Passports & Visas

Every traveler must have a valid passport. Nationals of the following states may enter into Bosnia and Hercegovina with a passport or a valid identity card proving identity and citizenship of:

  • Member State of the European Union
  • State signatory to the Schengen Agreement
  • Andorra, Montenegro, Liechtenstein, Monaco, San Marino, Serbia, the Holy See and Swiss Confederation.

Most countries do not need a visa, but if you do, it is possible to get one from the Bosnian embassy in your country.
The minimum amount of financial resources required for the stay of foreigners on the territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina is 150 KM (or equivalent in freely convertible foreign currency) – for each day of the intended stay.
For more information about visas, please follow this link.


Public holidays

Certain public holidays are celebrated throughout Bosnia and Herzegovina-such as: New Years (01. & 02. January), Independence Day (01. March), Labour Day (01. & 02. May), Statehood Day (25. November).


Drinking water

In Bosnia and Herzegovina water is of outstanding quality. All towns have at least one public fountain, which is often located in front or near mosques. Fountains can also be found along roads that were used by passengers in past times. Most mountains have streams and springs that are common sources of drinking water. In Bosnia and Herzegovina tap and public water does not pose a problem and there is no need to buy bottled water. Also what is noteworthy, Bosnia and Herzegovina’s domestic bottled water is of great quality and has claimed many awards worldwide.



Using phones within Bosnia and Herzegovina
If calling international from Bosnia and Herzegovina, you need to enter the international country code, for example, for calling Turkey “+90”, for Russia “+7”.
If calling Bosnia and Herzegovina, you will need to add the country code for Bosnia and Herzegovina which is “+387”.

Using a cell phone in Bosnia and Herzegovina
Bosnia and Herzegovina’s sim card can be bough almost anywhere. A “BH Telecom” sim card costs 5 KM, which is 2.5 euro.


Time Zone

During the winter, Central European Time (CET) applies in Bosnia and Herzegovina. From the end of March to the end of October, Summer Time applies (CET + 1 hour).



Bosnia and Herzegovina has a mix of Mediterranean and Central European climate. It gets hot in summer but quite chilly in winter, especially at elevations where snowfall can last until April.
The most popular time to come is from May to September and for skiing between December and February. Sarajevo temperatures range from minus 2°C in winter up to 27°C in July and August. Temperatures in the south are several degrees warmer.



Due to the most recent census of Bosnia and Herzegovina, known as the 2013 census, in Bosnia and Herzegovina lives 3,791,662 persons.
The population grow rate is -0.1%.



Bosnian is a South Slavic language spoken mainly in Bosnia and Herzegovina. On a formal level, Bosnian began to emerge as a distinct language after the break up of Yugoslavia in the 1990s. It became one of official languages of Bosnia and Herzegovina in 1994, along with Croatian and Serbian.
Standard Bosnian uses a Latin alphabet. Historically it was written with a version of the Cyrillic alphabet known as Bosnian Cyrillic from the late 10th century. During the Ottoman era Bosnian was written with a version of the Arabic alphabet.
Bosnian is notable for a number of Arabic, Ottoman Turkish and Persian loanwords, largely due to the language’s interaction with those cultures through Islamic ties. The Bosnian language also contains a number of Germanisms that have been in use since the Austro-Hungarian Empire.
The first Bosnian dictionary, a rhymed Bosnian–Turkish glossary authored by Muhamed Hevaji Uskufi, was composed in 1631.



Nearly 48% of Bosnian population are Muslims, predominantly, Sunni Muslims. The Serbs are generally Serbian Orthodox, a faith practiced by about 32% of the population. The Croats are primarily Roman Catholic, a faith practiced by about 14% of the population. There are small communities of Protestants, Baha’is, Romani’s, Jews and others.



Bosnia and Herzegovina is located in Southeastern Europe, in the Western Balkans. It has a 932 km border with Croatia to the North and Southwest, a 312 km border with Serbia to the East, and a 215 km border with Montenegro to the Southeast. It borders the Adriatic Sea along its 20 km coastline.
The country is mostly mountainous, encompassing the central Dinaric Alps. The northeastern parts reach into the Pannonian basin, while in the south it borders the Adriatic. The highest point of the country is peak Maglić at 2,386 m, at the Montenegrin border. Major mountains include Kozara, Grmeč, Vlašić, Čvrsnica, Prenj, Romanija, Jahorina, Bjelašnica and Treskavica.
Overall, close to 50% of Bosnia and Herzegovina is forested. Most forest areas are in Central, Eastern and Western parts of Bosnia. Northern Bosnia (Posavina) contains very fertile agricultural land along the river Sava and the corresponding area is heavily farmed.
The capital city is Sarajevo. Other major cities are Banja Luka in the northwest region known as Bosanska Krajina; Bijeljina and Tuzla in the northeast; Zenica and Doboj in the central part of Bosnia and Mostar in Herzegovina.
There are seven major rivers in Bosnia and Herzegovina: Sava, Una, Sana, Vrbas, Bosna, Drina and Neretva.



Bosnia has a transitional economy with limited market reforms. The economy relies heavily on the export of metals as well as on remittances and foreign aid.
Main industries in Bosnia and Herzegovina include: steel, coal, iron ore, lead, zinc, manganese, bauxite, aluminum, vehicle assembly, textiles, tobacco products, wooden furniture, ammunition, domestic appliances, oil refining. Beside metals the most important export commodities are clothing and wood products.
Foreign banks, primarily from Austria and Italy control most of the banking sector. The convertible mark or BAM – the national currency introduced in 1998 – is pegged to the euro, and confidence in the currency and the banking sector has increased. Bosnia’s private sector is growing. Bosnia and Herzegovina became a full member of the Central European Free Trade Agreement in September 2007.


Medical care

Bosnian health services are not as standardized regarding fees. Most private clinics have a list of prices of procedures available. The prices are usually similar between clinics. Public health facilities, such as ambulances and hospitals, have standard “international” fees for services.
For emergencies, you may go to the nearest hospital or emergency practice, or in urgent cases, call the ambulance 124 or 611-1111.


Emergency numbers

Emergency calls:
122 Police
123 Fire Department
124 Ambulance



Many but not all medications available in Western Europe are available in Sarajevo and other major towns, usually under the European brand name. The following pharmacies in Sarajevo are open 24 hours:

  • Baščaršija Pharmacy (Obala Kulina Bana 25; tel. 033-272-300)
  • Novo Sarajevo (Zmaja od Bosne 51; tel. 033-713-830)

further information on pharmaceuticals in Bosnia and Herzegovina, go to the World Health Organization.



The Bosnian Convertible Marka is the currency of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The currency code for Convertible Marka is BAM, and the currency symbol is KM.
The Bosnian Convertible Marka is pegged to the euro and has the fixed exchange rate of 1 EUR= 1.95583 BAM.

The Bosnian Convertible Marka comes in the following denominations:
5, 10, 20, 50 feninga and 1, 2, 5 maraka

10, 20, 50, 100, 200 maraka


Credit cards

The safest and easiest form of money are credit cards. The cards most used are MasterCard and Visa.

 Many banks in Bosnia and Herzegovina have equipped their ATM machines with the CIRRUS or MAESTRO system. Most of the banks offer ATM machines for cash advances with your credit card. It is recommended to have a small amount of cash on hand upon arrival in Bosnia and Herzegovina for immediate expenses, i.e. taxis, city transportation etc.


Tax free shopping

Tourists that buy goods worth more than 100 KM (50 euro) are entitled to a VAT tax refund. VAT consists of 17% of the purchase price. The refund applies to all goods bought within three months before leaving, except petroleum, alcohol or tobacco. A tax-refund form (PDV-SL-2) should be filled and verified (stamped) at time of purchase. A passport will be required. Upon leaving B&H, the Bosnian customs will verify the tax-refund form. It will be necessary to show the purchased goods. A VAT refund in KM can be obtained within three months, either at the same shop where the goods were bought (in that case the tax will be refunded immediately) or by posting the verified receipt back to the shop, together with the account number into which the refund should be paid.



Shopping in Bosnia and Herzegovina is a special experience. Traditional purchases include woodcarvings, brass coffee-pots, ceramics, handmade carpets, woolen goods, wines, folk-art, tapestries, embroidery and leather boxes.

The best place to shop for leather is Visoko and the central region of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Sarajevo and Mostar with its fancy shopping malls are ideal for clothes and shoes.
Brass Alley, in Sarajevo’s tourist district of Old Town, brims with tiny quaint shops selling brass, silver and copper goods. A lot of Turkish influence can be found in the wares made there. Turkish coffee grinders, which easily pass off as pepper mills, coffee sets and ornate platters, peep out of most stores. The colorful wooden shops dotting the pink stoned medieval alleys of Baščaršija Market in the old town is a must visit for some good bargains.
Tiny shops selling handicraft, carpets, antique and souvenirs are squeezed into the narrow streets in Old Town. Artisans, goldsmiths and cobblers can be seen bent over their work benches giving life to their creations. Exquisite pieces of handicraft, intricate jewellery and unique shoes are churned out in hours. Hand woven carpets and knitted sweaters, which are also a Turkish trademark, can be found here. ”Stari Zanati”, a type of handicraft devised by the Turks nearly 500 years ago is still effectively pursued by the artisans of Baščaršija.