Wizz Air readies for Macedonia expansion


Wizz Air is preparing for the launch of its first of eight new destinations from Macedonia in just over a week with the airline also upping capacity and upgrading certain routes. All eight of the new services will run on a year-round basis. Seasonal flights from Skopje to Barcelona, as well as from Ohrid to London Luton, which are set to resume this summer following a five-month hiatus, will once again operate throughout the year, with two weekly flights planned on both routes for the 2019/2020 winter. Furthermore, the low cost airline has increased capacity on its upcoming new service between Skopje and Larnaca, which is due to launch on July 3. Flights will now be maintained by the larger 230-seat Airbus A321 aircraft, instead of the initially planned 180-seat A320. Services between the Macedonian capital and the Cypriot city will run twice per week, each Wednesday and Sunday.

As previously reported, Wizz Air is also increasing frequencies on its existing services. The airline will add an additional weekly flight from Skopje to Gothenmburg, Hamburg, Cologne and Malta, while operations to Basel will be increased by an additional three weekly services for a total of ten per week. The network growth will come as the airline allocates its fifth aircraft, an A320, to its Skopje base this summer. “Further expanding our Macedonian operations means that Wizz Air can provide even more opportunities for Macedonian customers to travel across Europe at the lowest prices. We are confident that our customers will appreciate our new connections and that these routes will be as popular as the other thirty in our Macedonian network", Wizz Air's Chief Commercial Officer, George Michalopoulos, said.


The eight new routes being launched by the low cost carrier from Macedonia this summer will bring an additional 200.000 seats onto the market. As a result, Wizz Air has over 1.9 million seats on sale from and to the country this year. "We will continue to further expand our network footprint and provide truly affordable prices, as well as stimulate the local economy of the communities we serve", Mr Michalopoulos noted. Wizz Air handled just over 1.4 million passengers on its Macedonia flights in 2018, representing year-on-year growth of 14.4%. The airline held a market share of 62%, while it accounted for 85% of all passengers travelling on low cost carriers to Macedonia in 2018.




Comments

  1. Does anyone know what is the projected growth for Skopje Airport considering these new routes, capacity and frequency increases?

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    1. I can only imagine the growth Ohrid will see :D

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    2. 2,4 million meaning that SKP has now all the chances to reach DBV.

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    3. Reach DBV? I am sure Dubrovnik will reach at least 2,6 million this year, if not 2,7. It would be success for SKP to overtake Priština finally.

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    4. with reach he didnt mean overtake , "within reach" more likely

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  2. Fantastic to see that all routes will be kept year round!

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    1. And that SKP-BCN and LTN-OHD are back year round.

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  3. And there were fears by some that SKP-LCA wouldn't work yet we have the route operated with an A321 now.

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    1. True, I did not see that happening and its also going year round. I was most worried about Larnaca's and Turku's chances.

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    2. Skopje-Turku is mainly for Kosovo market as is Ohrid-Milan for Albanian.

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    3. It's a subsidized route, why wouldn't it work?

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    4. LOL, sorry but most of the routes are filled by Albanians to 50%, some more some less, enjoying the subsidies from NMK...be it ohrid Milan or Vaxjo SKP or GOT SKP

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    5. are you not tired of trolling all day?

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  4. So Wizz was obligated to start 6 routes from Macedonia (4 from Ohrid and 2 from Skopje) but they will instaed start 8 routes and they will now be all year round. Nice.

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    1. Wasn't the requirement for them to base a plane in Ohrid not Skopje? All Ohrid flights will originate from foreign destinations.

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    2. It was. But it is possible they base an aircraft in Ohrid later. They will have 7 routes from there.

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  5. I really can not understand how come Barcelona can work out for Skopje and not for Ljubljana?

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    1. Odd indeed.

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    2. And on top of that they will operate the A321 to Barcelona this summer from SKP.

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    3. @9.12 it is easy to launch new routes when you get money from the state.

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    4. The subsidies for Barcelona have ended.

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    5. Exactly, the moment subsidies ended so did year-round operations. Anyone can fill a plane to BCN in summer.

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    6. Diazepam danas u ponudi

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    7. indeed odd... especially as we keep on reading on this forum how Slovenians are so rich and love to travel.
      or perhaps, they just drive to Barcelona, (yet another argument on why carriers don't launch flights from LJU).

      my hint:
      LJU management sucks!

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    8. Funny how every time someone says something that annoys SKP fanboys dogmatists they immediately try to be funny by saying how Bromazepam is offered today.
      Get a life and compare yourself to some other ex-YU airports and then you will be the ones needing Bromazepam when you realize how far behind you are. Unless achieving a monopoly is your goal then you are right on track.

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    9. SKP is not far behind other airports in ex-yu
      of course, it lags behind some only in terms of pax numbers- but the rest is just fine

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  6. Their passenger share will probably get up to 70% territory this year.

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    1. Yep the share will only increase in 2019. My guess is around 70% too.

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    2. I estimate around 75% as others such as JU and OS will lose more customers who will fly directly now.

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    3. OS is not losing passengers from SKP, on the contrary i read somewhere that it increased flights to 14x this summer.
      OS flights are to primary airports where pax can transfer, whereas most of the routes of W6 are routes either on secondary airports or airports with litte oportunities for transfers (e.g. CGN or HAM for flights to North America)
      Even with 4 x weekly from BRA to SKP for some years now, OS with 2x daily from Vienna is doing just fine on this route.

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    4. sorry, BTS

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    5. OS and OU increased their pax from SKP regardless of Wizz

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    6. Austrian isn't too happy with Wizz special treatment
      https://www.exyuaviation.com/2018/06/austrian-complains-over-macedonian-lcc.html

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    7. *sviri violina

      Wizz is now getting cash from VIE for their base there

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  7. So BCN was suspended over this winter as a warning to the Macedonian government about subsidies? I mean I don't see the reason you would resume it year round after just one season.

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  8. I really wished they stopped opening German routes and started looking at other markets more.

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    1. Yes 11 German routes from SKP.

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    2. Turku, Barcelona, Malta, Larnaca, Bratislava, Basel and the scandinavian routes are not german routes.

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    3. Traffic is mainly gastarbeiter so it is natural to fly where is demand.

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  9. All I can say is well done Wizz and MKD.

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    1. W6 can be considered the flag carrier of Macedonia

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    2. and it costs less than what JU, MGX and OU cost taxpayers in their respective countries

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    3. Maybe it costs less FOR NOW but the moment SKP tries to change the game they will threaten like they arleady did. So in a few years the cost of W6 will be similar to what others are paying. To make things worse, even with subsidies Wizz doesn't fly to central airports from SKP.

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    4. well, we are living in THE NOW, and not in the future, so unless you have your cristal ball with you, you can't really predict what will happen.

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    5. Neither can you. That said I am predicting the future based on Wizz's past behaviour.

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  10. Good job Wizz. They have made air travel accessible to many Macedonians and increased tourism in the country.

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  11. SKP handled 2,158,258 last year which is more than impressive. This year I expect them to reach 2.480.000 which should be enough to come really close to Dubrovnik. I think it's not unrealistic to expect SKP to be ex-YU's fourth busiest after BEG, ZAG and SPU.

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    1. DBV has lots of new additions this year, far greater than 8 routes. Check the right hand section of the home page to see the new routes.
      Imagine if DBV also received subsidies similar to SKP, it would have much more passengers,

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  12. Where to from here? It's great they have introduced more new routes but I don't see what else could Wizz launch from Skopje in the future. Perhaps Poland?

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    1. They should work on increasing frequencies to makes sure the market remains competitive. Maybe those who are two weekly should become three weekly.

      Also they should push for Alitalia to return so that we have another option to fly to the US and Canada.

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    2. Prague is coming once the two IATA seasons are gone and they can get some cash for launching it

      a certain: one of the struggling secondary austrian airports once they change their fees-policy

      Slovenia (why not MBX) a big gasto market

      when they can make Malta work year round, the possibilities are sheer endless :D


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    3. SKP-MBX would really harm SKP-LJU as I am sure JP carries some p2p.

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    4. it does, but with 40k mk gastarbeiters and 800 mk students im Slo they dont do the O&D potential any justice ... there is a 100k yearly potential on Mk-Slo routes (similar for BiH i suppose)

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  13. In my opinion SKP has to be one of the most overrated airports in ex-YU. It's basically one airline expanding at secondary and tertiary airports thanks to government funding. Naturally it's fanboys think it's like Frankfurt or something.
    I think they should go visit the Croatian coast to see how small airports with limited local demand should be run. These fill the state budget, they don't empty it.

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    1. Anon 10.47

      How many of those did you take when AA announced DBV? :D

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  14. Bravo Makedonia!
    Greetings from Sofia!

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  15. I think W6 should have considered Israel ONCE and for all!
    TLV is like connected to every corner in Europe, even secondary Hungarian, Polish, Romanian, Bulgarian, Lithuanian cities!
    Instead of this German mania, why don't they launch exciting routes??
    Barcelona is great, but Växjö, Bremen, Turku?? Please!

    I hope they add not so boring routes next time. Lisbon, Tel Aviv, Málaga, Nice, Nantes, Lyon, Aqaba, Krakow, hello?

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    1. There simply isn't enough demand for non-gasto routes. Any Israeli carrier is more than welcome to launch SKP but they don't because they don't want to lose money.

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    2. sve eksperti alal da vie

      @12.41 you should have known by now that Wizz can start TLV only from EU places ..

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  16. Wizzair is a business that simply cannot compete with other airlines and can not exist without subsidies. You only have to look after its sad state of despair at much bigger markets.

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    1. Yepp, all the 110 (soon 120) aircraft are obviously operated on the subsidies received from SKP.

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  17. Da vidim samo tko ce letjeti taj peti avion. Od kad su poreze makedonci digli a wizz nije korigirao plaće ekipa odlazi i odbija na slobodne dane raditi. Očekujte dosta otkazanih letova :-)

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