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Croatia Visitor Visa for Americans Traveling by bus?


Is the croatia 90 day visitor visa automatic for americans entering croatia by bus? Do you think the bus will be boarded by people who stamp your passport etc?

I am currently in Poland and approaching my 90th day in the EU (the max for the schengen american visitor visa is 90 days), so i will be arriving on the 90th day in croatia. Wanted to make sure i can enter because europe might penalize me if i am turned back and go past that 90 day mark


Posted by Andrew H.
Portland, Oregon
3219 posts

Croatia is in the EU too but not yet Schengen. I'm not sure what that means for you or what the rules are. But, your passport will be stamped when you enter Croatia as I recall; it will certainly be inspected, whether you enter by bus, train, car, or boat.

Posted by Chris F
Basel, Switzerland
6553 posts

As a US passport holder your passport should be stamped TWICE. Once for exiting the Schengen by the Slovenians (or are you coming from Hungary), and again by the Croats for entering Croatia. Make sure you get that exit stamp so when you want to come back you are "clean".
I don't know if you will have to get off the bus or not, possibly.

I trust you know it is 90 days in any 180, so once your 90 days is used up you cannot go back into the Schengen Area until 180 days after your first arrival. You will need to factor that into your plans for going back to the USA.

EU citizens have no time limit for travelling to other EU countries, hence do not have their passports stamped and can travel with an ID card only. Most of your fellow passengers just have to wave their ID or passport, you however need the full treatment.

Posted by Emily
Vienna, Austria
2966 posts

Why would it matter what mode of transport you use?

It has been my experience lately that the Slovenes don't stamp your passport when departing or arriving Croatia. They note the info inthe computer.

Posted by acraven
Washington DC
10369 posts

In 2015 I spent 89 or 90 days in the Schengen zone before taking the bus from Ljubljana to Rovinj in Croatia. I had no trouble at all entering Croatia, though I think everyone had to get off the bus and walk through the immigration office. I don't remember whether Slovenia gave me an exit stamp, but I certainly received an entry stamp from Croatia.

If you're pushing it to the 90-day limit, check and double-check your bus departure time (ask at the bus station) and do not plan to take the last bus of the day.

Posted by tintinabulator94 OP
6 posts

Thanks everyone! It was just my first time crossing a border by bus, but I feel a lot more confident now. Thanks again

Posted by Nigel
Northamptonshire, England
19511 posts

Remember that the Schengen 90/180 is for a midnight to midnight day. The day counter starts as soon as you enter a Schengen country, even if that is one minute to midnight it counts as a day. When you are leaving the Schengen area again if you are in a Schengen country for as little as a minute after midnight it counts as a day. Time on transportation, such as a bus, still counts as time in the Schengen area.

I never advise people to push the 90 days right to the limit for exactly the reason implicit in your question - things happen, even things over which you may have no control. What if the bus has a breakdown and you are delayed beyond midnight? Or a weather delay? You are then an illegal overstayer and subject to a huge fine.

There was a story on this website some time back of the daughter of one of our regular posters who was over by a few hours and wound up with a €500 fine. I don't completely remember if she was also banned from the Schengen Area for some years but I think so.

I don't think that any visa is automatic, even for a bell ringer. It may be easy but there is always a person making the final decision.

Posted by tintinabulator94 OP
6 posts

Thanks Nigel
I changed my reservations after reading your post, so now I will be leaving on the 87th day instead of the 90th.

Posted by SharYn
Berkeley CA
724 posts

Nigel always gives the most complete information and the best advice!