Sunday, November 20, 2016

UK carriers see strong Croatia demand


Carriers from across the United Kingdom have identified strong demand for the Croatian market in 2017 and have responded with a sharp rise in capacity. Monarch Airlines will launch routes out of London Gatwick and Manchester to Zagreb, while Ryanair has also announced a twice weekly service from Glasgow to Zadar next summer. Jet2.com plans new flights from April from across the UK to Dubrovnik and Pula, while Thomas Cook Airlines is offering new routes from May between Manchester and Split. Furthermore, British Airways will commence operations from London to Pula. The head of the Croatian National Tourist Board, Ratomir Ivčić, says, "Up until now we were the ones pursuing airlines, now it's the other way around. We have held talks with British Airways, Norwegian Air Shuttle and several other UK carriers that want to double their number of flights to Croatia, particularly Istria and southern Dalmatia".

The number of visitors from the United Kingdom to Croatia grew 26% in 2016 to three million over-night stays, however, the figure is yet to surpass records set in the late 1980s. This is estimated to be achieved in 2018. "Jet2.com is launching four new routes to Croatia next year and will increase capacity by 100%. All available data shows that early bookings are performing extremely well", Mr Ivančić notes. The growing demand for flights from the UK to Croatia will be on full display in Pula next year, with a record six airlines operating flights from London. "British Airways will be the sixth airline that will connect London and Pula, in addition to easyJet, Norwegian, Thomson Airways, Ryanair and Jet2.com, but the first to link Pula with Europe's busiest airport - London Heathrow”, Pula Airport said in a statement.

The National Tourism Board has criticised Croatia Airlines' plans to discontinue flights between Zagreb and London Heathrow Airport next year, noting that slots at one of the world's most congested airports are extremely valuable. It added that the airline's eventual return to Heathrow would be almost impossible if the sale goes through. On the other hand, the Croatian government noted, "Heathrow is one of Europe's biggest hubs and offers links to the rest of the world. Flights to the airport ensure a significant number of tourists from the United Kingdom". London is Croatia Airlines' only destination in the UK. It previously served Gatwick as well.

58 comments:

  1. And at the same time Croatia Airlines is selligf slots. Amazing...

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  2. It's interesting that number from Yugo days still haven't been overtaken. If I remember correctly Aviogenex, JAT and Adria use to fly charters to the UK plus British companies.

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  3. What is OU doing? They should have more flights to the UK.

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    1. If they exit Heathrow it means they won't be flying to the UK market at all. Not sure if they operate some charters though.

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  4. OT Israir Airlines will most probably add third weekly flight from TLV to BEG in December, while Air Serbia cut flights on Saturdays on the same route since yesterday.

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    1. Really? Are these charters or..?

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    2. seasonal flights that run until the end of december. It was reported here a month or two ago. Arkia is also flying the same.

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    3. Israir Airlines have regular flights twice weekly till the end of W16/17, tickets can be bought trough their web-site. Tickets for Arkia flights can be bought electronically as well, but the company will temporarily cease flights in January and February and will resume flying in March.

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    4. But Arkia you can only buy if flying from Israel?

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    5. It was like that in the start but not anymore.

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    6. Yeah, Arkia uses small E90 on the route, while Israir comes with 73Hs leased from Travel Service or Polish Enter Air.

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    7. I also saw Israir with their A320. The market grew a lot since the visa regime was suspended some years ago.

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  5. Total number of passengers between all airports in UK and Croatia is 1.058.658 (988.679 on scheduled flights and 69.979 on charter flights). Busiest route in 2015 was London-Gatwick - Dubrovnik with 199.741 passengers, followed by London-Heathrow - Zagreb 181.789 passengers, London-Gatwick - Split 124.661

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    1. Quite good numbers, especially ZAG-LHR. It's nuts that OU will be leaving this route. Thanks a lot for the statistics.

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  6. What do people think about the MAN-ZAG route that Monarch will start. Can it work?

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    1. Is this route year-round or seasonal?

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    2. Definitely it can work

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  7. Nice work. UK carriers have seen the potential but OU which should be driving the growth and promoting Croatia as a holiday destinations is leaving one of the most important markets in Europe.

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  8. I think OU definately have issues on this route.

    I flew on OU's flight from ZAG to LHR yesterday and there was only 1 person in business class (out of 18 available seats) and no more than 40 people in economy - on an aircraft that has 144 seats - just terrible.

    I am now on the BA flight flying from LHR to ZAG this morning and what a difference!

    5 people in business class (out of 18 seats) and the economy cabin is more than 80% full.

    The above text tells us of increasing popularity of Croatia, yet we hear Kucko tell us that LHR has been loss making for the longest time.

    I paid double to fly on BA than what I did on OU, yet BA was twice as full.

    Something just doesn't add up.

    If the issue has been this bad for so long, then the problem precedes even Kucko and his people.

    The issue - plain and simple - is poor sales people. They have no clue how to sell or where to go and look for sales.

    If BA can price twice as much and OU can't make it work in a growing market, then the issue is the sales/commercial people....

    Change that and you start to see improvements...

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    1. Why does OU have 18 seats in business? Maybe it was full.in the other direction?

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    2. The OU LHR issue is just being repeated every single day in every single post. And it´s even not happened yet. Nag nag nag.

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    3. Anon 10.58
      I agree with you, such a shame they are suspending LHR

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    4. OU ZAG-LHR was more than 90% full all the year. OU tickets are much more expensive than BA. In same time BA has much lower LF!!!

      Example of yours is extremely strange as we have more than 50 witness that told us how LF was super-high with high price on OU flights. And you can compare prices on internet OU is much much more expenses than BA.

      Those comparable data was publisher in Purger article on Tango 6.

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    5. Whenever I fly on DBV-ZAG-LHR (with OU), the flights are more or less packed, even during winter, but, I suppose, not all of the flights have great LFs.

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    6. Anon 12:45

      If you take time to think about it a little it really makes no sense what you wrote there. How on earth does OU dominate BA if they have, more expensive tickets and lack of transfer option as well as the brand awareness that BA enjoys.

      What you are essentially saying is that people are willing to pay more money to fly with an airline that has next to no connectivity and no brand awareness in comparison to BA. How does that make sense??

      What i think is going on here is that people are focusing on this issue way to much and trying to use it to justify everything that is wrong with OU, not acknowledging the facts, or rather focusing on quasi hopeful facts. Maybe this route loss making, we dont know that, but what is for sure is that it is not the only one. It comes as a big issue only because the sale of LHR slots are attached to it. That is, if such an important route with huge increase in demand is loss making what about the others? Perhaps you better focus on that.

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    7. This slow demise of OU is becoming painful to watch.

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    8. I am not sure which ex-Yu carrier is doing fine anyway. JP hurdles, OU cutting routes, YM not managed well by Daliborka and JU already cutting capacity slowly and still flying with Aviolet. It´s time for a new common airline that unites all 6 republics.

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    9. The slow demise is a problem, just because it's slow. As a Croatian taxpayer, all I can say is that they had many chances to recover but did nothing (Kucko as the main problem, but the employees as well). If they go bankrupt, I'd be sorry, but it won't be the end of the world, someone else will jump in.

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    10. Exactly maybe someone like DY even opens a base.

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    11. If OU LHR is heavy on connections with UA, VS etc..and they get 20 or 30 EUR per transfer pax you easily get your answer on how amazigngly great is basing your LF on feed to bigger fish in the pond. BA feeds itself so all metrics are different cause money stays in the house.
      Ans P2P traffic is surely on BA side due to their overall presence in UK market.

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  9. Does Trade Air operate any charters to the Uk?

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    1. They used to fly charter chains to Bristol from Split and to Norwich from Dubrovnik. They also had ad-hoc charters from Zagreb to Liverpool and Newcastle. Not any more, as far as I know

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  10. Good news for Hrvatska. Also, once the UK people like a destination they usually tend to repeat. HR has nice beaches, cheap alcohol and accommodation - exactly what they are looking for. In 5 years, the top ex-Yu list will be led by Croatian airports rather but BEG will still hold the crown.

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    1. In five years

      BEG
      SPU
      DBV
      ZAG
      SKP

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    2. In other words in 5 years it will be exactly as it already is today. ;)

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    3. Well SKP will get to the fifth spot

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    4. Nooo, it will be like

      PRN
      BEG
      SPU
      DBV
      SKP
      LJU
      TGD
      SJJ
      TIV
      INI
      OHD
      ZAD
      PUY
      RJK
      OMO
      ZAG
      and only BNX and OSI would be behind ZAG.

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    5. ZAG won't be last but it won't be second either.

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    6. SKP might overtake ZAG soon.

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    7. When FR comes it will have two million so half a million less than zag.

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  11. Who cares if OU leaves London. If they do BA will go 10 weekly from LHR, Monarch will be daily from LGW and maybe Norwegian or easyJet will launch flights as well.

    Maybe even W6 from LTN.

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  12. British fruit vendors are growing their apple sales. Meanwhile, Croatian pundits are outraged at how, in light of this, a Croatian fruit vendor is going to stop its unproftiable sale of oranges.

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  13. I can only say .If government don't change the current management including the Ceo Kucko.They can just as well close their business in general

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    1. It's already too late

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    2. Unfortunately, I think so too. But, then again, who knows, things in aviation change so quickly.

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    3. Best case scenario is where the government agrees to bankrupt OU and in its place Eurowings opens a base and hires some old staff.

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  14. I don't think previous governments were agresive enough in trying to sell OU. I mean, you can't just say: We're offering OU, would you, please, buy it? It might be too late, but they should definitely try, without wasting any more time, contact the potential buyers directly!

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    1. Sorry but there aren't gonna be any potential buyers. A wise EU airline will not buy an airline with debts. They will just wait for it to go bankrupt and take over their market, so simple!

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  15. OT beyond EX-YU
    Sofia Airport is seeing passenger growth by 50% nowadays, tremendous.

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    1. 50%, come on man.

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    2. It could be, if we compare Nov 2015 v Nov 2016.

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    3. Talking of the region, Athens is doing exceptionally well.

      OCT 16: 1.773.485 (+12.4%)

      2015: 15.699.017
      2016: 17.331.886 (10.4%)

      Aegean carried 9.6 million passengers in the first nine months and recorded a €50 million profit.

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    4. Just a small correction NEMJEE it's 9,8 millions for the first nine months.

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    5. My bad, was lazy to check... thanks. :)

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    6. SOF will have around 6 mln. next year

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    7. @ AnonymousNovember 20, 2016 at 1:59 PM
      50%, come on man.
      Yes, it's believe or not, but it's really 50%. In September it was 26%, in October 33%. And than Ryanair has come.

      Delete

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