June 17, 2021 – Croatia has its first official Middle Eastern digital nomad. Meet Saad Al Sulaibi from Jordan, owner of a 12 month Croatian digital nomad permit.
1. You are the first person from the Middle East to obtain the Croatian Digital Nomad permit. Congratulations! Tell us first about yourself and how your interest in Croatia started?
Thank you very much, my name is Saad Al Sulaibi from Jordan. I am an Account Manager for a US based company and work remotely from my home in Amman. Through a group of friends, I met a Croatian who lived in Amman for three years. During this time he was still talking to me and showing me pictures of Croatia, and especially his hometown, Split. It made me curious to know more about Croatia. While doing some research, I found an article on the Digital Nomad Visa. I found this opportunity interesting and decided to apply.
2. We don’t have as many Jordanian tourists. Do you think Croatia could be a good destination for them? What are the best selling points of Croatian tourism in the Middle Eastern market?
Absolutely. Croatia is a good destination for Jordanians and other Middle Eastern countries. Like much of Jordan, Croatia boasts of ancient cities and historic ruins and is full of stunning natural attractions. It also has a great Mediterranean lifestyle with a very affordable standard of living.
3. Why did you decide to apply for the digital nomadic license?
When I read about Croatia and the Digital Nomad Visa option, I wondered – why not? Croatia has beautiful and very green nature, amazing food and wine, nightlife, is affordable for living, has good health care, great internet connection for work and there is no need to pay income tax in Croatia while working there.
4. The permit generates a lot of interest, but not much information from the successful applicants. Can you tell us in detail how long the request lasted, what was involved, how much it cost and what issues you encountered?
The request took 1-2 months to get approved, and it cost me around $ 55. The biggest challenge was not having a Croatian embassy in Amman. As a result, I had to send my application and other documents to the Croatian Embassy in Cairo. It is also worth mentioning the daily efforts of the Ministry of Interior in Croatia to have this request approved.
5. Now that you have a 12-month residence permit in Croatia, what are your plans?
The plan for now is to stay in Split to meet my friend, then in Zagreb then in Krk, Hvar, Dugi Otok, BraÄ, Vis, Rab, KorÄula, Å ipan.
6. In your opinion, what makes Croatia such a great nomadic destination, and what needs to be done better?
Again, Croatia is one of the best places to live for the reasons I mentioned earlier. What needs to be improved is Croatia’s marketing to Jordan and the Middle East.
I would like to take this opportunity to introduce Jordan to my second family, the Croats. Jordan is a great destination to visit, we have many historical places to visit like Petra, Roman Theaters, Amman Citadel and many more. We also have religious sites to visit like Al-Maghtas where Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist, Mount Nebo where Moses looked at the Promised Land, Umm ar-Rasas a fortified Roman garrison which contains 16 Byzantine churches, Madaba which holds the Madaba map which is the oldest mosaic map of the Holy Land.
The latest statistics on the Croatian digital nomad permit. 132 requests to date (12 last week), with 38 permits granted and 85 in progress.
For the latest news and features on digital nomads in Croatia, follow the dedicated TCN section.
Are you a digital nomad planning to move to Croatia? Why not join us online or in person at Zagreb Digital Nomadic Week 2021, which starts on Monday?
Or be a digital nomad ambassador of Zagreb with a free month of accommodation from July to December, as a guest of the city.