|June growth slows for Belgrade and Zagreb airports|
The airports in both Belgrade and Zagreb have seen their passenger growth slow during the month of June, with Belgrade surpassing the two million passenger mark, while its counterpart in Zagreb managed to handle its millionth traveller for the year. Serbia’s busiest airport welcomed 461.490 passengers through its doors during June, an increase of just 2.3%. However, Belgrade still achieved growth despite a decline in the number of operated flights. The airport recorded 5.541 flight operations, down 1.1% on the same month last year. The decline came as foreign carriers reduced their offering to the Serbian capital, with fewer summer charters performed as a result of the Serbian Civil Aviation Directorate’s decision to limit the number charter services by foreign operators.
However, Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport handled its two-millionth passenger for the year, the first time it has managed to so during the month of June. Overall, the airport has welcomed 2.137.489 passengers during the first two quarters of the year, an increase of 7.5% compared to the same period in 2014. On Wednesday, Qatar Airways introduced an additional two weekly flights from Doha to Belgrade via Sofia for a total of seven weekly rotations, while Germanwings will launch two weekly seasonal summer flights from Stuttgart to the Serbian capital on July 30. At the same time, LOT Polish Airlines suspended its daily flights to Belgrade on June 30 as a result of restructuring. The service will be resumed on January 2, 2016. During the first half of the year, the number of flight operations at Belgrade Airport increased from 27.312 in 2014 to 28.189, up 3.2%.
Meanwhile, Zagreb Airport saw its numbers improve 1.8% in June, significantly down compared to the double digit growth recorded throughout most of the year so far. However, Croatia’s busiest airport handled its millionth passenger during the month, eight days ahead of 2014. A total of 248.438 travellers were welcomed in June. The number of flight operations increased from 3.430 to 3.686, up 7.5%. During the month, SkyGreece Airlines launched transatlantic flights from Toronto, however, earlier this week the return leg of the second flight from Zagreb was cancelled due to technical problems with the aircraft, although the carrier maintains it has been affected by the economic uncertainty in Greece. The Boeing 767-300ER has been grounded in Zagreb for the time being but the airline plans to resume normal operations later tomorrow. Furthermore, on June 30, Qatar Airways added another two weekly services from Doha to the Croatian capital. As a result, flights now operate on a daily basis. During the month ahead, Germanwings will resume its seasonal service from Hamburg on July 22. Overall, Zagreb Airport handled 1.159.490 travellers during the first half of the year, up 7% on 2014. In addition, the number of operated flights grew 8.4%.