American Airlines touches down in Dubrovnik


American Airlines has inaugurated its seasonal service between Philadelphia and Dubrovnik, marking the resumption of flights between the United States and Croatia after 28 years, as well as the return of scheduled long haul flights to the Adriatic city. Flight AA148 took off from Philadelphia just after 18.30 local time (00.30 CEST), with 209 passengers on board the Boeing 767-300ER aircraft, while the return service has 169 travellers. On Wednesday evening, a ceremony was held at the National Constitution Center Museum in Philadelphia to celebrate the new three weekly service (increasing to four in September). Prior to its departure, a media gate party was held at Philadelphia Airport, attended by American's Vice President for Hub Operations, Jim Moses. He said, "Dubrovnik has been a place of interest for several years. It has grown in popularity among US travellers, but remained unserved by US airlines. American Airlines saw an opportunity to fill that gap. We are very pleased with sales on this route".

Gate party for flight AA148

The large Croatian delegation on the inaugural flight included, among others, the Croatian Ambassador to the United States, Pjer Šimunović, and the State Secretary at the Croatian Ministry of Tourism, Frano Matušić. Mr Matušić noted, "We are honoured that American Airlines has chosen Dubrovnik to launch this historic service connecting our two great countries. We believe this will deepen the bilateral alliance and the bonds of friendship between two World Heritage cities and between the United States and Croatia".


Commenting on the historic service, the General Manager of Dubrovnik Airport, Frano Luetić, said, "American Airlines chose Dubrovnik for several reasons. They have recognised us as a quality destination and our airport worked very hard during the negotiating process in order to secure these flights. Initially, this will be a seasonal service". He added, "There are a lot of Croats in the US. These are second, third or even fourth generation who are happy to come and visit their homeland. Air travel is much more affordable these days and we expect excellent sales. Philadelphia was chosen to be linked with Dubrovnik because it is an East Coast hub for the airline and has excellent links with the West Coast, Canada, as well the Bahamas and the Caribbean. Therefore, we expect a lot of transfer passengers as well. Furthermore, Philadelphia is close to New York, which is too congested".


The head of the Dubrovnik Tourist Board, Romana Vlašić, said, "After 28 years we finally have direct flights from the US again. This pilot project from American Airlines will grow over the coming years to include more American cities as well as new airlines". She added, "We have been working intensively on the US market for years and it seems that this work is starting to bear fruit. There have been a whole series of promotional events that we have carried out in the US, from the New York Times Travel Show to specialised travel fairs in Las Vegas. Secondly, we are working with a luxury tour operator in the US who has proved to be very professional and has brought us many guests to Dubrovnik over the past few years".

Water cannon salute at Dubrovnik Airport for AA148

American Airlines crew upon landing in Dubrovnik

The Croatian National Tourist Office's Director for North America, Ina Rodin, said, "We are thrilled that there is now a nonstop flight from the US to Dubrovnik, as Croatia continues to capture the imagination and gain attention from travellers. The Croatian National Tourist Board and our tourism colleagues from Dubrovnik are excited to continue to show the world that Croatia and its magnificent Pearl of the Adriatic, Dubrovnik, the most visited destination in Croatia for Americans, followed by Split and Zagreb, respectively, are all exciting destinations worth exploring, especially among visitors from the US market”. From January to May, Croatia has experienced a significant increase in travellers from the US market compared to the same period last year. In the first five months of 2019, American arrivals to Croatia stood at 143.647, an increase of 14.5%, while overnights totalled 363.663, or an increase of 14.6%. Americans were the second largest group to visit Dubrovnik thus far in 2019 and in this same period, American arrivals to Dubrovnik amounted to 35.725, up 19% on last year.


Prior to the break-up of the former Yugoslavia, Dubrovnik Airport was well connected to the United States. JAT Yugoslav Airlines maintained a one weekly seasonal nonstop service from Dubrovnik to New York JFK, as well as a one weekly service to Chicago with its wide-body DC-10 aircraft. Meanwhile, Pan Am offered daily connections to New York via its Frankfurt hub, using a Boeing 727 on the inter-European sector. Almost three decades later. American will not only maintain its seasonal service, but continue to offer year-round travel options via its codeshare partners Iberia through Madrid and British Airways via London. Flight AA148 itself is codeshared by fellow Oneworld alliance members, Iberia, British Airways and Finnair.













Comments

  1. Bravo Hrvatska!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Pan Am also flew ZRH ZAG DBV as well as A310-300 JFK ZAG DBV. I once flew on my 2nd last visit to BEG in SEP 1990 on Pan Am B727 ZRH ZAG BEG

    Glad to see DBV has a regular intercontinental service again

    Anonymous: the cake was for all new Summer dest launched such as Berlin, Bologna, DBV fm PHL. Also marketing dept most probl has no 767 models anymore

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Correct about ZRH. One period of time FRA was switched to ZRH, and even MUC, and both 737 and 727 were used by Pan Am on inter-European flights, from all of its three ex-yu destinations :BEG, ZAG and DBV. But A310 to fly on from ZAG to DBV, that part I don't remember. As far as I know, A310 service was JFK-ZAG-JFK .

      Delete
    2. In the PA timetable JFK ZAG DBV A310 had the same flt nbr, whether now the flight continued to DBV or at the same there was ZRH ZAG DBV B727 or ex Germany B727 and passengers ex ZAG to DBV continued on B727 to DBV, I cant recall. In ZRH we also had PA 91 ZRH JFK LAX but the 747 ex ZRH flew just to JFK and u had to ac change in JFK. American Carriers use often one flight nbr for a one stop service to a fin dest but with ac change at first stop

      Delete
  3. Congratulations and good luck!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Welcome to Dubrovnik American! The best of luck for a successful route!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Congrats DBV! Hope the route becomes a success.

    ReplyDelete
  6. 100% LF on the first flight. Very good.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That aircraft has a seatcount like an A321.

      Delete
    2. Since bookings are going well, maybe we could see a B787 on this route.

      Delete
    3. I don't think PHL will become a 787 base in 2020, somebody knows that better?

      Delete
  7. Congratulations Dubrovnik and a very good catch with the worlds biggest airline. But I fear the overcrowding will become even worse.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Well done Dubrovnik. I hope we see AA expand further in the region :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Congratulation to Dubrovnik on this major win of confidence.

      Delete
  9. Safely landed.
    If there is high demand it will be great if they extend flights to start from April/May until the end of October next year. 787 would be sexy too :)

    ReplyDelete
  10. At this rate they will reach 3 million. End of the year wasn't that good with falling numbers but for the five months they have reached stable growth which is good. I hope this winter as well they can keep on growing even if demand is much smaller.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Congratulations to DBV. Hopefully ZAG can follow suit.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Will they offer transfers to ZAG via DBV?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Don;t think so. Croatia Airlines does not have any deal with American.

      Delete
    2. They from a rival alliance. And I think the majority of passengers on this route just stays in Dubrovnik and surrounding areas.

      Delete
  13. Bravo Dubrovnik for making this happen

    ReplyDelete
  14. Next year daily to PHL from DBV! Congrats Dubrovnik!!

    ReplyDelete
  15. The crew is on the senior side :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Nothing. Am I not allowed to comment?

      Delete
    2. thats usual in the North America, nothing wrong with that, just opposite

      Delete
  16. Nice to see IB, AY and BA codesharing on this route.

    ReplyDelete
  17. I can't believe they didn't use the airbridge. They parked at the air bridge but they used the stairs instead o.O

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Quite odd decision. Anyone know why? There was no ceremony on the tarmac so I don't understand the reason.

      Delete
    2. AA's 767 has one door before the wings. The airliner stopped very near to the terminal, so the bridge can' t reach 1L.

      Delete
  18. Congrats Croatia! Dubrovnik is the ice breaker for US flights to Croatia, and its only a matter of time the numbers will make sense for AA (or others waiting in the sideline for the numbers) to consider direct flights to Zagreb. What’s the worst case, AA only flies to DUB, still a great achievement!! Croatia's trending, attracting a new long haul flight almost every year (Air Transat, Emirates, Air Canada, Korea, AA). Inevitably non-stop to Asia will probably be next, whether readers are happy about this or not! I wish all the SE Europe airports and airlines a lot of luck!

    ReplyDelete
  19. Excellent news form Croatian tourism.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Nakon 30 god ...opet ono sto smo imali .... napredujemo,nema šale !!!! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. To šta si imao da je valjalo opstalo bi. Kako nije onda je i propalo.

      Delete
    2. Valjalo je valjalo...

      Delete
    3. Ne samo da je valjalo nego je bilo uzor mnogima i predstavljalo opasnost za bankare i ostale malobrojne vladare napacenog nam Planeta. Cak je toliko valjalo da je morao biti razbucano. Toliko je valjalo da se danas taj model globalno ne smije ni spomenuti a predsjednica Hrvatske, instalirana znamo od koga i odakle prica pricu o jednoj vrsti jogurta iako ih je bilo 76. Razbucavanje je bilo samo generalna proba za isto tako "neuspjesne" i "siromasne" Libiju, Egipat, Irak, Siriju, Venezuelu.. . Razbucali bi oni i Iran i Kinu da nisu preveliki, prepametni i premocni. Pretpostavljam da mnogi, pogotovo mladji, koji to "zlo" nisu zivjeli i koji su uvjetno receno produkt propagande, nece razumijeti o cemu pricam i da ce krenuti sa diktatorima i diktaturama, na sto cu se ja samo slatko nasmijati

      Delete
    4. Da totalno je valjalo...jos uvijek me uhvati nostalgia za hiperinflacijom nakon sto su dugovi iz "zlatnih" 70ih dosli na naplatu u 80ima. Jedna cijena kruha ujutro, druga popodne i svi smo bili multi-milijarderi ha ha!

      Delete
  21. Croatia keeps winning!

    ReplyDelete
  22. This could have been OU.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Only US3 flying to ex-Yu. This shows to what extent Dubrovnik is a world-class destination.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. ZAG is in negotiations so they will happen soon

      Delete
  24. Croatian tourism is on fire

    ReplyDelete
  25. Thank you for the update and pics.

    ReplyDelete
  26. Will they carry any cargo on this route?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Would make sense

      https://www.exyuaviation.com/2018/03/american-cargo-extends-croatia-slovenia.html

      Delete
  27. AA is a great match for this route with its massive hub in PHL feeding it with connections from over 250 US and Canadian destinations.

    ReplyDelete
  28. Once again thank you 1000 times to ex YU Aviation for the great coverage of this special moment. We are so damn lucky to have you.

    ReplyDelete
  29. Only 28 Business Class seats and 21 Main Cabin Extra seats. That should be easy to fill.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Right foot forward. It couldn't happen to a better place. Anything worth having requires sacrifice!

    ReplyDelete
  31. Load is very good for the first flight.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 100% on the way out but lower LF back which is to be expected since the majority of passengers are tourists.

      Delete
  32. Hopefully another new destination next year :)

    ReplyDelete
  33. tonights AA 148 PHL-DBV 195 Pax booked out of 204.
    AA 149 Monday 129 Pax. Both flights Business class booked with 26 o/o 27 seats

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. AA could start with 4/7 to DBV..

      Delete
  34. Congratulations to wonderful Dubrovnik and a very nice set of pics!
    Landing to Dubrovnik is an amazing experience, especially after flying over the Croatian coastline on a clear day!

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

EX-YU Aviation News does not tolerate insults, excessive swearing, racist, homophobic or any other chauvinist remarks or provocative posts with the intention of creating further arguments. A full list of comment guidelines can be found here. Thank you for your cooperation.