SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico -- Croatia is making a comeback in U.S.
tourism, with almost all major cruise lines calling at ports and
nine U.S. Tour Operators Association operators scheduled to operate
programs in 1999, Croatian tourism officials told the press at the
USTOA conference here.
Some 60,000 U.S. citizens visited Croatia in 1998, most of them
business people and citizens of Croatian descent, with 6,000
pleasure travelers on land programs and 8,000 cruise ship
passengers, according to Pave Zupoan Ruskovic, president of Atlas
Travel in Dubrovnik. "I put Croatia on almost the same level as
Italy in terms of beauty, nature and art," he said.
Giving Croatia a big push in 1999 will be the addition of many
new tours and packages by USTOA members, the result of a workshop
that Croatian tourism officials held for USTOA in June.
The nine operators that will offer Croatia packages in 1999 are
Educational Travel Services, Abercrombie & Kent, Central
Holidays, Collette Tours, Gate 1, Homeric Tours, Maupintour,
Sunnyland and Trafalgar.
Central Holidays is discussing with Air Europe the possibility
of offering a summer charter program to Croatia, with weekly
flights from the east coast. Central Holidays is releasing a
20-page color brochure on Croatia, also including tours to Austria,
the Czech Republic and Germany.