As we’re sure you’ve heard, yesterday Croatia was taken off the UK’s travel corridor’s list. (Others may refer to it as Croatia being taken off the ‘green list’ or being placed on the ‘red list’). This means that anyone that returns to Croatia after 4am on Saturday 22nd August will need to quarantine for 14 days.
Why has this happened? Unfortunately, there has been a sharp increase in the numbers of new coronavirus cases in Croatia over the last week or so. After the initial wave in March/April, cases tumbled to hardly anything – sometimes 1 or 2 per day, sometimes even zero. From the end of June onwards, cases starting increasing again (as with many other European countries) although they generally stayed around the 50-100 per day mark. Then, suddenly, from 13th August and over the last week, there are been upwards of 150-200 cases per day. Yesterday, 20th August, saw a new record of 255 new cases announced.
As ever, you can see daily updates on coronavirus case numbers in Croatia on the Koronavirus.hr website (in English). This will also show you where in the country (by county) the active cases currently are.
We talk about case numbers because it is this that the UK government track when taking countries off their travel corridors list. Or rather, the 14-day cumulative number of cases per 100,000. It is thought that any country with a figure of over 20 for this cumulative number gets taken off the list. As of yesterday, Croatia had a figure of 41.7. And so, Croatia was taken off the UK’s travel corridor’s list.
By comparison, yesterday France was on 46.3, the Netherlands was on 46.8 and Spain on 138.7. (These three countries have all recently been taken off the travel corridors list too.) The UK is on 20.9. You can see these figures on the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) website.
Can I still travel to Croatia?
Yes, of course you can. The main issue is that after Saturday, you will need to quarantine for 14 days when you return back home to the UK. For some of you – who are perhaps working from home anyway – this may not be much of an imposition.
Do check how the UK’s announcement affects your travel insurance, however, should you need to use it. But do also remember that until the end of 2020, UK citizens can still use their EHIC cards for emergency treatment in Croatia (a EU country). See more on this on our Safety and Healthcare in Croatia page.
Help! How do I get home from Croatia now?!
If you’re in Croatia at the moment and need to get home…pronto…you do have a few options although unfortunately all are likely to be expensive, and many will already have been booked up.
Nevertheless, the following airlines all have scheduled direct flights from Croatia to the UK on Fridays:
- British Airways – flights from Zagreb, Pula and Dubrovnik to London Heathrow; Split to London City
- Croatia Airlines – flights from Zagreb to London Heathrow and Split to London Gatwick
- Easyjet – flights from Split to London Gatwick and London Luton; Dubrovnik to London Stansted, Bristol
- Ryanair – fights from Rijeka to London Stansted
- Wizzair – flights from Split to London Luton
- Aer Lingus – Split to Dublin
You may also find some of these airlines are able to offer you flights back to the UK via a stopover. It is also worth looking on a website such as Skyscanner for other connections you may not be aware of!
If you are in Istria, you may consider travelling by bus over to Trieste or Venice and then getting a flight from these cities back to the UK. Those in Zagreb/the north of the country could travel by train or bus to Slovenia or Austria to fly home from there.
If you are in Croatia and wish to return today, we do wish you luck in getting home.
Will Croatia be put back on the travel corridors list at some point?
Well, at the same as Croatia being taken off the list yesterday, Portugal was placed on it. So this does show that countries can be put on the list if their situation improves. We hope this to be the case with Croatia, but whether this will happen in time for the rest of this season (which includes September and October)…it’s difficult to say.
Certainly, case numbers will have to reduce considerably and for a sustained period for this to happen, and we’re not sure there’s enough time for this to happen. We do of course for it to happen.