Wednesday, 14 April 2021

Will Traveling During the Coronavirus Pandemic to Croatia be Problematic? Plan B in Place

April 14, 2021 - With the season approaching, the question on everyone's mind is will traveling during the coronavirus pandemic to Croatia bring problems for tourism in the country?' A light at the end of the tunnel still might be possible.

While many high-reputation magazines regularly praise Croatia as a top destination, this summer, the season will be only as strong as the health situation regarding coronavirus – both in Croatia and abroad, from where the country welcomes as many tourists as possible. Sadly, as Croatian National Radiotelevision (HRT) reports, due to the bad pandemic situation, many European countries, including Croatia, are canceling the travel season.

While, as we reported on TCN, many flights are returning and coming to Croatia, the measures are possibly demotivating travelers.

HRT says Croatia is declared as a highly-risked country in Germany, and returning citizens need to show a negative test that is no older than 48 hours which is a change to previous arrangments when Germans could test after returning home.

„The English planned to allow traveling from May 17 but tour operators and others don't have a big number of reservations to make it profitable so everything is postponed until June 24“, said hotelier  Domagoj Tomasović to HRT. 

British tourists were indeed expected mid-May, but as Darija Reić, director of the Croatian Tourist Board in London, said on the "Good Morning Croatia show" on HRT, there are still fines for non-essential travel.

„Travelling outside of UK is still illegal if you don't travel for essential reasons which include traveling for business, education or medicinal purposes. Otherwise, it's possible to be fined 5000 pounds“, explained Reić, as noted by Turizmoteka.

Tonči Glavina, state secretary for Tourism ministry, said for HRT that the UK is not alone in sending a message to its citizens to not travel anywhere and went on to say that may not be bad for Croatia.



While the UK stands better in the percentage of vaccinated people than Croatia, Croatians are focusing on reaching the green zone by the end of May. Seventy thousand vaccinated workers in the tourist sector are the goal for the country.

„If that doesn't happen until the start of the season, then we need tests and it would be good if tourist board make testing zones and if we co-finance the expenses of testing to our guests“, concluded Tomasović.

The Ministry of Tourism already secured 20 million kuna to co-finance testing for tourists if Croatia doesn't reach the green zone.

PCR tests currently cost 500 kuna; quick antigen test is 150 kuna, and the translations of the results to English is 125 kuna. Twenty tourists were already tested in Zagreb on Tuesday. 

Learn more about coronavirus: news and travel in Croatia on our TC page.

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

Wednesday, 14 April 2021

Croatia Registers 3,099 New Coronavirus Infections, 41 Deaths

ZAGREB, 14 April, 2021 - In the past 24 hours Croatia has registered 3,099 new coronavirus cases while 41 people have died as a consequence, the national COVID response team reported on Wednesday.

That is a significantly higher number of infections and deaths compared to Tuesday when 1,936 new cases and 25 deaths were registered.

There are 13,880 active cases in the country, including 1,955 hospitalised patients, of whom 185 are on ventilators. There are currently 27,528 people in self-isolation.

Since 25 February 2020, when the first case of coronavirus was detected in Croatia, there have been a total of 297,973 people infected with the virus and 6,399 people have died as a consequence. A total of 277,694 have recovered from the disease, including 1,274 in the past 24 hours.

To date a total of 1,663,542 have been tested for the virus, including 11,017 in the past 24 hours.

As of 13 April a total of 605,423 doses of vaccines have been administered, inoculating 491,601 people. Of that number, 375,993 people have received the first dose and 113,822 have received both doses. For 1,786 people there was no data on which dose they received.

For more about COVID-19 in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.


Tuesday, 13 April 2021

Johnson & Johnson Arrives in Croatia Wednesday, New Vaccination Plan in Works

April 13, 2021 - Johnson & Johnson arrives in Croatia tomorrow, and within a few days, an Action Plan will follow, which will define the order and manner of priority vaccination.

Slobodna Dalmacija reports that another coronavirus vaccine will arrive in Croatia on Wednesday. The Johnson & Johnson vaccine is expected in Zagreb and will be distributed throughout Croatia by public health education institutes (NZJZ).

This vaccine is similar to that of AstraZeneca, i.e., it is a standard vaccine that is not made based on mRNA technology, such as PfizerBiontech or Moderna. However, its advantage, compared to all previous vaccines, is that a person who is vaccinated with this vaccine should be vaccinated only once, meaning you don't need to go to the doctor twice to get two doses of the vaccine.

With Johnson & Johnson's arrival, which gives the vaccinated person around 70 percent protection, Croatia will have four vaccines in use for now. The next, fifth vaccine, which is eagerly awaited and could soon receive EMA approval in May this year, is the German vaccine Curevac, which is made on mRNA technology, like Pfizer and Moderna.

According to the announcements, a total of 747 thousand doses of various vaccines should arrive in Croatia by the end of June, with the help of which we would be ready for the tourist season.

The fact that an inter-ministerial meeting was held to discuss the continuation of vaccination of priority groups also speaks in the direction of vaccinating the working-age population as much as possible.

As soon as all elderly and chronically ill people are vaccinated, vaccination of other priority groups is planned. An interdepartmental meeting was held on this topic, where members of various departments proposed groups from their jurisdiction. Thus, the mentioned tourism workers, educators, sailors, professional drivers in road and air transport, police officers, soldiers, craftspeople, shop workers, and other professions are important to be vaccinated at this stage, wrote Vili Beroš, Croatian Minister of Health, in his message. 

An Action Plan will be drafted within a few days, which will define the order and manner of priority vaccination.

"I especially want to point out that we will be among the first in the major markets that will vaccinate their tourism workers, which is a clear message of the safety of our destination to tourists who intend to come to Croatia. It is important to note that citizens over the age of 65 and the chronically ill, who cannot or do not want to be vaccinated at the moment, will be able to be vaccinated whenever they decide to do so," Minister Beroš pointed out.

Given that the tourist season is around the corner, it would certainly be necessary to vaccinate those who work in the tourism sector, or all those who in any way come into contact with tourists as soon as possible. Therefore, before our tourist competitors, Croatia should start vaccinating tourist workers and give guarantees to foreign tour operators that foreign guests are coming to a safe destination.

Maja Bašić, a spokeswoman for HALMED, spoke about the latest with the Russian Sputnik V vaccine and whether we can expect it as the sixth vaccine in Croatia.

"HALMED is checking the documentation of the Sputnik V vaccine so that everything would be ready to launch intervention imports. At the same time, the EMA is conducting a process of evaluating the documentation for granting marketing authorization for this vaccine," said Bašić.

Finally, it is important to note that if the EMA does not approve the Sputnik V vaccine, Croatia will not be able to introduce it "on its own."

For more on coronavirus in Croatia, including travel, border and quarantine rules, as well as the locations of testing centers across the country, make sure to bookmark our dedicated section.

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