Zagreb’s number grow in December as annual figures decline
Zagreb Airport closed 2013 with growth by handling almost 4.000 passengers more in December than the year before. It marked the first month of growth for Croatia’s busiest airport after eight consecutive months of passenger decline. In December, Zagreb Airport welcomed 149.752 passengers, an increase of 2.7% compared to the same month in 2012. This is despite the number of flight operations declining from 1.409 in December 2012 to 1.347 last month. This would indicate that aircraft flying to and from the Croatian capital had significantly better loads than the year before.
Overall, Zagreb Airport ended 2013 by handling 2.300.006 passengers, a decrease of 1.8% compared to its record breaking 2012. Despite a promising start to the year, number began to decline in April. During 2013, Zagreb Airport had to deal with the fallout of an almost ten day strike by Croatia Airlines staff, a big reduction in the national carrier’s operations over the summer season and a 24 hour strike by its own staff which saw the airport shut down its doors to all traffic. As a result, the number of flight operations also declined during the year. In 2013, Zagreb Airport saw a total of 18.437 arrivals and departures, down 5.6% on the year before.
December’s performance will serve as a welcome start for Zagreb Airport’s new operator which intends to boost passenger numbers by 8% this year. Etihad Regional (Rome), KLM Cityhopper (Amsterdam), Germanwings (Hamburg) and Trade Air (Rijeka), in cooperation with Croatia Airlines, have already announced new flights to the city in 2014. In addition, only a few days ago, Turkish Airlines boosted its frequencies from Istanbul to Zagreb to double daily flights. El Al Israel Airlines will also increase frequencies on its seasonal summer service to the Croatian capital from one to two per week. Overall, Zagreb Airport is hoping for a busy year which will see it surpass its 2012 passenger record.