New hope for Banja Luka Airport
Wizz Air is still considering launching flights to Bosnia and Herzegovina’s second largest city, Banja Luka. Wizz Air’s Corporate Communications Manager, Daniel de Carvalho, says, “We are keeping this option open because we are a company that is recording strong growth both fleet and passenger wise”. A Wizz Air delegation recently reviewed the facilities at Banja Luka Airport and reported they were satisfied with the its technical capabilities. The main reason the airline is staying away is because of high fuel prices at the airport. “Our fuel costs 1.89 euros per litre but for an agreement to be reached it must range between 1.10 and 1.20 euros. We are unable to lower the cost below the asking price of the fuel provider”, Davorin Mihić, the CEO of Banja Luka Airport says.
Mr. Mihić notes that the airport is doing everything to solve the issue, “We are really trying but we haven’t resolved the problem yet”. He adds that the low cost airline is interested in launching flights to Scandinavia, after which it would considering opening new routes if the service proves successful. Several months ago Wizz offered Banja Luka flights from Luton, Malmo, Eindhoven and Dortmund to choose from, with the airport selecting the service from Sweden as it considered it to be the most viable out of the offered destinations.
Wizz Air began talks with Bosnian officials last year with plans to launch flights from all four commercial airports in the country, including Sarajevo and Mostar. Talks with Sarajevo Airport ended in failure when the airport’s CEO said that reducing service costs for Wizz Air would cause a “domino effect” with other airlines. The no frills airline is said to be interested in launching flights from Mostar to Italy and Poland in order to cash in on the flourishing religious tourism. Next week the airline will launch its first service to Bosnia and Herzegovina by inaugurating flights from Malmo to Tuzla.