Croatian authorities have been cracking down on online travel since the start of this year, when a crackdown on social media and fake passports prompted widespread protests.
The country has also been struggling with an economic crisis, and the government has been trying to crack down on illegal migrant traffic, particularly from the Balkans.
But now, a new report from a leading travel and travel consulting firm has called the country a “virtual nightmare” for the international traveler.
The company says it has documented more than 1,000 cases of visa fraud in Croatia since 2015, with a number of cases involving foreign nationals.
A spokesperson for the Croatian government told the Associated Press that more than 10,000 fraudulent passports were issued between January 1, 2018 and March 6, 2019, with about 600 of those being fraudulently issued for tourism purposes.
“We are very aware of the fact that we are the third largest EU country in terms of the number of visitors to the country,” the spokesperson told the AP.
“But the main problem is that we have the largest number of fraudulent passport holders.”
“It is clear that the government does not know the best ways to prevent people from taking advantage of the system,” the company’s spokesperson added.
The spokesperson also told the news agency that Croatian authorities are working to improve their handling of visa applications and provide better assistance to tourists, but they still have work to do.
“It has to be done more in a way that is easier for people,” the travel consultant said.
“For example, the authorities need to provide more information about how to avoid the most common scams, and they need to give more help to tourists.”