Tuesday, September 6, 2011

New era for Skopje Airport

New terminal for new achievements
Today, a new chapter in the history of Skopje Alexander the Great Airport began as it opened the doors to its brand new terminal. The multi million Euro project took just over a year to complete and will allow Macedonia’s capital to have the most modern airport facilities in the former Yugoslavia. The new terminal at Skopje Airport is ten times the size of the current terminal building, which was built in 1987 and will be closed as of tomorrow. The new terminal stretches over two levels and 40.100 square metres. Besides the new terminal the runway has been lengthened in order to accommodate larger aircraft. Furthermore, millions have been invested into supporting infrastructure such as access roads, a car park and an administrative office building.

The development of the new terminal was made possible by the Turkish airport operator, TAV Holdings, which took over the management of both Skopje and Ohrid airports from the government in early 2010. As a result, the opening ceremony of the new terminal was attended by Turkish government officials and businessmen.

Macedonia’s Prime Minister said that the new terminal was one of the biggest and most complex investments in the country. Thousands of people turned out to see the opening of the new terminal. Special busses were organised from the city centre so the public could get a glimpse of the new facilities and look around.

TAV will now begin work in other fields to improve the airport’s offering. The company will soon begin the construction of a new web page for both Skopje and Ohrid airports and will work with the Skopje public transport company for it to have a bus line from the airport to the city. The operator is also working hard on finding an established airline to base an aircraft in Skopje, which would lead to an increase in passenger numbers. In the first half of the year, Skopje saw a passenger increase of 8%.

A total of 110 million Euros has been invested into the new terminal which features air bridges, several duty free shops, a food court, 23 check in desks, over a dozen passport control counters and has the capacity to handle 4 million passengers per year.


  1. I think they should leave the old terminal for lowcost carriers...

  2. The new one is big enough to accomodate regular and low cost carriers anyway...

  3. Yes but now that we have the new terminal many new airlines will start flying to Skopje!

    That is why there should be a lowcost terminal to offer an alternative!

    Great day for Macedonia can't wait to go and see it today!

  4. The Turkish PM will not be coming today, because of a busy schedule. Instead he will visit the airport at the end of this month.

  5. An alternative LCC terminal only makes sense if the main one's gushing with traffic.

    On top of that, the old one is barely equipped to handle 180/189 seater A320s/B738s, what with effectively one operational gate and a tiny pre-boarding area.

    As we say - first jump, than say 'op' ;)

    Otherwise, congrats on the new terminal. Landing in SKP is finally going to be a pleasant experience, and I hope the bus connection to the city is finally opened.

    Hoping to see a Wizz Air A320 based there soon.

  6. If you want to see inside pics.


  7. Inside of the terminal looks even better than the outside. Let's hope it will see many pasengers. Looking forward to landing at the new SKP. Cheers!

  8. Gongrats to Skopje. It's nice to see some progress and modernization happening in the region.

    However, and not to sound vicious...I am still battling to understand the logic of this heavy investment. It's the investor's business - ok, but from the perspective of the market elements (population, tourists, transit pax) I am having a hard time seeing the aggresive growth to up to few millions pax. Maybe in 10 yrs...I wonder what's the break even point of pax volume for the investment to start paying off, the period of return, NPV (net present value) etc.

    Skopje's 8% won't bring it even over 800.000 pax in 2011 and plus other airports in ex Yu that are much larger grow at double digits.
    Passenger hub for transit pax ? Which pax ? Pristina has ambitious plans, so does Belgrade, Zagreb as well.
    Transit pax from east and south Europe/North Africa rely on already established hubs in the area (sofia, Bucharest, Istambul).
    I barely see a chance to Belgrade and Zagreb to compete with big airports. What market share would be within reach for Skopje ?

    I'd like someone to write a few good arguments/hypothesis and help me understand the logic. Again this is not to undermine, humiliate or dismiss the project. I simply don't get it.


  9. Good luck SKP! The old terminal was really pain in the asses for the passengers!

  10. simply and nice.. congratulations to SKP

    referring to last anonymous:

    1 mio pax per year, means 500000 departing each year or 1370 each day. Let s say you choose 70 pax per flight, this would mean apx 20 departures per day. From 0600h until 2200h this means 1,25 departures per hour. Of course there is peak times where u need 4-5 airbridges at the time and than there is hours where you wont need 1...
    it s for sure an optimistic project.. but let s wait and see how it all develops

  11. better pics then the previous ones, here:


  12. I'm wondering if new airlines decide to use a new terminal based on potential passenger numbers, research etc, or if a new terminal is built at an existing airport?

  13. Congratulations to Macedonia(ns) from Kranjska Gora!

  14. Congratulations to SKP and many happy landings and take-offs :)

  15. "The operator is also working hard on finding an established airline to base an aircraft in Skopje"? That is, first build the aurport and then look for flights to send in?
    Apparently the market isn't there. Otherwise MAT would have survived and would have been more flights to Europe. Was the supposedly insufficient infrastructure what impeded growth, or the lack of a market really?

  16. MAT never made it because of mismanagement. It was a Macedonian firm, meaning quick profit to the detriment of sustainable long term growth. There is a steady market. Macedonia is betting on progress in attracting foreign tourists, investments and accommodating its large diaspora. As they say, build it and they will come. With a bit of a bias and gleaming heart I welcome the development, congratulate the developers and TAV and hope this will be one of many airports developed in the EX-YU. Greetings to everyone on the website and may aviation win in the end in bringing people together.

  17. Честитки Скопје!
    Urime Shkup!

  18. Can an airport grow without increasing its size?

  19. How come we never get an update on the construction at pristina airport?
    Btw the Skopje airport looks amazing, love the 6 jet bridges.

  20. ''Anonymous said...
    Can an airport grow without increasing its size?''

    An airport like Skopje which has around 700-800k pax/yearly can not grow till 6 million pax (which is the capacity of this new airport) frankly said never. To build an airport for 2-2.5 mill pax was enough and it would be cheaper to maintain the airport. Right now you have a huge 6 million pax terminal which will be empty most of the time. Just nice to look at, never mind that hardly 13% of the terminal is gonna be used and the rest will stand there for decoration.

    Congratz Skopje.

  21. that number of 6 million exists only in your head.

  22. From May to September this year 62000 air tickets has been sold for tourists visiting Ohrid annd Struga. Total passengers this year should be arround 165000(the same number of passengers as in 1989). It is a very good financial result for Ohrid airport who has total of 95 person stuff in all airport services and facilities.

  23. So far most of the Macedonians flew from other Balkan airport,from now on they will definetely fly from and to the Skopje Airport, evenmore there is an increasing number of tourists using the the Macedonian airports, this number is obviously going up, I think that in few years the owners of the teo airports will be satisfied while the Macedonians will be proud with all this!

  24. Oh dear, Oh dear! This just another example of poor investment. Most of the "visitors" through SKP will be returning ex-patriots who are visiting relatives and families in MK. The amount of true tourists who have no familial ties to MK can be measured in the hundreds annually. Speaking from experience, SKP can be a difficult destination to get to, depending on where your journey starts. For example, try coming from the UK! Only Wizz Air offers a five days a week flighy direct Luton-Skopje, and they can be extremely difficult to deal with. So last time I came it was Munich-Belgrade-Skopje. But back to the point, projected "increases" in passenger throughputs are highly speculative and inaccurate. What is there about Macedonia that suddenly will increase tourism? Transit passengers to where? Macedonians who can afford to fly, do so as fares out of other Balkan airports are cheaper due to high fuel costs in MK. So is that going change? I suspect not! MK has no national carrier since the debacle that was MAT, and cannot attract an airline to base there. So what is going to support this airport? Gospo znaj! I'll be there in September to find out what has changed. My best guess? Nishto!


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