Uproar at Croatian airports

“The winner takes it all”
Alarm bells are sounding across Croatian airports as new regulations are set to strip all airports in Croatia, with the exclusion of Zagreb, Dubrovnik and Split, from their status as international airports. As a result Pula, Rijeka, Osijek and Zadar airports will no longer be allowed to handle aircraft arriving from countries outside of Europe’s Schengen Zone.

The new regulations, which have received their blessing from the European Union, will see Pula Airport loose a third of its passengers. Rijeka faces even greater problems. The airport is on the verge of financial collapse and the airport’s CEO has said that the airport could soon be closed if a financial solution is not found quickly. The airport did receive a cash injection from the government earlier this year. The new regulations are yet another problem for Rjeka Airport. In order for the airport to make a profit it needs to handle approximately 450.000 passengers per year. However, the airport is expected to handle only 120.000 passengers this year. Rijeka’s CEO says that the airport is now turning to cargo traffic and is hoping to make a profit in that sector.

The proposed new regulations have infuriated tour operators across Croatia. Pula has launched a petition against the new regulations.

All countries that form the European Union are part of the Schengen Zone, with the exception of the United Kingdom, Ireland, Bulgaria, Cyprus and Romania. Non-EU members Iceland, Norway and Switzerland are part of the Schengen Zone.

The new regulations still have to be passed but they have strong backing from the government. Rijeka Airport CEO still has hope that the regulations will be dismissed and describes them as completely “illogical”.


  1. JATBEGMEL10:10

    not good news for Croatian airports.

  2. Anonymous10:48

    WoW is this a way for them to save some cash?

    This means JU wont be able to operate the line to Pula anymore?!

    God this is just plain stupid!

  3. Zrak11:02

    It seems to me that Croatian government simply decided to sacrifice some airports (zadar, rijeka, pula) in exchange of boosting OU.

    Now coming outside Schengen you either have to land at one of OU hubs and then let them handle your passengers or you need to get permit for domestic air traffic (and that wont happen).

    Anyway good move from government for OU and bad for croatian people as they will loose money in the long run (jobs at airports, loosing tourists and so on)

  4. Now this is shit news!

  5. Would it really help OU that much?

    I don't understand the logic behind this decision.

    To me it seems it will have a more negative impact for Croatia by making the tourist destination less accessible.

    If Zagreb had built and opened a new terminal by now, then I would understand what they were trying to do but since Zagreb airport can not handle anymore pax, then why would they want to funnel more pax through there at this time?

  6. Anonymous13:52

    So, those airports will still be able to take on planes coming in from Schengen zone countries? Then it isn't that bad. Turks, Russians, Egyptians, etc., will not be happy, but the majority of tourists will not be affected (if I understood the article correctly).

    In any case, where does that put Jat as it is about to be put on the Schengen list, but it isn't losing borders just yet.

  7. Anonymous15:06

    Serbia will be a part of the schengen zone from 1 jan 2010 even though the country isnt a part of E.union-Jat will be allowed to fly to pula etc

  8. Anonymous15:39

    Not at all. Serbia won't be part of Schengen zone.

  9. Anonymous15:45

    As you can see even EU countries are not in the Schengen zone since they do not won't to be part of it (like UK an Ireland) or they are simply not prepared for the Schengen zone standards (like Romania and Bulgaria): http://www.axa-schengen.com/en/schengen-countries

  10. Anonymous15:46

    More on http://www.schengenspace.com/

  11. Anonymous16:04

    Serbia will by no means become part of the Schenghen system on January 1, 2010! One thing is that Serbian citizens won't need visas to enter the Schenghen zone, but there will for instance still be a border between Serbia and Hungary. Should Serbia become part of the Schenghen system, such a border would no longer exist. Thus, JAT would not be able to fly to Pula under the new agreement :-(

  12. Anonymous16:54

    No way. The Schenghen zone and EU visa regulations are two TOTALLY different things.

  13. Anonymous17:23

    Whi is this guy saying that Serbia will be part of Schengen agreement! Mijesas "babe i zabe"! Srbija ce biti na tzv bijeloj schengen listi, kao sto je vec receno ovdje, tj. nece trebati vize za sengen zemlje za turisticke razloge!!!! jedan od uslova za nove clanice Sengen-a je da prvo udju u Evropsku Uniju a zatim nakon nekoliko godina da udju u Sengen(kao sto se trenutno desava sa Rumunijom i Bugarskom , takdje vec lijepo receno od strane drugih, tako da ne zelim vise da ponavljam!!!) Elem, htjedoh dati komentar na ovu GLUPU odluku, hahahahaha bas im je pametna ta odluka, vidjece oni sledece godine tj. sezone prazne aerodrome! Smijesno i zalosno u isto vrijeme! Boze svasta, sa ovim sam stvarno shvatio da apsolutno sve Vlade Ex Yu republika su jedna korumpirana banda!

  14. Anonymous17:38

    I do wonder, is there anyone normal to lead these countries :-( I genuinly hoped that Croatia,at least, if not other Ex Yu republics were getting better and opening to the world! This is just mad :-((((What is the next step? lets cancel all airlines as well?!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  15. Anonymous20:57

    Zadar had better pull the plug on their expansion plans ASAP, looks like they will only be getting 2 domestic flights a day from Zagreb thanks to that mad woman in charge of the country.
    What normal individual would propose such a stupid law. Might as well close all the hotels on the Adriatic!

  16. Anonymous22:25

    "I do wonder, is there anyone normal to lead these countries :-("

    Not to go off-topic and into political issues, but to answer the question at one point, recently, there was one in Serbia. Too bad Serbia didn't appreciate him.

  17. Shalom!23:32

    Hold on - these are only PLANS for the time WHEN Croatia enters the European Union and fulfills all requirements for entering the Schengen area. Any flight from and to Croatia still requires border and customs formalities, be it from a Schengen or non-Schengen destination, meaning that a flight to Pula from Frankfurt or Belgrade is, by Croatian (and EU) laws - an international flight.

    I am afraid that the guys running this blog (as well as some others, RJK CEO included) misunderstood the piece of news...

  18. ANONYMOUS02:07

    This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  19. frequentflyer04:57

    Something doesn't quite add up in this article, does it?

    EX-YU, where have you got this story/information from? Perhaps we could see the original to actually see if this is the case...

    If what's written there is true, then the country is about to deny itself billions of kuna in revenue, and tens of thousands of jobs are at stake across the transport and tourism industries. Something tells me though that this isn't the case at all...

  20. ^ The Croatian media have been littered by this news in the past few days. The regulations are part of an action plan for the integrated boarder control of Croatia.

    And might I remind other readers that if they are unhappy with the news they are reading, and immediately believe it’s a fabrication as a result, are not obliged to visit under any circumstance.

  21. @ Shalom. Please read the article carefully, so you’re not confused, and note the last paragraph as well (words such as “proposed” and “still have to be passed” are used). Nowhere are time frames for the implementation of these regulations given. Croatia is not required to pass these regulations if it does not wish to.

  22. Shalom!10:37

    @ EX-YU Aviation
    No confusion on my side. Simply wanted to give some sort of explanation to those who may have misunderstood the article and the Schengen rules as such.

    By the way, I think that saying that the blog readers "are not obliged to visit under any circumstance" is, however true, an unnecessary act to do, whomever it may have been directed to.

  23. ANONYMOUS12:55


    Thanks for deleting my post, you are like some sort of dictator who removes anything that contradicts your rather narrow view and understanding of aviation in the ex-yu region.

    I've taken you to task many times, and all you can do is remove my posts. This is not Soviet rule, whereby freedom to speak and critise is forbidden and as this is a form of information about the industry in this region, if I see fit to 'correct' your mistakes and misunderstandings - then I shall do so...because believe me, about most of what's going on I know a LOT more than you ever will,


  24. ^ Good, you are welcome to open your own website and write about your vast knowledge. Your comment had been deleted because it was pointless. Comments from Shalom who disagreed with the article were left because it was constructive. As an administrator I have the right to delete any comment I deem unnecessary, in fact I can ban the comments section all together but I choose to have it so people can share their thoughts rather than insult others. I still keep asking myself why, for months now, you visit this blog, if you think everything is a fabrication.

  25. ANONYMOUS16:21

    It's not a 'fabrication' - but you make one vital mistake in my view: You accept what the press write as being somehow based on fact, and I can tell you that about 90% of it is just public relation departments for politicians and others who want certain messages passed on to the general public - but almost all of it wil never happen, or is not happening/evolving anything like the way it's written.

    YOUR mistake is that you then translate this into English, add some of your own commentary, and DON'T SOURCE the media outlet where you're taking it from!

  26. Stupidness of Croatian Government with these destructive regulation for Croatian aviation and tourism can not be expressed in word. Does anybody else in Croatian Goverment use their stupid empty heads for thinking to cancel this idiotic shit of regulation probably prepared by some governmental idiot with IQ=-1?

  27. very good posting. i liked it. :-)


  28. very good posting. i liked it. :-)



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