Ryanair eyes additional Banja Luka flights


Europe's largest low cost airline, Ryanair, is expected to follow up with new routes to Banja Luka Airport after announcing its entry onto the Bosnian market last week with flights from Charleroi and Memmingen, which are due to commence this October. The Prime Minister of the entity of Republika Srpska, Željka Cvijanović, said, "Following the introduction of these two routes to Banja Luka, a second set of new destinations will be announced, which is encouraging". The acting General Manager of Banja Luka Airport, Duško Kovačević, noted, "We estimate that these two routes will carry some 50.000 to 60.000 passengers next year, which is four times greater than the total number of travellers handled in 2017".

Ryanair, which has begun an advertising campaign for its new Banja Luka flights noted, "We will continue developing our operations at Banja Luka and we look forward to opening additional services in the future and attributing to passenger growth". The no frills carrier confirmed that once it introduces a new city to its destination network, it looks to follow-up with the addition of several routes. However, the airline noted that it has made no definitive decision concerning its future operations out of Banja Luka. "We are starting with these new routes and are on the lookout for new opportunities", it added. Bosnia and Herzegovina will become Ryanair's 37th country of operation. Within the former Yugoslavia it maintains services to Croatia, where it boasts a seasonal summer base, Montenegro and Serbia.

Sweden, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and Germany have been identified as markets with potential to sustain flights to Banja Luka. Apart from Ryanair's new routes, the city will continue to be served by Air Serbia from Belgrade, with the airline to run charters to Antalya in Turkey over the summer as well. Talks are also underway to secure charter services to Tivat. Prime Minister Cvijanović noted, "I am grateful that we have managed to sustain flights between Belgrade and Banja Luka all these years, which were extremely important for us at a time when there were no other services from our airport. These flights will continue to be maintained in the future as well".

Comments

  1. It would be interesting to see which route might be next. My guess is somewhere in Sweden.

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    1. Gothenburg 100%

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    2. I agree with Gothenburg. I also think potential destinations could be Bratislava (because of Vienna) and Frankfurt.

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    3. If Wizz Air was smart they should just launch Vienna-Banja Luka. Not only would it be a success, they would also have presence in BNX which gives them a better opportunity to compete against Ryanair.

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    4. Vienna would be an absolute hit.

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    5. Ryanair can have Laudamotion launch Banja Luka this winter season.

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  2. Nice. Good times ahead for BNX?

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    1. If Ryanair starts flights from the Netherlands, that would be Eindhoven, since its is their base and they fly to many destinations from Eindhoven. So that would be indirectly a direct attack on Wizzairs route Eindhoven - Tuzla.

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    2. It would make sense especially since FR already forced W6 to suspend INI-EIN.

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  3. How much is Banja Luka paying Ryanair for this?

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    1. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u_aLESDql1U

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    2. It's a fair question. These flights are certainly subsidised one way or another like there are in Zadar, Nis and Podgorica

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    3. It's the only way smaller airports can survive and I'm sure the return on investment outweighs the subsidies.

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    4. +100 the only way these small ex-Yu airports can develop is by attracting LCCs

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    5. Nis is not subsidising FR, they offered low price per pax in order to attract ULCC.

      Subsidising was done in INI few years ago with YM and it is not being done anymore.

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  4. So basically BNX is copying INI and wants the bigger slice of the cake..

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    1. But will they copy them all the way and try to attract other LCCs or they will just stick to Ryanair.

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    2. Hopefully they do. It is the safest way but somehow I doubt Wizz Air would be interested with them having a base in Tuzla and probably hoping to start more flights from Sarajevo.

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    3. Wizz Air will be interested if they start losing customers to FR in BNX.

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    4. But can BNX pull away passengers who used to go via Tuzla? I'm not so sure.

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    5. Well it certainly can especially those that originated in Banja Luka. What do Wizz Air and Tuzla have that Ryanair and BNX don't?

      The two cities are some 160 km apart, that's not exactly close.

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    6. Well they have a wider choice of destinations.

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    7. Obviously but I was referring to future markets that will be served from both airports.

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  5. I'm a bit surprised they went for Cherleroi. Are there a lot of gastos there from the area?

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    1. I remember last year that Brussels Airlines said they were interested in flying Brussels-Sarajevo-Banja Luka. So there must be some demand.

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    2. There is a large Bosnian diaspora in Belgium. Many moved there during the war.

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    3. Ok, thanks

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    4. dont forget the northern part of France...

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  6. Konacno BNX! Odvno je trebala slediti niski primer! #nedamoniskiaerodrom

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  7. Banja Luka will likely be handling around 80,000 - 90,000 passengers next year.

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    1. More if Ryanair introduces new routes which they probably will for summer 2019.

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  8. I'm glad they are getting their act together. Good to hear about the charters too.

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  9. Next Ryanair routes for BNX!
    NRN-BNX
    HHN-BNX
    GOT-BNX
    MMX-BNX
    STN-BNX

    Cheers and good luck BNX!

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    1. Is there really demand to the UK? Bosnian passport holders still need a visa to enter the UK and as I remember Wizz Air failed on Tuzla-London route too. It was their worst performer.

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    2. Don't forget EIN-BNX

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  10. The best part about this BNX-Ryanair romance is that FR doesn't fly out of any nearby airports.

    If we take large cities in Srpska such as Banja Luka, Prijedor, Doboj and Gradiska then the market grows to 431.000 people which isn't that bad.
    On top of that, if we add some Croatian regions such as Brod-Posavina or Pozega-Slavonia in addition to eastern Croatia, then the catchment area for Ryanair grows to much larger numbers. Not to mention that all these regions in both Srpska and Croatia have seen many people transition into gasterbajterhood which further stimulate demand for air travel.

    Airlines such as Ryanair or Wizz Air are not looking at just the city they plan on serving, they look at the whole region.

    Just like I wrote before, all this LCC expansion in the region (LJU, BNX, TZL, OSI, ZAD ...) is catalyzed by Zagreb's refusal to attract more LCCs. I am not counting Eurowings as they are far from being your traditional ULCC.

    I am certain Ryanair will keep on growing at BNX. What we need to follow is how Wizz Air responds to all this and if they become more aggressive in Tuzla. Who knows ... maybe we see the same scenario as in INI where both end up launching flights from the same airport.

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    1. Agreed. ZAG is so stubborn when it gets to LCC. BNX will be a leader gasto airport and will indeed attract many others. The BNX-CRL route is already becoming slowly more expensive, proving demand for the route.

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    2. FR is usually dirt cheap in the beginning so if fares are going up it means planes are filling up quite nicely. I remember INI was never more than €50 to Berlin the first few months despite planes being full.

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  11. Bosnian airports are developing very nicely lately:
    Sarajevo legacy airlines is making nice profit year after year.Summer season SJJ is connected with 20 destinations in Europe and Asia (ME)
    Tuzla is Wizz Air stronghold with 16 destinations in Europe.
    Mostar is taking off this year too, Eurowings and Croatia Airlines. Turkish Airlines is next to come.
    Banja Luka finally will become Ryanair base by next year with one B737-800 and 5 new destinations !

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    1. I must admit it is a very good development for BiH. This a benefit of decentralized countries.

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    2. It is amazing that Bosnia and Herzegovina will have 4 airports that are served by large and respectable airlines.

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    3. We can expect up to 3 new FR destinations in BNX, but basing B738 in BNX in 2019 is way too optimistic. Maybe year or two later.

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  12. This is great for Republika Srpska but bad news for Air Serbia.

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    1. Why? Air Serbia gets subsidies on this route to the amount to cover the entire cost of their flight and judging by the PMs statement they will continue to get them.

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    2. ASL will loose passengers who were flying to the rest of its network via BEG hub.

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    3. Most of them from BNX, flу to Zurich via BEG

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    4. Memmingen isn't that close to Zurich.

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    5. JU in BNX carries mostly locals and Zurich passengers so I don't see how this will affect them.

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    6. Contrary to popular belief or wishful thinking Bosnian Serbs want and need to fly to more destinations than just BEG and ZRH

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    7. No one is disputing that, we were merely speaking about the passenger structure on JU's BEG-BNX flight. Vast majority of passengers are heading to these two cities.

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  13. I'm not sure Ryanair is exactly going after Wizz Air here. I mean Belgium is not even served from Tuzla.

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    1. Many people from Belgium (Flanders and Brussels) are using Eindhoven for Tuzla

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  14. This is a big turnaround. I'm very happy for Banja Luka.

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  15. Fantastic news.

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  16. It's good to see Ryanair paying a bit more attention to this region outside Croatia.

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  17. How long was it from when Ryanair announced its first routes to Nis to them announcing a new expansion?

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    1. Exactly a month. They announced Berlin in April and then Bratislava in May. And then another two routes in June.

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    2. Great! That means we could expect these new routes to be announced soon.

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    3. Doubt it.

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  18. OHD is next

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  19. Banja Luka airport should play this smart and concentrate on wide region of Croatia to fill this flights. Its ca 1.5 hours with a car from BL airport and even closer to somemother Croakan cities. That border corssing is piece of cake and with direct trabsfers homedoor to aiport should be in very good position to attract tons of passengera. Zagreb South it is!

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    1. Sure thing. Just watch how the borders crossing will be smooth and easy if ever the numbers of pax grow. You must be silly to think that Croatia will not subtly block any significant number of pax going from Croatia to BNX. Wake up!

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    2. Of course they won't because it will impact negatively on their election results in those regions. And anyway BNX has more to worry about OSI than BNX.

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    3. Which regions? There are very few Croats in Republika Srpska, and those poor ones from Slavonia are already in Dublin and if ever they vote they will vote against HDZ. Therefore, BNX will not benefit much from Croatia but it can benefit a lot from retaining the pax that flew using other airports.

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    4. The region between Zagreb and the Serbian-Croatian border will be gravitating between four airports: ZAG, BNX, TZL and OSI.

      Those who emigrated from there to the Benelux will consider flying from CRL to BNX especially since the only other airport with flights is ZAG where tickets are rarely under €200.

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    5. Anon @11:19 C'mon man reread what you have written before posting, it's full of typos.

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    6. Anon @12:50 those near the Serbian border can and do use BEG.

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    7. Anon 1.14
      With OSI booming there is no need anymore especially now that there is Eurowings that offer connections.

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    8. What about for other destinations offered from BEG?

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    9. I am not sure Eurowings in OSI with 2 weekly departures could be compared to the posibilites BEG can offer on a daily basis.

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    10. Don't bother to quarrel. Those living in Slavonia are poor people and their only travel might be a one-way ticket to Dublin. Once they leave they are lost for good, not like previous gastos. These do not return once they take their families with them.

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    11. I don't think they are any poorer than people from the Vojvodina.

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    12. Well their perception is what counts and they feel poor. For that reason they are willing to leave Croatia and go to Ireland. There they take any jobs they can find, even those they reject in Croatia, because they feel desperate. Over time they will be better financially but they're lost for Croatia for good. People in Vojvodina perhaps do not feel that desperate as the rest of Serbia does not live much better then they are.

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    13. Vojvodina is actually not poor, not to mention that it has two economically strong cities: Novi Sad and Subotica.

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    14. That is great for air travel from BEG. Poor people do not fly, or they fly one-way to DUB only.

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    15. Dajte prestanite svojatati imena koja nisu vaša - Zagreb South i sl.
      A zašto ne bi bili London SE ili Dubai NW?
      Imate kompleks manje vrijednosti da koristite imena gradova iz drugih država.

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    16. So, basically Croatian newer diaspora is gone for good and is buying a one way tickets to Ireland and Serbian/Bosnian is flocking back and forth all the time?

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  20. Great news from Bosnia lately! :)

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    1. and finally some positive news for Banja Luka

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  21. Check which autobus routes are most popular from Banja Luka and there you will see the potential air routes from BNX.

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  22. Can BNX grab some pax from Zenica and even Sarajevo?

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    1. There are no direct flights to Brussels from either Tuzla or Sarajevo so I guess yes.

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  23. As expected FR is not going to stop in BNX on 2 destinations only.

    Banja Luka will in few years become real compettion to TZL and people from that part of BiH and Slavonia will be offered real ULCC.

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  24. My guess is that their next flights will be for Scandinavia and UK. UK would be my first destination, but they are still demanding visas from us, so...I hope that gets sorted soon. One can hope :|

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  25. ZRH - BNX
    or
    BSL - BNX

    So many passangers waiting in Zurich and Switzerland in general. Please open a Line from Switzerland to Banja Luka

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    1. OSI already has flights to BSL. It's a bit too late, amigo.

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    2. I am very surprised that they are no flights for Switzerland from BNX when it is HUGE Bosnian and ex Yugoslavia expat community here. They would never run out of business. Somebody just didn’t calculate right how many people Ryanair could get from opening the posibilities with Switzerland . Zurich, Geneva are really big in demand.

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  26. Will there be a shuttle bus from ZAG to BHX coordinated with the departure and arrival times of FR? How long does the border check roughly take? Is the border busy?

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    1. Probably will be some sort of shuttle bus service, but more likely from Zagreb Main bus station.

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  27. The border check will take sufficiently for you to lose the flight and eventually lose any interest in flying from BHX :D

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    1. I like the way you know this already.

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    2. Lame and boring comment, anon 9:15pm

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    3. Boring and extra lame comment, anon 10:38pm, so there.


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  28. Someone pit stn banka luka?
    So thatst uk to bosnia direct? Is this correct? Source

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