Croatia abolished border control at land and sea borders on January 1, and starting Sunday, border control for passengers traveling within the Schengen area will also be abolished at Croatian airports.
“From this Sunday, Croatia completes its membership in the Schengen area,” the Croatian Prime Minister emphasized at the government meeting on Wednesday Andrej Plenković. “Also, the regime of entry into Croatia at airports will now be the same as it has been in force since January 1 on roads, railway crossings, and seaports. Practically all flights to Croatia from Schengen countries and vice versa will become domestic flights, without any document control,” he explained. He estimated that this will also be an added value for this year’s tourist season.
The difference in the dates of entry into force of the Schengen regime at land or sea borders and airports is the result of the fact that the winter and summer flight timetables are established at the international level, the Croatian Minister of the Interior explained already in December Davor Božinović.
When the Schengen regime at the airports comes into force on Sunday, the same procedure will apply to flights from Croatia to countries of the Schengen area and vice versa, as has previously applied to all internal flights. This means that there will be no difference for the passenger if, for example, he flies from Zagreb to Dubrovnik or Amsterdam.
Seven airports in Croatia have international airport status, in Zagreb, Split, Dubrovnik, Rijeka, Pula, Zadar and Osijek. They all expect an increase in the share of Schengen passengers and a smaller share of passengers from elsewhere, and thus less crowding.
A new corridor at the Zagreb airport
At the largest Croatian airport, the Franjo Tuđman Airport in Zagreb, it was estimated that after the entry into force of the Schengen regime, they will have around 70 percent of Schengen passengers. They explained that they started the adaptation work in December and will finish it by Sunday. So far, part of the signs at the passenger terminal have been replaced, and the rest will be replaced on the last evening or on Sunday night, for example the exit numbers that were previously international, but from Sunday they will become domestic.
For domestic and Schengen flights, a glass corridor was also built from bridge number 5, which will lead passengers to the ground floor, where there are baggage claim lanes and exits from the terminal. At the airport, the number of passport control booths will be reduced at the departure of international flights.
The flow of all passengers to the security control will remain the same, where they will then divide to the left for international traffic and to the right for domestic or Schengen traffic. After the security check, international passengers will go to the passport control at the new location. The flow of passengers in the transfer will remain the same as before.