Russian ‘COVID-19 Tourists’ Flood Croatia Seeking Jabs

Russians are travelling to Croatia to get EU-approved vaccines since at home they can only get the Russian Sputnik vaccine, which the EU and many other countries don't recognize,

In addition, the vaccine in Croatia is free and Russian tourists can choose from the four main types: Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca and the Johnson & Johnson, which is administered in one dose, so they don't have to come back for a second shot. In fact, the Johnson & Johnson vaccine is the most popular one among Russians.

After vaccination, these Croatian "COVID-19 tourists'" from afar receive a COVID certificate, which allows them to travel across Europe and many other countries.

Russian tourist agency Russian Express introduced vaccination "tours" to Croatia late in September, and demand has constantly increased.

Its website highlights these tours as attractive offers. The standard package includes air travel to Pula or Zagreb, transfer, health insurance and hotel accommodation, and may include transport to a vaccination point.

The price per person is €440. The agency recommends a four-day stay in case of side-effects, which it says can be used to enjoy Croatia's tourism offers, Croatia's news agency HINA reported.

In fact, demand is growing so fast that the Croatian news outlet Večernji list reported that flights from Russia to Zagreb are almost all fully booked. By the end of November four Russian airlines will provide six flights a week to Zagreb.

Zoran Carapic, owner of the Atlantis Travel tour agency, told BIRN that demand is on the rise. "It was never like this. Before there was one flight a week, operated by Aeroflot, with 100 seats," he said, adding that Russians are coming to Croatia to get the QR code, which enables them to...

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