State Department: Croatia - Consular Information Sheet, January 26, 1996
Croatia - Consular Information Sheet
Country Description: Croatia is an independent nation, formerly a
constituent republic of Yugoslavia. Facilities for tourism are
fully developed although not always accessible in the unstable areas
of the country.
January 26, 1996
Entry Requirements: A passport and visa are required. While the
visa can usually be issued at the port of entry, obtaining it in
advance from a Croatian Embassy or consulate may prevent
complications at the border. Croatian authorities require
foreigners to register with local police when they first arrive in a
new area of the country. This is usually handled in routine fashion
during hotel registration. However, failure to register is a
misdemeanor offense, and some Americans have been subjected to
arrest, short-term imprisonment, and fines. Additional information
on entry requirements may be obtained from the Embassy of Croatia at
2343 Massachusetts Ave., N.W., Washington, D.C. 20008, telephone:
(202) 588-5899 or the Croatian Consulate General in New York City.
Areas of Instability: In 1995, Croatian government forces
recaptured territory formerly controlled by rebel Serb forces. This
area includes western Slavonia and the Krajina region. While travel
there is possible, considerable risk of bodily harm caused by mines
and unexploded ordnance continues to exist.
The Dayton peace accords have reduced fighting and tension in the
region. The remaining rebel-Serb-held area of eastern Slavonia is
to be placed under U.N. supervision for a period of gradual
reintegration into Croatian government control -- a process
beginning in January 1996. Travelers who cross Serb lines before
U.N. supervision is fully established may run the risk of
harassment or arbitrary detention.
Medical Facilities: Health facilities in Croatia, although
generally of Western caliber, are under severe strain. Some
medicines are in short supply. Doctors and hospitals may expect
immediate cash payment for health services. U.S. medical coverage
is not always valid outside the United States. Travelers have found
that supplemental medical insurance with specific overseas coverage,
including provision for medical evacuation, has proven to be useful.
Further information on health matters can be obtained from the
Centers for Disease Control's international travelers hotline at
Crime Information: Croatia has a relatively low crime rate, and
violent crime is rare. Foreigners do not appear to be singled out;
however, as in many cities, displays of wealth increase chances of
becoming the victim of a pickpocket or mugger. Such crimes are more
likely to occur in bus or railroad stations.
The loss or theft abroad of a U.S. passport should be reported
immediately to the local police and the nearest U.S. embassy or
consulate. Useful information on safeguarding valuables and
protecting personal security while traveling abroad is provided in
the Department of State's pamphlet "A Safe Trip Abroad", It is
available from the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government
Printing Office, Washington, D.C. 20402.
Currency Information: Credit cards and traveler's checks are more
widely used than previously but still not accepted everywhere.
Terrorist Activities: A car bomb exploded in the coastal city of
Rijeka in late 1995, killing the car's driver and injuring
bystanders. News reports attribute the bombing to a militant
Islamic organization. While many legitimate Islamic relief
organizations work in Croatia and Bosnia, it is generally known that
militant Islamic fighters have operated in Bosnia in considerable
numbers and that some of their support organizations are in Croatia
and may be involved in terrorist activities.
Drug Penalties: U.S. citizens are subject to the laws of the
country in which they are traveling. Penalties for possession, use,
or trafficking in illegal drugs are strict, and convicted offenders
can expect jail sentences and fines.
Registration and Embassy Location: U.S. citizens may register at
the U.S. Embassy and receive updated information on travel and
security within Croatia. The U.S. Embassy in Zagreb is located at
Andrije Hebranga 2, tel. (385) (1) 456-5500
This replaces the Consular Information Sheet dated August 23, 1995
to delete the travel warning and update areas of instability and