Low cost carrier Wizz Air handled almost 870.000 travellers on its flights to and from Serbia and Bosnia in 2016, registering double digit passenger growth in both markets on the year before. From Belgrade and Niš, the airline carried 545.000 passengers, up from 456.789 in 2015, or an increase of 19.3%. The growth came as a result of a stronger performance at its base in Belgrade (+3.2% in the first three quarters), as well as the launch of new flights from Niš to Eindhoven, Memmingen and Dortmund. The no frills airline is expected to register an even better result in Belgrade this year with the stationing of a second jet in the city from mid-May, which will result in the introduction of flights to Friedrichshafen, Nuremberg, Hannover and Malta. All will operate on a year-round basis. In addition, it will boost frequencies on services to Dortmund, Eindhoven, Gothenburg, Memmingen and Stockholm Skavsta by adding an extra weekly flight. As a result, Wizz will offer 642.000 seats from the Serbian capital in 2017.
In Bosnia and Herzegovina, Wizz Air handled 324.000 passengers on its aircraft to and from Tuzla. The figure represents growth of 20.6% on the year before. During 2016 the carrier introduced new flights from Tuzla to London Luton, Berlin and Billund, but discontinued services to Stockholm Skavsta. Wizz will base a second Airbus A320 in Bosnia and Herzegovina's third largest city in March and launch flights to Bratislava, Cologne, Friedrichshafen, Nuremberg and Vaxjo. The new routes represent a 96 million dollar investment on Wizz Air's behalf into Tuzla and the creation of a further 36 local jobs. Meanwhile, the new aircraft will allow the airline to increase the number of weekly flights on existing routes from Tuzla to Eindhoven, Gothenburg, Malmo and Frankfurt Hahn. Wizz will further expand in Bosnia this year with the introduction of a new two weekly service between Budapest and Sarajevo, while talks with Mostar Airport over possible flights are set to resume in the near future.
Overall, Wizz Air carried 23 million passengers in 2016 across its network, representing a 19% passenger growth year over year. The airline will add at least thirteen new routes and offer over two million seats for sale out of the former Yugoslavia this summer season. Apart from its expansion in Serbia and Bosnia, the no frills carrier has announced plans to launch services from Budapest to Pristina, Skopje and Podgorica, as well as from Basel to Osijek. There are also reports the airline may base a fourth aircraft in the Macedonian capital, however, neither Wizz Air nor the airport have confirmed such plans yet.