|Sarajevo Airport anticipates 800.000 passengers in 2015|
Sarajevo Airport is heading for its busiest year on record and is negotiating the launch of several new routes. The CEO of Sarajevo Airport, Ivan Veličan, says, “We are currently holding talks with a number of airlines which plan to connect Sarajevo with several attractive destinations. We have the necessary capacity and are open for cooperation, both with full fare and low cost airlines. Sarajevo Airport has never before had so many links to the world”. Mr. Veličan adds, “Sarajevo offers twelve daily flights to European cities through which passengers can connect onwards to other destinations. The introduction of new routes depends on the airline’s assessment of the market and is a purely commercial decision”. While the airport’s CEO refused to name the airlines interested in launching flights to Sarajevo, so as not to jeopardise the negotiating process, Wizz Air is said to be eyeing up to three new routes to the Bosnian capital next summer season. Furthermore, Alitalia has also expressed interest to launch flights to Sarajevo by 2016 at the latest, while SAS Scandinavian Airlines is considering turning its seasonal summer flights into year-long services.
Bosnia and Herzegovina’s busiest airport has already secured the arrival of two new customers with low cost Flydubai to launch services in December. On the other hand, Swiss International Air Lines will inaugurate flights from Zurich next May. Mr. Veličan is confident the airport will attract more new airlines, particularly budget carriers, with the opening of a dedicated low cost terminal. The building that has been designated for low cost use, located next to the passenger terminal, has been previously occupied by the airport’s management. “Our priority in the coming period is the launch of new routes which will result in an increase in passenger numbers. We also plan to invest in infrastructure, particularly in the reconstruction of Terminal B and its conversion”.
During September, Sarajevo Airport handled 71.168 passengers, an increase of 6.7% compared to the same month last year. The number of flights operating to and from the airport also increased, from 520 last year to 577 this September. Over the past nine months, Sarajevo Airport has welcomed 555.145 travellers through its doors, up 6.7% on 2013. The number of flight operations over the same period grew by 10%. The airport’s CEO estimates Sarajevo will handle some 700.000 passengers this year and an additional 100.000 in 2015. “The results so far have served as an incentive for us to handle a record breaking 700.000 passengers by the end of the year. Next year we plan to further increase passenger numbers to 800.000. We can and we will”, Mr. Veličan concludes.