Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Croatia to focus on long haul flights


The Croatian Minister for Tourism, Gari Cappelli, has said the country is looking to secure flights from far-away markets in the coming period and is in talks with a number of carriers. Speaking to the "Globus" weekly, Mr Cappelli, said, "The Ministry's strategic goal is to develop Croatia as a destination which is accessible to various airlines, particularly before and after the height of the summer season. We are directing a part of our funds towards closer cooperation with carriers, which will result in more flights to all of our airports. We are turning towards the Far East and the Middle East. Since January, we have been in talks with a number of large global and European airlines, as well as tour operators. I am certain that the result of these talks will be visible next year with a strong increase in visitors from non-traditional markets". Mr Cappelli singled out South Korea, Japan, China and Taiwan as key markets. Currently, Korean Air and Japan's ANA serve Croatia through summer charters to Zagreb and Dubrovnik respectively.

The Minister noted that crisis-hit holiday destinations in North Africa and Europe are beginning to recover, which is why Croatia must do more to attract tourists from Asia. "That is why we are turning towards the Asian market, primarily Korea, Japan and China, where we are concentrating a lot of our efforts. We might see direct flights between China and Zadar", Mr Cappelli said recently. The Ministry for Tourism played a role in overseeing Emirates' service launch between Dubai and Zagreb this year. The route caters for a significant number of holidaymakers from countries such as Korea, China and Australia. Furthermore, the Ministry is also in talks over potential seasonal services from Zagreb and Dubrovnik to the United States, which could launch next year.

China Southern Airlines recently commenced talks with Zadar Airport over the possible introduction of flights from its main base in Guangzhou. It marks Zadar Airport's second attempt at establishing services to China following a failed effort in 2014 with Hainan Airlines. Talks are said to have gone "very well" so far. However, Guangzhou Airport has noted it would contact other carriers if China Southern decided against launching the service. Meanwhile, Korean Air has said it is considering upgrading its seasonal charter flights from Seoul to Zagreb as the airline introduces more fuel efficient aircraft to its fleet, which could cater for such markets. The President of Korean AIr, Won-Tae Cho, said that the next generation of fuel efficient jets, such as the Boeing 787-9, will allow the airline to "reduce costs and improve the business". Mr Won-Tae Cho added, "This will give us an opportunity to improve our results and expand in markets such as Croatia and Marseille. We will focus on various overseas routes".

139 comments:

  1. It's good that they have the initiative. Hoping we see some results.

    ReplyDelete
  2. OU should have taken out a long haul aircraft and started flying to the US and a point in Asia.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Too expensive.

      Delete
    2. That is a financialy disastrous strategy.

      Delete
    3. I am not so sure. Older generation B777 are dirt cheap to lease. If they were to lease one or two 20 year old birds and serve Taipei, Guangzhou, Beijing, Seoul, Tokyo, NY, Chicago, Toronto all 1 weekly as mainly charters (most seats pre-sold to tour operators who take over the risk for selling their seats) then it can work. We have heard many times that TOs would actually be interested. I am certain in that case it would be no issue to sell the remaining seats via regular channels for most of the year hence during those periods OU could earn well in the long haul incoming business. Even a better strategy would be to lease these planes only for some 8 months a year, if possible.

      Delete
    4. This sounds like a proper way to finish OU.

      Delete
  3. If there is demand airlines will come and fly. Emirates does a good job covering those markets, but as demand grows we might see some others launching flights as well.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I do not think that Croatia is ready for year round service to China and the USA.Charters are working awesome, and if there was demand, other cariers would already fly to Croatia.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There are charters from Croatia to the USA and China?

      Delete
    2. What is there to be ready about? Croatia has airports and runways that can actually take on these flights. So they are ready! :D

      Delete
    3. I was talking about demand for USA and China market.I know there are no flights to thes destinations but there is Canada, Japan and South Korea.

      Delete
    4. Croatia should have had flights to the USA years ago, at least during summer!

      Delete
    5. ^Agree. Route would work without an issue, even year round.

      Delete
    6. Yes, but which airline would operate that route?

      Delete
    7. I think any American carrier could give it a try but United would make the most sense. It's a star alliance members and flies seasonal routes to Athens, Hamburg, Stockholm and Venice in Europe.

      Delete
    8. United's B767s would be perfect for this route.

      Delete
    9. Considering Air Transat's success on the Toronto-Zagreb route, I have no doubt the US would work too.

      Delete
    10. Croatia is so much connected to the USA and Canada with 1 stop flights that it will be hard for any direct service in terms of yield to be profitable. KLM/LH/BA/EI/OS/LX/SN/LO/ to name a few connect not only the capital but also the seaside towns. KLM flies from the start 10X a week between SPU and AMS. A lot of intercontinental traffic - same goes for EI/BA/LH and many others.

      Delete
    11. Regarding US airlines flying to Zagreb, there are too many bigger markets in Europe for them to start first.

      Delete
    12. The same was said for Emirates ;)

      Delete
    13. United would be absolutely the best choice. They could codeshare with Croatia Airlines from Zagreb to the rest of country plus Skopje, Pristina, Sarajevo, Bucharest... It could be a major success.

      Delete
  5. "We are directing a part of our funds towards closer cooperation with carriers"

    Didn't some make us believe how the country provides no financial support to airlines?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes and I don't know why they claimed that. If foreign airlines need some simulation which give a return on the investment by bringing in more tourists, then I don't see why not. I'm certain they did this with EK as well and so they should.

      Delete
    2. When EK said they received assistance to launch Dubai-Zagreb people here were having fits how its not financial help. Now the minister openly says they are giving money to attract airlines.

      Delete
    3. They will! Future.

      By present budget of Republic of Croatia and Croatian Tourist Board they DID NOT!

      In Croatia (European union member) you can not give someone money out of your budget plan and realization or legal changing of budget.

      Delete
  6. Dubai - Zagreb is NOT long haul flight. Yes, they use wide body plane for this route but it's medium haul.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Who said it was?

      Delete
    2. It is not, but its always a pleasure to see the B777-300ER daily fly past my flat and dock at the airport.

      Delete
    3. It is actually considered long haul as any route from Central Europe to Arabia is widely considered a long haul service. It does not play a role if a medium haul jet such as 737 could also reach the destination. Likewise services from the UK/France to North American East coast are considered long haul

      Delete
    4. Uk and France from the Middle East are completely different as these flights last up to 8 hours. Zagreb, Belgrade, Skopje, Sarajevo from the Middle East is just 5 hours.

      Delete
    5. Short-haul flight: <3 hours
      Medium-haul flight: 3 to 6 hours
      Long-haul flight: 6 to 12 hours
      Ultra long-haul flight: >12 hours

      Delete
    6. Not correct.

      Short-haul flight: <4 hours
      Medium-haul flight: 4 to 8 hours
      Long-haul flight: 8 to 12 hours
      Ultra long-haul flight: >12 hours

      Delete
    7. That is total nonsense! Where do you have these numbers from??

      You are seriously claiming that a flight of 8 hours duration is not a long haul service? So a service from Germany to NYC is medium haul according to this?

      Maybe you should inform yourself before texting such misinformation!
      One example (official definitions from Eurocontrol, AEA, several long haul carriers):

      https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flight_length

      Even by the Eurocontrol definition every flight longer than 4000km is a long haul flight. Zag-dxb is minimum 4163km.

      Additionally, many airlines simply define long haul as flights to other continents.

      Delete
    8. @AnonymousAugust 8, 2017 at 9:09 AM

      Anything over 4 hours is a long haul flight

      Short haul flights are up to 90min,
      Medium haul flights are between 90 min and 240min. Anything over 240min is considered a long haul flight. Over 12 hours is considered ultra long haul flight.

      Delete
    9. Agreed with the last anon. Otherwise all the flights from western Europe to the East coast, particularly the Northeast, would be considered medium. And they're not. Flights from London,or Paris to NYC last 6&1/2 - 7 hours.

      Delete
  7. Good luck! There is definitely potential.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Wonder which airlines they are talking to.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Probably Korean

      Delete
    2. There is a rumour they will start seasonal 1x weekly flight next year.

      Delete
    3. It pretty much says in the article - China southern and Korean.

      Delete
  9. It's good that they are thinking about new markets. Would be fantastic to have regular flights from one of these countries.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Not surprised they are focusing on these countries as tourists from these countries prefer to come out of season and the government's objective is to extend pre and post season.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. True. In January, February and March for example, Koreans were the top foreign tourists by number of arrivals.

      Delete
  11. If the minister is counting on flights from China to Zadar like he says, then it means they haven't done a lot to attract Chinese airlines since I doubt this service will happen like it was the case a few years ago

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Zadar makes no sense at all. Dubrovnik or Split would be much more logical, not to mention Zagreb.

      Delete
    2. Zadar is the cheapest airport on the coast and possibly they are willing to have minimal charges for heavies/widebodies.

      Delete
    3. But can Zadar handle widebody planes? Aren't there runway limitations.

      Delete
    4. There is talk that Alibaba could build a large distribution center next to Zemunik Zadar. If this happens than these flights will make much more sense.

      But still, one of the runway's at Zadar might have to be upgraded.

      Delete
    5. There are many airports all around the world that handle wide body jets 787/330 on a runway of 2500m.

      Question is if taxiway, apron, ground services can handle wide bodies?

      Delete
    6. wide bodies did lend in Zadar in past.

      Delete
  12. I wish Croatia would learn from other european as tourism is not a high yield business and could cause more damage than benefits long therm.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It accounts for 20% of GDP.

      Delete
    2. I agree. Croatia has done a great job developing tourism but now needs to focus on other sectors in its economy. Companies like Rimac should be the focus now.

      20% is a scary number leaving Croatia way too exposed to economic damage if lets say the worst was to happen.

      Delete
    3. Yes, economy should be more diverse, and the 11% growth of the industry sector is encouraging, but you're right - more emphasis should be put on high tech, IT,clean energy...Croatia has enormous potential for that, with so much water, sunlight and wind. Rimac is an amazing inventor, but he needs help in running a bussiness in my opinion. Biotech, pharmaceuticals, chemical and food industry, telecommunications, culture sector...etc. are already strong in and around Zagreb. But Zagreb needs a stronger financial sector.
      And on a side note - transport. The last time I was in Zagreb, transport was a disaster. Constant gridlock.
      It needs a much more efficient rapid railway transit system. At leas a light rail. Current one has way too few stations and lines.

      Delete
  13. I'm surprised Korean hasn't started regular flights yet.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If Korean were to launch regular ZAG flights it certainly would take away some passengers from EK, QR and TK.

      Delete
    2. One flight per week seasonably would hardly make any difference, especially since they are flying summer charters for years now.

      Delete
    3. Having a regular one weekly flight instead of 10 per year, which can be freely booked by others (and not just through a Korean tour operator) would be quite different then the existing set up.

      Delete
    4. Korean wouldn't start year round operations and with 350k+ Koreans coming to Croatia, I think that one flight per week definitely wouldn't shake EK, TH or QR business.

      Delete
  14. Is it just me or does this minister seem much more aviation oriented than his predecessors.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Definitely. I'm glad that this minister is paying more attention to aviation and that they are directly involved in negotiations with other airlines.

      Delete
  15. I really do hope that something materializes out of this.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Great news. I think there is a lot of potential from these markets, especially China and I do not understand why more hasn't been done. Flights to Zadar just seem like a dream project. There should be flights to Zagreb or Dubrovnik/Split.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Agree. Politicians have been talking about China-Croatia flights since 2014 and nothing has happened yet. It's time for some concrete action.

      Delete
    2. What are the stats for Chinese toursts in Croatia in 2016? I tried googling but could not find anything.

      Delete
    3. China - 102k
      Hong Kong - 24k
      Macau - 2k

      Delete
    4. Alen Šćuric PurgerAugust 8, 2017 at 6:40 PM

      China 102.044
      Hong Kong 23.603
      Macau 328
      Taiwan 83.538

      Top 10 out of Europe:
      1. 377.779 South Korea
      2. 337.446 USA
      3. 149.829 Australia
      4. 120.971 Japan
      5. 110.997 Canada
      6. 102.044 China
      7. 83.538 Taiwan
      8. 53.385 Isreael
      9. 47. Brasil
      10. 35.057 India

      Delete
    5. So it really becomes clear the top top priority should be Seoul!

      They can have easily 1x weekly B748 charter whole year round - equals 368 seats * 52 weeks = only 19000 arrival seats yearly. That is only one twentieth of the number of South Korean visitors/arrivals per year to Croatia. Seems crazy there is no direct regular year round airlink as of yet.

      Delete
    6. Alen Šćuric PurgerAugust 9, 2017 at 1:23 AM

      Seoul and JFK should not be problem all year with 3-5 flights per week. Sydney-Melbourne, Peking, Tokyo and Taipei twice per week seasonal charters, Rio and New Delhi once per week seasonal charters.

      Delete
  17. Kakva su sad punjenja EK?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. News from a few weeks ago, so not the freshest but at the time, summer peak was looking very good with high LF - no info on the yield, but winter was pretty bad in terms of forward bookings. Hence the reduction in frequencies.

      Overall, for a new route, its looking good.

      Delete
  18. Bravo Hrvatska!

    ReplyDelete
  19. How tiny does the dash look next to the B777 :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Quite the difference ;)

      Delete
    2. How tiny the airport looks...

      Delete
    3. Where can you see "the airport"? On the picture you barely get to see 5% of the terminal and almost nothing of "the airport".

      Delete
  20. They have been delaying flights from Zagreb to US each year. Hope it finally happens in 2018!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think they can't find an airline to fly this route. But since Croatia plans to subsidize airlines, they might be able to now.

      Delete
  21. Malaysia Airlines used to fly to Zagreb via Vienna. Could this route be resumed?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What was the background of that route? It certainly wasn't because of tourists or demand.

      Delete
    2. Wasn't it for UN peacekeepers in Sarajevo?

      Delete
    3. Nope has nothing to do with it. It was mainly serving Croatian diaspora in Australia. Flights operated twice per week with a B777-200. Croatia Airlines and Lauda Air codeshared on Vienna-Zagreb-Vienna sectors.

      Delete
    4. Oh and 9.52 there is no chance of this route being resumed since MAS is in the state it is in. But it was interesting to see all the craze for the EK B777 when just a few years ago we had regular flights with a B777 with a much more exotic airline.

      Delete
  22. Because of demand for year round travel, Korea flights might be more lucrative then TATL.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Well done. It seems the Croatian government is really trying to attract as many new customers as possible.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Good minister for tourism.

      Delete
  24. Zadar would only work with charters. A JFK/EWR-ZAG-DBV-JFK/EWR by B787 (daily in peak season), would work well in MHO.

    ReplyDelete
  25. With the massive capacity Emirates is offering to Zagreb and the competitive fares they have been offering, I think they will easily serve for all of these far east markets to Croatia.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They would certainly loose a portion of passengers, but I think these airlines get enough feed from other routes to sustain their operations.

      Delete
    2. Well, haha, demand certainly exceeds 350 seats per day one direction...so it is not that EK can do it on its own; other carriers also dont seem to lose on passengers even with EK now here.

      Delete
    3. You are telling me EK is full on every flight?

      Delete
    4. No, I am saying that EK with one 77W certainly cannot serve all of demand for Croatia on its own...

      Delete
  26. Well done Croatia!

    ReplyDelete
  27. Good luck, I hope these flights get launches next summer:)

    ReplyDelete
  28. I don't see how a route can be sustained purely on tourism which is highly seasonal in Croatia.

    ReplyDelete
  29. Would be interesting to see how much these flights would bring in new tourists.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Well at least they are looking ahead and preparing for the future. The minister is correct that other markets will recover and Croatia has to try and keep these tourists. Making the country by accessible via the air is a good strategy.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sorry that should say
      * Making the country more accessible via the air is a good strategy.

      Delete
  31. I think the best airline apt for the job is Norwegian. It is much easier to fill a 787 or 350. ZAG-OAK or ZAG-EWR would fit nicely.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Could the 737 MAX make it from Zagreb to the east coast of the States?

      Delete
    2. ZAG-BOS but after 2021 and not ZAG-EWR.

      Delete
  32. Less talk, more action.

    ReplyDelete
  33. They have been announcing flights to New York for years and years!

    ReplyDelete
  34. I think Croatia Airlines will eventually launch long haul flights. They are building up their European network and after that is done I don't see why they wouldn't try to expand into the long haul business.

    ReplyDelete
  35. Good to see the region has woken up in terms of attracting long haul flights, not just Croatia.

    ReplyDelete
  36. I think Japan, South Korea, China and the US are perspective long haul markets for Croatia. Happy the government is taking some action.

    ReplyDelete
  37. How many widebodies can Zagreb handle at the same time?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Alen Šćuric PurgerAugust 8, 2017 at 6:45 PM

      4 on air bridges (one on two gates 2/3, 4/5, 6/7 + one on 8th gate) but in that case there can be only one A320 in same time with 4 long-haul. Or much more if you put them out of air bridges.

      Twice per week you have Emirates and Air Transat in same time. Emirates is on gate 8, and Air Transat on gate 4/5.

      Delete
  38. Some news of Ex-Yu services from A3 fro next year:
    http://www.routesonline.com/news/38/airlineroute/274197/aegean-airlines-s18-europe-service-increase-as-of-07aug17/

    BEG goes 4 weekly all A320 series/
    DBV goes daily all Q400s.
    SPU goes 4 weekly.
    TGD goes 3 weekly.
    Capacity increases on all airports.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. BEG is actually three weekly, down from 4.

      Delete
    2. 3 weekly A320 series instead of 4 weekly Q400s. That is a big capacity increase for BEG!

      Delete
    3. A3 has only one A319.
      So the flights will probably be operated by A320.
      A3 A320s have 180 seats. 3w is 540 seats.
      4 Dash400 flights have only 312 seats total.
      That is a major capacity increase.
      Bravo BEG.

      Capacity info from Seatguru.com

      Delete
    4. BEG is going to come close to 6 million passengers next year!
      More airlines are expected to announce similar increases.

      Delete
    5. ATH might want to start thinking about expanding, the airport is turning into a zoo most of the day, especially in summer.

      Anon 2.49

      Have any other airlines announced anything or is it just a feeling?

      Delete
  39. 2018 will be an amazing year for Croatian airports.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Great news for Hrvatska!

      Delete
  40. A list of nice wishes. I'll believe it when I see it.

    ReplyDelete
  41. More political routes...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. How is it political?

      Delete
    2. When Serbia attracts Hainan Airlines and supports start of JU flights to JFK - it is political. But when Croatia supports EK flights and tries to attract other airlines with the same incentives, it isn't political ?

      C'mon ....

      Delete
    3. I think he meant "political" in general, regarding Ex-Yu region.

      Delete
    4. @AnonymousAugust 8, 2017 at 5:37 PM

      EK is not political, it is commercial decision by EK. EK gets subsidies from the airport that goes to all new airlines at the airport. Someone posted information on Zagreb airport new routes support package.

      Croatian Government can't subsidies anyone, without Sabor, having say on it.

      Any money from Budget has to be allocated to relevant ministry, which need to present Sabor with plan of action and financial plan for coming year. Any program exceeding 20 million kuna per financial year needs to be examined by Croatian Parliamentary committee before it can be approved by the central government.

      Any program exceeding 37.5 million kuna is also scrutinized by the EU.

      Find me anywhere in Croatian budget money allocated for support of new airlines that are coming to Croatia!!!

      If Tourist organization wants to subsidize flights or airport, that is not Croatian Government. And even then we're talking $50-100 000 in subsidies per year. Sorry that is not a subsidy, that is a Low cost PR campaign.

      Delete
  42. OT

    Another spectacular month at INI. They welcomed 32.262 passengers in July, so far this year they handled 182.460 passengers.
    Last year they welcomed some 124.917 passengers.

    Cargo numbers are encouraging:

    1-12.2016
    1967.808 t on 65 flights.

    1-7.2017
    1937.243 on 61 flights.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So by September they will have around 210.000. Maybe 320K was a bit too optimistic this year.

      Delete
    2. I can see INI easily having close to 350.000 pax next year.

      Delete
    3. If Wizz Air or Ryanair (or even Swiss) add more flights then the airport will handle between 350.000 and 400.000.

      Delete
  43. Good news from Croatia. A mix of scheduled and charter flights would be excellent. Glad to see tgere is someone in the government who is paying attention to aviation.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Finally someone in HR paying attention to aviation, finally.

      Delete
  44. OT: IBERIA inbound for Skopje with A340-600

    ReplyDelete
  45. Purgeru,Kako komentarises cinjenicu da je hrvatski ministar otvoreno priznao da Hrvatska finansira dolazak novih avio kompanija u Zagreb?
    Naravno, u tom svetlu treba posmatrati i dolazak EK u ZAG

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Alen Šćuric PurgerAugust 9, 2017 at 1:17 AM

      Ja sam shvatio da je to nešto što će se napraviti u budućnosti. Kako (preko HTZ, oglašavanje, poticaji) tek treba vidjeti. Tu je ministarstvo vrlo limitirano pravilima EU. Nije da nema modaliteta, ali ne može baš napraviti što želi.

      U svakom slučaju hvala bogu da iznađu načina. Bilo je i vrijeme da nešto naprave. A ne da im već dogovorene poslove drugi otimaju političkim utjecajem i akcijama.

      Ja u proračunu ne mogu pronači ni jednu stavku iz koje bi bilo vidljivo da je EK financiran. A izvan proračuna to nije moguće. Možda je dogovoreno da se to čini od iduće godine.

      No, ako i je, skidam kapu. Jer mnogo je onih koji bi diljem svijeta i te kako financirali EK, pa ih on odbija. Nije dovoljno samo imati novac, treba tu ipak imati i potencijala za napuniti 600+ putnika svaki dan.

      Delete
  46. Australians LOVE Croatia and everyone is talking about it. Being holiday makers, the yield is low and there are so many affordable/cheap options to get to HR from Australia. There is no point mentioning Aussies in Croatia because of the low yield and the seasonality of travelleramto warrant any more flight options.

    China has more potentiality because it's a faster growing market, their carriers are happy to fly at a loss and the growth could be enormous.

    HR needs to push China, China, China like it's never done before.

    ReplyDelete
  47. South Korea and the USA could work for sure. It's only a matter of time. 2018. and 2019. it'll happen almost certainly.

    ReplyDelete

EX-YU Aviation News does not tolerate insults, excessive swearing, racist, homophobic or any other chauvinist remarks or provocative posts with the intention of creating further arguments. A full list of comment guidelines can be found here. Thank you for your cooperation.