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Croatian Airports Have Abolished Internal Border Checks Today

Starting from today, March 26, 2023, travellers taking a flight from Croatia to other Schengen Area Member States, or vice versa, will no longer have to go through air border controls, as the Croatian airports have joined the borderless Schengen Zone.

This means that airports in Croatia will now treat travellers from and to other Schengen countries, the same as the country’s domestic travellers, flying from one Croatian airport to another, reports.

While Croatia’s internal land and sea borders were abolished on January 1, 2023, when the country officially joined the Schengen Zone, air borders were set to remain in place until March 26, in order to align the date of their elimination with the summer/winter time schedule of the International Air Transport Association (IATA).

The removal of the air border checks has been reconfirmed by the country’s Prime Minister Andrej Plenković last Wednesday, March 22.

As of this Sunday, Croatia completes its membership in the Schengen area,” the PM said.

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 become domestic flights, without any document control,” he pointed out following a government meeting.

The changes in passenger controls will take place at seven airports in Croatia, which have international airport status, which are the ones in Zagreb, Split, Dubrovnik, Rijeka, Pula, Zadar, and Osijek.

The airport in Zagreb, which is the largest in the country, and expects to mark a share of 70 per cent of Schengen passengers, has started the adaptation work as early as last December.

We do not expect any problems with the application of that regime, but a faster and easier passage of passengers in departures and arrivals,” a Zagreb Airport spokesperson had claimed back in January.

Amongst the changes that this airport has taken in order to adjust to the Schengen accession, is replacing signs at the passenger terminals, like exit numbers for previously international terminals, that are now considered domestic.

At the same time, a glass corridor has been built from bridge number five, which will lead passengers to the ground floor, where now are placed baggage claim lanes and the exit from the terminal.

The new changes mean that, after travellers make their check-in or online check-in and hand over their luggage, they will go through a security check and then immediately go to the terminal for their flight.

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