Border checks

What border checks are performed on persons?

Border checks entail measures and procedures conducted by the border police that are laid out in the Border Control Act and other regulations. They are exclusively performed prior to intended border crossings or immediately after a border is crossed. The police perform border checks when a border is crossed (entering and leaving the country). This entails checks performed on persons, on items in the possession of persons crossing the border, and on vehicles.

Border checks after joining the EU

After Croatia joined the EU, border checks with Member States (Slovenia and Hungary) were not abolished.
After the Schengen Borders Code came into force on 7 April 2017, the procedure for conducting border checks changed.
Border checks now include systematic verifications of all persons crossing the border of the Republic of Croatia. This applies when they are entering and leaving via the internal border (land border with Slovenia and Hungary) and the external border (land border with Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Montenegro, as well as by airports and harbours).
Persons who have been granted freedom of movement in accordance with Union law have their identity and citizenship checked when entering and leaving the country. The authenticity and validity of the travel documents that they use to cross the border is also checked. This shall include, inter alia, checking the document in relevant databases, especially the following:
  • the Schengen Information System (after Croatia joins this system);
  • Interpol’s Stolen and Lost Travel Documents database (SLTD);
  • national databases containing information on stolen, lost and revoked travel documents.
Third-country nationals are subject to thorough checks when entering and leaving the country. Alongside the aforementioned systematic verifications, these checks also include the following:
  • checking whether they possess a valid travel document, issued in the last 10 years, that shall remain valid for at least three months after the planned date of departure from the territory of Member States;
  • checking whether they possess a valid visa, if they require one;
  • checking whether the purpose and conditions of their planned stay are justified and whether they have enough funds to support themselves, both for the duration of their intended stay and for the return to their home country or transit to a third country which they are certain will accept them;
  • checking whether the entry and exit stamps were affixed in the travel document;
  • checking the place of departure and the destination;
  • checking that the person, their vehicle and the items they are transporting do not present a danger to public policy, internal security, public health or the international relations of any Member State;
  • upon exiting the country, checking whether the person exceeded the maximum allowed duration of stay in the territory of the Member States.

What is the external border?

The external border is (since the application of the Schengen Implementation Agreement in the Republic of Croatia) the border of the Republic of Croatia that it shares with a country that is not a signatory of the Schengen Implementation Agreement, as well as the border crossings in airports and in harbours in internal waters through which international traffic crosses.

Other countries

Citizens of other countries may enter the Republic of Croatia pursuant to the conditions laid out in the visa system of the Republic of Croatia.
Before going on a trip abroad, we advise travellers to check out the MANNER OF RECORDING THE CROSSING OF THE BORDER OF ANOTHER COUNTRY section of the website of the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs in order to check the current conditions for entering a specific country.