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Renta Car crossing through Bosnia

Hello fellow travelers, I am considering renting a car in Dubrovnik and driving north to various places in Croatia. Based on many comments in this forum renting a car is the best way to travel around Croatia. However, I have also read comments that driving into Bosnia can be a hassle at the border. Looking at the map of Croatia it appears I must travel through a bit of Bosnia as I drive north to Split. Should I take the bus from Dubrovnik and rent the car in Split? Or what do I need to do to have a smooth border crossing at Bosnia then back to Croatia? And will the car rental company require any additional insurance or charges for this short time in Bosnia? Due to time limit I will not include Bosnia in this trip.

Thank you!

Posted by Andrew H.
Portland, Oregon
2984 posts

Driving through the Neum corridor - the small section of Bosnia you drive through between Dubrovnik and Split - is routine. There are two border checks; if you have a valid US passport it's generally just a flash of your passport, quick and through, not a hassle. In theory they might check your rental car's insurance card, but I've never had mine checked there. (I have had it checked at other border crossings between Croatia, Bosnia, and Montenegro.)

Still, you're right - it's possible the rental car company may charge you extra just to drive through Neum, because technically you are leaving the EU. Each car company handles this differently. At least a few make exceptions just to drive through Neum and won't charge you more for that. Check with the rental company.

At worst, it's not really a "hassle" just an extra cost to rent the car. When you shop for cars, add it to the total cost and don't worry about it. Shouldn't be more than an extra 40 or 50 Euros total for the rental (if that). If saving that amount is worth taking a bus to you to avoid, maybe you should do it. Keep in mind that sometimes longer rentals have a lower average per-day cost than a shorter rental, anyway, so a longer rental from Dubrovnik may incur that cross-border fee but still not cost much more total. Do some comparison shopping. (Try EconomyCarRentals, Kemwel, and Auto Europe for example.) You can also email car companies directly and ask about a fee for Neum; some will respond to you in English.

Posted by Terri OP
18 posts

Andrew, thank you for all the information. I am much reassured that renting a car is the best option. I will certainly check the rental companies to see if they require anything additional for the short time in Bosnia. I had originally planned to travel by ferry to see the islands and spend one night there for a different experience but my friends have a limited schedule and cannot risk being stranded on an island in case the ferries/catamarran are cancelled due to weather. Car will be almost as good.

Thank you,
Terri

Posted by Richard
Ston, Dalmatia
72 posts

If the hire companies are trying to charge a lot to let you drive via Neum, there is always the option of driving via Ston along the Peljesac peninsula to Trpanj, where you can catch the car ferry to Ploce, avoiding any border crossings. Times and prices are on the Jadrolinija site. http://www.jadrolinija.hr/en/ferry-croatia

Posted by Terri OP
18 posts

Richard,
That is an interesting option. It would also allow me to visit the island and have the flexibility of a car to drive around and explore. I will check out the link you sent.

Thank you,
Terri