Saturday, 27 May 2023

Best Value for Money Destinations: Zagreb Ranks High Among European Cities

May 27, 2023 - For 16 years now, the British Post Office has been compiling a list of European cities that are the best value for money destinations. This year, the Croatian capital made it onto the list.

A new list for the year 2023 has been released, comparing 35 European cities and revealing the most profitable European destinations. This year it is the Portuguese metropolis Lisbon, writes Klix.

The Post Office team calculates and compares the average price of a weekend stay in the city for two nights in three-star hotels. Add to that the price of some top tourist attractions, sightseeing by tourist bus, the price of public transport, and food and drinks.

Lisbon is the right place this summer if you want to have an amazing mini vacation or an extended weekend in the city without spending a lot of money.

This holiday destination has topped the list of the cheapest city breaks in Europe, which is an incentive for tourists, who are already flocking to Lisbon for its world-famous nightlife, beautiful beaches and delicious food.

From the perspective of tourists, prices in the Portuguese capital are largely unaffected by inflation and the cost-of-living crisis, rising only 2 percent compared to last summer.

Two nights in a three-star hotel average around 140 euros, which is only 5 percent more than in 2022, compared to a price increase of over 20 percent in every other city surveyed. In fact, prices in Lisbon were less than a third of those in the most expensive European cities such as Venice and Amsterdam.

Lisbon is a great place to visit for a number of reasons. The city is somewhat randomly located on the rugged landscape on the west coast of the country, providing many varied and excellent views. It is said to be one of the oldest cities in the world, and according to legend, it was founded by Ulysses on his return from the Trojan War.

The title of the most expensive city in Europe was taken by Amsterdam, where 835 euros should be allocated for the weekend, and Paris, Venice, Geneva, Belfast and London are among the most expensive. Dubrovnik in neighboring Croatia took first place on the list of cities with the most expensive tickets for cultural and historical sights.

And Croatia's capital ranked quite high on this list of the most cost-effective European cities in 2023, starting with the cheapest: Lisbon (Portugal), Vilnius (Lithuania), Krakow (Poland), Athens (Greece), Riga (Latvia), Porto (Portugal), Zagreb (Croatia), Budapest (Hungary) ), Warsaw (Poland) and Lille (France).

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated News section.

Tuesday, 25 April 2023

The British Telegraph Praises Slavonia as Loveliest Forgotten Destination

April 25, 2023 - The British Telegraph published a report on Slavonia, which the author Jane Foster presented as "the most wonderful secret region" that is worth visiting and experiencing with regard to its natural, cultural, and eno-gastronomic attractions.

The report titled "The little-known European region that's making wine for the King's Coronation" was created in collaboration with the London representative office of the Croatian Tourist Board and the editorial staff of the Telegraph after the author visited the region in February.

Slavonian cities, nature parks, and numerous well-known wineries that nurture traditional wine production along with the local gastronomic offer are part of the details the Slavonia report highlights, particularly emphasizing places like Iločki Podrumi and the Traminac wine variety.

As they note from the Croatian Tourist Board, that wine has traditionally been consumed at the British Court since the coronation of the late Queen Elizabeth II and will be served at the coronation of King Charles III in London, one of the most important events in recent British history. 


Copyright Romulic and Stojcic

"In 1953, Ilocki Podrumi supplied Traminac for the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II; in 2011, they sent ice-harvest Traminac for the wedding of William and Kate; and in 2018, berry harvest Traminac for the wedding of Harry and Meghan. 

Tradition being tradition, they will be sending Traminac Principovac (a semi-sweet white wine, produced in a limited edition) as a gift to Charles III and Camilla for their coronation on May 6, 2023".

In her report, Foster praises the local wine tradition, cultural wealth such as the old city center of Osijek and Ilok, as well as the special features of Vukovar and the wealth of flora and fauna of the Kopački rit nature park.

The Croatian Tourist Board adds that "the synergy of rich cultural heritage, numerous events, and natural beauty makes Slavonia a winning destination with a luxurious tourist offer for all markets, including Great Britain." 


Copyright Romulic and Stojcic

They also note that the new direct Ryanair flight on the London-Osijek route, which will operate four times a week from June and contribute to the traffic availability of Slavonian destinations, will contribute to the additional attractiveness of Slavonia on the UK market.

And the data from the Croatian eVisitor system confirms positive trends from the British market, writes Poslovni. "Positive trends from the British market are also confirmed by the data of the eVisitor system, according to which tourists from that market have spent almost 153,000 overnight stays in Croatia so far this year, or 3 percent more than in the same period of record 2019," concludes Croatian Tourist Board.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated Travel section.

Friday, 24 February 2023

Out of Office Travel Conference - Meet the Croatian Globetrotters

February 24, 2023 - All travel lovers and enthusiasts in Croatia, we've got something just for you - the Out Of Office travel conference. It will bring together famous Croatian world travellers, and it's taking place in Zagreb, 10 - 11 March 2023, in the newly opened premises of the Wespa Business & Lounge.

The aim of the conference, according to the organisers, is to encourage people to spend more time out of their homes and offices and to draw their energy from overcoming unknown situations on trips or from a relaxing vacation in nature. After all, taking a break and returning fresh will make everyone a lot more productive in solving daily tasks.

At the conference, seasoned Croatian travellers will happily share information and ideas on how and where to travel, telling stories from around the world. There will also be plenty of opportunities to exchange experiences with like-minded people. Those who want to travel, but have inhibitions about where to start, will find all the motivation they need in the presentations on travelling cheap or visiting American national parks. Those with more experience, on the other hand, might find it interesting to learn about trekking through the jungle or travelling in a campervan.

Ranko Ilić, the director of Zagreb Airport, will reveal some secrets of air travel.


You can see the complete program and lecturers at the official website and on Instagram.

Ida Prester will moderate the conference. The key speaker will be Kresimir Sucevic Mederal, known to the Croatian public as one of the chasers from the Croatian version of The Chase (Potjera) and a passionate traveller.

We do not doubt that there will be something for everyone and that all visitors will leave with new insights inspired for their next trip.

Morana Zibar's travel quiz will ensure lots of fun, where in addition to a light test of knowledge, visitors will have the opportunity to win valuable prizes. In addition to the quiz, there will be several other fun corners.

Come and check out what the Croatian travel scene is all about!

Tickets are on sale at Entrio.

The conference was made possible by the sponsors who recognised the importance of the event and supported Out Of Office - by travellers, for travellers.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated Travel section.

Thursday, 23 February 2023

Pointers Travel: Croatia is an Undiscovered Gem for American Tourists

February 23, 2023 - I opened an office on 7th Avenue, and we’re starting our activities there, including the promotion of Croatia on the American market, proudly says Krunoslav Weinpert, founder and owner of DMC agency Pointers Travel from Osijek.

And there are many reasons for him to be proud because for an agency from Croatia to have an office in New York is a great success and a huge challenge. It's one thing to come to a tourist fair for a couple of days, and quite another to be present at the market every single day, writes hrturizam.

"We are starting with one project directed at all tourist boards in Croatia. It unifies the presentation of Croatia as a tourist destination to more than 2,000 agents in America. For the American market, we will present tourist destinations through 4 regions, plus "Best of Croatia.” American agents will go through training, be it 45-minute or 60-minute lessons, separate for the regions of Croatia,” says Weinpert.

The decision to open an office did not come overnight. Pointers Travel has been working on a market expansion for the last five years, and they have been to various fairs in America during that period. The opening of the office followed a logical sequence of events. American agents for sure view it differently when an agency is present on-site in the USA.

"This is our 10th time appearing on the American market - last year we went to 5 fairs, this year two, and before that with the Croatian Tourist Board. We were there before the pandemic. We already have two fairs arranged for next year. Next year we are going to Chicago and New York; the contracts have already been signed. Opening an office in NY immediately turned out to be a great move. We have already seen at the fair that it changes a lot. Travel agents and companies prefer to work with a company from the USA.

I can say that these are extremely large investments. So far, attending 7 trade fairs plus the ones before, while being present for two years on the American market, was a significant investment. We had some support from the EU, but we really gave it our all - not just financially, but our energy," points out Weinpert and emphasizes that, according to their experience, American agents are extremely interested in Croatia.

"Croatia is becoming one of the top three locations in Europe for the American market, and we realized that Americans still need to learn a lot about Croatia. They know some information, but they don't have much detail. Seeing as Pointers has more than 400 videos, and we work with more than 150 tourist boards all over Croatia, the decision is to approach agents in such a way. We will also do PR activities on the American market, as well as online campaigns, all kinds - adverts, Facebook, and PR articles on the American market", states Weinpert.

Focus on the pre- and post-season: Americans do not want to go to Croatia at the peak of the tourist season

Another sector that Pointers travel will cover is strategic assistance to tourist communities. Again, it is one thing to take up advertising space in the media, and quite another to have partners who are on the market, presenting, and know the market best. This is something that every tourist board should take full advantage of if it’s trying to communicate with the American market.

When asked what their cooperation with tourism boards will entail, Weinpert states three directions.

"We give the tourist boards the opportunity to become our partners in the project and, in that way, present their tourist destination, the special features of the destination and, what is very important, want to help them boost the pre-season, and post-season. Americans don't want to come during peak season; they do not find that interesting.

Secondly, we can bring them visitors with high paying power. We try to make sure that the events in which they invest significant funds are well attended, that they are sufficiently present in the American media and presented to agents as if we are "selling" the new contents of their destinations. For example, if a destination has invested in cycling or hiking in recent years, then we will focus on what they have invested in. This is how we give tourism boards the opportunity to cooperate."

The project officially starts on the 10th of March with the arrival of the first American agents in Croatia. These are agents who own companies in both America and the Emirates and cover the markets of America, the Emirates, and India.

"They want to come, they have 5 days, and their entire tour of Croatia this time starts from Baranja. We start from Baranja, Osijek, and the rest of Slavonia. Then we go via the golden hills of Papuk, Velika, towards Varaždin, the pearl that is Zagorje, Zagreb, we tour the famous four rivers, Gorski kotar, Lika, and Plitvice. Via Knin and Split, we end up in Dubrovnik.

One of the tours goes to Umag to the Kampinski Resort and includes a tour of Istrian wineries. We provide agents with study trips to Croatia, which allow them to get to know Croatia as a whole. What we are going to do now is to create more than 30 types of travel packages for the whole of Croatia; there will be between 50 and 60 travel packages, and they will be given to agents in America for use.

We provide agents with more than 10,000 photos, free of charge. These are photos that Pointers has been able to create together with tourist boards in the last 7 years, and we provide them with more than 400 videos of professional quality," explains Weinpert and adds that the benefit of what they have been doing in Croatia for the past seven years is finally being recognized.

The third segment, which is included in the entire project and is very important, is cooperation with hotels, restaurants, wineries, and destination attractions. Naturally, they find it interesting to be on the route and defined itineraries of the American agents.

"We go to the hotels in those destinations with which we cooperate; we go to quality restaurants, wineries, and attractions. We offer them cooperation on an annual level, on a contractual basis, where we also present them and include them in tourist packages. We bring agents to introduce them to all of this. I expect that by the end of the year, a large number of agents from America will come to Croatia, a few dozen. I don't know if the number will reach a hundred, but many American agents will certainly come to Croatia this year," points out Weinpert.

Croatia is an undiscovered jewel of Europe for American tourists

It is difficult to generalize, especially when the American market is concerned, but when asked what the perception of Croatia is on the American market, Weinpert emphasizes that there is great interest for this Adriatic beauty.

Americans want to avoid the biggest crowds in the peak season; they want a different type of vacation than just chilling at the beach; Weinpert further explains and points out that American tourists are looking for packages where they can taste and experience quality gastronomy and wine, and see natural and cultural sights.

"We got to know the American market well; we saw that its potential is huge, that Croatia is well accepted, that our prices do not pose any problem to them, and that they need much more in-depth information about Croatia. We push packages that last 14 days, some 7 days of cruising the Adriatic and visiting the main points along the coast, and after that, the continental areas, via Zagreb to the east of Croatia.

We do not work below that, nor does the market demand it; it simply does not make sense to come for a shorter period due to the length of the journey. We must admit that the reason for coming is still a brand stronger than the name of Croatia - Dubrovnik, followed by the Plitvice Lakes, food, nature, clear sea, wonderful people - this is what is most often communicated.

What surprised us all these years is that people who have been to Croatia have so many exceptional positive emotions for the country. Croatia is the undiscovered jewel of Europe for American tourists, which is starting to push hard alongside Greece, Italy, France; it is starting to brutally beat the competition," Weinpert concluded.

A large part of the work has already been done. The promotion has been done, and promotional photo and video materials are available, as well as direct contact with American agents who come to Croatia and experience Croatia firsthand. The most important thing, however, is to be constantly present in the American market.

By opening the Pointers Travel office, he took that big step forward and completed the whole story with strong foundations. That is the first prerequisite for a more serious approach to a market, in this case, the American market.

Finally, if you want to be part of this project and your focus is on the American market, representing a tourist community or a hotel, restaurant, or winery, contact Krunoslav Weinpert from the Pointers Travel agency (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ) or via the website.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated Travel section.

Thursday, 26 January 2023

The British Times Lists Their Favourite Croatian Hidden Gems

January 26, 2023 - Foreign media loves Croatia indeed. And not only during or just before the tourist season, either. They're starting to discover it sooner and talking about it more than ever before. It's only the start of the year, and though it is mainly a summer destination, there are articles already popping up left and right about the beauties of one of Europe's most recent tourist hits. The British Times calls it Secret Croatia, and goes on to list their favourite Croatian hidden gems.

This time around, the Biritish Times dug deeper and decided to praise the hidden spots of our beloved land of wonder. They speak of paths undiscovered, waters unswam, and food uneaten. Granted, no mention of eastern Croatia, but we’ll be patient and they might just take us seriously when we say it’s a place like no other.

In the meantime, let us also give praise where praise is due. Deeming the country’s former currency, the kuna, as... obscure, the Times sees the introduction of the euro as one of the things that will further boost tourism in Croatia in 2023. And with most visitors concentrating in and around the hotspots such as Dubrovnik, Hvar and Rovinj, they set out to find alternative routes and hidden gems. And so they did.

First off, the fishing village of Vrsar in Istria is presented as a place with which even the legendary lover Casanova fell in love, going back twice and saving it for eternity in his memoirs. Vrsar is a typical little Istrian village of cobbled streets, old churches, and the most charming of chilling spots overlooking the nearby islands. Go there for dolphin spotting, seafood eating, kayaking and paddleboarding, or just life living.

Second on their list, Rastoke, inspires one of those mixed feelings in me, as a local. I almost selfishly wish they haven't listed it. Rastoke, in my humble opinion, is one of the most magical little places in Croatia. It is a small village nestled on the banks of the Korana River, whose source is at Rastoke’s big sister, the Plitvice Lakes. Though absolutely stunning and deserving of every praise, the popularity and therefore, crowdedness of the Plitvice Lakes national park is exactly what might inspire visitors to pivot towards Rastoke. The river creates over 30 waterfalls, making it perfect for adrenaline lovers, and the walking trails of its banks are ideal for a relaxed time in nature. And an abundance of places where you can enjoy trout directly from the river always comes in handy.

Eastern Mljet found itself on the list for its sandy beaches and the famous Odysseus cave. Though the part of the island with the national park receives plenty of visitors, its eastern side is unfairly neglected. If you’re looking for the full spectrum of blues and green to soothe your soul, though, this is the place to go. The pines provide the perfect shade to balance out the sunny moment in eastern Mljet’s beautiful bays.

As further spots to find perfect privacy, Times brings up Drvenik Veli and Drvenik Mali. The big brother, Drvenik Veli, for its Blue Lagoon, and Drvenik Mali for the Vela Rina sandy beach. Both live a wonderfully laid-back, perfectly relaxed lifestyle ideal for a getaway.

Lastly, the Times regards Korčula’s main town almost as the second Dubrovnik, which has no trouble attracting the same crowds of visitors as the southern capital of Croatian tourism. Lumbarda, however, is the antidote, and it’s right there. This lively little village offers beautiful beaches and an island lifestyle with long summer nights. Its main attraction, as the Times emphasizes, is the wine scene with the grk and plavac mali varieties.

Hats off to the Times; they found a few truly stunning Croatian hidden gems.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated Travel section.





Wednesday, 25 January 2023

Croatian Regions Locals Love the Most and Where They go for Food

January 25, 2023 - A survey was carried out to gain insight into the extent to which specific Croatian regions spark curiosity and desire of the local population to visit, what images are associated with which region, and at what time of the year which region is the most attractive.

Dalmatia, Istria, Lika, and Gorski Kotar are the Croatian regions most attractive for domestic tourists, with Slavonia following in the fourth place, while Zagreb is the urban centre that offers the most opportunities for shopping, culture, and entertainment.

At the same time, writes Poslovni, Istria did the best when it came to gastronomy and a longer tourist season, which is where Dalmatia and other destinations have enormous room for improvement. This was found in a survey conducted at the end of last year by the Improve agency in cooperation with BlueRock Consulting.

In the recently adopted Croatian tourism strategy until 2030, year-round and more regionally balanced tourism is set as one of the strategic goals, and it is thought that the unique tourist identity of certain regions should be developed, that is, the umbrella brand that connects tourist destinations. Accordingly, target groups of guests should be clearly defined, explains BRC.

The leaders

"The results show that the key brands are the tourist regions themselves, and there is no dilemma about the name of a particular tourist region either. Short and clear names were adopted, and regions were recognized as such. This is great for these tourist destinations and their further communication and the development of tourist products. It is great that Lika and Gorski Kotar are already almost as attractive to domestic tourists as developed coastal regions. Preservation of natural beauty is essential, but how much the other reasons for coming are lagging shows how wide the room for improvement is," emphasizes Emanuel Tutek, a partner in BRC.

For Dalmatia, natural beauty is a far more important asset than cultural heritage and gastronomy. Admittedly, in comparison to Istria, entertainment facilities are somewhat more attractive in Dalmatia, while quality and attractive private accommodation is the slightly less attractive factor. In addition to peace and relaxation (79%), the most common associations of those who chose Dalmatia are fun and joy, more than other regions except Zagreb.

Istria is perfectly positioned as a gastronomic destination, rich in culture and natural beauty, and guests associate it with comfort and romance. The authors note that Istria most successfully promoted the breadth of its offer, as those who chose that region to cite relatively more different motivating factors.

The most common are natural beauties (80%), followed by gastronomy (62%) and culture (heritage or events, 56%). Quality and attractive private accommodation is the fourth most common factor. However, recreational or sports activities are rarely mentioned as the motivation for visiting Istria.

New discoveries

Among those who are attracted to this region, the top associations are peace and relaxation. More than other regions, it attracts people with higher household incomes and higher education as well. For Lika and Gorski Kotar, natural beauty and peace, and relaxation are the leading reasons for visiting, but the region stands out by associations with health and opportunities for recreational, sports, and adrenaline activities.

Associations that stand out more than in other regions are health, adventure, and adrenaline, but also peace and relaxation and "new discoveries." In Slavonia, besides natural beauty, there is a very strong motivation for choosing gastronomy (61%), and it is just as strong as in the most successful region of Istria. Cultural heritage holds the third place, while recreation and entertainment rank poorly, and quality accommodation is hardly mentioned. Slavonia attracts older people (over 55 years) more than average. Motivation for local guests to visit Zagreb includes shopping (32%), cultural heritage and events (27%), and entertainment (for adults, 24%, for children, 26%), and the top associations are entertainment and variety.

The longest season is guaranteed in Lika and Gorski Kotar, which attract guests almost all year round. The spring and less warm summer months are chosen the most for both Istria and Slavonia. For Dalmatia, the focus is on the summer months, from June to September, and very few consider the spring months to be the best time to visit Dalmatia.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated Travel section.

Wednesday, 29 June 2022

Border Controls on Land and Sea to be Revoked on 1 January, at Airports on 26 March

ZAGREB, 29 June 2022 - The Council of the EU on Wednesday proposed that controls at Croatia's land and sea borders with Schengen countries be revoked as of 1 January 2023 and at airports as of 26 March.

The reasons for the different date for air traffic controls are of a technical nature.

At airports in Schengen countries, it is necessary to change the gates for aircraft arriving and departing from Croatia in order to separate passengers and direct them to exits without border controls. The same needs to be done at Croatian airports.

"The date for the lifting of controls at the air borders has to coincide in practice with the dates of IATA summer/winter time schedule, i.e. either the last Sunday of March or the last Sunday of October," the EU said in its Draft Council Decision on the full application of the provisions of the Schengen acquis in Croatia, published on its website.

The Council of the EU sent the draft decision to the European Parliament with a letter to Parliament President Roberta Metsola asking for the Parliament's opinion as soon as possible.

The draft decision also suggests that all restrictions on the use of the Schengen Information System by Croatia shall be lifted from 1 January 2023.

The opinion of the European Parliament is not binding on the Council but constitutes a procedural step that cannot be avoided.

The decision to launch the procedure was adopted today at a meeting of the Committee of Representatives (Coreper), which consists of the ambassadors of the EU member states.

If no unforeseen obstacles emerge, Croatia would thus become a member of the Schengen Area and the euro area, the two closest organisations that form the core of the entire Union, in the tenth year of its membership in the EU.

For more on travel in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Wednesday, 15 June 2022

Croatian Air Traffic Recovers Completely, Zagreb Airport in Lead

June the 15th, 2022 - Croatian air traffic has well and truly recovered from the enormous amount of damage done to it as a result of the global coronavirus pandemic and all of the lockdowns and measures against travel for leisure that were introduced across Europe and the world.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Darko Bicak writes, the fact that there was a complete recovery of Croatian air traffic after the global coronavirus pandemic has been very clearly shown by data from the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS). Their information shows that in April 2022, the total passenger traffic at Croatian airports amounted to 580 thousand people, which is 654 percent more than in April 2021, when the country realised a turnover of a mere 77 thousand passengers.

The largest amount of Croatian air traffic in terms of passengers was realised by Zagreb's Franjo Tudjman International Airport, with 254 thousand passengers (an increase of 375.8 percent when compared to April 2021, which saw the transportation of 53 thousand passengers), followed by Split Airport with 132 thousand passengers and an increase of 842.1 percent when compared to April of last year (14 thousand passengers).

Dubrovnik Airport had 117 thousand passengers, which is an enormous increase compared to only eight thousand passengers in April 2021. Dubrovnik is still primarily an air destination owing the need to cross the border in and back out of neighbouring Bosnia and Herzegovina at Neum when travelling by car. The placing into function of the long awaited Peljesac bridge will likely aid that.

The most significant amount of international Croatian air traffic was realised with German airports, which transported 141 thousand passengers into Croatia, which is an increase of 650.3 percent when compared to the same period back in 2021.

The total number of aircraft landings and take-offs at all Croatian airports during April 2022 was 7,932, an increase of 126.7 percent when compared to April 2021, when the number of landings and take-offs stood at a mere 3,499.

The total cargo traffic at Croatian airports in April 2022 amounted to 728 tonnes, an encouraging increase of 14.5 percent when compared to April last year.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated travel section.

Thursday, 24 March 2022

Zagreb To Be Promoted On CA Flights To 15 Destinations

ZAGREB, 24 March 2022 - The national flag carrier Croatia Airlines (CA) and the Zagreb Tourist Board (TZGZ) will collaborate during the summer flight timetable and promote Zagreb's tourist attractions on 15 international flights, a press conference heard on Thursday.

The summer flight timetable starts on 27 March and lasts until the end of October and CA will be connected with Barcelona, Amsterdam, Athens, Vienna, Brussels, Dublin, Frankfurt, Copenhagen, London, Munich, Paris, Rome, Sarajevo, Skopje and Zurich.

The director of CA's commercial operations, Slaven Žabo, said that the summer timetable was expected to strongly contribute to developing Zagreb as a destination.

TZGZ director Martina Bienenfeld said that CA is the tourist board's strategic partner, which is logical because more than 50% of visitors to Zagreb arrive by plane while 30% come by car and the rest by other transport means.

The president of CA's management board, Jasmin Bajić, too, was pleased with the cooperation with TZGZ. Bajić expressed his gratitude for the cooperation and hope that the pandemic would be over soon.

"We hope the situation in Ukraine will not disrupt our plans. Over the past two pandemic years, CA continued to fly. We didn't stop. In 2021 we generated 70% of the 2019 turnover. This year that could be even higher because on some days during the summer we have up to 100 flights a day. Nevertheless, going back to the turnover of 2019... is not expected before the end of 2023 and before 2024," said Bajić.

He said that CA will fly with 12 planes during the 2022 summer season, the same as last year but two fewer than in 2019. Croatia will be connected with 21 international destinations with about 16,000 flights and just over 1.76 million seats.


Travel and destinations: For more on travel in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Monday, 7 March 2022

Croatia on a Shoestring: 10 Money Saving Tips for Travelers

7 March 2022 - Have rising costs from inflation put a slight dampener on your travel plans to Croatia? Fret not! We look at various ways you can enjoy a trip of a lifetime without breaking the bank featuring 10 money saving tips for travelers.


Enjoy the best of Croatia without financial strain. (Image: Pexels)

1. Let’s start with an obvious one if you can: try to visit Croatia during the shoulder seasons, April - June for Spring and September to November for Fall. Not only do you avoid the shoulder-to-shoulder crowds, if you’re on the coast, but the sea is also still warm enough for a dip and you can still get away with a light jacket in the evenings.


Fall is one of the best times of the year to visit. Image: (Zagreb leaves in Fall/Pexels)

On top of this, accommodation, attractions and activities are significantly cheaper. For instance, entry to Plitvice National Park is almost 50% less during shoulder seasons (300 kuna to 180 kuna). Imagine staying in a beachfront hotel with breakfast for only €55/night in November!

2. Start planning your vacation now! Early bookings ensure that you can lock in not only the best prices but also accommodations in prime locations.


Sign up for newsletters, free memberships to access the best online deals. (Image: Pexels)

Don’t forget to use a Virtual Private Network (VPN) since prices can vary depending on where you are booking from. Using a VPN can make it look like you’re booking from another location, reducing prices further. Worth it to try and get the best online deals.

3. Be willing to mix and match flights If you’re traveling within the EU, rather than booking return tickets on the same airline, try looking for 2 one-way flights instead. I’ve scored a weekend flight for €9 one way from Lyon, France on one airline, and a return for another airline for €19.


Tuesdays are often the cheapest days to fly. (Image: Volotea/Facebook)

If you’re visiting from outside the EU, scoring a cheap flight to Europe and then booking a secondary flight within the continent on a budget carrier is often the best way to go. Some of the airlines that frequently fly to Croatia within the EU include Volotea, Easyjet, Ryanair, TUI, Vueling, Wizzair, Eurowings, and Jet2.

4. When it comes to booking accommodation, see this article for how to get the absolute best deals. Alternatively, to lower costs further, maybe try your hand at camping at one of the many scenic spots around the country.


Enjoy the beautiful outdoors. (Image: Pexels)

5. Instead of renting a car, use private bus transfers or if you’re feeling more adventurous and less pressed for time, trains, to get around the country.


Zagreb's tram system is a fun way to get around. (Image: Pexels)

Companies such as Flixbus and Arriva run frequently over Summer, connecting you to major cities and attractions. Public transport within cities is also highly reliable and most Croatian cities are very walkable.

6. Keep an eye out for City Cards such as Splitcard or Zagreb card. These initiatives are run by most big cities in Croatia and are available for purchase at Tourist Information Centers or at the airport. They offer fantastic deals such as free entry to certain attractions, or huge discounts on tours, activities, shops, and even restaurants! Depending on the validity of your cards (24/48/72 hours), costs range between €10-20, which often includes free use of public transport within the city.


Image: Visitsplit/Facebook

7. Take a ‘free’ walking tour to get a feel of local life and get to know the intricacies of the city. Often these tours are led by highly experienced locals who are able to share the rich history and culture of your chosen city.

As a bonus, they also have a wealth of insider information and will be able to advise you on the best local spots for you to keep exploring on your own. Here’s a tip for summer, always ask them where their favorite ice cream place is!


Walking tours are also a quick way to get your bearings when in a new city. (Image: Pexels)

8. Eat like a local. Although Croatia does not offer “street food” per se, the local markets are a reasonable and equally delicious alternative. In addition to fresh produce, there are often bakeries (pekara) and small food stalls offering cold cuts, cheese, and fixings (e.g. marinated olives, peppers, pickles) to make any gastronomer a delish picnic.


Products at the Green Market of Split. (Image: Visitsplit/Facebook)



Grab fresh pastries and bread at any Pekara and pair it with a beverage for a quick and tasty meal. (Image: Pekara Dubravica/Facebook)

9. If you do head out for a meal, favor lunch over dinner. During lunch, restaurants are likely to offer specials or throw in a free drink or appetizer on occasion.


Try to pair this meal with the local wine (stolno vino), beer (pivo), or spirits (rakija). Not only are they dangerously good, but imported brands are also 15-20% more expensive on average which can add up over time if you’re keeping an eye on your budget. Also, the tap water in Croatia is potable, which may further reduce your food spending.

10. If you don’t already have one, get a multi-currency bank account with an online bank such as Revolut or Wise. This way you’ll save on enormous ATM fees (10% in some cases) as most either offer free or lower fees up to a certain amount withdrawn. Croatia is a cash dominant country with few places, especially when off the main streets, equipped to handle credit card purchases.


Croatia is a cash dominant country. The local currency is currently the kuna but will be adopting the euro in January 2023. (Image: Pexels)

When at a local ATM, always select the option to be billed in the destination’s local currency. This means in Croatia, you’ll be asked, “Would you like to be billed in HRK or in your card’s home currency?”, always choose HRK.

Before I round this off, here’s a bonus tip! Rather than paying enormous roaming costs or going through the hassle of contacting your service provider to ask about special rates, just purchase a local SIM card when you get to Croatia.


Image: Pexels

For 85 hrk (€11), Hrvatski Telekom offers a 1-week unlimited mobile data plan so you don’t have to worry about accessing the internet during your vacation.

I hope you manage to put some of these tips into practice on your next Croatian vacation. For more advice and Croatian insights, check out our travel and lifestyle section.

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