Thursday, March 19, 2015

Ambassador hints at US - Croatia service

National Airlines eyes New York - Dubrovnik flights

The Ambassador of the United States to Croatia, Kenneth Merten, has said his country is working towards establishing flights to Croatia, adding that the foundations for such services are currently being put in place. The comments were made as Mr. Merten toured the construction site of Dubrovnik Airport’s new terminal building. “I am happy to see that arrivals by American citizens to the Dubrovnik County are growing, and by 20%. I hope this year there will be even more visitors. It is good to see progress here at Dubrovnik Airport. For Croatia it is important to plan for growth”, the Ambassador said. This year, the American Association of Airport Executives (AAAE) will host its annual gathering at Dubrovnik Airport, between October 19 and 21. The conference will include time for one-on-one business development meetings between US airport officials and commercial service officers with other airport officials from the region.

US charter carrier National Airlines has expressed interest to launch two weekly seasonal flights from New York to Dubrovnik in 2016. The airline has two Boeing 757-200s in its fleet, which have the capacity to seat 239 passengers. US tourists now rank fifth by visits to Dubrovnik and future flights from the United States could prove popular. In an interview to EX-YU Aviation News last year, Dubrovnik Airport’s Commercial Manager and Deputy Director, Frano Luetić, said that all conditions must be met in order for regular seasonal long haul flights to Dubrovnik to be launched. In 2014, American Airlines began codesharing on Iberia flights from Madrid to Dubrovnik while US Airways added its codes on British Airways flights from London. On the other hand, Zagreb Airport’s operator noted that one of its main tasks will be connecting the Croatian capital to the United States and is said to be negotiating with potential carriers.

The last time Croatia had scheduled nonstop flights to the United States was prior to its independence. JAT Yugoslav Airlines maintained services from Zagreb to New York, Chicago and Los Angeles. During its last year of normal operations, prior to the country’s break-up, Yugoslav Airlines operated four weekly flights from Zagreb to both New York and Chicago and two weekly services to Los Angeles with its DC-10 aircraft during the 1990/91 winter season. During that same season, the carrier maintained a one weekly flight from Dubrovnik to the Big Apple as well. Previously, during the 1980s, Pan Am operated summer services from the States to Dubrovnik and maintained flights to Zagreb until 1991.

63 comments:

  1. Admin please change your information that last time flights from Zagreb to USA was on winter 1990/91. In summer 1991 there were flights by Pan American directly to New York JFK

    ZAG-JFK PA037 A310 nonstop --34-67 1015 1440
    JFK-ZAG PA036 A310 nonstop -23-56- 1830 0755*

    In that time there were also Air Canada flights from Toronto to Zagreb
    Zagreb-Toronto AC879 1stop 1---5-7 1105 1610 76S
    Toronto-Zagreb AC878 1stop 1---5-7 1800 0955+ 76S

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    1. It doesn't say that last flights from Zagreb to USA were in '90/'91 it says how JU operated flights from ZAG to US in its last year of normal flights.

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    2. "The last time Croatia had scheduled nonstop flights to the United States was prior to its independence when JAT Yugoslav Airlines maintained services from Zagreb to New York, Chicago and Los Angeles". And that is not true. In 1991 summer time table JAT did not fly to USA from Zagreb at all (but from Belgrade) and Pan American did!

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    3. Croatia proclaimed independent on 25th June 1991. On that time JAT did not have any nonstop or even 1stop flights to USA or Canada from Zagreb. Pan Am and Air Canada did, together 7 weekly flights.

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    4. 1990 was before Croatia's independence and I see Pan Am flights are also mentioned in last sentence. As if it matters. I think more important part is about possible flights to US now.

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    5. What are you talking about. Croatia's independence came into effect on 8th october and international recognition in january 1992. At the times there were no flights to the us so the article correctly says that the last scheduled flights were prior to independence. Also I don't see where in the article it mentions that the last flights to the us were by JAT. It just says JAT operated its last flights from ZAG and DBV to US in 1990/91 winter season. And all of this was more than 20 years ago!

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    6. Jat was not last but Pan AmMarch 19, 2015 at 4:10 PM

      "The last time Croatia had scheduled nonstop flights to the United States was prior to its independence when JAT Yugoslav Airlines maintained services from Zagreb to New York, Chicago and Los Angeles".

      That is not true. True is:

      The last time Croatia had scheduled nonstop flights to the United States was in summer 1991 whan Pam American maintained services from Zagreb to New York.

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    7. ^ Did you even read the text?

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  2. Croatia is on fire!!!

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    1. Lucky the Air Force has Canadairs and Air tractors ! :)

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  3. Exciting times for Croatian aviation. Good luck.

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  4. Hopefully all these plans and announcements will actually materialize.

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  5. Sorry for OT, very interesting article about BEG airport:

    http://centreforaviation.com/analysis/belgrade-airport-with-resurgent-air-serbia-challenged-the-hub-order-in-centralsoutheast-europe-213774

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    1. This was already posted and discussed. No need to repost it.

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    2. This was freaken posted the fifth time in 4 days!
      One word, trolls!

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  6. Naj logicnije bi bilo da leti UA sa 752 ili sa 763 i da imaju codeshare sa CTN ali ja mislim da ce mozda biti neka charter aviokompanija.
    INN-NS

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  7. Can a B757 make it nonstop between NYC and Dubrovnik or Zagreb?

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    1. High-gross-weight versions of the aircraft can fly 4,500 statute miles (7,240 kilometers) nonstop with full passenger payload. Izvor Boeing
      ZAG-JFK-ZAG razdaljina Kilometers: 6902.79
      BEG-JFK-BEG razdaljina Kilometers: 7240 .
      U povratku bi verovatno morao da ima stop over u DUB a u dolasku bi bilo bez problema ja mislim.
      INN-NS

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    2. Nope, usually they have fuel stopover on Iceland. They can fly coast to coast America Europe.

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    3. Not in Iceland, but in Ireland ( Shannon to be specific)

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    4. oko STR je granica za NYC letove sa 757.
      A ta linija nije ekonomski funkcionirala kod United.

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  8. Not anymore if, but when the services start between Croatia and the US, they will not be operated on B757. ExYu aviation forgot to mention that National is seriously considering introduction of B777 into its fleet, probably to arrive beginning 2016, and to start DBV flights from NYC later that year. ZAG will probably see United B767 to ORD in 2016 as well, while Skygreece, with the same type, B767 (2nd unit), will start operating ZAG to NYC, month or two after Toronto, July or August this year.

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    1. Yea yea, so you will be connected to Chicago, New York, Toronto, Montreal, Seoul, Tokyo, Beijing, Singapore, etc all in the period of less than 2 years while last 10 years you had only seasonal charters. Stop dreaming and dont act like INN-NS. ZAG is getting better connected that is obvious, but dont over glorify things.

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    2. Wet dreams just like very successful Air Croatia. You might get for sure 2 weekly Korean flights and now all this glorifying. I see Croatians are no different than Serbian, all big dreamers lol.

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    3. No, at the moment there are no plans and no talks for Montreal, Tokyo, and Singapore. Also there are no plans and talks for Beijing, but for Shanghai instead. Toronto and Seoul are already confirmed, National officially expressed interest for DBV, At this point I cannot guarantee United ORD and Hainan PVG to ZAG, but it's highly likely they are starting 2016. And unlike INN-NS, I work in the industry. Cheers!

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    4. Hi Anonymous 4:49. For the sake of conversation, let's say that all of these airlines are considering ZAG. From my point of view (and MIDT data) NYC would be no brainer Vs ORD for ZAG as O&D is much much bigger - I get that UA can offer transits from/to ORD, but wouldn't NYC make much more sense for ZAG?
      I'm honestly surprised about Shanghai, didn't know there's such big demand between the cities/countries. For that I would really count more on BEG.
      Anyway, let's see what happens - I have to say I am not really optimistic we will get any year round or non charter wide body service here. But, in my view, something like NYC-ZAG or ZAG/DBV route might appear, as demand in volume is there; hopefully finance is as well. Cheers!

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    5. Croatia is trying hard to change its tourism from seasonal to year-round. Some results are already here. Simultaneously, far away markets are booming, and growing by double-digit annually. That is why Shanghai, as well as both New York and Chicago, together with Seoul and Toronto, have prospects, and not only seasonally, but year round. Once again, I'm not saying it's done deal, as INN-NS usually does, but yes, according to activities of both politicians and businessmen lately, I think something has finally started to happen

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    6. Let's hope some of these initiatives materialize! In last 2 - 3 years ZAG got BA, KL, LO, FZ and QR (maybe some more, don't know by heart) - hopefully we will have even more diversity on the apron.

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    7. True, all those 5 arrived. This year there are Swiss and Brusseles coming too... so that's 7 new airlines. Mind that easyJet left last fall... Czech Airlines left 2012, but that was not ZAG's fault. Malev went bankrupt in the beginning of 2012.

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    8. + ASL, Vueling

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    9. IB, Norwegian

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  9. OT: There have been no official updates on USA-Serbia Air Transport Agreement since November. Serbian Civil Aviation Directorate did not release any official statements so far. Air Serbia previous expectations for late 2015 flights have been quietly pushed back by 3-6 months (according to recent updates by the CEO and Mayor of Belgrade) without any explanation for the delay.

    US ambassador to Croatia statement from todays article supports process to begin flights between US and Croatia while US ambassador in Serbia is no longer talking about US Serbia air link in public interviews.

    While there are no official clarifications, these events start to paint a picture of US-Serbia bilateral process being slowed down or blocked while others in the region are supported to get ahead with transatlantic services. There is no better way to deny rumor mill than with an official statement on the progress.

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    1. No official announcement has ever been made by mgt frm Air Serbia re Nth America flights, other than the CEO who said in an interview that they hope to realise it in 2016, subject to further analysis. Even James Hogan has said the same. The only people who have trumpeted NTH America flying are the PM and SInisa Mali - neither of whom manage the day to day nusiness of Air Serbia. So what is there to say ? The only people making noises about this are the politicians and that should say everything ....

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    2. Pa letovi ce krenuti sledece godine ako bude sve po planu.
      INN-NS

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    3. Source: http://exyuaviation.blogspot.com/2014/11/serbia-and-us-reach-initial-air.html

      Quote: In a statement made earlier this week, Air Serbia’s spokesman, Arsen Rudan, said, “When it comes to our long haul flights, we are currently undertaking a feasibility study and we have, on numerous occasions, said that we hope to launch these services by the end of 2015”.

      Air Serbia PR quote qualifies for an official statement regarding long haul while not specifically addressing USA as a destination. Statements from Hogan about Chicago combined with this quote however clearly identify USA as one of potential destinations even if PM and Sinisa Mali quotes are excluded. Efforts on FAA Cat I and DCV/FAA principle agreement to modify 1977 bilateral complete the picture.

      It does not make absolutely no sense that Air Serbia would delay completion of the bilateral and other outstanding approvals, including with DoT. Even if Air Serbia "feasibility study" does not warrant immediate start of the US service, that should not stop work on outstanding paperwork so when the time is "right" they can proceed without further delay.

      There is no apparent reason Air Serbia would sabotage this process.

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    4. INN-NS didn't you say flights will start in March this year 100% ( no changes), enough with speculations and changes!!!

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    5. OMG you guys are 100 times worse than INN.enough already, you proved the point.17 year old does not know what he is talking about. It's time for you to show that you are not 5 any more.PLEASE

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    6. Well I am tired of somebody spamming about transatlantic flights at least 2 times per week. He said what he had to say, now enough! How is that so hard for you to understand SM?

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    7. That leaves US of A trying to block the bilateral with Serbia: https://youtu.be/z5rRZdiu1UE

      It may take a year or 10 years, but those flights will happen. Sam Cooke didn't live to see his prophecy come true but he was right: a change is gonna come: https://youtu.be/gbO2_077ixs

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    8. I am not denying it wont happen, but I for sure do not want someone posting for 3-4 years ( at least 1-2 per week) about how this flights will come. I think that is a fair thing to ask for

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    9. Anon 11:45

      Let me u understand this. Because he was spamming about transatlantic flights in March now you or those like you have a need to remind him and everybody else about it EVERY SINGLE DAY no matter what the topic is.

      You proved your point, now stop being a baby and go on with your life.

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  10. OT: Any info about this weird flight? http://www.flightradar24.com/FPO102T/5ca8fd6

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    1. There is a picture: http://picresize.com/images/rsz_svm3kpu.jpg

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    2. JAT tehnika?

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  11. OT

    flightradar shows 13 airborne ASL planes, no Boeings among them. Hope it stays that way!

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  12. American, Delta and United are in the middle of an offencive againts the Gulf carriers. They have released a paper in which they argument their anger againts the Gulf carriers. These three airlines and an American union of pilots are using every political connection they have got to stop the spread of Gulf carriers. They want to change the exisiting Open Skies Agreement. This is the true reason why Air Serbia is not being issued proper permits.

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    1. And there is more coming : As of today, 28 EU ministers, led by France and Germany, suggested similar protective measures against MEB3. The consequences for those big players, but I'm afraid smaller ones related to them are to be seen in near future

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    2. Bunch of bull, Open Skies does not cover Serbia-USA at all.

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  13. Why arent there any other international catering companies in ZAG, BEG, and all ex yu. In Sofia you have Alpha catering and LSG, while in all ex yu none. If there is demand in SOF I am sure there is demand in BEG or ZAG

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    1. I doubt there is a demand for it anyway in both SOF and BEG. Airlines tend to take on catering at base for the return sector on short haul flights. LH and OS just offer something sweet like a cake or chocolate bar followed by a bar service on flights to BEG so there isnt a reason for them to take on catering from BEG since it can be catered for from their respective bases. EY takes ASL Catering. QR was taking on catering from ESB but i dont know where theyre taking it now since they now go via SOF. Also Bulgaria Air and BH Air dont have their own catering department like JU has in BEG.

      ASL catering is quite good, they definitely have improved the past year. I recently flew them to and from AUH and I wish the catering from AUH changed as it is horrible.

      But regarding ground handling, there was talk of Swissport coming to BEG but nothing has been mentioned for a long time.

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    2. Thanks for explaining, it does make sense. It would be interesting to know where QR gets catering,although I highly doubt they get it from ASL. I remember news about Swissport also, but it seems nothing will happen.

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  14. Why no American airlines show interest flying in Belgrade?

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    1. Maybe because of this?

      Belgrade airport in new Russian transport plane military video (01:50), bottom of the article:

      http://www.novosti.rs/vesti/planeta.299.html:539383-Ovo-je-novo-Putinovo-vojno-cudo

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    2. We must not forget that Belgrade is a low yielding destination. Cargo is not a strong thing at the airport either, with smaller airports such as LJU handling more cargo (almost double more). There may be demand for direct flights, but how many of those seats will be filled in the premium cabins? What cargo will be filling the aircraft? What feed will there be from BEG? Tourism isnt a developed industry in Serbia neither is its image in the world the best after being tarnished with war, sanctions and corruption, and i dont see our government working hard to change that image any time soon.

      JU will have a big battle to make their flights profitable, long haul is harder to fill and bring to profitability, but at least some form of transit pax is arriving in BEG, something American airline companies dont exactly have access to.

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    3. Yes - no cargo route can survive without either premium or cargo traffic, that's why it's a good sign Air Serbia is putting so much emphasis on both, those flights will eventually materialize.

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    4. JATBEGMEL,
      I wouldn't say BEG is too low yielding either, especially in transatlantic traffic. There is a lack of premium passengers, but it is hard to find fares for less than $1000 from most of the USA and Canada to BEG, unless flying during the off season. This has a lot to do with the striking duopoly on North America-BEG traffic. The Star Alliance cartel and the AF/KLM/Delta/Alitalia monstrosity really keep fares rather high.

      Often times, I notice that it is cheaper to fly LAX-Mumbai than LAX-BEG with Lufthansa, and sometimes by a rather wide margin. This leads me to believe that fares are inflated.

      If JU decides to enter the transatlantic game, they should price themselves around $200 cheaper than the competition. The competition then has a choice of lowering their fares and trashing their yields just so they can stop a small percentage of the market from being captured by JU, or they can do what they are doing with Norwegian and just ignore JU as best as they can and try to keep the fares as high as possible.

      JU could have a lower cost base than the established carriers because they have discounts at BEG, Etihad can get planes for cheap because of their size, and because salaries and taxes are smaller in Serbia.

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    5. ASL discounts at BEG will cease by the end of 2016. Summer of 2016 will the only high season opportunity for ASL to seize those discounts for longhaul advantage, another reason to move swiftly with longhaul announcements.

      ASL prices for nonstop (like YYZ-BEG) should be higher than *A offers via FRA, MUC, WAW or VIE for a reason. Customers that want convenience of a nonstop should pony up extra few bucks over competitors stopover product. However ASL prices for regional destinations (say JFK-BEG-SJJ) should be slightly below *A pricing (JFK-FRA-SJJ).

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    6. I bet you are a Croatian or Bosnian who wants cheap tickets to Toronto. You are saying rip off Serbian pax and give the good old neighbors nice prices. This is happening right now for Moscow flight, it is 100 euros cheaper to fly from ZAG with ASL then from BEG. So I disagree with your logic since I wont benefit from it ( unless I myself go to ZAG with bus from BEG), but ASL does not :D

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    7. LOL you would lose your bet, I am neither. That pricing approach is not based on my personal interest. Goal is for Air Serbia to have a profitable and sustainable long haul product and they are doing a good job so far on existing routes including Moscow. If you can't afford to fly nonstop, go with cheaper one stop options. Airlines are businesses, not social services.

      If that pricing was based only on my selfish interests I would advocate free business class tickets for myself for all destinations!

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    8. Your logic does not make sense since you are saying that for instance flight from AMS to TLV should be cheaper than BEG to TLV. Explain to me how is it profitable for some Israeli guy to pay like 200 euros and get a ticket from AMS to TLV. For short hops like Banja Luka price can be same, I dont mind, but how on earth do you justify AMS to TLV to be cheaper than BEG to TLV.
      Yes I know airline company is not a charity, but would they not make more money on charging decent prices from BEG to TLV and attract more pax than instead DUMP prices from AMS to TLV.

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    9. My whole point is
      They gain more transfer pax by dumping prices, BUT at the same time lose Serbian pax who will chose LH or TK ( plus does Serbian pax are willing to pay decent price)
      FOr a Serbian pax: 1) ASL provides 1 direct flight for decent price
      For transfer pax: 1) ASL provides TWO flights for a cheaper price
      Transfer pax are good if there is no dumping, but CLEARLY THERE IS!

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  15. "Cargo is not a strong thing at the airport either, with smaller airports such as LJU handling more cargo (almost double more)." - That fortunately is changing now.

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