Passengers skipping SarajevoThe services for using airports across Bosnia and Herzegovina are expensive and the airports are failing to attract customers. Nudžeim Rečica, the CEO of B&H Airlines says, “At Sarajevo Airport where most of Bosnia’s air traffic is handled, taxes amount to 18 Euros per passenger plus a further 10 Euros is paid for tax for the development of civil aviation in the Bosnian Federation. In the rest of Europe taxes mostly vary between 15 to 20 Euros but most airports have their own taxes added as well, such as a security tax". The CEO of Sarajevo Airport, Bakir Karahasanović, says that prices have never deterred airlines from Sarajevo but the country’s major problem is that there is a lack of a middle class and thus airlines do not see the potential of flying to Sarajevo. ”We do not have enough passengers so airlines are avoiding Sarajevo", the CEO of Sarajevo Airport says adding that the airport handles approximately 500.000 passengers annually which is nearly 90% of all air traffic in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Banja Luka Airport has only 2 scheduled services, to Zurich (operated by B&H Airlines) and Belgrade (operated by Jat Airways). Airports in Tuzla and Mostar have no scheduled services. Marin Raspudić, the CEO of Mostar Airport, says that airports in Croatia pose the greatest competition. "Despite its location most passengers are avoiding Mostar. This is a city which is regressing and its airport is no exception", Raspudić says. In order to attract airlines to smaller airports many governments in European countries finance low cost airlines for a certain amount of time to fly on these services, which is not the case in Bosnia and Herzegovina.