How to participate in Croatia’s 2021 census of population, households, and dwellings

Census of Croatia population
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In the territory of the today’s Republic of Croatia, the first census was conducted in 1746 and the last one in 2011. The census in Croatia is conducted every 10 years. The 2021 census (called “Popis ’21”) started on September 13, 2021, and it will last until October 17, 2021.

The purpose of the census is to collect statistical data on the population who lives in Croatia, households, and dwellings – meaning every resident, not just Croatian citizens. For the first time in Croatia, this very complex statistical survey will be conducted digitally in two phases. The data must be provided in the Croatian language.

In this post, we cover:

The facts are these…

How to participate in Croatia’s 2021 census of population, households, and dwellings

Which data will Croatia’s 2021 census include

The 2021 census includes data on the population, households, and dwellings including:

  • Demographic characteristics
  • Economic characteristics
  • Educational characteristics
  • Migration characteristics
  • Other characteristics

The data is collected according to one’s status at the reference moment of August 31, 2021, 24:00. The reference moment is necessary to define the changes that occur in census units.

The census is carried out on the basis of the Act on the Census of Population, Households, and Dwellings in the Republic of Croatia in 2021 (Zakon o popisu stanovništva, kućanstava i stanova u Republici Hrvatskoj 2021. godine). By this Act, private data collected by the census is strictly confidential. It shall be used only for statistical purposes.

The English version of the Act is available here.

The Croatian version of the Act is available here.

More information on Croatia’s 2021 census is available in English at the census official site here.

Who must participate in Croatia’s 2021 census

Everyone who lived in Croatia (with legal residence) at the reference moment must be included in the census. Croatian nationals living outside of Croatia won’t be recorded in the census. The goal of the census is to calculate only people who live in Croatia.

All of the following groups should be included:

  • Croatian nationals with permanent residence (prebivalište) or temporary (boravište) residence in Croatia
  • Foreign nationals with permanent residence (prebivalište) or temporary (boravište) residence in Croatia
  • People without nationality with permanent residence (prebivalište) or temporary (boravište) residence in Croatia

[Read: Prebivalište and boravište – two addresses that must be registered with the police]

If you are temporarily absent from Croatia due to study or work, your family member must indicate this in the questionnaire or to the enumerator and provide the required data about you.

If you live outside of Croatia, but own a house or apartment in Croatia, you don’t need to report yourself independently in the first phase. Your housing unit will be recorded in the second phase of the census by the enumerator. [Read: How to get a residence permit based on the property in Croatia]

If you don’t have a household in Croatia and you are absent from Croatia, you can report yourself independently in the first phase of the census.

People living in homes for the elderly will be calculated in these homes regardless of the address on their personal documents.

People who are tenants, but are not registered at the address should be reported at the address of their tenancy regardless of the different addresses on their personal documents. Landlords are not allowed to report their tenants. [Read: How to find an apartment to rent in Croatia]

Students will be counted in the second phase as residents of student homes. Their parents can also report them as temporarily absent for the purpose of schooling. Students who live as tenants can be reported as temporarily present for the purpose of schooling although their parents also report them as members of households in their hometown. [Read: How to study and gain student residence in Croatia]

Who manages the 2021 census

Approximately 9.500 people are directly or indirectly engaged in the 2021 census.

The 2021 census involves:

  • ~8.000 enumerators
  • ~1.100 controllers
  • ~170 instructors
  • ~45 coordinators
  • Deputy coordinators
  • Members of county census committees
  • Members of the census committee in Zagreb
  • Members of census committees of branch offices
  • Heads of census centers

During the second phase of the enumeration, you will directly cooperate with an enumerator. They will visit households in person to verify the information.

How Croatia’s 2021 census is conducted

The 2021 census is conducted in two phases:

  • Phase #1 – Online via the e-Građani web application
    • Period: September 13, 2021 – September 26, 2021
  • Phase #2 – By enumerators through a personal interview
    • Period: September 27, 2021 – October 17, 2021

The first phase is conducted online, independently. You or someone else can fill out the online questionnaire via e-Građani. You can also do it for another person, i.e. your friend, grandma, neighbor, or relative if they need help and provide you with their e-Građani credentials.

The second phase is conducted through a personal interview at your address. The interview will be held by an enumerator in charge of your area. They will fill out the remaining data or all the data if you didn’t go through the first phase.

Now, we will explain both phases of the census in detail.

Phase #1 Online enumeration

During the first phase of the census, you can independently register yourself and your family online through the e-Građani web application. The system allows you to report the data about you, your family, the household, and your dwelling.

The person who accesses enumeration with their credentials to e-Građani becomes the reference person. It means that they are obliged to enumerate all members of the household. This is why it is best to agree with your household members about who will be the reference person in advance.

It is possible that two persons from the same households provide the data on their household by using two different accounts. In this case, this duplication error will be corrected in the processing phase of the census data. However, avoid this scenario to eliminate misunderstandings.

How to report your household via e-Građani

If you already have access to e-Građani, log in to the service “Popis ‘21” (Census ‘21) which is available here. It is possible to log in via digital credentials of high, significant, or low level of security.

If you don’t have access, we’ve provided detailed instructions on how to access it in the section below.

After you log in to the service, you must read the terms of use, confirm that you are an adult person, and start the self-inventory process. The system will show you a questionnaire on your home and household consisting of 60 questions. You have to fill it out in the CROATIAN language.

Only one member of the household can fill out the form via e-Građani for their household. Otherwise, the data would be duplicated. You don’t have to fill out the questionnaire all at once. You can save the entered data, return to the questionnaire later, and enter and change data until the end of the first phase.

Once you fill out and submit the questionnaire, the system will display a unique control code on your screen. This code is proof that you have successfully finished the self-inventory procedure. You must save this code and give it to the enumerator in the second phase. After you submit the questionnaire, you can no longer change the data.

Note: If you need help with filling out the questionnaire, you can contact the support service on the phone (0)800 900 887 or via email at Their working hours are Monday to Sunday 8:00 – 21:00 during the enumeration period.

2021 Census questionnaire

The census questionnaire consists of the following:

  • Identification data
  • Data on households
  • Data on dwellings
  • Data on people

The census questionnaire is available in 23 languages including Croatian, English, and the languages of national minorities.

How to get access to e-Građani

There are multiple ways to access e-Gradani. The easiest method for most foreigners is by using your bank’s mobile application.

Below is a list of credentials you can use to log in:

  • AAI@EduHr
  • Addiko Bank
  • Certilia osobni certifikat (ex Kid certifikat)
  • Certilia osobni mobile.ID
  • Certilia osobni sms.ID
  • Certilia poslovni certifikat (ex ID.HR certifikat)
  • Certilia poslovni mobile.ID
  • Certilia poslovni sms.ID
  • eOsobna iskaznica
  • ePASS
  • ePošta
  • Erste e-Građani
  • Fina RDC osobni certifikat
  • Fina RDC poslovni certifikat
  • Fina soft certifikat
  • HPB token
  • HTTelekomID
  • HZZO
  • Istarska Kreditna Banka Umag d.d.
  • KentBank
  • Mobile ID osobne iskaznice
  • mToken
  • OTP banka d.d.
  • PBZ
  • RBA
  • ZABA token

Another method is to request an ePass credential. Below are the steps to request this access.

  1. Fill out the ePASS application form which is available here.
  2. Scan the application form in PDF format.
  3. Scan a copy of your ID card in PDF format.
  4. Go to the online service for submitting the request for the issue of the ePASS credential which is available here.
  5. Choose the option “ePass i mToken”.
  6. Under the section “Odaberite dokumentaciju”, upload the scanned application form and a copy of your ID card.
  7. Under the section “Unesite kontakt podatke”, enter your personal data:
    • Ime i prezime – name and surname
    • E-mail adresa – email address
    • Broj telefona – phone number
    • Odaberite Vama najbližu Fininu lokaciju – closest FINA location to your residence
  8. Under the section “Podaci za provjeru statusa predanog zahtjeva”, enter the arbitrary secret code that you will use to subsequently check the status of the submitted request.
  9. Click on “Prihvaćam Opće uvjete korištenja” to accept the general terms of use.
  10. Click on “Predaj zahtjev” to submit the request.

You will receive an activation code on your email within one day. With this code, you can create an ePass account.

Croatian instructions for getting access to the e-Građani are available here.

Phase #2 Interview with enumerator

During the second phase, the census will be conducted by enumerators through a personal interview with the population. Each enumerator is in charge of certain enumeration areas.

Once the enumerator visits you at your front door, you will have to take some time for an interview. Be aware that they are not allowed to ask for your identification documents. The census questionnaire is based on your statement.

Enumerators are not allowed to enter your home if you don’t agree with it. The questionnaire can also be completed in the hallway of your building or outside your house (in the garden, at the terrace). Enumerators must respect COVID-19 measures, as well as you and your family members. [Read: How to get the COVID-19 vaccine in Croatia]

Enumerators will fill out the remaining information that you haven’t reported independently via electronic devices. You have to give them the unique control code that you received from the system in the first phase. If you didn’t fill out the questionnaire independently, the enumerator will enter all the data.

Enumerators will also check out the data entered in the first phase with you. If you want to change some data, now is the time. For example, you may realize that you entered incorrect data in the first phase or you want to enter an additional household member.

You can provide your identification data, data on the dwelling and household, and data on other members of your household. If other members of the household are at home, they can provide the enumerator with their own data.

What to do if you are not at home during the second phase

If you are not at home when the enumerator visits your home, they will leave you written notice and arrange a new date.

If you already reported your household in the first phase, you can leave the unique control code on your door for the enumerator. Another option is to ask your neighbor whether they are willing to give the code to the enumerator instead of you.

Browse our other residency articles


Please note: Information provided by Expat in Croatia is only for the purposes of guidance. It does not constitute legal or financial advice in any form. Croatian laws and bureaucratic rules often change, and each personal case is individual, so different rules may apply. For legal advice, contact us to consult with a licensed Croatian lawyer. For financial advice, contact us to consult with a licensed Croatian tax advisor or accountant.

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