Are you travelling to Croatia this summer? Here’s our guide to some things you might like to consider before you go!
Do I need a visa for Croatia?
Citizens of EU countries, the U.S., Canada, Australia and New Zealand DON’T need a visa to visit Croatia. There are also many other countries whose citizens don’t need a visa for Croatia – we won’t list them all here, so please do check against the information on Croatian Ministry of Foreign Affairs website.
It is also possible to visit Croatia using a double- or multiple-entry Schengen visa – which is useful if you’re doing a fair amount of travelling around Europe this summer. Again, please check the information on the above website.
What if I do need a visa?!
If you need a visa for Croatia, please contact the Croatian Embassy in the country you’re based in – or the Embassy as advised in this list: Diplomatic Missions and Consular Offices of Croatia.
If you want to obtain a Schengen visa, you would obviously have to do this at the Embassy of a Schengen area country. Normally this would be the country in which you are spending the majority of your time when on your holiday.
What about money – what’s the currency in Croatia?
The currency is the Kuna. Plural in Croatian is Kune, but it’s fine to says Kunas. On signs, the currency is abbreviated to Kn; in foreign exchange places (outside of Croatia) it will be listed as HRK.
The currency in Croatia is not the Euro. Euros are not accepted. Croatia will not be joining the Euro anytime soon.
(Slight disclaimer: Some private accommodation places might accept payment in Euros…but really, work on the basis of the currency being the Kuna!)
See more on our Money in Croatia section.
Should I obtain Kunas before I go?
We know that travellers have many preferences when it comes to foreign currency. Our preference is to travel with debit (cash) cards and withdraw money from ATMs/cash machines as we travel. These are readily available in Croatia (even at airports) and exchange rates are normally very good. Of course, your home bank will charge fees – but these can often be quite low. (Check before you travel!)
Otherwise, there are many places to exchange money – bureau de change and banks – practically everywhere. Simply take along your home currency (Pounds, Euros, Dollars) to Croatia if you’re planning on changing money in the country. Avoid changing money in hotels as exchange rates are normally pretty bad.
You can also obtain Kunas before you go to Croatia if you like – for example, in the UK many high street banks, Travelex.co.uk, the Post Office and M&S Money all sell Kunas these days. However, the exchange rate that you get will be a bit better in Croatia than in your home country.
How much money should I take to Croatia?
For those that do prefer taking cash on holiday, this is the $64,000 question! (Although, please don’t actually take $64,000 along with you.) It’s difficult to answer because – what are your typical spending habits? Do you like to splurge for every meal and on drinks? Or will you mainly be having low-key meals? Will you be signing up for daily organised excursions? Or relying on local buses and ferries to get you to other places?
Below is an idea of some prices in Croatia during peak season. Do note that some locations (e.g. Dubrovnik and Hvar) can be pretty pricey during summer! These are all approximate prices, only to be used as a guide – please do note
- Relatively simple meal for two (pizza/pasta) with a drink each (beer/soft drink): 150 Kunas
- Push-the-boat meal for two with a nice bottle of wine: 500 Kunas (or more!)
- Local beer: 15-20 Kunas
- Glass of wine: 15-20 Kunas
- Soft drink: 15 Kunas
- Bottle of water (at a restaurant/cafe): 10-12 Kunas
- Coffee: 10-15 Kunas
- Ice cream: 9/10 Kunas
- Buses journey – Split to Dubrovnik: 125 Kunas (Obviously, bus prices vary depending on the journey! See Bus Ticket Prices in Croatia)
- Catamarans – Split to Hvar: 55-70 Kunas (As above!)
- National park entrance fees e.g. Krka National Park: 110 Kunas (summer price)
- Excursion e.g. Split to Plitvice Lakes: 500 – 600 Kunas
You can save money by buying your own food/snacks at markets and supermarkets – which are pretty cheap – ideal for a picnic-style lunch; drugstores/pharmacies usually stock a small range of snacks as well.
What cards are accepted in Croatia?
Visa and Mastercard are readily accepted in Croatia. However, you may find that some places – such as smaller, family-run restaurants – don’t accept cards at all, so do always have some cash to hand!
What electrical travel adapters do I need?
Croatia uses the standard European 2-pin electric plug. It’s best to bring one (or a few!) along with you – don’t rely on buying them in Croatia! (Technically, they’re available, but you don’t want to spend all day hunting around for one.) Or, better still, take one and a 4-way plug adapter – so you can charge a few things at once!
As with travelling anywhere, you really should arrange travel insurance before your visit to Croatia. Shop around for the best deal.
As Croatia is now in the EU, the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) is recommended for EU citizens as this will help you get state medical healthcare for free/reduced rates. An EHIC card is free – apply for one (or renew one) online.
If you’re travelling from the EU, many mobile phone providers now offer rather cheap data and phone plans if you plan on using your phone abroad. For example, UK-operator o2 let you use your phone in other EU countries for £1.99 a day which includes unlimited data (upper restrictions apply); you can making/receive calls for 50p then no more for the first hour, and send texts for just 5p. Contact your own network to find out how much it’ll cost you to use your phone – it may be cheaper than you think. (But it’s always best to double-check!)
Wifi is readily available in Croatia these days – almost all accommodation places offer it (normally for free), as do many cafes/restaurants. You may also find free hotspots in some towns and cities.
Guidebooks on Croatia
Why do you need a guidebook when you have Visit Croatia?!
We’re just kidding, of course, for we also love travelling abroad with a trusty travel guide! (Although Visit Croatia is now fully mobile-optimised!)
Check out our Books on Croatia section to see what’s available.
Accommodation in Croatia
We’ll assume many of you have already sorted out your accommodation for Croatia. If not, head to our Accommodation section!
If you’re planning on leaving until you get to Croatia – wanting to go the ‘private accommodation’ route – that’s fine too. However, because summer is peak season, availability is low – though you should still be able to find a bed for the night somewhere. If you’re not that bothered about accommodation amenities or how basic a place is (although everywhere should be clean and safe – don’t worry about that kind of thing), that’s fine. If you have specific requirements/wants, or wouldn’t be best pleased to stay somewhere basic and with a 80s-style bathroom, then think about booking ahead!
If you ever get stuck looking for accommodation, head to the local tourist office. They should be able to help you find somewhere.
Should I learn some Croatian before I go?
Pretty much everyone that works in the tourist industry – hotel staff, waiters, tourist office works – speaks English, with the younger generation speaking it excellently. (Older waiters, for example, probably speak better German, but they’ll still understand you!)
It wouldn’t hurt to learn a few basic phrases – see our Croatian for Travellers guide and below – but don’t worry too much about learning Croatian!
Basic phrases in Croatian
- Good morning – Dobro jutro (doh-broh you-trow)
- Good day – Dobar dan (doh-bar dan)
- Good evening – Dobra vecer (doh-bra veh-cher)
- Hi! – Bok! (bok!) Note: quite informal – use one of the above, normally!
- Goodbye – Dovidenja (doh-vee-jen-ya)
- Yes – Da
- No – Ne
- Thanks – Hvala (Hva-lah)
- Please – Molim (Mo-leem)