Friday, August 11, 2017

Wizz Air to downsize Tuzla operations


Low cost carrier Wizz Air plans to reduce operations from its base in Tuzla over the 2017/18 winter season with the temporary suspension of three routes. The airline will turn its services to London Luton, Bratislava and Nuremberg to seasonal summer flights only starting November 1. All three were launched over the past ten months, with the latter two commencing this summer. In a statement to EX-YU Aviation News, Wizz Air said, "Wizz Air constantly monitors the performance of its routes to allow for the most popular destinations to have the lowest possible fares. The routes from Tuzla to London Luton, Bratislava and Nuremberg have been optimised according to the market requests and will be operated only in the summer season”. At this point, it is unclear whether the airline could substitute the three routes with new ones.

The airline said it would continue working on developing the aviation sector in the country over the coming period. "Wizz Air remains committed to its Bosnia and Herzegovina passengers and will strive to further stimulate the aviation industry while providing affordable travel opportunities that can best meets its' customers needs", the company noted. The airline did not comment on whether the route suspensions would impact on the number of aircraft stationed in the city over the winter period. Currently, Tuzla plays host to two of Wizz Air's Airbus A320 jets. The airline based a second aircraft in the city this summer and launched four new routes as a result. Furthermore, the carrier expanded its presence in Bosnia and Herzegovina this year with the introduction of flights from Budapest to Sarajevo, while Mostar Airport has confirmed it is in talks with the budget airline over possible services from Sweden.

This June, Wizz Air carried its millionth passenger on flights to and from Tuzla since launching operations to the Bosnian city in 2013. Being the only scheduled airline to serve Tuzla, the carrier helped kick-start passenger growth at the airport by inaugurating flights in May 2013 and has since constantly expanded its Bosnian network. In 2015, Wizz Air established base operations in Tuzla. The following year, it handled just over 310.000 passengers to and from the city. The carrier previously suspended only two routes from Tuzla - Sandefjord and Stockholm, however the latter was later resumed. This year, Tuzla Airport has recorded spectacular growth, handling 226.462 passengers during the first half of the year, up 59.4% on 2016. Despite plans to launch a multi million euro terminal expansion project this July, work on Tuzla Airport's new-look terminal has stalled.

111 comments:

  1. I'm a bit surprised Bratislava didn't work out considering the large Bosnian diaspora in Austria.

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    1. The driving distance to Vienna is between 5 and 6 hours so probably most ended up taking the bus/car.

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    2. Didn't Montenegro Airlines try Vienna - Tuzla some 2 years ago and fail?

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    3. They did but if I remember correctly you could only book the tickets via certain agents, not online.

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    4. MGX failed because they had non existent promotion, tickets were sold only through one travel agent and they announced the flights only a month before in the middle of winter.

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    5. What 9:05 said. Too short, especially when you want to show your car off back 'home'.

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    6. The issue with BTS are also flight times. 6am departure from TZL really limits the market to TZL and surroundings, since you otherwise need to leave your home at some ungodly hour or the night before - which makes driving even more attractive.

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    7. August 11, 2017 at 9:05 AM

      What...? Vienna and Bratislava are only 80km away from each other. No way it can take 5-6 hours

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  2. wow looks like Wizz didn't do its homework with the their latest expansion from TZL.

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    1. They no longer have an exYu manager to guide them.

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  3. Seems like they rushed with the expansion there. Maybe a more prudent approach like in INI should have happened.

    Can anyone predict how many passengers TZL will handle this year?

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    1. My guess is around 410,000 pax this year.

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    2. Thanks, so the difference between INI and TZL might be under 100,000 passengers. Let's see if there are some additional flights out of Nish this winter so as to further boost the numbers.

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    3. I think TZL will have bigger numbers then that. The management's estimate is 480.000 this year.

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    4. Not rushed, just misplaced. BTS really got my eyebrows raised when I heard of it..

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    5. i.e. they repeated the SKP-TSF mistake.

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    6. What Treviso mistake?

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  4. Pity but it is normal for them to try routes and see what works and what not.

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  5. No surprise with London since their loads were not very good on these flights. I'm also kind of surprised about Bratislava.

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    1. Do you know the loads for Bratislava and Nuremberg.

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  6. It seems they will also end Belgrade-Nuremberg from mid-November. But that's the only route they will be ending from there.

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    1. Also I have noticed that during the winter a few routes from Skopje will only fly once per week!

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    2. Yep, no longer possible to book tickets from November.

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    3. It's like this every year especially with the less popular routes. I am shocked to learn NUE didn't work well for BEG. BEG needs more German airports such as LEJ, DRS, SXF, ERF

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    4. from SKP routs going normal, nothing special, min 2 x week

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    5. No. Malta is only once per week,

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    6. Maybe they still haven't finished their winter schedule, let's wait a bit longer. My guess is that they are going to operate some more W routes with these free planes

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  7. If they don't add any new routes to replace these I see no point in them keeping a second plane in Tuzla during the winter.

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  8. Which other unserved route could be popular from Tuzla?

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    1. Spain from Tuzla? Are you serious?

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    2. Could Tuzla-Dublin work? Lots of Croats from Slavonija have moved to Ireland.

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    3. Yes many many young people from slavonija moved to ireland. This route would be good

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    4. Tuzla-Barcelona? :D does wizz fly from Tuzla to Paris?

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    5. Nope, Wizz does not fly Tuzla - Beauvais.

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    6. This would be an very good idea. There are no flights between BiH and France

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  9. i can only imagine the comments if an ex-yu airline was ending 3 routes.

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    1. We would already be planning the company's date of closure.

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    2. it's mostly like: doom, doom, closure, closure, imminent bankruptcy, apocalypse, run for your lives

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    3. The difference being that Wizz has made a small airport with no flights successful and even with these suspension will operate 13 routes from TZL.

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    4. Bad news for JU. Opportunity to base additional aircraft in BEG. Opportunity for WIZZ to take on more of JUs routes

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    5. Hahahahahah of course, everything is bad news for JU. Malaysia Airlines downgrading LHR service from A380 to A350 is also bad news for JU.

      LOL troll.

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  10. If Wizz is suspending flights, then you know loads were awful.

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  11. Once Oil Prices pick up again the presence of Wizz in the region will collapse like a cardhouse.

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    1. I wouldn't say oil prices are exactly low and they entered the ex-yu market when the oil prices were at a record highs.

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    2. Actually LCCs are usually the least affected by fuel prices. They tend to operate brand new, very efficient aircraft (especially per-seat-wise), fly at a slower speed, etc. They also limit their exposure to high fuel costs.

      High fuel costs usually only create a lot of burden on smaller companies, with older aircraft (B737 Classics and couple of MD80s come in mind, non-winglet A320s as well) and without fuel hedging system in place. It's also the time when everybody gets rid of small regional jets (count the number of CRJ200s and E145s in Europe).

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    3. This is only true if they can compensate the fuel cost increases with higher fares, which they can in many markets. How would people change their booking behaviour if tickets increase from lets say 39€ to 69€ one way?

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    4. LCC's typical fuel share of the ticket cost is around 40%. So in your case for the ticket of 39 EUR , fuel cost would be roughly 15 EUR. For the ticket to rise to 69 EUR only due to fuel cost, it would mean the oil price would have to go up 4.5x. That would mean crude oil prices over 200 USD/barrel. Highly unlikely, or at least the whole economy would fold together with majority of the airlines.

      Now, this 40% is for very efficient aircraft in LCC operation. Try comparing 737 MAX or A320 neo to 35-year old B737 Classic or 40 year-old MD80 (engine/wing design time)...

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    5. "LCC's typical fuel share of the ticket cost is around 40%" - so you imply that the fuel price share is depending on the price, that is it is variable? That would be really strange. So as prices increase during the period prior to departure the overall absolute price for the fuel increases?

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    6. Anon 9.22AM - I doubt it. Wizz will keep rebounding from strength to strength. Such a good robust successful airline and pax love their price point. So successful

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    7. 40% of the Operational Costs of LCC is for fuel. Therefore an increase in oil prices has a big impact on LCC and their price calculation.

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    8. Probably meant to say that fuel is 40% of the cost.
      If a plane is 10% more efficient, that means the toal cost is 4% lower, all else being equal. In aviation, 4% is uuuge.

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  12. They have delayed the expansion of the terminal again. Why am I not surprised.

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    1. Have they installed the landing lights that they promised?

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    2. *approach lights I mean.

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    3. Tuzla will really have to improve its terminal. No offence to anyone but it is like a box shed. I hope the expansion happens as soon as possible.

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    4. How many pax per year can TZL's terminal handle?

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  13. I'm not so sure these will be resumed. They also said how Tuzla-Oslo would become seasonal and they never resumed it.

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    1. But they resumed Stockholm and now it is staying year-round.

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  14. 2 aircraft for a small town like TZL is a lot. Filling around 2300 seats per day is quite challenging. Also, SJJ is now getting new destinations.

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    1. My guess is that the aircraft from Tuzla will also do the Mostar rotation.
      For example Tuzla-Malmo-Mostar-Malmo-Tuzla.

      They did similar things with Belgrade aircraft when they launched Nis in the beginning.

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    2. Nis was operated by SKP planes

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    3. You are right. My mistake

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  15. IF idiots were not running Banja Luka airport and they managed to make a deal with Wizz it would have been a great success, even these three routes that are being suspended from Tuzla.

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    1. The funny thing is BNX has very good predispositions for low cost travel. It is the second biggest city, weather conditions are good unlike in Tuzla... such a shame.

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    2. True. This airport is such a contrast to Nis and Tuzla and what they have achieved. Amazing. And the funniest thing it has the most potential.

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  16. Wizz is now starting to announce new routes for the winter so we never know. Like the article says maybe these will be replaced by some other routes.

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  17. What a shame. This is their first major reduction in ex-YU since they removed one plane from BEG a few years back (even then they didn't end 3 routes). Wonder what will happen with all the extra staff TZL hired to handle the second plane.

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    1. The only difference is that BEG was reduced over fees, not because planes were empty. I guess this is the first time we are seeing such reduction due to weak.performance

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    2. The planes were not really empty (almost always above 80% LF) in the end but the ticket prices were quite low.

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  18. Tuzla is a bit problematic during the winter because of adverse weather conditions. A lot of planes get diverted. Even now during the summer they were forced to divert to BEG several times. I doubt that is good for a LCC.

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  19. Tuzla is in dire need of another airline!

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    1. Swiss or Germania operating Zurich-Tuzla could work. Just look at how well these flights are doinf to Nis.

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    2. Let Ryanair came to Tuzla. It is not good that only Wizz Air is in Tuzla. It would be better to have more airline in Tuzla. Ryanair is the best option.

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    3. It's not like anyone is stopping Ryanair. I don't think they are interested.

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    4. Last year they said they were in talks with a second airline but obviously nothing happened.

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    5. That second airline was Ryanair and after that Wizz announced its new routes from Tuzla which I think was a preemptive measure. They did the same in SKP, except this expansion didn't really work out.

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    6. Would be best if if Wizz took Tuzla snd Ryan Mostar.

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  20. It also looks like they are suspending Nuremberg from BEG after 10th November.

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  21. Anyone know what are Wizz Air's plans for next summer for ex-Yu. Any planned expansions?

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    1. They are announcing new routes for next year like crazy this week but still nothing new from ex-Yu. But remember their expansion from ex-Yu this year was huge. It is unlikely we will see the same thing next year.

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  22. Is Tuzla canton still subsidizing Wizz flights?

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    1. Not directly but through lower fares + financing the airport as it still operates with a minus.

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  23. These routes were planned for Sarajevo and the incompetent management there flicked them away. Probably couldn't commit to keeping the airport open a few more hours at night. They would have worked from SJJ.

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  24. So how many destinations will they have this winter from TZL?

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    1. And any idea what are the busiest?

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    2. In 2016
      1. Dortmund, 49.319
      2. Malmo, 44.553
      3. Gothenburg, 42.991
      4. Basel, 38.388

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  25. Didn't Wizz also downsized Ohrid? I think that LTN became seasonal, or I'm mistaking?

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    1. Yes it did. But that was last winter.

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  26. So Bosnia will again have no flights to the United Kingdom :(

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    1. There is no demand. You need a visa to go and travel there and diaspora is too small to sustain the route.

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    2. Sarajevo had BA flights before to London. They suspended them in 2008 because of "high duel prices". That was the official reason at least.

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  27. Wizzair is still the largest carrier in ex-yu and is doing a fantastic job! 3 routes did not turn profitable so what it´s not the end of the world.

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    1. More like the whole airline didn't turn a profit yet.

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    2. Isn't Wizz in profit?

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    3. Lol @ 12:07. Are you stuck in 2007 or something?

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  28. This comment is not in common with this post but i wanna ask you what are your predictions for Ohrid Airport(OHD) for this year how many PAX?

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  29. Just goes to show how risky it is to rely on a single airline for all your traffic.

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    1. Beggars can't be choosers.

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  30. Can't believe they could not make Bratislava work.

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  31. Why is TZL-LTN going seasonal? They could've reduced them to 2 weekly and that's it.
    Also, why are they suspending flights from BEG to NUE in Nov 2017? All airlines now fly there, I thought BEG was the leader in German destinations. No Serb community in NUE?

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    1. Who knows. The route stops operating in mid-November which is odd. In summer it performed really well, LF was over 85%.
      We should wait for a while longer and see if there are some more changes to the timetable.

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