Croatia Airlines losses mount amid strike

No end in sight - strike enters second day


19.15: Talks with the management collapse. Strike to continue into third day tomorrow.

15.30: Croatia Airlines to announce fresh cancelations for tomorrow at 17.00 CEST.

14.40: No agreement reached between the management and striking pilots and cabin crew. Talks to continue later in the afternoon.

12.25: Croatia Airlines employees demand for the company’s entire management to resign. Talks over strike action continuing.

11.15: Pilots and cabin crew start fresh talks with the management.

10.45: Zagreb Airport staff announce partial strike from tomorrow.

10.40: Split Airport and Croatian Air Traffic Control will launch industrial action tomorrow threatening to result in complete chaos for air traffic in the country.

Croatia Airlines passengers will today experience a second day of cancelations and delays as pilots and cabin crew continue with industrial action. For today, the Croatian carrier has cancelled its flights from Zagreb to Zadar, Brussels and Munich as well as the return service from Priština, Sarajevo and Pula to the Croatian capital. Flights to Rome and Copenhagen are still in doubt. The airline has also cancelled its flights from Split to Zurich, Munich, Dubrovnik and Dusseldorf as well as the Dubrovnik - Zurich service. Once again, foreign crew and aircraft will be used on some flights. Adria Airways, Trade Air, SkyWork Airlines and the Slovakian based Air Explore will step in to provide some relief.

Following extensive talks between the management, pilots and cabin crew yesterday, no agreement was reached on the revision of the new collective agreement. The management has agreed to retract the controversial dismissal of 42 cabin crew members but the Minister for Sea, Transport and Infrastructure, Siniša Hajdaš Dončić, warned some may lose their jobs over the ongoing strike. Croatia Airlines CEO, Krešimir Kučko said, “Our pilots work less than the competition yet they have bigger salaries. The productivity of our cabin crew and pilots are 15% less than in the rest of Europe”.

It is believed the ongoing strike will have grave consequences on Croatia Airlines’ finances and offset the ongoing restructuring program. The Croatian national carrier recorded a 12.9 million euro loss in the first quarter of this year. In an open letter to the Prime Minister, cabin crew members have warned of “catastrophic results” in April and blamed the management for handing over the Croatian market to Lufthansa, its subsidiary Germanwings as well as Turkish Airlines. The strike has now effectively gone on for four days since many services were cancelled on May 1 and 2 after crew failed to show up to work. The management is expected to launch a new round of talks with its dissatisfied employees today.


  1. Anonymous09:10

    Sack the lot of them, corrupt management, lazy pilots and deluded cabin dollies. Then start new airline Croatia Airways with correct number of staff.

    1. Anonymous09:25

      +1. Yes I think that would be an excellent idea! Also don't recognise unions. Ryanair can never go on strike because their employeees are not allowed to belong to a union!

    2. Anonymous09:38

      You people have fantastic ideas. Bravo! Ryanair opened a base in ZAD without hiring a single Croatian citizen. They brought stewardesses from Lituania (who by the way still get paid more than those working for CA), same with Ryanair pilots ( paid way more than CA).
      The only difference is ryanair has a lot less administration staff, does not pay to fly to ZAD but gets paid by the airport.
      To conclude, we dont need to make anything here in the Balkans. Just sell timber and other raw materials. I guess we are not capable of anything else.

    3. Anonymous12:39

      Do yo know that pilots in Ryan must buy their uniforms, pay flight simulators, insurance, licences, food, transport to airports... si that bigger salory is not so big

    4. Anonymous13:15

      take all that into account....they still get paid way more. Like 50 percent more. All this is publicly accessible info. feel free to check...

    5. Anonymous18:22

      OK, can you do that for us than. Can you put here precise numbers. Thanks...

    6. Anonymous00:27

      So precise numbers and documents?

      I didn't think so...

  2. Anonymous09:36

    I love the 'vi dont trast yu' banner :D

    1. Anonymous09:51

      +1 LOL!!

    2. Anonymous09:53

      hahaha priceless

    3. Anonymous11:09

      This is similar with your "Gde je Pecat"?

      In Croatia, recently, we have had saying of one of our representatives in EU, "Pipl mast trast as" i.e. written, as per Mr. V.Karadzic.

  3. Anonymous09:54

    12.9 million in just 3 months is beyond catastrophic!

  4. Anonymous10:05

    Well, Ryanair will not hire a Zadar based cabin crew if operating seasonal flights.

    1. Anonymous10:16

      Of course, why wold anyone be flying in Croatia outside the season. We should just close the whole country down in the winter.

    2. Anonymous10:56

      There is no need to close down Croatia but what needs to be understood is that the coastal cities can not solely rely on Croatia Airlines, primarily because it can't be relied upon.
      The reason for this is the seasonality of the coastal market. That is why it is much easier for Ryanair to enter the market during the summer months, take the passengers and then pack up and leave with the first days of winter.
      The real danger for Croatia Airlines is if Ryanair decides one day that it doesn't want to leave Croatia in winter. Then, it can seek deals with various airport, Zagreb included. If this happens then we will be seeing the last days of Croatia Airlines. It is unfortunate that the management of the airline and the Croatian government have not dealt with this issue earlier so a to make the airline self-sustaining before the country enters the European Union.

      Best from Belgrade.

  5. Anonymous10:06

    Let us not forget something else, something that has a great deal of impact on both Jat and Croatia Airlines.
    Both Serbia and Croatia rank as number 2 and 1 in the world when it comes to the salary tax. This tax represents 70% in Croatia while it is 63% in Serbia. This is ridiculous and crazy. Maybe if both governments were not retarded and if they could lower it for their airlines, they could function in a better manner and be more competitive internationally.
    Then again, all we have to do is look at the people sitting in both parliaments to realize how sad the situation is.
    It is sad and pathetic that both countries with such potential are governed by uneducated morons.

  6. Anonymous10:48

    The reason why the management bashes the cabin crew is their logic of thinking that they are easiest to replace since for every stewardess fired there are 3 younger girls waiting in line to work for 1/2 the money.

  7. Anonymous10:58

    The shit had officially hit the fan! Kaos

  8. Anonymous12:01

    lol love it how Croatian aviation websites don’t even mention the strike. Aerosvijet’s lead article is about Lufthansa’s award for Zagreb!

    1. Anonymous12:45

      You should know that Aerosvijet is financed by croatian airports and try to be financed by Croatia airlines, so they are far from objective and reality

  9. Anonymous14:56

    Swissair, Sabena, Olympic, Malév, OU.

    1. Anonymous18:23

      Much before Jat!

  10. Hello Everyone,

    I know this doesn't have a lot to do with what's going on with Croatia Airline's strike but I got very sad reading one of the posts yesterday on airliners.net from a former Emirate's crew member who very well described the conditions working for this fast growing airline giant and how cruel the airline industry has become. The comment was referring to the original topic of EK’s decision on not to award bonuses to its crew staff even though they have achieved record profits as well the passenger numbers. Below is the excerpt from his comment:

  11. "The problem is that EK is notorious for rewarding the bad behaviour of their passengers. I can't tell you how many times I was asked by pax for a complaint form as they boarded. I would of course enquire what the nature of the problem was and if I could do anything to rectify the situation, and the response was always "oh, I want one just in case." They would always find something arbitrary to complain about or just make up something entirely, knowing that EK would reward them with miles and upgrades. Crew end up getting disciplined for nothing and it just drives moral down even more rather than "sending a message" to the rest.

    I, for instance, was disciplined for having told a passenger in First Class to stop smoking and subsequently extinguishing his cigarette for him when refused. Smoking is not allowed on planes. It is in fact illegal. Yet I was the one who was disciplined? What sort of message does that send to staff? (According to my manager, the passenger in question was given a complimentary F class ticket from KWI to DXB, by way of apologizing for the inconvenience. It was the only time I didn't have to worry about doing a KWI turn, as he was promised I would not be part of the crew.)

    All of this is a result of EK relying on people doing just what you suggest - quitting. They are replaced by new, inexperienced crew and if a situation arises that relies on the crew being well trained and experienced, the results could be fatal. The crew on AF 358 at YYZ back in 2005 did a brilliant job in a dangerous situation because they were both well trained and experienced. Were the same accident to happen at EK, there is no way that everyone onboard would have survived. Their crew simply aren't prepared to handle that. Why? Because they are poorly trained, often fatigued and largely inexperienced. Why? Because all of the good ones do just what you suggest - they quit."

  12. I know how many people love Emirates Airlines and their success story. I was one among them too. However, reading this post and comments from other former EK crew members opened my eyes. I hope we never become an EK or anything similar. The business model practiced in the Middle East is based on fast money and modern age slavery. They lure people from countries with desperate economies and living conditions (Ex-Yu is no stranger to this one) promising them money and glamour. However, soon after being hired you realize that the money and glamour are only distant dreams. You are overworked, threatened, fatigued, disciplined for no reason and after short time basically forced to leave, so they can hire younger, more naïve and even cheaper labour. Is this who we want to be? A successful airline or any other company should not only treat its customers with respect but its employees too. How much money does EK spend on shiny airplanes, advertising, sport sponsorship, bribing governments and what not and yet they treat their employees like slaves.

    That’s why, dear readers, aviation fans and colleagues at Croatia Airlines that are protesting today, never let this happen to you. Raise your voice and don’t let the corrupt management and the government officials to take away from us what we have earned and have fought for during the past ages. Don’t let the achievements of the past revolutions and wars we have fought so fiercely against bourgeoisie and greedy capitalists be taken away. Many of us are lucky to live in Europe and N. America where we still have some kind of rights and protections but if things go the way they are, I am afraid we might end up the same way again – enslaved.
    Yesterday, I unliked all three of the Middle East airlines (EK, QR and EY) from my Facebook page and for as long they continue to practice their business this way, they will never see me on their airplanes.


    1. Tupolev16000:06

      Though what you're saying is right, your reasoning is very stupid and immature. Should you also boycott Air France and British Airways cause their whole economy is based on centuries of ruthless exploitation and enslavement of other countries and nations that didn't have the option to "quit" but were completely destroyed and wiped-out from history. I'm sure they don't give a shit of you "unliking" them, that's just pathetic. Your countries from Europe and N. America who supposedly have "rights and protection" have done everything possible so the rest of the world lives in slavery and exploitation, for them to be able to obtain cheap resources from them. Perhaps, if you allow them more time, the Emirates may also step up their social protection policy and behaviour towards workers? At least they're not slaughtering them as Western forces used to do with their workers across Africa and North America. Following your reasoning, i think there would be very few airlines left for you to fly on (and like on Facebook), Jat being one of them. Very immature thinking.

    2. Although it's true that there aren't many countries who can stand proud without ever being involved in causing harm to others, this shouldn't be an excuse for UAE, Qatar, China and similar to exploit and abuse people nowadays. I am not justifying anyone's crimes and abuses from the past. In fact, I have the same stance against the US and EU companies who exploit the cheap laborers overseas, causing harm and unemployment to local economies just so they can increase their profits with no social responsibility at all. While it's true that we can't change the past, we definitely can try to make things better for everyone now and make sure the abuses and exploitations that happened to many of our predecessors never happen to us and generations to come regardless who or where from they are. You can call my act immature but if I made 1 person aware of this issue and have them think next time who to fly with or who they buy their t-shirt from, my mission is achieved.

  13. At the very least the same conditions should be kept for the employers involved.

    I had a bad experience with Emirates, they ran out of food on my flight! I was told they would get me something from business class and I thought that will be nice but all I go was a small bowl of pasta. Not even on a tray, no bread, salad, water etc. Not even an explanation or a genuine apology. I was shocked and surprised how bad the service was. Real disappointing experience!

    They have also lost there 5 star rating a few years back and seem to care very little about getting it back.

  14. JU520 BEGLAX19:28

    check out www.lju-airport.si

    new webdesign

    1. Anonymous20:58

      It looks smashing and works fine on my ipad. Great!

    2. Anonymous23:55

      It doesn't even display airplane type. I don't see what's so special about it.

    3. Anonymous00:36

      Yes it does! Together with the weather forecast for the destination. It adjusts to different screens and types of digital media automatically. And it really works. I also like direct web check-in link for each destination.

    4. Is there a webcam?
      Am I mistaken or are the Croatian airports Zagreb, Split, Dubrovnik, Zadar and Pula the only airports in the Ex Yu with webcams?

    5. Anonymous09:10

      Yes. There is. There was already on the old one.

  15. Anonymous08:33

    LJU airport was the first EX-YU airport with web cam. here is the link http://www.lju-airport.si/sl/interaktivno-letalisce/webcam/ :) enjoy :)

  16. Anonymous14:43

    What a stupid people,going on strike for 4 days they employed other airlines to do the flights on behalf of Croatia Airlines.The company is losing big money every day and it will go bankruptcy very soon!


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