Croatia Joins EU, What Cruisers Should Know

3097_10151022266755513_1154451798_n By Sarah Phillips

Croatia joins the EU, the headline wasn’t big but we are focusing on it because cruise ships head there. As of July 1st, Croatia is the 28th member of the European Union. You might be asking – what does this have to do with cruising and how does this affect me? If you’ve got a cruise planned that’s stopping by beautiful Dubrovnik or another Croatian port, here are a few things you’ll want to know:

European Union Value Added Tax. The EU VAT now applies in Croatia and it also applies to select on –board purchases if you don’t visit a non-EU country on your sailing. Basically if your stops are all to countries in the EU (Italy, Spain, France, etc.), select on-board purchases are now subject to the VAT. Check with your specific cruise lines for more details, but this is an EU charge that has nothing to do with the cruise lines.

Money. For now, Croatia is still using the Kuna. It’ll still be a few years before they fully adopt the Euro. But don’t worry, a lot of vendors do take Euros. But this is one of the few countries left in Europe where another currency besides the Euro is accepted. Take advantage of it and get some Kuna while you’re there!

Passport. If you’re going to visit Croatia direct from the US, you’ll obviously need your passport. When you visit on a cruise ship, you’ll need a photo ID at a minimum.  Check with your specific cruise line for what you’ll need when you disembark in Croatia. Part of the cool thing about the EU is not having to show your passport in every country – only when you enter and exit the European Union. This should now apply to Croatia too.

Croatia is one of my very favorite places in the world. So, don’t let any of this change much about your trip to Croatia. It’s truly the gem of the Adriatic and a top stop for most cruisers in the Mediterranean. If you’re sailing there soon – or you’ve already been there, let us know what you think!

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