Chinese travellers’ interest in visiting Croatia is expected to increase again as the Asian country has lifted its COVID-19 restrictions, which kept nationals isolated from travelling for almost five years. Now, as China opens up to the world, Croatia also welcomes Chinese travellers, with whom it has good relations.
According to Croatian local news, not only tourism but also economic and trade cooperation between the two countries has been off to a good path. Last year, trade volume between China and Croatia totalled up to €2.2 billion, increasing more than 60 times for 30 years, SchengenVisaInfo.com reports.
“Since I arrived in Croatia a year and a half ago, Croatian friends from all walks of life have been full of praise, stressing that the bridge has helped Croatia achieve its long-awaited desire to connect the north and south of the country, strongly promoted local economic and social development, embodied China’s speed and showed a good image of Chinese companies,” E. Mr Qi Qianjin, the Ambassador of China to Croatia, said.
In November 2019, the number of Chinese nationals reaching the city of Split reached 12,859, who spent a total of 15,972 overnight stays, scoring a 32.4 and 36 per cent increase, respectively. In general, Croatia welcomed 234,118 Chinese arrivals and 345,293 nights was spent in the country throughout 2018.
However, in 2022, the number of Chinese arrivals dropped significantly, as the country was applying a zero-COVID policy and travelling was prohibited. Regardless, Croatia received a total of 15 million tourists between January and September, recording 86.6 million overnight stays.
These numbers represented increases of 40 and 27 per cent, respectively and also reached pre-pandemic numbers of 91 and 96 per cent.
The majority of tourists came from Germany – a total of 19.8 million, while Slovenia and Austria followed with 8.8 million and 6.5 million, respectively. In addition, 5.7 million visitors came from Poland, 5.2 from Czechia and 3.7 million from Italy.
In addition to Croatia, Chinese nationals come to visit other countries in Southeastern Europe, such as Slovenia, which has witnessed the world’s highest increase in Chinese tourists in recent years. In the first half of 2019, 46,032 Chinese nationals visited Slovenia, spending 71,571 overnight stays. These numbers are up by 22.5 per cent and 37.6 per cent, respectively.
The most visited EU country by Chinese nationals is Italy, with 13 million arrivals being recorded in this country in 2019. After Italy, the Chinese usually pick Spain and Belgium as their favourite destinations. Every year. 1.3 per cent of all tourists to Europe are from China.
Source: Schengen Visa Info