Zagreb numbers decline as Dubrovnik and Split boomWhile most Croatian airports are recording strong growth in 2012 with some seeing record figures, Zagreb Airport is lagging behind on last year. Croatia’s busiest airport welcomed 1.064.000 passengers in the first half of 2012, a slight decrease of 1.8% compared to the same period last year. The airport managed to level to last year’s results in mid June when it handled its millionth passenger on the same day as in 2011, however, numbers declined in the coming days. Zagreb has lost Malév, Spanair and Central Connect Airlines to bankruptcy but has welcomed Qatar Airways, which will be joined by SkyWork Airlines and British Airways later on in the year. “This year we have handled 18.400 passengers less than in 2011. The primary reason for this is the financial crisis”, Zagreb Airport spokesperson Jadran Kapor notes.
On the other hand, Dubrovnik saw its best June on record. The airport has also started strong in July as it welcomed 5.000 passengers more than last year. Croatia’s second busiest airport also has new routes planned for the upcoming slow winter season. Croatia Airlines will extend its seasonal summer service from Dubrovnik to Zurich throughout the winter. Flights will operate twice per week while Swiss International Airlines will code share on the service. It comes after Lufthansa announced it will be operating flights from Munich to Dubrovnik throughout the 2012/2013 winter as well.
After a slow start, Split has also turned its fortunes around. The airport handled 471.692 passengers so far this year, an increase of 10.1%. Split Airport ended 2011 by handling 1.300.381 passengers and is expected to comfortably surpass that figure by the end of 2012. Zadar and Pula are also recording strong growth. The only airport which has taken a big hit this year is Osijek which has suffered greatly from Ryanair’s exit.