Driving in Croatia

Which side to drive on, where to get traffic news and updates, are there any unusual traffic regulations? Find out those and many other answers in this detailed guide.

Highway signPhoto: Highway sign

Right- or left-hand traffic?

In Croatia, cars drive on the right side and overtake on the left. Road signs are placed on the right-hand side of the road.

Driving license

According to Croatian law, a driver needs one of the following to drive: driving license issued in Croatia, driving license issued in another country or international driving license.

Speed limits

In Croatia, there are some general speed limits that are applied if there are no signposts restricting maximum speed. Obey the limits, since police routinely monitors the traffic and fines are quite high if you drive much quicker than allowed.

These are the general speed limits in Croatia (in km/h):

two-lane expressways
other roads (outside settled areas)
within settled areas
within settled areas, if safety prerequisites are met (if speed limit is higher than 50 km/h in a settled area, it will be clearly marked so by signposts)

On highways, speed limit might be lower on some parts of the road. Sometimes those restrictions are displayed on 'regular' signposts on the right side, but you will find them more often on interactive screens above the road.

Other drivers

Although Croatia is by no means Italy when it comes to driving, Croatian drivers are known to be quite tempered. They often drive quicker than allowed and try to overtake the others who are slower. Some of the drivers, if it isn't possible to overtake on some parts of the road, drive on other driver's tail. Do not let them distract you if that happens to you, respect the rules and you are both safe and certain to avoid fines - who knows, police could be monitoring traffic just behind the next curve.

Other drivers might sometimes flash the headlights to communicate with you and it usually means one of these three things:

If the are driving behind you, that is the obvious form of aggressive driving - they are annoyed and want to overtake you. This happens very rare and it is illegal (drivers that do this kind of flashlighting can be fined by the police if noticed).
If they are driving towards you, they probably want to notify you of a police check ahead of you.
If they are driving towards you, they might also warn you of having lights turned off when you need to have them turned on. If you have the lights turned on and you don't see police soon after other drivers' flashlights, stop on the side where you can and check your car if there are any abnormalities.
If they are driving towards you, they might also warn you of an accident ahead or even someone lying on the road.

The general rule is - when someone flashes the headlights towards you, slow down and be even more attentive than usual.

Traffic jams / congestion

In general, traffic jams usually occur in early morning and in the afternoon, i. e. approximately from 07:00 to 09:00 and from 15:00 to 17:00. However, during the summer, traffic jams can occur anytime in coastal destinations, especially during 'big migrations' to and from beaches, i. e. before noon and after 16:00.

Traffic regulations

Here are some of the rules that you need to respect when driving in Croatia:

Every person in the car that is sitting on a seat with a seat belt, is obliged to use that seat belt.
Drivers are not allowed to use mobile phones while driving.
Driving with dipped headlights is obligatory during winter time. However, even during Daylight Saving Time it is obligatory to use the lights in cases of reduced visibility.
Driving with dipped headlights is obligatory for motorcycles and mopeds during the whole year.

Drinking and driving in Croatia

You will still often find the information that Croatia has zero tolerance policy when it comes to drinking and driving. Although that was true for few years, now it is only partly true.

Drivers are allowed to have 0,50 g/kg of alcohol when driving, except the following groups:

Drivers up to 25 years old
Professional drivers (e. g. truck drivers) when on duty

Also, if you commit any other traffic offense, you will get fined for lower blood alcohol concentration as well. E. g. if you drive with 0,1 g/kg and get stopped by the police without making any other traffic offense, you won't get fined at all. However, if they stop you for speeding and discover that you had been driving with 0,1 g/kg, you will get fined both for speeding and driving with more than 0,0 g/kg alcohol concentration.

Useful phone numbers

Here are some phone numbers that you might find useful when on the road:

SOS Call (police, fire department, ambulance): 112
Traffic and road conditions info: +385 72 777 777
Roadside assistance service: + 385 1987

When dialling 112 it is possible to communicate in English, German, Italian, Hungarian, Slovakian and Czech language

Traffic news and updates

You can hear traffic news and updates on the Croatian Radio 2 (marked as HR2 on the road signs), which can be found on the following frequencies: 93,3 MHz in Gorski kotar, 96,1 MHz in Split, 98,5 MHz in northwestern Croatia and in Dubrovnik, 98,9 MHz in Makarska Riviera and 105,3 MHz in Istria.

During the summer, HR2 broadcasts traffic information in foreign languages. Emergency information by Croatian Autoclub (HAK) is broadcast in Croatian and English. This year, foreign content will be broadcast from June 28 to September 7, 2014.

Basics And Tips About Croatia

Counties of Croatia

Zagreb - The only city-county in Croatia

Croatia has 20 counties and one city-county. City of Zagreb, the only city-county, is the largest county by population, while County of Split-Dalmatia is the largest one by total area.

Croatian Beer: Best Known Brands And Breweries


Croats are well known for their love of beer. In general, beer is more popular in the inland, while people on the coast prefer wine.

Driving in Croatia

Highway sign

Which side to drive on, where to get traffic news and updates, are there any unusual traffic regulations? Find out those and many other answers in this detailed guide.

Ferries in Croatia: The Ultimate Guide

Jadrolinija's ferry

Croatia is famous for its beautiful islands, 1244 of them. The most important ones are reachable by ferries or catamarans. Find out everything you need to know to explore Croatian islands.

Ferry Operators in Croatia

Jadrolinija's ferry

Find out more about ferry operators in Croatia.

How to Buy a Croatian Mobile Phone Number

SIM card

If you plan to stay in Croatia for a while, buying a Croatian mobile phone number (SIM card) might be a good idea.

How to Dial a Croatian Phone Number

Mobile phones
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How to Top up Your Croatian Mobile Phone Account

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If you decide to buy a Croatian mobile number with prepaid service, you might occasionally have to top up your account.

Mobile Networks And Operators in Croatia

Mobile tower

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Population of Croatia

Zagreb - Ban Jelačić Square

According to Census 2011, Croatia has a population of 4,28 million, down from 4,44 in 2001. Zagreb is by far the biggest city, with more than four times more inhabitants than the next city on the list.

Postal Services in Croatia


Find out more about postal services in Croatia - how to send postcards and letters, where to buy stamps, how long do post offices work etc.

Roaming For Tourists in Croatia

Map of the world

Staying in Croatia only few days? Then roaming is probably a better option than buying a new SIM card.

Telecommunications in Croatia


How roaming works in Croatia, what networks are available, where to top up a mobile phone? Find out those and other answers in this guide.

Tourism in Croatia


Croatia is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Europe. Cosindering its size and population, of European countries only Austria has more tourists per inhabitant.