Croatia tourism revenue surpasses pre-Covid figures

 Wednesday, July 19, 2023

According to the Croatian Ministry of Tourism, more than 9 million tourists visited Croatia this year. This amount represents a 12% increase over 2022.

It indicates that tourism revenues are higher than they were in 2019, when travelers almost vanished owing to COVID.

The explanation, according to the Zagreb government, is simple: Croatia entered the eurozone and the Schengen zone at the beginning of this year.

“The eurozone made everything easier for tourists. They don’t have to look for exchange offices, don’t need to check the rates,” says Antonio Miskovic who works at one of the biggest yacht clubs in the Adriatic.

But it’s not such good news for locals, though.

“I think for people who live here, it was a big change. They’re still trying to adapt to the new prices.”

Many sellers in Trogir, a popular tourist destination, said they don’t accept the ministry’s estimates. They claim that there are at least 20% to 30% fewer tourists than previous year.

Inflation is causing problems for many Croats. It peaked at 13.5% in November of last year, and while it has progressively declined, there was a rise in January when Croatia moved to the euro. It has now stabilized at 7.6 percent.

With tourism contributing for 20% of Croatia’s GDP, the country’s success is critical.

For the time being, though, there appears to be a significant gap between what residents believe and what the numbers reveal.

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