Saturday, March 24, 2018

Ukraine International plans Zagreb, Belgrade service


Ukraine International Airlines intends on launching a number of new routes within the next five years among which are both Zagreb and Belgrade, the head of the company's Supervisory Board, Aron Mayberg, said at a press conference in Kiev. According to Mr Mayberg, services to Zagreb are planned to commence in 2021 along with a number of other European routes, while flights to Belgrade will follow a year later, in 2022. This year, the airline will commence operations to Vinnytsia, Copenhagen, Cairo, Delhi, Toronto and Sanya. This will be followed by Mykolaiv, Hamburg, Lisbon, Naples, Oslo, Gomel, Ashgabat, Tashkent, Izmir and Shanghai in 2019, as well as Izhgorod, Dublin, Manchester, Bologna, Gdansk, Bishkek, Kuwait, Miami and Guangzhou in 2020. In addition to Zagreb, the Ukrainian carrier will introduce flights to Varna, Tallinn and Seoul in 2021 and Bratislava, Beirut, Shiraz, Addis Ababa, and Chicago, in addition to Belgrade, in 2022.

Ukraine International Airlines, a 100% privately owned carrier, serves over eighty destinations with more than 1.100 scheduled flights per week. This year alone it will take delivery of ten aircraft, including four Boeing 777-200s, as well as four B737-800s and two Embraer 195 regional jets. Neither Zagreb nor Belgrade offer nonstop flights to the Ukrainian capital. Based on traffic flow, Kiev has been identified by Zagreb Airport as having the potential to sustain direct flights. In 2009, Croatia Airlines considered introducing services to Ukraine, however, ultimately decided against the move. This winter, Adria Airways launched services from Ljubljana to Kiev, which will be maintained throughout the year.

On the other hand, Ukraine's Aerosvit Airlines operated flights between Kiev and the Serbian capital until June 2011, after which the route was suspended as a result of "technical reasons". The carrier has since filed for bankruptcy. In 2014, Air Serbia cancelled plans to launch daily services to the Ukrainian capital due to instability in the country at the time. However, it introduced six weekly flights between Belgrade and Kiev in the summer of 2016, utilising leased equipment from Adria Airways. Despite solid loads, the route was operated only seasonally that summer and was never resumed.

82 comments:

  1. I don't understand why a company would outline each route they will open in next 5 years. Isn't this giving the competition insight into exactly what you plan to do?

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    1. +1 agree. I mean who knows what's going to be with Ukraine in 5 years.

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    2. I was wondering that as well.
      Never heard of putting out a plan up to 4 years from today.

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    3. totally true

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    4. My guess is that they know neither JU or OU will rush to open KBP so they are safe.

      Actually, it's quite nice to see an airline planning this long ahead. It shows they have a sound business plan.

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    5. That is indeed quite strange to announce 5 years ahead! Great to see them expanding in the region. Pity they do not open Belgrade sooner.

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    6. It's Russian style 4 or 5 years planning. Same as in old Yugoslavia.

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    7. Same as in old YU? Im 33 yrs, but as far as i know there were only two 5 yr plans (petletke), after 62’ YU didnt follow russian model anymore, so comparing the two is pure demagogy

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  2. Why did JU stop Kiev?

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    1. Supposedly poor yields. Could have been political, too.

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    2. That's true. Relations between Serbia and Ukraine are not great.

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    3. I doubt it had anything to do with politics. The yields probably did not perform well. Also JU had no equipment for these flights.

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    4. JU suspended KBP because it no longer had the right aircraft for the route.

      The Atr is out of question (even though JU did send it to KBP in the 1990s) while the A319 might be too big. Not to mention that JU doesn't have enough aircraft as is.

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    5. Nemjee why do you claim they do not have enough aircraft? Looking at their summer schedule they will be able to perform all routes, have one A319 for charters and even have a reserve plane.

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    6. @Nemjee
      JU used to fly to Kiev in 90es? I do not remember that. Tnx.

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    7. I don't remember when it was in the 1990s but I know they used to send the Atr. My family took this flight on a few occasions and they said it took close to three hours.

      Well, JU will struggle with capacity this summer as they retired two B733s. I am flying to Berlin next month and my return flight is on the 737. It goes to show that they still rely on these old planes despite network cuts.

      I think VIE is the only destination that didn't see any reductions since Etihad took over.

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    8. When JU resumed Beijing in the late 90s they flew via Kiev with DC10 because there was not enough fuel in Belgrade. Later after the bombing in 99 when they again resumed Beijing it operated nonstop. Kiev was operated on and off during the 90s with various equipment. I can only imagine what this flight was like in an ATR.

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    9. Cool tnx for this info guys. Had no idea JU used to make stop in Kiev every on route to Beijing.
      Nemjee, it is really strange they still use 737 on regular routes but I have seen it as well. I suppose it is outside the main charter season if Airbuses go for maintenance. Looking at their schedule, they have around 325 weekly departures from Belgrade which is not a stretch if they are using 16 planes for regular flight and 2B737 and 1 A319 for charter. I think this year they might have a spare plane just in case.

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    10. Very interesting post Anon 10.49. Thank you!

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  3. Have there ever been flights from Zagreb to Kiev?

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    1. Yes, there was in the 80s...Aeroflot ran the route once or twice per week.

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    2. Cool. Thanks :)

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  4. You snooze, you lose.
    Good work JU management...

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    1. JU hasn't snozen. It's just because of the weak LF. Also, they should have waited for the EU visa free travel that came into action last summer.

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    2. Kiev had high LF.

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    3. Ukraine is a country of 40 million!
      JU should have kept that route and develop it.
      It could have also used it to feed its network in Croatia, Montenegro. Albania, Macedonia, Greece.

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    4. Anonymous at 11:09 AM
      +1000

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    5. Yes, but it's still a very poor country.

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    6. +1 anon 11:09

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  5. Considering the way OU has been opening new routes, I wouldn't be surprised they launch Kiev before these guys.

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  6. This airline has been expanding like crazy. How come all of the sudden?

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    Replies
    1. Post war boom??

      Big population so it’s probably not that big in perspective.

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  7. Bravo Hrvatska!

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  8. Embraers would be good equipment for these routes.

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  9. Yesterday, FR announced flights from Ukraine this autumn. You never know what will happen by 2022. Maybe they decide to launch flights to BEG and ZAG.
    VAR comes with no surprise - the airport will handle more than 2 million this year, such a pity JU wasn't successful with its attempt.

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    1. I am afraid FR would not be able to benefit from Open skies agreement between Ukraine - Serbia.

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    2. Wizz used to have Ukraine subsidiary, if I recall correctly. They could start it.

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  10. lol thats a lot of times ...

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  11. BEG would make perfect sense. Not only could they rely on O&D but there is a lot of demand for CIS and the rest of Asia, a market currently served via IST and SVO.

    UIA is the queen of dumping fares meaning they would help in expanding and further stimulating demand.

    They recently announced Copenhagen flights which were increased from daily to 10 weekly even before the route waslaunched. Seems like they know how fill their seats.

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    1. Yes, that would be a nice transit alternative.

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  12. Last year I had to fly to Kiev and the cheapest option was BEG-AMS on JU and then AMS-Kiev with UIA. Their price was dirt cheap to the point that it was cheaper than the majority of Ryanair flights.

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    1. You went all the way to Amsterdam to get to Kiev?

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    2. Yes, it was the cheapest option. Everything else also required long transit time so I would have got to Kiev at about the same time.

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    3. Kiev is super expensive from Belgrade. OS is regularly over 300 euros!

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    4. That were two separate tickets?

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    5. Yes but I only had hand luggage. UIA is really low cost in terms of service but the return flight beteeen AMS and Kiev cost 30 euros.

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    6. Wow that was cheap!
      What was the price of the JU ticket? That was after Transavia started flights?

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  13. UIA would affect LO a bit as well as they offer cheap tickets to western Europe.

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  14. YAY! This would be a nice addition to BEG especially now when they could get a slice of the Iran-Serbia market.

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  15. Talking of BEG, does anyone know why Vueling has an arrival but not a departure from the airport? Are they bringing a sports team?

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    1. Vueling is launching BEG much earlier. Their flight was supposed to leave at 10.10 and it took off at 10.30.

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  16. This conference took place a month ago. Shows the entire potential of the transfer model when things are done right. Sanya is a nice surprise. I suppose Guanghzou was chosen over Hong Kong. Greetings from Ukraine.

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    1. Izmir was planned this year but they didn't get approval of the Turkish authorities, that is why it is pushed back to 2019.

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  17. Anybody knows how are their finances? Are they getting any state aid from the Ukrainian government?

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    1. They're 100% private.

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    2. That does not answer the question :)
      Many private companies receive state aid.

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  18. More good news for BEG. LO will be increasing BEG to 12 weekly this summer in stead of the previously announced 11.

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    1. Did they have a problem with the BEG slots?

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    2. Another lost opportunity for ASL....

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    3. What I was asking if LO had a problem finding a slot at BEG ?

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    4. No, no problems with slots. They are expanding left and right so I guess they didn't have enough aircraft.

      Mind you, LO is continuously upping capacity to BEG. By mid-June there are barely any E70 in the system. This additional frequency came as a result of solid advance bookings.

      This summer they are adding more Embraers.

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    5. Even these days LO sends E75 to BEG. Good for them, I like this airline.

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    6. Do you have an answer?

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  19. While Air Serbia flew to Kiev, this route was generated many passengers to New York.

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    1. And it's good without that route, today loads:

      229/236 economy
      10/18 business

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    2. Wow a LF of 94%. Crazy...

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    3. Not only that but it's still not high season and Easter is not that close.

      No wonder they are adding more flights in summer.

      A second A332 could be used to push JFK to 8 weekly and 3 to ORD.

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    4. 8 weekly is too much, 6 weekly is very smart move and that is enough for now. Whit second A330 they can try YYZ 2 pw and ORD 3 pw.

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    5. Well they can fill six weekly so eight is not such a jump and with those flights they could offer even more connections.

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    6. On a more pessimistic note, we should not be happy about this numbers. 229/236 in economy is good but the plane is flying there just two times a week and sitting on the tarmac for 5 days (at least this part of the year). 10/18 in business is definitely bad, as business class is the one making money for most companies flying across Atlantic.
      Additionally, economy tickets are very cheap. You can depart next Thursday 29/3 and return 10 days later, price is 450 eur. I have no idea how they manage to cover costs on this route.

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    7. Yes, 450 eur. who traveling from Belgrade, but who traveling from other cities prices are bigger.

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    8. 545 eur from TGD. Although, Turkish flies from TGD for eur 485, with a lengthy layover.

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    9. Tickets are much more expensive when booking from the US.

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    10. Yes, a lot of them are going from USA, transfer passangers mostly. They paid 800-1000$ from New York - Belgrade - x destination

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    11. 800-1000$ even during this period of the year? Then JU is maybe not losing massively on this route.

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    12. JU announced itself that the passenger structure is mostly made up of people from Europe - so yes they are losing money with this service a lot. They will have to try earning as much as possible during the summer to compensate at least part of the yearly losses.

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    13. People from Europe - you mean passengers from Serbia and other Balkan countries transfering in Belgrade? With 450/550 eur tickets it is hard to make money on it. Hopefully they do good over the summer and make some money.

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    14. Yes. People from Europe does actually refer to pax originating in Europe. Either starting their journey in BEG or anywhere else on this side off the pond.

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    15. No one told me we have clown convention here. Random sample of load and price and clowns already know JU is going bankrupt!

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  20. Do you think it would be cheaper to fly to JFK via KBP is the flight is cheaper, compared to JU and if is transfer is 2h? How about BKK or YYZ?

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