Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Jat offered Banja Luka flights

Banja Luka phones a friend
The beset Banja Luka Airport has offered Serbia’s Jat Airways the opportunity to launch flights from the Serbian capital Belgrade to Bosnia and Herzegovina’s second largest city. Since such flights have proved as loss making in the past, the airport has suggested for the service to continue on to Vienna, thus connecting Banja Luka with two cities. If such an offer is accepted, services would begin next summer. Jat has already announced the launch of six new routes during the 2012 summer season. Sky Srpska, based in Banja Luka, still does not have any aircraft of its own but would code share on Jat’s flights to both Belgrade and Vienna. “Our research shows that there is a need for flights to Vienna”, Zoran Injac, the CEO of Sky Srpska, said recently as he outlined the airline’s plan for 2012.

Banja Luka Airport is currently only served by four weekly B&H Airlines flights to Zurich. The Bosnian national carrier recently suspended flights from Banja Luka to Copenhagen which operated for a record two weeks. Due to its inability to attract flights and passengers, the airport has found itself in substantial financial problems. Earlier in the year it nearly lost its license to handle commercial flights.

Jat Airways has operated flights to Banja Luka on and off for several years. Services were cancelled each time due to low loads. B&H Airlines was scheduled to launch flights between Banja Luka and Vienna last winter but cancelled them in face of low interest. The airline planned two flights per week between the two cities which is the frequency reportedly being offered to the Serbian carrier, internal sources say.


  1. If they really want to launch flights why don't they just fly Belgrade-Banja Luka and then have the passengers from BNX to VIE sit in the plane for 40 minutes in BEG while they board others for the 08:10 departure to Vienna.

    It would make far more sense rather than to have BEG-BNX-VIE.
    With Austrian Airlines and Niki having multiple daily flights, Jat would be commiting suicide.

  2. Jat has far more interest in Nis, where business travelers demand is growing. For that reason, Jat should launch INI-BNX-VIE route, minimizing poor loads from BNX, boosting INI opportinities at the same time. Such AT7 on the route, should serve as a feeder from INI to BEG in the other day morning.

  3. I am not sure about INI flights. On the other hand INI is even not in Amadeus or whatever so it is not possible to check-in all the way to INI, but in TGD the boardings are reissued for INI flights.

  4. Well, I really don`t know about INI not being in Amadeus, but things always can change.
    If daily avg on YM INI-TGD flights are varying between 40-50 it should not be underestimated by airline struggling for life.
    On the other hand side, JU`s S12 timetable logically suggests that they will not be able to implement it with no fleet renewal. In that sense, one AT4 leased may turn to cash-cow for flights to SKG, SOF, INI, OHD...

  5. BNX was served by JU properly (morning outgoing connections and evening inbound flights). The only disadvantage was low frequency (3-4 weekly in recent years). As operated by R6 previously, 6 weekly flights would be better for connections.

    The biggest advantage was - with Airlift (former JAT tour operator) arrangements the flights from/to BNX were gratis!

  6. 50-60 pax daily is nothing!
    Adding one more flight from Belgrade would anyhow attract people from INI and also from other areas.

    Take a look @ BUD. Same story, a lot of regional airports, but only BUD has some flights.

  7. I few to Nis a few weeks ago and the load wasn't bad. maybe 40%. I think it has potential.

    First Anonymous' suggestion is better than what's proposed in the article.

    I'm not sure about Aero's idea, but I find it interesting.

    How much demand would there be between INI and BNX?

  8. There is no marketing for BNX, i am from Banja Luka and in my life i havent seen any advertisment for flights in BL. People who dont know anything about the job are main characters at BNX, and as long is that BNX story will be the sad one.

  9. Opposite approach makes more sense.
    BNX should be a hub fed by BEG

  10. Some 2 months ago I write on this blog that BNX and INI can have chance just in sinergy. The best option for sure would be Jat with AT7:

    BEG-IST-INI-BNX-VIE (1-3-5-7)/MUC (-2-4-6-)-BNX-INI-IST-BEG

    Much better option than SkySrpska with 2 planes.

  11. sorry for mistake

    write = wrote

  12. to anonymous 11:41
    Recently BH Airlines put a full page ad in a Banja Luka daily.
    Also to remind the readers BH airlines recently put BNX on the map and it is now possible to find BNX in GDSs. Since last week people are flying from BNX to abroad via SJJ on the same ticket.

  13. The airlines in the region need smaller regional planes to service cities like Banja Luka and Nis. 20 to 35 seaters max! If ever the route develops well enough to justify large capacity then great easy done, change to an AT7 or Q400 but smaller regional aircraft are needed in the region!

    Maybe there is room for a small feeder airline using Saab 340 or Jet Stream 32 or Beech 1900Ds. Maybe they could even code share with the 'big 3'.

    This is the only way some of these airports will ever see success! Smaller aircraft with decent priced tickets and timetables otherwise forget it!

  14. @Q400

    Perfectly agree with you! Small communities always dream about big planes and scheduled flights to VIE,ZRH,MUC... Only small regional planes can "develop" small markets in INI,BNX... an offer daily flights.

  15. Has anyone here actually *been* to BNX airport, and know where it is situated? By the time you've driven all the way there (some 30km north of BL), you're almost half way to the border with Croatia and the motorway connection to ZAG. That's always going to kill demand for BNX, unless they can get enough flights in there that a proper bus service could be offered to the city itself.

  16. OT:

    Air France stop code-share with Jat on CDG-BEG route.


    and sarajevo - belgrade flights always cancelled nw, is tht because of not enough planes and it is lowest cabin load factor route (which i dont believe) or ..?

  17. ^ Flights to SJJ are not cancelled always they have been cancelled several times recently because of fog at SJJ. Most airlines have been cancelling their flights because of bad weather and this is standard procedure this time of year when it comes to SJJ. Yesterday Turkish, Croatia and Jat cancelled their flights.

  18. It must be that some people have never heard of air freedoms. BiH should grant fifth freedom to JAT to launch flights with pay load on BNXVIE vv. Or JAT may deside to relaunch AIR SRPSKA as an operating carrier based at AP BNX.

    If Government of Republic of Srpska wants flights from BNX to VIE, then they must bring OS in order to attract transfer passengers because only in that case they can see more than 10 psgrs on board.

    JU can have more than 80% CLF on BNXBEG vv operated by AT7 if they set a schedule and fares right.

  19. @ last anonymous

    Nothing is preventing the relaunch of Air Srpska except for the lack of demand. There is not enough demand and I think the main reason is that Zagreb is so close with much better and cheaper flight options. That will not change any time soon.

    I doubt OS would be interested unless there were major subsidies, but why should the whole area finance the 5 people that will use the flights?


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