Wednesday, June 6, 2018

American eyes Dubrovnik service


The world's largest carrier, American Airlines, is considering introducing seasonal flights to Dubrovnik. According to the "TangoSix" portal, the company is in talks with the airport over a seasonal service from Philadelphia. A decision on the matter is expected within the next month. American operates a number of seasonal flights to Europe from its Philadelphia hub including Athens, Barcelona, Budapest, Frankfurt, Glasgow, Lisbon, Prague, Shannon and Venice. This year, the airline expanded its reach from Philadelphia into Europe with seasonal flights to Budapest and Prague. Both are operated by its Boeing 767-300 aircraft. The move is seen as affirming American’s commitment to Philadelphia as a trans-Atlantic gateway.

Dubrovnik Airport has identified the United States and South Korea as two far-away markets which could sustain services to the coastal city. Speaking to EX-YU Aviation News, Dubrovnik Airport's General Manager, Frano Luetić, said, "These two far-away markets are the most important for Dubrovnik. According to the city's tourist board, visitors from the US are the second most common, behind those from the United Kingdom, which is specific to the Dubrovnik region. On the other hand, Korean tourists are most plentiful during the winter months". With exception to several summer charters from Japan, operated by All Nippon Airways, Dubrovnik Airport currently has no regular long haul flights.

In 2016, local authorities said they were seeking a partner for the introduction of a two weekly, year-round, New York - Dubrovnik service. At the time, the now former Mayor, Andro Vlahušić, said, "The number of visitors from the United States to Dubrovnik has tripled over the past five years, which is why we want to establish direct flights between New York and Dubrovnik. A two weekly service from New York would significantly contribute to the tourism industry during the winter months". Commenting on possible services to Croatia, American Airlines said, "American constantly evaluates our network to ensure we are maximising our fleet and profitability while matching customer demand. While no airline can serve every destination, our joint businesses and alliances with airlines like British Airways and membership in Oneworld allows our customers to seamlessly connect to Croatia".

Dubrovnik Airport has recorded strong passenger growth so far this year. In May it welcomed 291.453 passengers through its doors, representing an increase of 14.8% on 2017. During the January - May period, the airport handled 537.152 travellers, up 13.4%.

140 comments:

  1. If you look at the cities they fly out of Philadelphia, Dubrovnik actually makes sense.

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    1. yes very intresting, very good for DBV

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    2. Congrats to DBV for trying! There are really many American tourists there!

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  2. wow that would be nice.

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  3. If they do decide to fly to Dubrovnik my guess would be for next year right?

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    1. Obviously. They won't announce these sort of flights in July for August.

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  4. I think it could work. There is definitely potential.

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    1. Besides Belgrade and Zagreb, Dubrovnik is the only city in my opinion that has (seasonal) potential for US flights.

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    2. SKP too if you look at its growth so far. Maybe not now but in a year or two yes.

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    3. +10000 Anon 09.16

      Maybe AA could link ZAG and SKP?

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    4. Why should they link ZAG and SKP?

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    5. Because they could fly like that year-round.

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    6. ZAG should have its own flights, just my thought.

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    7. What's your thought on ZAG still not having it?

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    8. I think it's called negotiating?

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    9. Anon 10:57, you can ask Korean Air about not having flights to ZAG! ;)

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  5. Did someone repeatdly say that DBV is just a small town of 40 thousand? Hmmm, try again.
    DBV = THE BEST in South Europe!

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    1. We know who is jealous the most of DBV here. :D It's ok,Dubrovnik will become the first in the country to get flights to the US and those people will just have to deal with that. :D

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    2. If DBV is getting them then it's only a matter of time before ZAG gets them as well.

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    3. Agree with Anon 9:24!

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    4. I doubt it, DBV always had more demand compared to ZAG, when it comes to US flights.

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    5. ZAG will get the flights to the US, there's no doubt about that.

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    6. Dubrovnik needs to hire someone decent to do their website. It was bad before and was recently updated and now it’s just a complete mess!! Like honestly probably the worst website I have come across in a long time.

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    7. many websites of airports needs better user experience most of them are bad

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  6. Have there ever been flights from DBV to US after Yugoslavia broke up?

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    1. I don’t think there were ever flights. Pan Am did fly to dubrovnik but from their Frankfurt hub.

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    2. JAT flew nonstop Dubrovnik - New York in summers.

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    3. JAT flew nonstop Dubrovnik - Chicago as well

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    4. PanAm had a number of flights just before the demise in 1991, JFK-ZAG-DBV-JFK with A310

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  7. If JAT and Pan Am could maintain flights to DBV from/to the US 30 years ago I don't see why there could not be flights now.

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    1. From Ex-Yu's vintage section :)

      http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-ChfhgTqWLdI/VEP15CnfOQI/AAAAAAAAOVU/njAETwYW7B0/s1600/panam.jpg

      http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-AF0ZQHMb3sY/VloJwCw_6eI/AAAAAAAAUb4/EVcA0IkCFfM/s1600/panam.png

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    2. Kind of sad that this was normal 30 years ago but would be a massive thing today.

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    3. It was a different time back then.

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  8. Fingers crossed.

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    1. I have no doubt about it this will become reality

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  9. It would be nice if they flew Philadelphia - Zagreb - Dubrovnik - Philadelphia.

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    1. No need, ZAG will have its own flights to the US. Even if this AA story for DBV doesn't work now, it will work in the future, for sure!

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    2. Zagreb airport is talking to number of US Carriers in starting service to Zagreb, there was some semi-success, read as US carriers considering Zagreb in the past.

      There's a small US ex-pat emigre community in Zagreb of around 1000, and in Croatia of around 1700, mostly entrepreneurs, artist and businessman working for international operations in Zagreb and Croatia. Not sure this would warrant direct links to US, as alternatives as really good, Air France, JLM, Lufthansa, Austrian, BA, Iberia, Swiss and OU code-share with United, all offering good decently priced flight deals for NY and other US cities.

      I think there'll be nothing of US flights before 2020 in Zagreb or Dubrovnik, perhaps in 2020, Delta or American might decide to initiate flights linking NYC with Dubrovnik via Zagreb seasonally.

      As is, the very good connection to US via major EU hubs, makes little sense for US carriers to start direct flights. Even though, Croatia is top 25 destination for US visitors in 2017, probably be top 20 destination in 2020 when it is expected over 700 000 US visitors could visit Croatia. Ahead of Czech Republic, Greece, Portugal, Hungary or Switzerland.

      In time perhaps US carriers will show up, lets hold it is rather sooner than later.

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  10. Good news just keeps coming from Croatia this year. Well done.

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  11. It would be the cherry on top of the cake for flights to the US to launch next year, with the new terminal opened and so many new routes being launched.

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    1. It would be the next major step for DBV. Let's hope it happens in 2019.

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  12. Why Philadelphia? Why not New York? Any particular reason?

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    1. PHL is American Airlines' major, intercontinental hub and one of the most premium airports in North America. That is why they are linking DBV with it.

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    2. Thanks :) Didn't know that.

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    3. Alen Šćuric PurgerJune 6, 2018 at 9:30 AM

      And in Pennsylvania is biggest Croatian Diaspora in USA.

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    4. What do you think the chances are for this flight Purger?

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    5. Which generation though? There's a lot of Serbs there especially around Pittsburgh but they are second or third generation.

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    6. Alen Šćuric PurgerJune 6, 2018 at 11:44 AM

      Well it is my information in first place.

      I speak with person who is in charge for this for several hours but I can not give any details.

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    7. Alen Šćuric PurgerJune 6, 2018 at 11:49 AM

      More information on topic:

      https://tangosix.rs/2018/05/06/kolumna-alena-scurica-korean-jos-jedan-veliki-iskorak-za-zagreb/

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  13. How many US visitors to Dubrovnik last year?

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    1. I don't know for Dubrovnik but in Croatia there were 451,947 US arrivals last year.

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  14. I still don't get that Croatia Airlines hasn't leased one or two A330s. The cost of leasing its quite low at the moment. They could pretty much pick and choose the destinations during the summer - US, Canada, Japan, Korea... We would be earning much more on these tourists that way.

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    1. If they would be smart they could hve cooperated with JU. But politicians are rather dividing and so we are in 2018 and instead of good, smart and fruitfull relations we hve political tension among some of the ex YU republic. Good evidence why to ignore politics and focus on more important things in life

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    2. Why should there be any cooperation between OU and JU? What's wrong about competition? Besides, it would be very difficult given that one has to operate under EU rules and other does not have.

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    3. @9.21 that would be nice but the only thing OU is missing here is money.

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    4. Because this way they could do something bigger.

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    5. Bigger does not mean better. OU needs to continue serving Croatian market by connecting to EU hubs and bringing pax to Croatian airports.

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    6. @AnonymousJune 6, 2018 at 9:21 AM

      I see no need for OU to lease or consider wide body aircraft. It is unecessry and with number of EU based carriers having great links to major EU hubs, direct flights for now seems ott.

      Croatian airlines is a small company, it'll need to grow some more before it can contemplate flights to north america.

      If Croatian Airlines had a fleet of 30 aircraft or so, 4 million passengers and served 50 destinations in Europe and near East, I'd understand the need to expand beyond this region.

      As is, there's no need for such flights at this time. Major EU carriers are doing brilliant job. Would love to see north american carrier establish flights to Zagreb and Croatia, but let them first take a chance.

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    7. There obviously is some form of demand for long haul routes from Croatia as ZAG has been recieving them for the past few years, which has only grown.

      The added advantage to OU is its Star Alliance membership as well as the Miles & More program. OU should be easily able to find a small niche from which to make a widebody or 2 work.

      YYZ - AC
      ICN - OZ
      EWR - UA
      SIN - SQ
      BKK - TG

      However, it lacks a proper hub to boost sales through connecting pax as seen with JU, which would mean heavily relying on the O&D demand.

      Ive said before many times that OU has more reason to go long haul than JU, demand is simply much larger for it in Croatia due to the tourism it generates, especially from the markets it does, which unfortunaty has been picked up by competitor airlines not in alliance with OU (EK, KE, QR, TS.

      @ anonymous 3,45pm

      OU could do some small changes like make departure/arrival waves which would improve connectivity in ZAG. Obviously OU wouldnt be able to meet the full demand, however it could compliment the offering via OU's partners in Euro hubs.

      Not the best example, but JU seems to be pulling it off with 21 ac and 2.6 million pax, having now increased JFK to 6 p/w. JU has a weaker partner (EY), is not in any alliance, a weaker FF program (EY guest) and Serbia is far from a tourism hot spot.

      But I guess its all about money, which OU doesnt have.

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  15. This will affect some airlines flying to DBV.

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  16. I am probably one of the rare ones who landed and dep on widebody in DBV ;-)

    AA B767 in Coach are not a real pleasure to fly with. First of all in average every 6 to 8 weeks u face an AOG in or outbound, no power plugin except for Maincabin extra and no PTV. Seats are 20 years old
    Business is updated and good

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    1. Well the B767 from AA is similar to Rouge. Same generation of planes.

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    2. Which airline/plane did you use at DBV?

      Agree with you about AA's B767s.

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    3. August 1989 JFK-DBV-BEG

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    4. Nice! Would be great if you could share some memories from that flight (if you can remember it).

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    5. I have had good experiences with AA but I have not been on their 767's.

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    6. Actually, just had a quick look at Skytrax to see how they are rated. Lots ans lots of 1/10..... Maybe I just got lucky lol.

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    7. anonymous 0953h: dont remember much but I was so excited on flying JU DC10 that during stop over in DBV where remained on board i was asking one of the flight attendants holes in her belly. Flight was full and delayed. I think about 110 pax flew to BEG, rest got off in DBV

      JU DC10 flights are my big own treasure which I will carry all my life in me. GN fm ZRH

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  17. Korean could easily extend its ZAG flights to go to DBV as well.

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    1. Would be nice to see Jinair in DBV

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    2. It is possible to see, perhaps not in 2019, but see no problem in getting Seoul - Zagreb - Dubrovnik - Seoul route approved over summer months.

      Hopefully it happens in 2020.

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  18. If Venice, Athens, Budapes and Prague can have US flights, why not Dubrovnik.

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    1. Dubrovnik could get those flights, no problem. But you can't compare Du to those huge tourist meccas.

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    2. Dubrovnik isn't getting that many air-passengers to warrant such flights. Venice has 10-11 million visitors, Prague 7 million, no idea if Budapest has direct NA flights, but even Budapest gets 4.5 million visitors each year.

      Dubrovnik with its 1.1 million visitors can't be classed in the same category just yet.

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    3. Budapest has direct flights to JFK, ORD, PHL and YYZ.

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    4. For instance, Venice doesn't have flights to China, so, how about that? And, judging by its reputation, don't you think it should have at least seasonal flights? What I meant to say, if AA thinks there is sufficient demand in DBV, they will come. If not, well, at least, DBV can try again.

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    5. Forgot to add, Venice doesn't have flights to Japan, either.

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  19. Good numbers from Dubrovnik as well.

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  20. I think a priority for DBV should be securing more winter flights. That said I wouldn't say that progress hasn't been made in this respect.

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    1. I also think they are working towards it. In 2016 they got Turkish Airlines, last year Vueling and this year Iberia

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    2. If only those flights had operated in reality. In most cases flights were cancelled.

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    3. It is unfortunate that Croatia Airlines has reduced its ops from Dubrovnik so much during the winter.

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    4. @11.01 what do you mean?

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    5. It is the result of low demand.

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    6. If demand is so low, why will the flights be resumed in the coming winter? yes, that's right, that Turkish Airlines has canceled some flights. Vuelings losdfactor was above their expectations and therefore satisfied.

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    7. Croatia did not reduce flights from Dubrovnik in winter:

      3 pw to Frankfurt
      2 pw to Rome
      22 pw to Zagreb (this winter up to 24)

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    8. Im surprised that after several years of seasonal
      ops, JU hasnt made DBV a year round route.

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    9. A za koga i zasto?
      Niti je vrijeme povoljno niti su hoteli otvireni

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  21. Alen Šćuric PurgerJune 6, 2018 at 9:43 AM

    Zagreb-Beograd-Podgorica-Beograd-Zagreb
    Air Serbia
    petak 8.6/subota 9.6.
    karta kupljena tri dana prije

    258 EUR bez prtljage i sjedala
    279 EUR sa prtljagom
    291 EUR sa odabranim sjedalima (23-30 kn je po legu odabir sjedala) - KUPLJENO!

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    1. To je odlicna cena imajuci u vidu da je leto i da letite za TGD koja je hronicno puna.

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    2. Alen, make trip report :)

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    3. Зар Air Serbia наплаћује пртљаг? Нисам то знао.
      П.С. Поздрав из ЦГ

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    4. ^ Zavisno kakvu kartu kupis

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    5. JP is still cheaper...
      210€ without luggage
      250€ with luggage

      But travelling to LJU and parking there... you come to the same price I guess.

      Haplek

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    6. Alen Šćuric PurgerJune 6, 2018 at 11:47 AM

      I fly with Air Serbia at least 15 times per year. And I made trip report on my first flight. Those days there is nothing special what you can write in trip report on those short flights.

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    7. Alen Šćuric PurgerJune 6, 2018 at 2:20 PM

      Haplek, 2 problems with JP:
      - costs (petrol, vignette, parking) + time for travel to Ljubljana
      - timing which was not good for me

      By the way what happen with 11 flights per week to Podgorica, as they fly 7 pw like last year. Problem with shortage of planes?

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    8. They should or will start with them by the end of the month

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    9. I believe that fleet shortage is the most logical explanation.

      8 new routes,
      2 CRJ900 at OS,
      1 CRJ700 at LG,
      no SAAB2000 in the fleet.

      Haplek

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  22. Any chance of seeing Norwegian flights from DBV-LAX or DBV-SFO?

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    1. Would be nice but knowing Norwegian's current state (lack of aircraft and liquidity) I'm not sure they would start such an adventure.

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    2. They will fly from OAK for sure. Probably next summer.

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    3. Ahahahahaha...

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    4. Or DBV-BWK-LAX. Even better!

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    5. Why not to Hawaii, or Sydney also?

      Hahahahahaha!!!!

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  23. Would be interesting to see how much these flights would bring in new tourists.

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  24. To me it would make most sense for an airline like United to start flights from the US to Zagreb and then codeshare on Croatia Airlines which is their Star Alliance partner to Dubrovnik and Split.

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    1. It would make sense for both DBV and ZAG to have flights.

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  25. Well done, Croatia!

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  26. it's just a matter of time.

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    1. Agree. So many Americans during summer in DBV.

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  27. Bravo Hrvatska!

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  28. I think flights from Dubrovnik to the US would be a great success straight away.

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  29. Two weekly year round would have been too much. But during the season it would definitely work.

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    1. At least 3pw during summer could work for DBV! The demand is there!

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  30. This is fantastic news!! Well done DBV and Croatia.

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  31. I think 2 per week on a 767 type would easily work on its own.

    Good airline too.

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    1. Good airline? Okay I flew with them only once, but they are as crappy as all two other major US carriers. Worn out interior and bad service.
      On long haul I prefer million times LH group airlines or TK from Europe (though I always think twice if I really need to book with TK as their safety record is a big concern) or any Asian carrier! US big 3 are the worst you can fly with on long haul, no doubt.

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    2. American Airlines is a brand and there are people who are willing to use it and go directly to their destination. Congrats to DBV for trying to negotiate this route, regardless how the negotiations end!

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    3. Yeah, I had a look at Skytrax and got they get lot of 1/10.... Like I wrote above, maybe I just got lucky but I thought they were very good From Syd to LA in the 777. Thought Delta long haul was good too.

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  32. If this goes thru the slimmer chances of Zagreb getting flights to USA.

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    1. Are you serious? Ahahaha

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    2. With a US3 carrier yes, daily to DBV and daily to ZAG seems too much. With LOT, Norwegian and carriers alike who fly low frequency TATL routes no.

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    3. @AnonymousJune 6, 2018 at 3:14 PM

      He is aying if Dubrovnik gets it first, less chance for Zagreb, which is true, as there's only two airlines from US that fly to many EU destinations, Delta and American. United only flies to select few hubs, London, Paris, Munich, Frankfurt, Amsterdam...

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    4. ZAG is actually negotiating with Delta and there is place for both, DBV and ZAG, at least for seasonal flights.

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    5. But hardly daily to both cities from US3, even in the peak season. So if DBV gets them next season it’s a setback for ZAG. The advantage of ZAG is that it might sustain year round flights unlike DBV. Couple of times weekly with LOT, maybe.

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    6. I doubt Dubrovnik will get anything more than a charter or seasonal charter from US. We need to be realistic what potential Dubrovnik has right now and mid-future.

      Apart from tourist and film crew there's little demand for anything else, in terms for film crew, most of them when on filming locations in Croatia are based in Zagreb, where filming studios and extensive faculties are, in Dubrovnik they just shoot the scenes, fly to Zagreb and edit the material before sending it off to Hollywood or London for post-op.

      I don't think Delta or America are in to holiday flights that much, sure they have seasonal flights to Venice, Prague, Vienna, Budapest...

      However these are major cities of commerce, trade, diplomacy and travel. Sorry Dubrovnik barely rates when compared. Any future US flights will need to be done via Zagreb, with Dubrovnik as a 2nd stop, sort of stuff Pan Am did in their heyday. Do I miss Pan Am, what a great airline that was. I was barely a child when they went bust, but stories and films, made about that airline and the fact they flew to Zagreb and Dubrovnik.

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    7. "...I don't think Delta or America are in to holiday flights that much, sure they have seasonal flights to Venice, Prague, Vienna, Budapest..."

      Sorry, I don't get this part.

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  33. Market for this would be mostly American tourists going to Dubrovnik. Some diaspora but not much, as LAX/ORD/JFK-PHL-DBV-ZAG is worse than LAX/ORD/JFK-FRA/MUC-DBV. No cruise ship passengers as Dubrovnik is just a port of call. Not too many business passengers and cargo demand. Very few passengers originating in DBV. AA cabin not optimized for leisure passengers like TS or Rouge. At best, seasonal 2pw.

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    1. The US3 operate TATL flight almost exclusively on a daily basis, only United operates couple of African destinations with low frequency (2-3x weekly). If this route really happens it will be daily.

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    2. Dubrovnik is starting port for MSC.

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    3. DBV is also homebase for TUI UK Cruises

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    4. I cant find Dubrovnik as a departure port on MSC website

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    5. "If this route really happens it will be daily."

      You kidding us, right?

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    6. Why should he/she be kidding? If there is demand, then there is demand...

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  34. I think Norwegian will base 1 787-900 just like LEVEL did in CDG. I see potential US routes:

    DBV-JFK
    DBV-BOS
    DBV-OAK
    DBV-LAX
    DBV-ORD
    DBV-MIA or DBV-FLL

    In the summer they can send the aircraft to Europe too:

    DBV-CDG
    DBV-LHR
    DBV-FRA
    DBV-MAD

    I am confident that they will also look into the Balkans and base a widebody a/c.

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