourist Board sent the claim by mail on the last day of the prescribed deadline. However, it was established that the application was actually sent to the wrong address - instead of the bankruptcy trustee. as formally and legally prescribed, the application was sent by mistake to the address of the bankruptcy debtor.

''Immediately after learning that the application was sent to the bankruptcy debtor's address, the Croatian National Tourist Board informed the bankruptcy trustee in writing by sending them a letter stating that the application was sent to the bankruptcy debtor's address instead of the bankruptcy trustee. The said letter was sent on the 5th of March 2019, the day after the bankruptcy claim was sent, and was received by the Bankruptcy Trustee on the 7th of March 2019. Therefore, the bankruptcy trustee was informed without delay that the consignment in question had been sent by mistake to wrong address,'' they explained from the Croatian National Tourist Board.

A new mail with the filing of the Kompas bankruptcy claim was then sent to the address of the bankruptcy trustee on March the 12th, but the bankruptcy court still issued a Decision rejecting the filing due to the aforementioned missed deadline.

After that, the Croatian National Tourist Board appealed the decision, but a cold shower arrived from the High Commercial Court: this body, namely, assessed that sending the application to the address of the bankruptcy debtor, and not the bankruptcy trustee is to the detriment of the tourist board, and the claims of this organisation are far from further helped by the fact that the bankruptcy trustee was informed that they could pick up the application at the address of the bankruptcy debtor.

"Unfortunately, given the fact that the Bankruptcy Law no longer recognises the subsequent filing of bankruptcy claims and that the court didn't take into account the fact that the Croatian National Tourist Board tried to act in good faith, although it informed the bankruptcy trustee representing the Kompas bankruptcy debtor, a decision was made to reject the appeal. Considering that this is a decision of the High Commercial Court, it is no longer possible to file a regular appeal against it,'' they explained from the Croatian National Tourist Board.

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Monday, 31 August 2020

310,000 Tourists in Croatia, Great Results in August

August 31, 2020 - There are currently about 310,000 tourists in Croatia, of which 240,000 are foreigners, and 106,000 came during the last weekend of August, the Croatian National Tourist Board revealed on Monday, whose director Kristjan Stanicic assessed the results in August as extremely good given the circumstances.

"August is behind us, in which we have achieved extremely good results given the circumstances. Our further strategic and marketing activities will primarily depend on the epidemiological picture of Croatia and the surrounding countries, and uncertainty in this regard requires flexibility and readiness for rapid and continuous adaptation. We are witnessing that some countries in the region have started to close, which we also consider when defining activities in the off-season," Stanicic said for HTZ at the end of August.

Stanicic presented eVistor data according to which slightly more than a million overnight stays were realized on the weekend of August 28 to 30, of which 319,000 were realized by German tourists, followed by Poles (109,000), and Slovenes (83,000).

Over the weekend, the highest number of overnight stays was again in Vir (52,000), followed by Rovinj and Crikvenica. Vir and Rovinj, according to eVisitor data, are the top two destinations in the total number of overnight stays for the whole of August - Vir with 756,000, and Rovinj with 651,000.

Medulin, Porec, and Crikvenica are among the top five destinations per night in August.

A total of 2.6 million tourists came to Croatia in August, more precisely until August 30, with 20.7 million overnight stays, which is 64 percent of last year's result in the same period.

The German market maintained its leading position with 5.2 million overnight stays, followed by domestic tourists with almost four million overnight stays. Slovenia is third with 2.7 million overnight stays in August, while Poland and the Czech Republic are fourth and fifth with 2.2 and 1.3 million overnight stays, respectively.

By counties, most overnight stays in August were realized in Istria County - slightly more than five million, while in Primorje-Gorski Kotar County, there were 4.1 million overnight stays, in Split-Dalmatia County 3.9 million, in Zadar County 3.7 million, and Sibenik-Knin County 1.6 million overnight stays.

Noting that complete statistics of arrivals and overnight stays for August and the first eight months of this year can be expected in the first part of September, the Croatian National Tourist Board adds that given the pandemic, they have prepared several different communication concepts to apply depending on the market and circumstances.

"If the situation allows, in the autumn we plan to launch a campaign 'A week's vacation is worth it' for domestic tourists and encourage their consumption in the off-season by using tourist services in the country at lower prices," announced Stanicic.

In conclusion, he emphasized that "domestic tourists have a share of 20 percent in the total result of the current part of the tourist year, which is an important share, and that their contribution is expected in the off-season with shorter and weekend trips."

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Thursday, 27 August 2020

Croatian Tourist Board to Focus Post-Season Campaign on Continental and Nautical Tourism

August 27, 2020 - A coordination meeting of the Croatian Tourist Board was held with the tourist boards of Lika-Senj and Karlovac counties at the Jezero Hotel in Plitvice Lakes.

Along with the director of the CNTB Kristjan Stanicic, the coordination meeting was attended by the director of the Lika-Senj County Tourist Board Ivan Radosevic and the director of the Karlovac County Tourist Board Dina Begic and 17 representatives of tourist boards of cities and municipalities from these two counties. The meeting was also attended by Tomislav Kovacevic, director of the Plitvice Lakes National Park, announced HTZ.hr.

The meeting was opened by Ivan Radosevic, who emphasized that the situation in Lika-Senj County is very good, especially if the initial projections from the beginning of the year are taken into account.

"In August, we achieved an excellent 67 percent of last year's result in the same period, and in terms of the cumulative period, i.e., from the beginning of the year until today, we are at about 54 percent of last year's result in the same period," said Radosevic. At the moment, there are guests, mostly from the markets of Germany, Croatia, and Poland. Dina Begic pointed out that at the moment, they are achieving 30 percent of last year's tourist results and that this year they are recording an increase in domestic guests who have a share of 30 percent in the total tourist traffic of Karlovac County.

CNTB Director Kristjan Stanicic said that the tourist results achieved so far, with a favorable epidemiological picture on the basis of which Croatia opened its borders to tourists in May, are a consequence of focused marketing and information campaigns conducted in key European markets, which ultimately generated the largest tourist traffic.

"Given the circumstances, we are extremely satisfied with the summer part of the tourist year, where only in August we recorded 67 percent of tourist traffic compared to last August. We have prepared campaigns for the post-season where we have put continental tourism, nautical, but also eno-gastronomy in the foreground, and we will focus on the markets in our immediate surroundings. In the domestic market, in October, we plan to implement the project 'A Week's Vacation is Worth It'. At the same time, we are preparing a plan for the next tourist year, which we know will be extremely demanding and in which we will rely on enhanced marketing and PR activities in selected markets and especially on advertising on digital communication channels," said director of the Croatian National Tourist Board Kristjan Stanicic, adding that in this tourist year, we will surely have two more months of tourist traffic if we adhere to the prescribed measures and recommendations and if the epidemiological picture in the country is stable.

Stanicic also presented future activities that will, among other things, refer to the adoption of new bylaws and regulations that will further improve and regulate tourism processes. The Ordinance on Underdeveloped Areas and the Ordinance on Associated Tourist Boards were discussed, as well as the future of the country's tourist board system, given the new circumstances caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and reduced revenues, but also the new law on tourist boards and the promotion of Croatian tourism, which came into force in early 2020. Topics included the further development of the tourist board system with an emphasis on the tasks and roles of tourist boards at the local and regional levels.

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Wednesday, 26 August 2020

Adhering To Health Measures Could Secure 2 More Months Of Tourism Turnover

ZAGREB, Aug 26, 2020- There are now some 500,000 tourists in Croatia and if the epidemiological situation remains stable and everyone complies with recommendations, we can certainly expect another two months of tourism turnover this year, the National Tourist Board (HTZ) director, Kristjan Stanicic, said on Wednesday.

Stanicic met with representatives of Lika-Senj and Karlovac county tourist board representatives at Plitvice Lakes.

Lika-Senj county tourism board director Ivan Radosevic assesses that tourist trade in that county is very good compared to initial forecasts, saying that "August has brought an excellent 67% of last August's results, and year to date we have stood at 54% of last year's levels."

Currently, there are visitors in that county from Germany, Croatia, and Poland and the situation is similar in Karlovac County with the local tourist board's director Dina Begic saying that currently, the county is generating about 30% of last year's turnover.

They both underscored that this year the number of local guests has increased and account for 30% of tourism turnover.

Stanicic recalled measures from May until now which enabled tourism turnover, including a focus on marketing and information campaigns conducted on key European markets where the majority of holidaymakers come from.

Considering everything, Stanicic is exceptionally satisfied with the summer part of the tourism year and with that in August alone when 67% of last year's August turnover was achieved.

He announced a campaign for the shoulder season with emphasis on continental tourism, nautical and gastronomic tourism focusing on the closest markets.

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Wednesday, 26 August 2020

Vir, Croatia's Most Successful Destination, Yet No Love from Croatian Tourist Board

August 26, 2020 - The Mayor of Vir, Kristijan Kapovic, and the Director of the Vir Tourist Board, Srdjan Liveric, are dissatisfied with the Croatian Tourist Board's attitude towards the island of Vir, the most successful tourist destination in Croatia so far this season.

Namely, HRTurizam reports that in the last two August press releases of the Croatian National Tourist Board (CNTB) which list the most successful tourist destinations, Rovinj, Porec, Split, Medulin, Crikvenica, Dubrovnik, Umag, Zadar, Pula and Novalja were highlighted as the destinations with the most achieved tourist arrivals. Contrary to the practice of all previous years, the most successful destinations by realized tourist overnight stays are not mentioned, i.e., the total data of realized overnight stays in Croatia and the most successful counties are given.

The fact that the island of Vir has the most in Croatia until August 15 - about 1.5 million overnight stays with 80 percent of last year's record numbers - is somehow bypassed at the peak of the summer season when the impression of the most successful and best destinations this year is created. In addition, Vir is the best destination in terms of overnight stays so far in August (433 thousand). With more than 700 thousand overnight stays (the only one in Croatia), it was also the most successful tourist destination in July.

However, the island of Vir simply does not appear in the CNTB's press releases in August. It is this fact that raised the whole of Vir to its feet, and the Municipality of Vir and the tourist board are asking: Is the island of Vir fancy enough to be the best destination in Croatia?

Realized tourist overnight stays measure the success of each destination. This fact is covered up in the CNTB's August media reports, according to a joint statement from the Municipality of Vir and the Tourist Board of Vir.

"They favor destinations in which billions of kuna of public state money have been invested so far, in communal, tourist and media-marketing infrastructure, so they are obviously bothered by Vir's success, which has never gained anything from all this. However, when the CNTB's coffers are filled, one does not ask where the money comes from, and a significant amount of money comes from Vir," says the mayor of Vir, Kristijan Kapovic. Thus, millions from the island go directly to the CNTB, and hundreds of millions to the state budget, adding: “No one can deny that, but we can also ask ourselves whether the time has finally come for that money to start coming back to us. Vir certainly deserved it," said Mayor Kapovic. The director of the Vir Tourist Board, Srcjan Liveric, agrees with him and feels first hand the complete neglect of the most popular Croatian destination.

“Several million kuna go every year to the CNTB's coffers at the state and county level, and not a penny has been returned to some media and marketing campaign for Vir. We do not have the support of the system and the people within the CNTB who, among other things, are paid with real money and whose job it is to help us. We rely only on our own strength," says director Liveric and adds that it is finally time for state institutions, tourism, and others, to start doing their job finally. "If we talk about tax revenues, hundreds of millions of kunas went to the budget from Vir. We would be satisfied if we got them back if we could arrange Vir as a top tourist destination in every sense," adds the director of Vir Tourist Board.

In their joint statement, they point out that a significant phrase of the CNTB director Kristjan Stanicic, who, speaking about the most successful destinations so far, mentioned only some of them. Even then, the island of Vir was not mentioned in a single word, letter or thought. When the CNTB director was confronted with the fact that Vir was the destination with the most overnight stays in Croatia, he responded to the journalist's statement somewhat reluctantly: "Vir is a specific destination of non-commercial accommodation."

According to UNWTO, the umbrella organization of international tourism and the United Nations agency, a tourist is any person who stays or spends the night in a place where there is no residence address. Therefore, that person can have their own house, cottage, caravan, tent, or brothel in the destination if they want. Still, if they do not have a residence - it is a person who is statistically registered as a tourist. This is what is called non-commercial accommodation in the structure of tourist traffic, according to Vir.

Vir also emphasizes that for a local or foreign citizen to buy or build a house in Croatia where they do not reside, it is necessary to set aside at least about 700 thousand kuna for the minimum facility and then pay taxes and other receivables. In one move, a foreigner or a local person invests about 100 thousand euro to have a housing or tourism business facility, on which they pay taxes and all possible benefits, and further use the goods and services at the destination. Only one such owner of the facility, or a tourist in non-commercial accommodation, spends at least one million kuna at the start, and their further consumption at the destination takes place at least three or four times a year.

In the case of Vir, we are talking about foreigners who spend 16 nights on average in the previous part of the season and domestic guests with 26.7 nights on average. The so-called commercial tourists that the CNTB likes, spend 500 to 600 euro once for accommodation and maybe the same amount for goods and services at the destination where they stay for two to three days, or a maximum of one week. They do not spend more than ten or fifteen thousand kunas without a guarantee that they will be in Croatia again next year. In order to equalize the financial performance of a non-commercial guest in the future, commercial tourists would have to stay at the destination for 100 years or there would have to be 100 times more of them, Vir points out.

"All tourism professionals know that reports are made according to the realized overnight stays, because it is the practice of measuring tourist traffic. Now that Vir is the best, suddenly reports are made in arrivals, which is strange, to say the least," concludes Liveric.

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Tuesday, 25 August 2020

New Government has Historic Chance to Put Croatian Tourism in Order

The new Croatian Government, at the head of which Andrej Plenkovic remains, has a historic chance to finally put Croatian tourism's ''house'' in order, but with so much on its plate, will it do so?

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Marija Crnjak writes on the 24th of August, 2020, it has become clear that this year's tourist season in Croatia is already over. When the last Germans, Slovenes, and Austrians have packed up and gone home, most tourist facilities have little to no choice but to close their doors prematurely until next spring and throw themselves into preparation for next season.

Despite the fact that it enjoyed a far lower income than it did last year, the season went better than most had hoped and expected. Tourists showed great confidence in terms of their safety in Croatia and the whole system, loyalty to the hosts with whom they spend their summers, and their passion for a summer holiday wasn't particularly shaken by the atmosphere of coronavirus-induced fear that has dominated 2020 so far.

We should thank them and congratulate them on this, just as we should with the very many enterprises operating in Croatian tourism who were in a constant state of crisis management this entire summer. It took courage to open a facility at all with the risk of booking cancellations. For them to organise their business in a completely different way than usual and continue to smile at guests from whom they are unlikely to make any profit is admirable. Many are now somewhat relieved.

Not everyone was equal, and not everyone will survive this year, however. The most serious situation is currently taking place within tourism agencies, which didn't even rise above 10 percent of last year's turnover, as well as the organisers of small cruises.

Despite serious preparations and the application of strict infection protection protocols, which cost them a lot, Croatia's hotels have, on average, drawn the short straw in terms of accommodation. Camps, for which Croatia is known throughout Europe, fared much better, even with the smallest of price corrections. Private accommodation, although statistics show that there were plenty of overnight stays realised, will still have only a slim income as there were plenty of discounts and hosting friends filling gaps in the market.

Data on fiscalisation shows that caterers and hospitality facilities on the Croatian Adriatic operated fairly decently, and additional staff were even sought throughout the summer, despite the huge economic issues which swept the country back in spring. Maritime transport also proved to be quite resilient.

What's next? By all accounts, a very modest congressional fall, as most events have been cancelled or postponed until next year. In that sense, Dubrovnik, Opatija, and Zagreb, which is the weakest city in terms of tourism this year due to the earthquake, will suffer the most, at perhaps a quarter of last year's traffic, if that.

The attention of every serious player in Croatian tourism is therefore on next year, in which things should be better. In that sense, every smile and every gesture which made a tourist think of returning in 2021 counts. This certainly includes the decision of hotel companies to finance their guests' test for coronavirus before departing.

In this way, hotels made life a lot easier for their guests and showed them that they really value their money and the fact that they chose Croatia during such circumstances. Such moves are not forgotten and hotels can count on some of these guests to come back at the first possible opportunity or recommend them.

However, it will take several years for Croatian tourism to fully recover, and those years should be used very wisely. The picture of Croatian tourism has never been clearer than it is now, and Croatia has never had a better opportunity to improve that picture. We have more than enough people in Croatia to move things forward, but we need the political will in order to go full steam ahead.

The new government headed by PM Andrej Plenkovic to rethink the way Croatia ''does'' tourism and come up with a more sustainable way of doing things. If this extremely harsh year has highlighted anything, it is that we need a rethink - and now.

There is an urgent need to stop the devastation of certain coastal areas and the seemingly constant construction of new apartments, which continued even this year, and to once and for all stop bowing down to the interests of certain unsavoury individuals, from local sheriffs to other powerful people who hold entire destinations in their grasp.

Croatian tourism needs to modernise its promotion system at all possible levels, and use technology that can do market research and promotion for less of a cost. Measures for all this exist and there is money available to engage in the process, but whether the will is there and whether or not lessons have actually been learned is yet to be seen.

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Monday, 24 August 2020

Why Did HTZ Block Instagram Profiles Promoting Croatia?

August 24, 2020 - Another illogical move in Croatia. The Croatian National Tourism Board blocked Croatian photographers on Instagram who promote the beauties of Croatia.

After Index.hr received a couple of messages from Croatian photographers, they started to dig.

"It is awful to block people who work on the promotion of Croatia," one of the blocked photographers complains to Index.hr. The Croatian Tourist Board said that they blocked only those who "steal", "falsely present themselves," and "with whom they are in court". As Index.hr has investigated, most of the CNTB's accusations do not stand. Index.hr was convinced by the fact that after their inquiry about the photographers, some profiles were unblocked.

The Croatian National Tourist Board has more than 10,000 posts and more than 378,000 followers on its official Instagram profile. Most of the photos are actually from other profiles, and the photos are signed with a link to the original profile where they were posted. The promotion of Croatia should be important for the CNTB, and for those who publish photos to get a larger number of views, and thus followers. However, the CNTB, as Index.hr finds out, blocked part of the photographers and did not download or share their content on the official Instagram profile of the CNTB.

Blocking a profile on Instagram means disabling a blocked profile from accessing your profile and preventing it from seeing posts. Also, blocking on Instagram prevents sending messages, tagging in pictures, and any communication between the profile that blocked and the one that is blocked.

By blocking the photographers, the CNTB also prevented the CNTB from tagging their photos, as well as any communication on Instagram.

"We try, we do their job, and they block us."

“We try so hard and instead of giving us a hand because we work globally, they block us all,” one of the blocked photographers complained. But none of them understand why this is being done. "It's frivolous and childish and no one benefits from it. We can watch CNTB announcements through other profiles, and other people can still enjoy promoting Croatia as a beautiful country on our profiles," another photographer complains.

The Croatian National Tourist Board claims that they have extremely successful cooperation with a large number of relevant, successful, proven and internationally recognized photographers and that they do not have any photographers blocked on their profiles.

CNTB: The problem is copyright and misrepresentation

"So far, we have had a successful collaboration with photographers on our social networks, but, unfortunately, we were forced to terminate our collaboration with one photographer due to the question of valid copyright over the photo that she published as her own and confirmed in writing. Namely, a third person appeared as the author of the disputed photo, and a court proceeding related to copyright is in progress," the CNTB told Index.hr, without specifying who it was.

The CNTB, in response to an Index inquiry, said that each author the posts themselves contact and ask permission to post the photo. Index.hr asked the CNTB why they block the profiles of some photographers.

"They use false information"

"These profiles used 'false information', or they were presented as official profiles 'in charge of promoting Croatia in the world. We are responsible for marketing Croatia overseas as a leading holiday and business tourism destination' and used author's texts and content of the Croatian National Tourist Board without consent and approval, which violated the copyright (of the texts). We reported this via Facebook for false presentation or use of the content without permission, which was later downloaded by Facebook / Instagram," says the CNTB's response.

Index.hr sent an additional query, stating that they unblocked some profiles after Index.hr first query was not answered.

As Index.hr checked, their misrepresentation answer was correct, but only for one page. This is the Instagram profile of Croatia, which is presented on social networks, specifically Facebook, as the "Croatian Tourist Board". The CNTB presented Index.hr with reports against that site.

For other profiles, for which Index.hr sent them inquiries, they did not give them any evidence.

Timotej: We should support each other and work for each other

The Timotej profile belongs to a Croatian photographer who was born in England, and who did not want to introduce himself by his full name and surname. His profile has more than 58,000 followers, and his photos promote the beauties of Croatia.

The CNTB says they cannot comment on why the site was blocked because "court proceedings are ongoing". In an interview with Index, Timotej says that he would certainly be informed about some kind of court proceedings, but he doesn't know it exists.

"All these beautiful Instagram profiles that post beautiful photos from Croatia are blocked by the Croatian National Tourist Board instead of supporting each other and working together. This is not a contest for the number of followers but our goal is to show the world the most beautiful places in Croatia and make people fall in love with Croatia," Timotej said to Index.hr.

Andrea Miličević: It is bad to block people who work on the promotion of Croatia

Andrea Miličević is behind the Instagram profile croatia_photography, which has almost 80,000 followers. Her profile was also blocked by the CNTB. She tells Index.hr that she has never received any notification of the reasons why she was blocked and has been blocked for five years.

"I honestly didn't try to find an answer. Underneath every photo that is not mine is the author, so there are no copyright infringements. In fact, people are extremely happy when a photo is published to them. I get inquiries about accommodation, trips every day it is extremely bad to block people who work on the promotion of Croatia," Miličević said.

Index.hr asked the CNTB to explain precisely why croatia_photography was blocked, but they did not respond.

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Thursday, 20 August 2020

HTZ Says German And UK Decisions Will Impact Tourism In Croatia

ZAGREB, Aug 20, 2020 - The Croatian National Tourism Board director, Kristjan Stanicic on Thursday said that decisions to put Croatia on lists of unsafe countries for travel would certainly affect tourism turnover.

The German foreign ministry on Thursday issued a warning against travelling to Sibenik-Knin and Split-Dalmatia counties because of the increasing number of new coronavirus infections. "Unnecessary travel such as for tourism to these areas is not recommended," the ministry said.

Commenting on the decision to Hina, Stanicic said that the fact that Germany had not declared all of Croatia as unsafe was "a mitigating circumstance."

"We know how important the German market is for Croatia's tourism from which we have generated 3.6 million bed nights in August thus far, which in the current circumstances is an excellent 93% of last year's results. As such, I once again appeal for everyone to adhere to the prescribed epidemiological measures because at the moment that is the fundamental precondition to continue achieving tourism turnover in the country," Stanicic said.

Putting Croatia on the red list in the UK will change travel plans to Croatia

Commenting on the latest announcement from the United Kingdom that Croatia could be put on the red list of countries due to allegedly imported cases of the infection, Stanicic said that it could potentially mean British tourists leaving earlier or changing their plans to travel to Croatia.

"The United Kingdom is one of the more important markets for Croatia's tourism and the Covid-19 pandemic has negatively affected arrivals. In circumstances when until mid-June it was almost impossible to travel anywhere in Europe and with the exceptionally strong contraction of air transport, the British market did not result in any strong activation. Hence, since the start of the year until now we have had about 97,000 arrivals and 483,000 bed nights from that market, which is about 16% of last year's turnover and the arrivals from the UK rank 12th among foreign tourists," Stanicic explained.

The director of the HTZ branch in Great Britain, Daria Reic, has informed that interest by British visitors for Croatia is still strong and partners are informing of good occupancy rates in planes.

"We are receiving a lot of calls from potential passengers enquiring about the current situation in Croatia and our partners are informing us of very good bookings for the remainder of August and September," Reic revealed.

She said that Brits are by no means happy with their government's decision, adding that the general opinion in public is that no one wants to go into 14-day quarantine.

Currently, 17,000 Brits are spending holidays in Croatia

If the government does indeed make such a decision there could be a drastic drop in tourists while Stanicic said that currently there are about 17,000 Brits in Croatia with about 56% in rooms and apartments, 29% in hotels, 7% in nautical accommodation, 5% in camps and 3% in non-commercial facilities.

Most of them are vacationing in Dubrovnik, Split, Konavle, Hvar, and Pula.

We are doing our utmost to precisely inform foreigners in the UK and elsewhere

Both Reic and Stanicic underscore that the HTZ is cooperating with diplomatic representations in the UK and elsewhere in the world to provide accurate information based on which they can then decide on including countries on the list of risky or safe countries.

"Unfortunately, we cannot impact a final decision and apart from the epidemiological situation, their decisions take into account the economic interests of each individual country. That is particularly obvious in the fact that some countries have declared us to be a risky destination (Slovenia, Austria, Italy) while others consider us to be a safe tourist destination and their tourists are enjoying their vacation in Croatia (Germany, Switzerland, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, and so on)," said Stanicic.

"We will continue to promote Croatia as a safe and stable tourist destination, particularly through online channels and we have launched an initiative for some local tourism boards and companies to organise testing in their areas for all interested tourists so they can continue their vacation undisturbed," he concluded.

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Saturday, 15 August 2020

820,000 Tourists Currently in Croatia, 68% of Last Year's Numbers

August 15, 2020 - There are currently around 820,000 tourists in Croatia, and there has been no noticeable decline in tourist traffic related to the increase in the number of coronavirus cases, Croatian National Tourist Board director Kristjan Stanicic said on Friday, announcing an increase in tourists this weekend.

Slobodna Dalmacija reports that tourists are currently making up about 68 percent compared to the same day last year when there were 1.2 million. Most of them, about 200 thousand, are in Istria County, followed by 160 thousand in Primorje-Gorski Kotar County, while Split-Dalmatia County is accommodating 150 thousand, and Zadar County about 145 thousand.

Stanicic states that according to the destinations with the most tourists, today, the top five are in Istria and Kvarner - Rovinj, Medulin, Porec, Umag, Crikvenica and Mali Losinj.

Asked if he expects increased visits to shrines to the Virgin Mary on Saturday, Stanicic said that this could certainly be expected because the celebration of the Assumption of Mary also includes visits to shrines.

"However, in the general atmosphere of reduced travel, precautions and restrictions introduced to combat the coronavirus pandemic, there may be fewer believers in Mary shrines for the holiday this year, including tourists, than in previous years," Stanicic believes, adding that this visit is difficult to formally quantify because it is mostly a one-day trip or only a few hours, and as there are no overnight stays, they are not recorded in the eVisitor system.

As this holiday this year coincides with the third weekend in August, after which, even in the best years for tourism, there was usually a slight decrease in tourist arrivals and overnight stays, this can be expected this year as well. August has so far surpassed all forecasts with about 70 percent of last year's overnight stays.

He emphasizes that the results of August so far have exceeded all forecasts and believes that by the end of that month, provided that the current market conditions remain unchanged, the achieved total arrivals and overnight stays of about 70 percent of last year will continue.

"Obviously, the coronavirus pandemic is still very much present and it is a crisis with an uncertain outcome and it is almost impossible to predict anything. The figures so far have already shown that this year's tourist results vary depending on the destination or individual types of facilities, so in this sense, the information from the field is different.

However, it is important to remember that this is a very challenging year for everyone, including tourism, in which the main goal is to achieve the best possible results to create a healthy basis for preparing and implementing the next tourist year, which will also be very challenging," Stanicic said.

On the other hand, it is difficult to predict what September and the entire postseason will bring, but he believes that in such circumstances, communication activities with the markets are important as one of the extremely significant elements of influencing travel decisions.

"We constantly communicate with the directors of our representative offices, and they with their partner markets, the media and others about the situation in Croatia. We fight certain blows, but we also react quickly, deny wrong information, hold meetings with partners, and cooperate with other institutions, primarily with diplomacy and the national headquarters," reveals Stanicic.

He also estimates that the good tourist figures from the markets of Germany, Slovenia, Poland, Austria, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary are also the result of intensive marketing and information campaigns, noting that the results still mostly depend on the epidemiological situation, necessary and strict adherence to all prescribed measures and recommendations of the national headquarters by all tourism service providers.

Commenting on the new measures by the Italian government, according to which testing is obligatory for everyone who comes to Italy from Croatia, Malta, Greece and Spain, Stanicic says that he sees a reason for that partly in the safety of his citizens, but also because of the Ferragosto period in which they travel.

"The countries included in this list are the direct and biggest competitors of Italy. There are currently about 45,000 Italian tourists in Croatia, but this Italian decision will certainly affect traffic from that market later in August. Despite this situation, the CNTB office in Italy still receives a huge number of inquiries about the arrival of Italians on vacation in Croatia - and they want to come," added Stanicic.

In the case of Slovenia, he says that there are no official decisions yet and believes that Croatia will remain on the current list, which enables Slovenian citizens to return to Slovenia without presenting a test or going to quarantine.

"Slovenia is one of our most important markets, many of their citizens own real estate in our country, and currently there are about 115,000 of them in Croatia," says Stanicic.

He also spoke about the Dutch market, where the CNTB is also in constant contact with partners, agencies and tour operators, as well as relevant institutions.

"It remains to be seen what the final decision of the Dutch institutions will be, but we believe that by all parameters, we can return to their list of safe destinations, which already includes some countries that have a worse epidemiological situation compared to Croatia," Stanicic said. Good cooperation with Croatian diplomacy is also important, which through its activities, contributes to maintaining the current position of Croatia as one of the few tourist countries in which significant tourist traffic takes place.

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Monday, 10 August 2020

Over 320,000 Tourists Arrivals in Croatia from August 7-9

August 10, 2020 - Reports of tourist arrivals in Croatia this August are anything but grim. Just last weekend, Croatia reported more than 323,000 arrivals and 2.3 million overnight stays!

According to the preliminary eVisitor data, which contains tourist traffic realized in the commercial and non-commercial segment and nautical charter, more than one million arrivals and 7.2 million overnight stays were realized in Croatia so far in August (from August 1 to 9), which is about 70 percent of last year's result achieved in the same period, the Croatia National Tourist Board reported.

They add that most overnight stays in the same period were achieved in Istria (1.7 million overnight stays), Kvarner (1.4 million overnight stays), Split-Dalmatia (1.3 million overnight stays), Zadar (1.3 million overnight stays), Sibenik-Knin County (578,000 overnight stays), Dubrovnik-Neretva County (392,000 overnight stays) and Lika-Senj County (271,000 overnight stays).

"After an excellent July, in which we achieved about 60 percent of last year's result, we recorded even better tourist trends in August and are currently at about 70 percent of last year's result. The markets that reacted best are territorially closer markets for which Croatian destinations are easily accessible by road routes, such as, for example, Germany, Slovenia, Austria, Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary.

We directed our promotional and information campaigns towards these markets all the time, communicating that Croatia is a safe and well-prepared tourist destination. Also, with the increase in the number of airlines, tourist traffic in the southern parts of Dalmatia has intensified," said the director of the Croatian Tourist Board Kristjan Stanicic, adding that, for example, Dubrovnik and London are currently connected with 44 flights a week.

"It is extremely important that we all continue to act responsibly and that we adhere to the prescribed epidemiological measures, because this is currently a prerequisite for the realization of tourist traffic in the country," concluded director Stanicic.

In the previous part of August, most tourist arrivals came from the German market, about 225,000, which is an increase of 6 percent compared to the same period last year. The domestic market follows with 178,000 arrivals, an increase of 18 percent, the Slovenian market with 133,000 arrivals, an increase of 10 percent, and the Polish market with 109,000 arrivals, an increase of 16 percent, compared to the same period last year.

Looking at the destinations, so far, in August, most arrivals were made in Rovinj, Porec, Medulin, Crikvenica, Umag, Split, Dubrovnik, Zadar, Pula and Novalja.

The Croatia National Tourist Board adds that during the last weekend (from August 7 to 9), there were more than 323,000 arrivals and 2.3 million overnight stays in Croatia.

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