Saturday, January 30, 2016

Croatia resumes talks over US flights

Croatia mulls options for nonstop flights to the United States

The Croatian Embassy in the United States has resumed talks with relevant stakeholders over the introduction of nonstop flights between the two countries. Speaking to the "Total Croatia News" portal, Josip Paro, the Croatian Ambassador to the United States, said, "The Embassy has this month again restarted discussions with various players in order to again explore the realistic possibilities to establish direct flights to Croatia. However, this will require, among others, a conclusion of a serious independent market study in the US that can verify passenger interest and establish a credible passenger load for the aircraft, which is essential to properly calculate the economics of these direct flights. We will do all we can to spearhead and facilitate this effort, and achieve direct flights as soon as it is economically possible". Last year, the Ambassador of the United States to Croatia, Kenneth Merten, said his country is also working towards establishing flights to Croatia, adding that the foundations for such services are currently being put into place.

Mr Paro noted there were several attempts to establish flights between the two countries over the past ten years, but all have ultimately failed due to a lack of interest on behalf of the carriers. "Over the last decade there have been several attempts to establish direct flights with no sustainable success, mostly because it is hard to ascertain passenger load/interest on both legs of the route, as well as some resistance from established global carriers and their hub based structures. The Embassy helped establish a taskforce of interested people with this purpose and we were also in discussion with Croatia Airlines last year about that, but there was no sufficient interest and capacity to take this initiative forward", Mr Paro noted.

The CEO and founder of TAV Airports Holding and TAV Construction, Sani Sener, believes flights between the Croatian capital and New York would be most desirable. "The most desired route from Zagreb would be New York", he said. TAV has a 15% stake in the consortium that runs the airport. Zagreb Airport attempted to initiate flights to the Big Apple five years ago, prior to the concession. The then Managing Director, Tonči Peović, held talks with North American Airlines over a potential two weekly service from JFK Airport to the Croatian capital. In addition, Croatia Airlines' CEO, Kreišimir Kučko, previously said his airline aims to begin long haul flights sometime in the future. "The dream is to one day add long haul flights to our network. That’s a long way off at the moment but it’s good to have something to aim for and we are building our airline to make it possible”, Mr Kučko said. Croatia last had scheduled flights to the United States during the summer of 1991, when Pan Am maintained four weekly nonstop roundtrips from New York to Zagreb with its Airbus A310 aircraft.

43 comments:

  1. Considering ASL is starting 5 weekly to US there's no chance Croatia will get those flights. And I'm pretty sure Canada flights will be cancelled as soon as Air SERBIA starts them.

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    1. Really? Air Serbia will be the only company connecting Croatia with the US? What about Lufthansa, Austrian, Air France, British, KLM, Swiss, Turkish? Can Air Serbia beats their price? You think that they will suspend servicies to Zagreb? lol

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    2. Does TK really carry pax to NA from ZAG? I doubt that

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    3. @ Marko: I'm interested in the avaiable connections to JFK via BEG ex ZAG, SPU and DBV.
      I still see some problems there..?
      Can you tell us the planned timetable?

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    4. This shows your lack of knowledge of aviation industry. Especially for saying that one smallish European company with 20 planes can ruin the possibility of Croatia to get direct flights to the States one day. It probably won't be CA, but if one of the bigger american companies recognize the number of passengers flying to and fro Croatia, they won't let it slip away. Especially not because of ASL.

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    5. @ Marko: There is no way that air transat will be cancelling yyz-zag because of ASL. They are targeting two different markets with Air Transat mainly focusing on tourism. I highly doubt that passengers would rather fly YYZ-JFK-BEG-ZAG if they could do it non-stop.

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    6. Air Transat this week cancelled its planned Nice flights due to poor sales. Hope the same doesn't happen with ZAG.

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    7. AirTransat is the biggest north American garbage, that is the reason why they are not able to get a good revenue in many countries. So far ZAG is going for 390+420 tax, that is showing you how well they are doing on that route.

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  2. Pa to se čeka! Bravo! Linija JFK-DBV je neupitna.

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  3. If United start flights to Zagreb with connections to Croatia flights to PUY, ZAD, OSI, DBV, SPU, SJJ, SKP and PRN Air Serbia should cancel JFK flights. And there is no big chance for that.

    In any other scenario it would be just P2P flights for tourists during summer season as there is some 50.000 tourist from USA to Zagreb and Adriatic (one, maximum too flights per week) and for sure Air Serbia will not have any influence to that.

    The best possible option would be Norwegian LCC flights to JFK from ZAG in combination with other Norwegian flights from ZAG (one or two airplanes based in ZAG). But that is just my wet dream, nothing else.

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    1. I don't think United is even considering Croatia, I am sure Turkey, Austria and Poland are higher on their list. At least for the time being. Also, PRN, SJJ and SKP could easily be served through Vienna with Austrian Airlines with which they have an ATI.

      What's likely to happen is to have some summer charters on an airline like National or one of those. That said, if any airport has a chance then my guess is that it's DBV.

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    2. @ Anon January 30, 2016 at 9:39 AM
      +1

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    3. Nemjee I also don't think there is chance dor United in this moment. But if Croatia would be much better company with logical waves and much more feeding routes it would be good oportunity to open ZAG route. Unfortunately it is not a case...

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    4. Having logical waves is a very expensive game to play. It means that airplane utilization is much lower, and ground crews will be highly burdened during the waves, but will be idle for most of the day.

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    5. If JU's decision to open JFK is political then Croatia's decision to lobby for it is equally political because it is quite clear they are doing only to keep the race with Serbia alive. The race no one sane can understand but both countries race it anyway...

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    6. Last Anonymous,

      I agree that Croatia starting to talk about USA flights is in response to Air Serbia's North American ambition and if the flights do materialise than I'm sure we will see an even bigger effort from the Croatian side to establish a North American service.

      But I don't agree that this phenomenon exists only between Croatians and Serbs. It happens all over the world and as long as it is done in the right spirit I personally see nothing wrong with it.

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    7. Last Anonymous,

      I agree that Croatia starting to talk about USA flights is in response to Air Serbia's North American ambition and if the flights do materialise than I'm sure we will see an even bigger effort from the Croatian side to establish a North American service.

      But I don't agree that this phenomenon exists only between Croatians and Serbs. It happens all over the world and as long as it is done in the right spirit I personally see nothing wrong with it.

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    8. Ja sam lepo napisao da morate najuriti ambasadora, ali me exYU brise.

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  4. What's going with JU this morning?

    YU-ANK VIE-BEG
    YU-ANJ ZAG-BEG
    YU-ANI LJU-BEG

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    1. What's so to be surprised with. Just B737 instead of AT72. Technical reasons.

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    2. Duuuh mr obvious. But it's odd that three Atrs would have a technical problem at the same time.

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    3. Fog yesterday night in BEG.

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    4. ATR su ostali na aerodromima LJU, ZAG, VIE i PRG zbog magle u Beg ... evo upravo se vracaju u bazu. Dobro je sto jos imamo B737 koji priskoci kad zatreba da bi se izbego potpuni kolaps.

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  5. It must be tough to play "follow he leader" .... not surprising, but typical and unimaginative

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    1. If we are to follow that logic then JU is 'following the leader' in Vienna.

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    2. @anon January 30, 2016 at 10:39 AM
      +1

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    3. Vienna is not a leader. They report into Cologne, their leader is there.

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    4. Sure, then JU is following the leader that sits in CGN. Same argument, just replace the city in question. Anyway, OS has far more creative freedom from LH than JU does from EY.

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    5. I have tried OS products many times and found nothing creative in them, just bland and boring. They should be thankful LH saved their a**es.

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    6. @12.20a ... which is a lot more creative freedom than OU has frm itself ...

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  6. What I don't understand is how can the current Ceo give his opinion on behalf of an airline when he is on his way out

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  7. All I know is that I just flew Montreal to Sarajevo return with Turkish for $$ 400 USD all taxes included. So my advice to Croatian, Serbian, Adria, and the rest in the region is just that, stick to your region and code-share with the big boys!!

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    1. Cheap fuel should be a precourse for increase in transatlantic routes. Not vice versa as you stated.

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    2. LOL :) Totally agree. TK will REALLY grow once the new IST apt opens as there is a shortage of slots in the current Ataturk Terminal. Flights to North America are likely to double, not to mention the rest of the world. The future looks bright to them...

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    3. Da li karte za JFK kreću u prodaju sljedeće nedjelje ?

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    4. TK future depends on security. If incidents like the one at Sabiha spread to IST it may affect travel.

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    5. Slijedeće nedjelje? hahahaha, jesi li ti normalan, na osnovu čega misliš da će se to desiti?

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    6. da jesam normalan, jucer je radjen test na ubacivanju karata na sabre sistemu AS, obicno to rade 3-5 dana pre nego se karte puste u opticaj

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  8. Дечко ТзарJanuary 30, 2016 at 9:25 PM

    OT: Aerodrom Kraljevo to open, Air Serbia ATR-72 can fly there:

    http://www.b92.net/biz/vesti/srbija.php?yyyy=2016&mm=01&dd=30&nav_id=1091287

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    1. Correct reading would be: Kraljevo airport opening announced, will stay in the announced status for another 20 years during which nothing will fly there except migratory birds.

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    2. or it could be: Air Serbia announces Kraljevo flights for summer season 2016.

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    3. Another pre election story. I'm sick of it...

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