Sunday, April 11, 2010

Ljubljana sets sight on Malaysia Airlines

Possible new visitor for Ljubljana
Ljubljan Jože Pučnik Airport is hoping to attract Malaysia Airlines as the first scheduled Asian carrier to serve the airport. Janez Krašnja, the airport’s sales and marketing director told the Malaysian News Agency Bernama that this year the passenger trend at the airport is set to change, adding that Asian countries were expected to be one of those contributors to the improved traffic volume. "There is a growing interest on the part of Asians to visit Europe", he told Bernama in a recent interview during a business visit to Malaysia. Krašnja said that Ljubljana Airport was also hoping to attract Malaysia Airlines as the first Asian carrier to fly to the Slovenian capital. Currently, Malaysia Airlines operates flights to Paris, Frankfurt, Amsterdam and London in Europe. At one time in its history it also served Zagreb via Vienna.

There is already a great exchange of goods and services between Malaysia and the European Union. Since Slovenia is in central Europe it has good connections and offers good tourism potential as well, Krašnja added. “People from Asia are not always going to travel to the most known destinations in Europe such as London and Paris because they want to experience "new" destinations like Slovenia”, Krašnja said. He also noted that most Asians travelling to Slovenia currently come via European hubs such as Frankfurt, Vienna or Paris. Krašnja also revealed that the airport is looking to attract cargo airlines from Asia and the Middle East.

From August 21 to August 28, the national airline of Japan – JAL, will operate charter flights from Osaka to Ljubljana. From August 27 until September 6 the airline will fly from Ljubljana to Fukuoka via Sapporo and finally from September 4 to 10 the airline will fly from Tokyo to Ljubljana. As was the case in previous years, the flights are being organised for Japanese tourists by the Japanese Tourist Bureau. All flights will be operated by the Boeing B747-400.


  1. I can t believe it will happen, but if it will, it would be awesome

    Does anyone knows when the construction for the terminal-expansion is going to start?

  2. Malaysian wanted to fly to Sarajevo from Kuala Lumpur, but offcourse uncapable and corrupted authorities at Sarajevo Airport couldn't manage this to happen. Go Slovenia!

  3. Well if MH is mad and happy enough to run their KUL-JNB-CPT-EZE flight at loss continuously, I don't see what's wrong with a KUL-LJU flight. Tag a KUL-ZRH-LJU-KUL would even make it a nice proposal to the Board! =P

  4. Omg...I wonder what he has been sniffing down there?
    And since when is Slovenia in Central Europe? More than half of it lies in the Balkan peninsula...
    Funny article, but I think it would have been more appropriat if it was published on the first of April

  5. I also don't belive in MAS to serve Ljubljana with scheduled passenger flights,however there's possibility to attract some asian cargo carriers to fly to Ljubljana.

  6. Malaysian wanted to fly to Sarajevo from Kuala Lumpur, but offcourse uncapable and corrupted authorities at Sarajevo Airport couldn't manage this to happen. Go Slovenia!

  7. This is an April fools article. MAS is serving only major points in Europe and what would Adria`s mastermind Lufthansa say about it? I think it's just the cheapest way to make advertiting for an airport.

  8. ^ It’s not an April fools joke. They are the words of Ljubljana Airport’s sales and marketing director. Whether the majority think it’s completely unrealistic and dumb is a different story.

  9. Let's cast our minds back to when MH operated twice-weekly shuttles to ZAG... if they can't make the flights work to one of the biggest cities in the exYU (even though the area was still in conflict, a contributing downfall), little LJU has NO chance!

    The *only* hope exYU have for long-haul is to operate flights to the mid-east and organise half-decent codeshares: JU is the only airline giving this a go, and as usual OU (who should be operating 3 direct weekly flights to DXB) is asleep at the wheel...

    @ Anonymous # 3

    MH operates to EZE because of supposed 'prestige' (it used to operate off memory to all continents), and because a certain former prime minister owns an ENORMOUS ranch just outside Mendoza...

    @ Anonymous # 4

    Spot on! But I could actually see such a comment being made from people in authority in the exYU - look at many of the statements made by the other airlines and airports...

  10. I flew MH in January from ZAG to KUL-MNL v.v. via IST (sector ZAG-IST v.v. by TK). Payed for the entire trip with stopovers both in KUL and MNL little over 800 Eur.

    MH wanted to operate nonstop flights KUL-ZAG-NYC-ZAG-KUL at the time they flew to ZAG via VIE but didn't obtain permissions from Croatian and US authorities.

    At that time MH operated european flights to MAD, ZRH, BRU, CPH, addition to tjose already mentioned. Meanwhile, concept of long-haul point to point flights was abandoned, not only by MH, but by most other airlines.

    That is why it seems almost impossible that MH will start direct flights to LJU. However, if they decide to give a try with a service to one of the airports in our region, I think that ZAG has more chance than LJU, because of:

    - high number of transit pax travelling between Croatia and Australia
    - much better connections from ZAG to Adriatic resorts, especcially DBV
    - new CEO of ZAG airport Peovic (who is btw already in talks for direct services between ZAG and the US.)

  11. Just to remind that JAL charter flights to Japan have been already operated past 2 summers from both ZAG and DBV, by 747-400 as well. No reasons for these services to be discontinued as number of Japanese tourists to Croatia increases continually.

    I also forgot to mention that MH has a town office in Zagreb, which covers whole region. Cathay Pacific, too, opened office in ZAG about a year ago, and people working in it have strong wish to bring CX to ZAG.

    Of course, nothing of this would probably happen before new terminal is being built in ZAG.

  12. @ Anonymous #1

    Generally, I don't disagree about uncapable and corrupted authorities, not only in Sarajevo but throughout the region.

    However, I'm not quite sure that runway at SJJ is long enough to serve 747 or 777 which MH operates on it's long-haul routes, fully loaded, in all weather conditions.

    For example, runway at ZAG is 3250m, DBV 3300m, LJU 3300m, but SJJ is only 2600m, which may be enough for an empty plane in good weather conditions, but definitely not enough for regular traffic.

    And there are other requirements, too, necessary for profitable commercial operation, which I doubt SJJ can have, even if the runway were long enough.

  13. @ Dude who said that Malaysian wanted to fly to Sarajevo.

    Malaysian has never expressed wishes to fly to Sarajevo, but the ambassador of Bosnia and Herzegovina in Malaysia did. Malaysian aircrafts can't even land in Sarajevo due to the surrounding hills and mountains.

    Mission impossible, so that means that Sarajevo Airport has nothing to do with it. Get some informations before jo start judging others and bitching around

  14. I'm a Malaysian that visited Slovenia, Croatia and Bosnia-Herzegovina recently and really loved it.

    Though it is quite uncommon for Malaysian to visit Slovenia since I was asked at the Passport control about my visit etc and they seem surprised to see my passport. I could be the first. Who knows?

    All the best if Malaysia Airlines do fly in. I loved Slovenia and hope other visitors feel the same way. I wish I can find a lovely Slovenian to be my significant other.

  15. Well, if Malaysia Airlines do fly to SJJ with its B777-200ER (definitely not the B747, the airline is money-conscious these few years), I guarantee that it can land safely at the 2600m airport. Kuching International Airport, a regional airport in Malaysia, receives a wide-body aircraft landing on its 2242m runway on a daily basis! Amazing, isn't it? But now the runway has been extended. However, it does proof that the pilots can land a huge jumbo well.


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