Croatian Minister of Tourism, Gari Cappelli, said on Thursday that currently, 246,000 tourists were vacationing in Croatia.
“Their number is rising by 20,000 to 30,000 on a daily basis,” Cappelli said at a government session, adding that this was a sign that Croatia “is a safe and recognisable tourist destination.”
When asked by journalists whether there were cancellations of accommodation in Croatia due to the coronavirus outbreak at the Adria Tour in Zadar, he answered that there were no cancellations, but that there was a little more pressure on questions asked by the media from nearby countries such as Slovenia and Austria.
“The fact is that there is a delay in order to see in a day or two whether something special will change. Σo far, there are no major connotations and I think that the new climate that has been created could be stopped in a few days.
We have to be ready for such events, either here or on the islands, these situations will be and from the first day, I say that we just have to be well prepared and have quality protocols to know who is doing what at what time. This goes for hotels, camps; everyone has their rules of conduct and what to do in case of infection to make tourists feel safe as if they were in their own country.
For these 10 EU member states, a health care system has been developed for who pays whom,” Cappelli said.
Austria and Slovenia have threatened to introduce self-isolation for their citizens when they return from Croatia, journalists reminded him.
“No, today I spoke to my colleagues from Great Britain where we will define the entry of British tourists into the Croatian market so if they still insist on entering, there is no reason not to trust our first neighbours with whom we have very good relations.
A Slovenian government spokesman said Slovenian citizens would not have any restrictions when they returned from Croatia. I visited a hotel in Opatija this morning, it is practically full, there are no free rooms and 99 per cent of foreign tourists are in it.
From what I heard in conversations with people from agencies and tour operators, there are no cancellations of arrivals, only now everything is a bit slow. Not that tourists do not want to come, but they want more information and they want to wait a day or two to see if the epidemiological situation in Croatia may worsen,” Cappelli said, adding that there are still no cancelled flights.
He added that as many as 66 foreign flights will be launched in a few days and 11 Croatia Airlines flights; with Frankfurt alone, Croatia will have 32 lines a week and in this way, it can connect with the whole world via Frankfurt.
“Today, Great Britain is still being specified, so the British should start arriving soon. Jet2.com insists on that and has quite good bookings, especially for Split and Dubrovnik, and I believe that we will achieve good results there,” said the Minister, and when asked by journalists how risky it is, considering that Great Britain currently has the most severe epidemiological corona situation in Europe with 2,000 to 2,300 patients a day, the minister said the control rules would apply as everywhere else.
“If our competition opens for Britain – Spain, Italy, Portugal and France, I think it would not be a good message to be the only one to close the door to them because the British market is very important to Croatia, but with additional quality epidemiological measures that will certainly be in airports.
After we agree with the British Ministries of Tourism and Foreign Affairs and get the green light to fly to Croatia, then we will further analyze the epidemiological situation. I call on all of us in Croatia to act a little more responsibly, we relaxed, and the recommendations are still valid,” said Minister Cappelli.
He pointed out that airlines are crucial for Croatian tourism because Split-Dalmatia County and Dubrovnik are practically dependent on airlines./ibna