Just in time for the start of the peak travel season, one might think, Slovenia is back with the announcement that due to the sharp increase in new infections of COVID-19 caused by SARS-CoV-2 in Croatia, the neighbouring country Croatia will be moved from the green to the yellow list. However, before Germans and Austrians who are currently in Croatia or have planned a holiday in Croatia panic, we would like to inform you about the background. New is: All those who come from Croatia have to leave Slovenia within 12 hours or go into quarantine
Croatia: COVID new infections only in clusters
It is probably common knowledge that Slovenians are not particularly pleased about the masses of holidaymakers who clog the roads in transit to Croatia during the summer months. Especially for travellers to Istria, they are paid a princely price for this in the form of an immensely high road toll. As a souvenir, there are then one or two sticker (!) for seven days in Croatia, which can only be removed from the windscreen with extreme difficulty.
Although the total number of new infections can be statistically justified for the upgrading of Croatia, it does not do justice to the matter on closer inspection. So far, new infections with COVID-19 in Croatia have only occurred in special clusters that have almost no epidemiological relevance for tourism.
Please take a closer look
Such clusters have also formed in Germany and Austria despite low infection rates. One only has to think of the outbreak in the German district of Rheda-Wiedenbrück, where more than 1,500 people were infected with corona in a very small area (a small town). Holidaymakers from the district of Gütersloh, to which Rheda-Wiedenbrück belongs, were turned away in rows along the German North and Baltic Sea coasts. Instead, however, a rebooking to one of the hotels on the Slovenian Adriatic Sea would have been possible without any problems. So much for the sense and nonsense of such blanket regulations.
Problem-free transit, but leaving Slovenia after 12 hours
But what does the downgrading of Croatia really mean now? Austrians and Germans currently in Croatia or planning to travel the country can use the Slovenian roads in transit without any problems, but should have left the country within 12 hours of crossing the border. Rest stops and petrol stations may of course be visited, but you are not allowed to stay overnight in Slovenia.
Slovenia intensifies border controls
Nevertheless, it would be advisable to prepare for increased controls at Slovenian border crossings, which experience has shown to lead to increased congestion, especially during the holiday season. Slovenian controls are not so much aimed at German or Austrian tourists, but rather at visitors from abroad, especially from Hungary, Serbia or Bosnia, who want to enter Slovenia via Croatia or Austria.
Nothing will change for Slovenians coming from Croatia either, they will not have to go into domestic quarantine. Only for other nationals who, for example, want to enter Slovenia from Croatia and stay there for more than 12 hours can quarantine be ordered.
No effects for holidaymakers in Croatia
In short, the downgrading of Croatia’s status will not have any concrete effect on holidaymakers visiting Croatia for the time being, except for the fact that waiting times at border crossings are likely to increase sharply. In concrete terms, this means that more time should be planned for the journey to Croatia or the return journey.
Federal Ministry for European and International Affairs: Travel Information Slovenia
Federal Ministry for European and International Affairs: Travel warnings
Foreign Trade Austria: COVID-19 BULLETIN ǀ SLOVENIA (current situations and restrictions)
HKR: border crossings
HKR: Traffic Forecast