How to get travel insurance in Croatia (putno), which you can use to apply for residence: Guide for 2023
In most cases, people need travel insurance if they plan to apply for residence in Croatia. Croatia requires that you have some type of private insurance that covers you on the territory of Croatia as part of the requirements for a temporary residence application.
Usually, people use travel insurance to cover that requirement. In Croatia, travel insurance can be cheaper than options abroad.
Maybe you are already a Croatian resident who often travels abroad and would like some additional security. In this case, travel insurance is also a good option.
Your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) through HZZO only covers so much.
Croatian insurance companies offer various travel insurance services, and you can arrange a deal according to your individual needs. Most offer accident insurance and insurance against loss or delay of luggage. In addition, they may cover the costs of treatment of medical emergencies and acute diseases.
Travel insurance is called putno osiguranje in Croatian. This article summarizes the basics of putno osiguranje and travel insurance companies that operate in Croatia. You can also get a quote from our vetted insurance agent by contacting us here.
We have covered the information for both Croatian residents and third-country nationals who have just moved to Croatia.
If you want to sign up for mandatory health insurance in Croatia called obvezno, hop over to this post. If you are an EU/EEA or Croatian citizen and wish to sign up for state health, then visit this post.
In this post, we cover:
- Insurance when living in Croatia
- Insurance when traveling outside of Croatia
- What travel insurance covers
- Travel insurance types
- Travel insurance duration
- Insurance companies’ obligations
- Insurance for EHIC owners
- Skip the research and let Expat in Croatia answer all your questions
The facts are these…
How to get travel insurance in Croatia (putno osiguranje)
Jump to the desired section:
- Insurance for short-term visa applicants
- Insurance for long-term visa applicants
- Insurance for Croatian residents
Foreign applicants for short-term Croatian visas for 1 or 2 entries to Croatia must prove they own valid travel health insurance that covers the entire period of stay in Croatia.
Foreign applicants for short-term Croatian visas for an unlimited number of entries to Croatia must prove they own valid travel health insurance covering the period of the first planned stay in Croatia. They must get a travel insurance policy from an insurance company in the country of their residence. If this is not possible, they must request travel insurance in another country.
If a natural or legal person from Croatia invites the visa applicant to Croatia, they can conclude a travel health insurance contract with an insurance company from Croatia instead of the applicant.
A valid travel health insurance for Croatian short-term visa applicants is used to cover all the costs that could occur during the stay of the visa applicant in Croatia and related to the return to their country of origin.
The possible costs may occur due to:
- Health reasons
- Urgent medical assistance
- Urgent hospital treatment
- Transportation in the event of death
You can learn how to transport the deceased person to Croatia or outside of Croatia in this post.
The travel insurance must have a guaranteed minimal coverage of costs of up to 30.000 euros.
Third-country applicants for long-term Croatian visas for 1 entry to Croatia must prove they own valid travel health insurance that covers the number of days and period for which the Croatian visa was issued.
Third-country applicants for long-term Croatian visas for an unlimited number of entries to Croatia must prove they own valid travel health insurance, which covers the period of the first planned stay in Croatia. They must get a travel insurance policy from an insurance company in the country of their residence. If this is not possible, they must request travel insurance in another country.
Long-term applicants for Croatian visas must get travel insurance from the insurance company in the country of their residence. If this is not possible, it can be requested in another country or obtained with an insurance company from Croatia in favor of the applicant.
A valid travel health insurance for long-term visa applicants is used to cover all the costs that could occur during a stay of the visa applicant in Croatia and related to the return to their country of origin, in a period they acquire mandatory obvezno health insurance in Croatia and the status of an insured person.
The possible costs may occur due to:
- Health reasons
- Urgent medical assistance
- Urgent hospital treatment
- Transportation in the event of death
The minimum amount of travel insurance must be 30.000 € in kuna equivalent.
If you’re planning to apply for temporary residence in Croatia, you must be insured privately. It doesn’t matter whether you are a digital nomad or applying based on prepayment of rent or the spouse of a Croatian or an EU citizen, everybody must have some kind of health insurance for the purposes of the residence application. There is one exception – and that is for those applying based on humanitarian reasons, which includes those who are a member of the Croatian people.
Most commonly, people obtain a travel insurance policy to satisfy this requirement. There is no minimum coverage. All they want to see is that it is valid on the territory of Croatia.
Some insurance companies offer travel insurance specifically for foreign citizens during their stay in Croatia. They may provide insurance for individuals, groups, and families during their travel and stay in Croatia.
Insurance for foreigners can cover travel health insurance, accident insurance, and luggage insurance. Depending on the time of their stay in Croatia, foreign citizens may contract the insurance for 3, 8, 15, and or 31 days, or 3 and 6 months.
Nothing is more important in life than our health. Unfortunately, sometimes we do not appreciate it enough until something gets in the way. Many things can go wrong while traveling, especially if you travel outside of Croatia.
Regardless of the place and time of your travel, being on the road always brings risks. You may lose luggage, have an accident, or a sudden illness may occur. The longer your trip is, the higher is the risk of an injury or unexpected issue.
No matter what happens, the costs of medical or other interventions while staying outside of Croatia can be very high. You may need an urgent rescue, transfer to a medical institution, or hospital treatment. These expenses can skyrocket if you do not have a travel insurance policy.
When planning your trip, do not hesitate to get travel insurance from an insurance company in Croatia. Each company offers different services that may save you from unexpected and unpleasant events on your trip. Each of them operates on its own terms, so examine their offers before picking the optimal one.
If you give up on the trip, you usually have the right to cancel the insurance contract and get a refund of the paid premium. However, the cancelation terms depend on each travel insurance company. They are defined in a travel insurance contract. Get familiar with terms and conditions so that you can cancel the contract on time in case something occurs.
We can jump in if you need help choosing the travel insurance policy.
Croatian obvezno health insurance will cover the basic costs if you travel within the Croatian territory. View our guide on Croatia’s state health care obvezno insurance, what it costs, and what is included here.
Note: Dopunsko health insurance is recommended for everyone with Croatian mandatory obvezno health insurance. It enables avoiding the additional costs that may arise related to healthcare services. The Croatian Parliament recently held a discussion about the expected increases in healthcare services. To avoid the additional costs, it is wise to get dopunsko.
What a travel insurance policy covers depends on each insurance company and your individual policy. However, it usually covers the most common accidents and health issues that may occur during your travel or stay in a foreign country.
By using travel insurance, you are exempt from the costs of treatment in a foreign country where you are staying. You may even choose the amount of your own travel insurance and services you want to use.
Travel insurance may cover:
- Costs of treatment of acute diseases
- Costs of emergency medical interventions and transport
- Costs of medicines and medical supplies
- Costs of search, rescue, and helicopter transport
- Costs of treatment of chronic diseases that unexpectedly become acute
- Accident insurance for amateur athletes
- Accident insurance
- Emergency dental services
- Operation costs
- Private liability insurance
- Flight delay insurance
- Travel cancelation insurance
- Insurance against loss or delay of luggage
- Available help 24/7
In addition to travel insurance, some insurance companies also offer an additional service of trip cancellation insurance. It is usually a separate service and must be contracted as additional coverage to the travel insurance.
If you acquired a trip cancellation service, it might also cover the reimbursement of trip cancellation costs in case of special cancellation events such as severe sudden illness resulting from an epidemic, pandemic, or quarantine. It may imply the disease of spouses, common-law partners, parents, children, sisters, brothers, grandparents, grandchildren, father-in-law, mother-in-law, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, or someone else named in a travel insurance contract.
Some urgent medical services can be covered with an EHIC (European Health Insurance Card), which is only available to EU/EEA residents with a state health insurance policy. Read more about EHIC in this section.
If you want to get travel insurance from a Croatian insurance company, you may be able to pick between several types, depending on what you need. The services included in each type of travel insurance depend on the insurance company.
Here are some options:
- Individual travel insurance – single trip insurance for one person
- Group travel insurance – single trip insurance for groups of approximately 6 or more people
- Family travel insurance – insurance for 5-7 family members with at least one adult (spouses, children, parents, grandparents)
- Annual travel insurance – multiple trip insurance within a year that may cover an unlimited number of trips, ideal for people who often travel
Many travel insurance companies offer the possibility of online contracting, special discounts, and special offers. Some of them offer free travel insurance for babies.
Croatian travel insurance policies usually last from only 1 day to up to a year. Annual policies usually last 365 days.
Some insurance companies also offer the possibility of concluding a long-term travel insurance contract with an indefinite duration. In this case, the insurance is usually valid until one of the contracting parties cancels the contract. Of course, the cancelation must be done according to the agreed conditions.
Before concluding a travel insurance contract with a future user, every Croatian insurance company is obliged to inform a user on:
- General conditions of travel insurance
- Duration of travel insurance
- Cost of travel insurance
- Payment method
- Conditions for cancelation of the contract
- Other important information
Once the contract between a travel insurance user and an insurance company is concluded, both parties must respect the terms and conditions defined in the contract.
Expat in Croatia uses Wiener dopunsko health insurance for company employees. Sara also uses Wiener’s insurance services for her personal car and home.
The travel insurance company is also obliged to inform their user about any changes within their company, including the name of the company, headquarters, and organizational structure. This obligation is in force as long as the travel insurance contract is valid. The insurance company must also inform a user about profit sharing once a year.
If the travel insurance company does not meet the conditions agreed upon in a travel insurance contract, a user has the right to submit a written complaint to the travel insurance company.
If you have an EHIC (European Health Insurance Card), then you have the right to use urgent health services from contracted healthcare providers in other EU/EEA Member States and Switzerland. This means that if you get injured, the costs of your medical issue will be covered by HZZO.
EHIC covers only urgent medical interventions. In addition, the costs are covered only in public health institutions throughout the countries of the European Union. Covered expenses include only the same cases from which the residents of that country are exempt.
EHIC does not cover the injuries that occur outside the EU/EEA territory, i.e., third countries. If you do not have travel insurance, you will have to cover all the injury costs in third countries.
However, travel insurance enables you to find the closest doctor once an injury occurs and covers the costs of medical treatment and medicines outside of Croatia.
We crafted this post to be as detailed as possible, but sometimes questions still arise because everyone’s situation is different. If you’d like personalized guidance on your situation, we can help.
Save yourself the time and uncertainty of trying to navigate the ever-changing rules for living in Croatia by scheduling a private chat with us.
How does it work?
All first-time clients get 30 minutes with an Expat in Croatia consultant PLUS 30 minutes with a vetted English-speaking lawyer from our network.
Repeat clients can book a 30-minute session with an EIC consultant as a stand-alone appointment.
During your chat with us, we will answer all of your questions about Croatia. You can tap into our expertise on anything you want; whether it be residency, citizenship, healthcare, buying property, letting accommodation, operating a business, what it’s like to live here, personal experiences with bureaucracy, or cultural nuance. It’s all tailored to you.
In addition, you’ll receive a follow up with additional resources based on your situation, Sara’s Croatia Restaurant Guide as well as introductions to vetted professionals like insurance, law, real estate, translation and tax.
All legal advice will be handled by our vetted lawyer network. We can help you with everything else.
Appointments will be scheduled over Zoom.
We have an extensive Frequently Asked Questions about this service here.
Who will I speak with?
Expat in Croatia has two experienced consultants, Sara Dyson and Carol Anne Škorvaga. You may choose your consultant.
Carol Anne Škorvaga, known to us as “CAM”, is a first-generation Croatian-Canadian living in Jastrebarsko with her family. She grew up entrenched in the Croatian community surrounded by culture and folklore, attended Croatian school in Canada and then returned to Zagreb to attend Filozofski Fakultet. CAM is fluent in Croatian and has firsthand knowledge of being both a Canadian expat and a Croatian returnee, building a home in Croatia and being a parent with children in local schools.
Meet CAM in this quick 2-minute video here.
Sara Dyson is the founder of Expat in Croatia. She has lived in Split, Croatia as a US citizen since 2012 and experienced first-hand applying for temporary residence, long-term residence and Croatian citizenship. She’s also operated 2 companies, purchased a home, and written about Croatia and its bureaucracy extensively since 2013. Her application is citizenship is based on her work through Expat in Croatia. Read Sara’s full bio here.
Meet Sara in this quick 2-minute video here.
What is the cost?
The below costs are per 30 minutes and include VAT (25% tax mandated by the Croatian government). If additional time is requested, it is billed in ¼ hour increments.
First-time clients automatically get an extra 30 minutes with an English-speaking lawyer from our vetted network.
Carol Anne Škorvaga
- First-time clients | 150 euros (includes session with lawyer)
- Repeat clients | 75 euros
- First-time clients | 250 euros (includes session with lawyer)
- Repeat clients | 150 euros
It takes a tremendous amount of hands-on, human work to research and vet our information that we provide during sessions. This process includes extensive web research, phone calls to the government, collaboration with licensed Croatian professionals, and visits to government, collaboration with licensed Croatian professionals, and visits to government offices.
Reviews from our clients
“Sara’s knowledge of Croatia is nothing short of encyclopaedic. I achieved so much more clarity in just a single session, and I would not hesitate to another if needed. Invaluable.” – Todd, United Kingdom
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View our other insurance posts
- Croatia’s state health care obvezno insurance
- Healthcare and health insurance in Croatia
- How EU/EEA citizens (and Croats) can sign up for Croatian state health insurance
- How to sign up for state health insurance in Croatia
- HZZO list of local health insurance offices
- What is a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC)
- What is dodatno health insurance
- What is dopunsko health insurance
- Why you must have health insurance
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.