Wizz to base fifth Skopje jet in late July


Wizz Air will station its fifth aircraft at its base in Skopje during the second last week of July, some twenty days later than initially planned. The Airbus A320 will enable the airline to introduce flights from the Macedonian capital to Turku in Finland and Larnaca in Cyprus, as well as increase frequencies on several existing routes. Services to Turku and Larnaca will now launch on July 24 instead of July 3 and will run twice per week. Starting July 22, an extra weekly rotation will be added on services to Gothenburg, Hamburg, Cologne and Malta, while flights to Basel will be boosted with an additional three weekly services.

The low cost airline previously noted the new aircraft allocation represents a further 101 million US dollar investment into Macedonian aviation, which will contribute to the creation of over thirty new direct jobs with Wizz Air. These estimates are based on the list price of an A320, as well as an Airports Council International study which suggests the creation of 750 on-site jobs for every one million passengers carried. Wizz started operations from Skopje in 2011, growing its fleet to four aircraft over eight years. Last June, two of the airline’s A320s were upgraded to two A321s. The no frills carrier launched new state-sponsored flights from Ohrid to Malmo and Milan, as well as from Skopje to Baden Baden and Bremen in March. This will be followed up with new services from Ohrid to Dortmund in early July, as well as Ohrid - Memmingen and the above-mentioned Turku and Larnaca later that same month.


Meanwhile, this week Wizz Air celebrated the fifteenth anniversary of its first flight, as well as a milestone of 200 million passengers carried. The first Wizz flight took off on May 19, 2004 from Katowice to London Luton. Since then the airline has grown its fleet to 112 Airbus aircraft. "We operated our first flight in 2004 between Poland and the UK, and today, fifteen years later, we celebrate a total of 200 million passengers carried from 112 airports across 44 countries. While it is undeniable that our people are the biggest driver of this achievement, there are also four key elements that have set WIizz apart from our competitors and helped establish our unrivalled strategic position in Europe", CEO Jozsef Varadi said. He added, "Thanks to our exceptional ULCC [ultra low cost carrier] business model, we are cost leaders in a commodity industry and one of the most valued airlines in Europe. Our market leadership and increased focus on the Central East Europe region gives us a unique advantage by allowing us to enter an underpenetrated market, in which we strive to get people into the franchise of flying, rather than compete for the passengers of existing airlines. We have an order of over 250 A321neo aircraft, an extremely valuable asset and a true game-changer for Wizz, offering the lowest unit cost and environmental footprint per passenger, as well as reduced noise and NOX footprint. Finally, our culturally diverse organisation and leadership team, represented by over fifty nationalities, ensure that we have a truly global vision, take balanced decisions and swiftly adapt to changes in our environment".




Comments

  1. How are other airlines performing in Skopje since Wizz is growing like crazy?

    I guess loads aren't great on the new routes since they can easily rebook passengers on other flights?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wizz Air's passenger share will probably get up to 70% this year. It was 67% in the first quarter. I presume it is having an impact on smaller airlines, especially from ex-Yu.

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    2. JU already reduced SKP this summer season.

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    3. Well OS is increasing SKP to double daily from 06.06

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    4. JP too, Germania Flug 8x

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    5. And despite the German saturation we will see Eurowings start flying to Ohrid this summer.

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    6. German saturation from the Macedonian market I mean.

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  2. Why did they push it back?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I believe it is primarily plane related.

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    2. I also think it has to do with capacity restraints. The same reason I think they are cancelling Osijek flights.

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    3. Osijek is cancelled because of insufficient LF of 80% which is low for Wizz.
      https://www.exyuaviation.com/2019/04/wizz-air-to-discontinue-osijek-service.html

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    4. OSI is unfortunately a tragic story but it's nothing new in Croatia. Continental part is neglectedin favor of the coast.

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    5. Perhaps staffing issues? Many have left Wizz in MKD ie pilots and crew. Salaries have stayed the same, the cost of living has increased.

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    6. @Anon 09:20

      It is very correct and it is actually the best proof that the airports in continental part of the country can't be compared with those on the coast.

      Or better to say only continental airports in certain countries can be compared.

      Delete
  3. So all routes are moved to the end of July except Dortmund-Ohrid.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Weird. I really wonder what is the reason.

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    2. Weak bookings probably.

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    3. You have proof of that?

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    4. lol nice spin

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    5. So what is the reason if it isn't weak bookings?

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    6. Anon 12.47

      Do you have proof that he is wrong?

      Delete
  4. Interestingly they will get the A321 to fly the Larnaca route.

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

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    2. Let's see how it performs, BEG didn't really work out for them so I doubt SKP will.

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    3. Like I said below, it will wok for them for the next 3 years because they are being paid to fly it and have to keep it. Besides, it has no competition on this route, unlike in Belgrade.

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    4. Also there are no subsidies in Belgrade.

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    5. If Malta can work year round for Wizz from Skopje then why not Larnaca.

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    6. Under the subsidy contract only 2 routes from Skopje will be subsidized and 4 from Ohrid. That means that two of the new routes from SKP are not susbidized.

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  5. Congratulations on the fifth plane Skopje.

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  6. I'm very interested to see how Turku will perform and whether it will become seasonal.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. For the next 3 years it won't since the route is subsidized.

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    2. All new routes will be kept year round.

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

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    4. Skopje-Turku is mainly for Kosovo market.

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    5. I don't know what's funny. Several thousand Albanians and Kosovars work for Meyer Turku
      shipbuilding company in Turku.

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    6. Interesting. The route makes more sense now.

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    7. stil a ridicolous claim

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    8. What exactly is a ridiculous claim?

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    9. I also don't see what's ridiculous. This route is almost solely being launched for Albania/Kosovo guest workers. You think Macedonians are going to go on holiday to Turku?

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

    ReplyDelete
  8. How many passengers did Skopje handle from January to April and what's the estimate for this year?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wizz will probably have around over 1.8 million passengers in Macedonia this year?

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    2. Yep seems realistic.

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    3. SKP will continue to see massive passenger growth this summer with these two new routes.

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  9. I think Wizz Air should have applied for INI subsidies. Like this they created themselves unnecessary competition.

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  10. Meanwhile all the current FMM will seem to be transferred to FDH by mid September until the end of November 2019. It's crazy how this area has so many airports nearby: FMM, FDH, ZRH, BSL, and almost all connected to some Balkan city.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Runway work.

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    2. That's right. I doubt they will be leaving FMM anytime soon. Out of the 18 destinations they serve, 8 are ex-Yu! BEG, INI, OHD, PRN, SKP, TGD, TZL and PRN. They also deploy their A321s quite often.

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    3. The main demand from ex-Yu seems to be Germany, mostly because of guest workers both historic and new.

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  11. It's ok we will wait another 20 days :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Let's hope there will be no more delays.

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  12. The Finland route is really exotic

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

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 5th plane is SKP, and maybe soon one in OHD (they will serve 7 routes)

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    2. Slovenia has a smaller population and JP smaller seat capacity and still manages to have the same traffic.

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    3. There will be 8, not 7 routes from Ohrid.

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  14. 5 planes to a population of 2 million people. Not bad.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They will soon overtake Montenegro Airlines by size in Macedonia.

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  15. But the 101 million USD investment and the way they calculate it is hilarious.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. all the lcc do it that way

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    2. But it's so deceiving.

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    3. Did they subtract the investment on behalf of the Macedonian government from the value of the 100+ million US Wizz Air is 'investing' ;)

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    4. PR mambo jambo.

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    5. Ryanair used to claim that each plane they based in some city created thousands of jobs, even though non of them were on their payroll. LOL.

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  16. They should really look into Prague and Bucharest.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There is no market there. The new routes are not going to work.

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    2. Even if they wanted to they could not have introduced Prague because it was served by CSA last summer and under tender rules the route must not have been operated for at least two years I think.

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    3. Prague is in the game for Wizz but as as the previous poster said .... If theres any other lcc interested for SKP Prague is the most obvious choice

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    4. Didn't Wizz Air significantly reduce operations from Prague last year?

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    5. Yes, so much so that they closed their one aircraft base. The A320 was moved to Vienna.

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  17. With 5 planes now based could we see Wizz seek a Macedonian AOC?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It would just increase their costs. Their is no need for them to do it. The only AOCs they have are a UK one and Hungarian one as far as I'm aware.

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    2. They also had a Ukrainian one but they shut it down.

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    3. Yes the IATA code for their Ukrainian unit was WU. They shut it down in 2015.

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    4. They have announced that they will reactivate their Ukranian AOC this year.

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    5. The reason why they want a Ukrainian AOC and not for example Macedonian or Serbian is that the Ukrainian market is huge and a lot of the most popular destinations from Ukraine are actually outside of the EU, which makes it difficult for a non Ukrainian airline to fly to.

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    6. They don't have a Polish AOC?

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  18. I'm reading Varadi's statement and I wanted to ask how much profit did Wizz have last year? Are they a profitable airline? I never seam to see any news about their finances unlike Ryanair and easy.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hilarious.

      http://lmgtfy.com/?q=wizz+air+profit+2018

      Delete
  19. Congratulations on the 15 years to Wizz. They have certainly made waves on the ex-Yu market and that is very good.

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  20. "We strive to get people into the franchise of flying, rather than compete for the passengers of existing airlines".

    Well said.

    ReplyDelete
  21. It was the best decision to support Wizz instead of creating some Air Macedonia, will done to all.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. +1
      SKP puts other busier airports to shame. They need to use the Macedonian model to develop LCC network as well. People don't want national airlines, they want cheap tickets.

      Delete
    2. Amen brothers (sisters).

      Some competition from FR and U2/DS wouldn’t hurt though.

      Delete
  22. Good news, It's also good to see W6 flying to more and more main city airports, as well as so called "exotic" destinations from Skopje.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Soon they will chase out most competition.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That does not seem to be the case as more and more airlines are launching flights.

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    2. Which ones?

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    3. To Skopje Flydubai, Qatar Airways, LOT, Aegean

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    4. If that's a success for the past 7 years while also loosing Alitalia, then ok.

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    5. Isn't FZ actually reducing SKP? QR did the same last year think.

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    6. No they are not reducing Skopje
      https://www.exyuaviation.com/2019/04/flydubai-shakes-up-ex-yu-operations.html

      Delete
  24. I wonder if SKP-BEG or SKP-ZAG could work on Wizz without subsidies? There are so many buses every day from Belgrade to Skopje.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It would for sure. But for that to happen Zagreb Airport would have to lower its fees and the Skopje-Belgrade route will only happen when both countries become EU member, or at least one.

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    2. SKP-BEG could be a double daily (morning and eveming) shuttle easily

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    3. Still hope to see wizzair flying to some east-european countries from SKP and OHD

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    4. as far as I know there are 5 daily buses from Skopje to Sofja. Which means (5*50=250) people in each way. For sure there is big demand.

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    5. @14.31
      I think everybody does. Until now it has been solely P2P. If they open some East European routes, there might be some transfer chances (I know it is an LCC in question, and that it doesn't have the hub system) for backpackers or anyone on a budget.

      Delete
  25. I don't think weak booking are the reason they moved it. I think its because of capacity constraints. They can't start these routes without fifth A320 and they probably can't get it to Skopje earlier. I mean they suspended that one route from Nis for a few months because the aircraft operating the flights from Poland was relocated.

    ReplyDelete
  26. cooool :) But I still hope Ryanair and Easyjet to come.

    ReplyDelete
  27. W6 is doing well in SK. I did try to book return Eindhoven-Skopje for August, it was 250 for return without luggage.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Of course, they need to make money. Only fools think they can fly everywhere and at any date for 20 EUR. That pricing is just marketing, now that Wizzair is established and airports depends on them, passengers will have to discover real cost of flying.

      Delete
  28. How many airbridges does SKP have? With 5 A320s there might be issues for airlines that spend the night there.

    ReplyDelete
  29. SKP Airport capacity will get the limit in 5 years and considering tough border to get out or to get in plus customs it is still behind

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Most routes are now 95% covered and basically there are no more routes to launch out of SKP.
      We also clearly see a market saturation. Doubt there will be new routes anytime soon.

      Delete
  30. Does anyone know skp and ohrid pax numbers but Separate?

    ReplyDelete

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