EX-YU's top airports register strong H1

The former Yugoslavia's ten busiest airports handled a combined total of 10.718.818 passengers during the first half of the year, adding an extra 786.279 travellers on 2018. Dubrovnik Airport was the fastest growing, adding the most new passengers, ahead of Belgrade and Pristina. During the first half of the year, Dubrovnik Airport welcomed 1.059.684 travellers, representing an increase of 17.4% on the same period in 2018. In June alone, figures grew 13.8%. During the month, easyJet accounted for most of the traffic with a share of 14.8% or 61.614 passengers. It was followed by Croatia Airlines with 49.229 travellers, Jet2.com with 35.411, Vueling with 20.779, TUI Airways with 20.760 and Lufthansa with 18.639 passengers handled on its Dubrovnik flights. Other carriers making the top ten included Norwegian Air Shuttle, Volotea and British Airways.

AirportPassengers H1 2019Passengers H1 2018Change (%)Difference
Belgrade2.612.9812.463.720 5.9+ 149.261
Zagreb1.534.1051.471.628 4.2+ 62.477
Split1.102.1181.020.626 8.0+ 81.490
Dubrovnik1.059.684902.500 17.4+ 157.184
Skopje1.059.223976.851 8.4+ 82.372
Pristina1.058.981943.401 12.3+ 115.580
Ljubljana859.557831.195 3.4+ 28.362
Podgorica541.086492.672 9.8+ 48.414
Sarajevo457.734430.140 6.4+ 27.594
Tivat434.630399.804 8.7+ 34.826

Belgrade Airport maintained its position as the busiest in the former Yugoslavia, adding over 149.000 new passengers. "Since VINCI Airports took over operations in December 2018, Belgrade Airport has achieved excellent performance. Over the first half of 2019, the number of passengers rose 5.9% to 2.6 million. Cooperation with airlines resulted in the return of Air France, which resumed its Paris - Belgrade route after a six-year hiatus, and the inauguration of a new Wizz Air route between Belgrade and Lyon, which is also managed by VINCI Airports. These two route openings helped boost the number of international visitors to Serbia", the airport operator said in a statement.

Skopje Airport handled 1.059.233  passengers during the first half of the year with strong growth expected over the coming three months. "We expect passenger growth to continue at the same pace, and to be even higher during the third and fourth quarters, due to the opening of four new routes from Skopje Airport", operator TAV said. It added, "Macedonia's airports are blossoming. They have became among the fastest growing in the Balkans and in Europe. We are glad they are being recognised by citizens from neighbouring countries, who use them regularly for their travels. We will continue to work on their development, with the aim to transform the airports into main regional air traffic hubs".


  1. Anonymous09:15

    Very food results. Congratulations.

  2. Anonymous09:16

    DBV, SKP and PRN all very simmilar numbers :D will be interesting to see whather PRN will overtake Skopje or SKP will stay in front.

    1. Anonymous09:28

      PRN will pull ahead of Skopje since its new Eurowings base.

    2. Anonymous09:38

      You forget that Wizz Air bases fifth aircraft in SKP and opens two new routes next week.

  3. Anonymous09:19

    Congratulations to Dubrovnik. The growth has been very impressive this year. American Airlines flights must have helped too :)

    1. Anonymous09:23

      As you can see, easy jet contributed the most.

    2. Anonymous09:34

      True. Although it's nice to see it's a mix of low cost and legacy airlines in June, which isn't all that common to coastal airports.

    3. Anonymous10:25

      Actually reduction of seasonality helped Dubrovnik the most. DBV grew a lot in the dead season.

  4. Anonymous09:19

    So despite all the moaning by some BEG did quite well during the first half. It was nice to see Mahan Air inaugurate flights from Tehran this morning with A310.

    1. Anonymous09:29

      Yes it did well. Overall 94th airport in Europe at the moment.

    2. Anonymous09:31

      Mogu misliti kakvi ce biti rezultati u Q3 nakon JU ekspanzije.

    3. Anonymous09:50

      Anonymous at 09:29

    4. Anonymous09:53

      ^ I didn't mean for my comment to be interpreted as some kind of snipe. I actually think that's quite good considering how much traffic there is across western Europe.

    5. Anonymous10:48

      Some speculated that because of the big hiring spree that Wizz will be expanding in BEG maybe even with a third A320. That will add surely another 150.000 to 180.000 passengers.

    6. Anonymous11:44

      Belgrade is 82nd in Europe, not 94th.

    7. Anonymous16:12

      Ahead of BEG are CIA and EIN and if BEG has more than 6 million then it can take them over especially since CIA is not having the best year.

  5. Anonymous09:19

    Bravo Hrvatska!

  6. Anonymous09:23

    Macedonian airports have really done fantastic these last few years but this is a bit too optimistic -> "with the aim to transform the airports into main regional air traffic hubs".

    1. Anonymous10:10

      i dont think they mean all the Balkans as region,more likely the southeastern part of it.

    2. Anonymous11:13

      Somehow I don't see SKP becoming a hub for even the southeastern part of the Balkans when SOF and SKG are near it.

      Just my2cents

  7. Anonymous09:26

    Overall it seems to me we will be seeing much smaller growth than past few years.

    1. Anonymous09:29

      Same as for most airports in Europe.

    2. Anonymous09:56

      Growth in ex-Yu is generally above European average.

  8. Anonymous09:26

    For comparison, does anyone have numbers for Sofia, Tirana and Budapest?

    1. Anonymous09:35

      Yeas, I would like to find out too. OTP as well.

    2. Anonymous09:45

      According to Fraport SKG had 3.046.758 or the first half, an 8% growth.
      Varna 700,700 pax, an 11% drop and Burgas airport 738,031 pax, a 14,5% drop!

    3. Anonymous10:25

      TIA 2019 H1 numbers are coming out tomorrow

    4. Anonymous10:37

      Anon9:45. That's quite a drop for those two airports, after the sensational growth. Wonder if prices have gone up in those two cities and people are now looking for cheaper options.

    5. Nemjee10:39

      SKG started the year really strong with growth over 20% which then slowed down as time went by.

      Jan - 25%
      Feb - 24%
      Mar - 13%
      Apr - 0.3%
      May - 1.4%
      Jun - 1.9%

    6. Anonymous10:41

      @Anon10:25. Heard Albania has become quite an attractive touristic destination recently and TIA having an annual growth of more than 10%. Although, the airport seem to be remaining somewhat expensive for airlines. What happened to that new national airline? Did they ever fly?

    7. Anonymous10:47

      Wizz based a second A320 this month in Varna so figures will change. Burgas drop was because of Ryanair relocating its jet in Paphos I think, same scenario as Timisoara but still above 3,2 million and also because of Russians going to Egypt and Turkey.

    8. Anonymous10:55

      TIA is booming, in past five years (2013-2018) they added 1.189.830 passengers. So far in 2019 their growth is 11%. If it stays like this then this year they will have almost 3.3 million passengers!

    9. Anonymous11:13

      H1 so far:

      SOF 3 462 961 +2,4% Interestingly cargo was +19,7% in June and +23% in February
      SKG 3.046.758 + 8% - nice improvements after a slight stagnation
      BEG 2.611.700 +6% - healthy growth

      TIA N/A yet

    10. Anonymous11:15

      Would be great to know cargo performance at BEG because in BUD it's collapsing by double digits.

    11. Anonymous11:22

      Really?! o_O

      Do you know why there is such a drop?

    12. Anonymous11:32

      No idea but I wouldn't be surprised if BUD starts losing money again since cargo airlines pay a lot due to the weight.

      JAN -6.4%
      FEB -3.6%
      MAR -0.4%
      APR -7.3%
      MAY -7.2%
      JUN -15.5%

      Drop seems to be increasing.

    13. Anonymous12:01

      Whoa! Now that's a story! I didn't expect that from an experienced airport such as Budapest.
      Thanks for sharing.
      As for Sofia, it is interesting to see the increased presence of DHL 757, Swiftair and lately Western Atlanic UK that operates every weekday to OTP and LGG.


      This is my only explanation.

      Does EY do cargo flights from AUH to BEG?

    14. Anonymous12:05

      Yes they fly Abu Dhabi - East Midlands - Belgrade - Abu Dhabi twice weekly with B777F

    15. Anonymous12:18

      Aha, nice and interesting route! I think cargo figures will be positive for Belgrade too.
      The frustrating part is that Vinci no longer publishes those figures.
      I am a big fan of the old beg.aero website, which was so cool and easy to use.
      You immediately see the flights, the ticking lights, the aircraft type with the code-sharing airlines. You immediately see the traffic figures.
      The new one is modern, but I definitely miss the older one.
      One other thing, why did Kosmas Air go defunct? Wasn't there demand for cargo at first place?

    16. Anonymous12:49

      @Anon10:41 The new ''national airline'' flies TIA-IST twice daily and thats it, they just basically took over TK, slots and everything. They are selling flights in both Air Albania and TK websites. Apparently, they are supposed to start Milan, Rome, Bologna and London soon, but in Albania you can never be sure

    17. Anonymous13:04

      Didn't TK take back the plane from Air Albania? I thought that little adventure died.

      As for cargo in Belgrade there are definitely some extra movement and DHL sends the B75F from time to time.

    18. Anonymous13:11

      They did months ago, but they returned it. You can check on flightradar, registration is ZA-BEL

    19. Anonymous13:26

      At least the plane is busy in the skies, even if it is just a single one ...

  9. Anonymous09:32

    So ranking by the number of passengers added, which is the most important metric

    1. DBV
    2. BEG
    3. PRN
    4. SKP
    5. SPU
    6. ZAG
    7. TGD
    8. TIV
    9. SJJ
    10. LJU

    1. Anonymous09:33

      Yes, it's very useful to have this information too. Puts things into perspective. Percentages don't tell the whole story.

    2. Anonymous09:46

      It would be interesting to include the smaller airports as well. INI used to have massive growth rates last year.

    3. Nemjee10:42

      I think when someone posted this last year SPU was on top.

    4. Anonymous11:23

      SPU is done. They cannot expand anymore with their infrastructue. There was a report recently in Germany about the infrastructure of the airport. Good they have gone the way for the passengers by building that urgently needed new terminal. Now they have to work on the airside. Once that happens they can finally let in new carriers and ULCC like Wizz and Ryanair in big numbers. Many airlines want to expand but they cannot get the slots they need and want. Lufthansa flying in the middle of night is no option and KLM would like to add up to three daily flight on Saturdays- but no slots. Hope they fix that problem very soon.

    5. Anonymous11:33

      Well they can increase capacity if they can't frequencies.

  10. Anonymous09:36

    Hopefully SJJ will see bigger growth with FlyBosnia becoming serious now.

  11. Anonymous09:37

    Considering Adria's passenger numbers decreased a lot it's good that Ljubljana is managing to see growth.

    1. Anonymous09:45

      Ljubljana airport should really wake up

  12. Anonymous09:38

    BEG, SKP and SJJ will have much stronger growth in Q3 with all the new routes launches.

  13. Anonymous09:43

    Cannot wait to see SJJs July numbers now that FlyBosnia is doing very good job there and Middle East airlines too.

  14. Anonymous09:51

    Some interesting observations. Gap between BEG and ZAG has increase. Between ZAG and SPU decreased, between SKP and PRN decreased, between TGD and SJJ increased.

    1. Anonymous09:54

      Disappointing for SJJ especially considering it hosted Youth Olympics, so you would expect some additional traffic during slow months.

    2. Anonymous10:10

      +1 but things will get much better in July, August and September.

  15. Anonymous10:02

    Oh people - is Mahan Air back in BEG ?!
    Saw it even on Flightradar24 ...

    1. Anonymous10:04

      You obviously don't visit here often

    2. Anonymous10:16

      Oh, OK thank you !
      Gratulation to Belgrade airport for getting service by such an exotic airline

    3. Anonymous10:45

      They are carrying Chinese tourists to Belgrade. This morning they had arrivals from Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou.

    4. Anonymous11:39

      They were parked at gate A1, the nicest one in my opinion. Anyone know the loads? I am sure BEG-IKA was empty since it was the first flight but I hope IKA-BEG wasn't.

  16. Anonymous10:10

    Good results. Very interesting tussle between Skopje and Pristina developing.

    1. Anonymous10:26

      To me it looks like this year will be the first time every single airport in EX YU will be a winner !
      Even for Ljubljana this year will be its best ever.

  17. Anonymous10:19

    Bravo Srbija!

  18. Anonymous10:25

    All the best to all the hard working airports across ex yu.

  19. Anonymous11:01

    Wow! The Dubrovnik figures are impressive! One of the most organised and well managed airports in the region. The airlines flying there are all excellent and the presence of easyJet is tremendous! The same applies to Norwegian!
    It is also interesting how Jet2.com suddenly expanded. The same thing happened to Burgas this year.
    It seems that Dubrovnik is a very popular UK destination. They are very traditional when it comes to tourism. Once they like a place, they repeat every year.
    Also, who would've thought that today American Airlines will fly all the way from America to Croatia.

    I have been following Dubrovnik so closely and really really impressed with its developments.
    That said, AA already has published its 2020 summer PHL-DBV. 1st flight will be on 01.06.2020

    1. Anonymous13:37

      ^ Absolutely agree with you !

  20. Anonymous11:06

    Anyone know BEG's numbers for June? I see they had 6% in May which is very respectable.

    1. Anonymous11:15


    2. Anonymous11:16

      Is this an official number or speculation? I mean did they publish it somewhere? If true then it's fantastic.

    3. Anonymous11:16

      More than half a million pax. March was not so good compared to the rest of months. No clue why.


    4. Anonymous11:19

      @ 11 16 it's official. Vinci published total number of passengers in first half of the year as published in the table. Subtract that from the January-May numbers and you get June's result. Then compare it to June 2018 and you get 10,5% growth.

    5. Anonymous11:24

      Sorry I meant 11.5% not 10.5%
      June 2019 - 601185
      June 2018 - 539169

      Makes sense. 10 new routes were launched in total in June and many airlines increased frequencies.

    6. Anonymous11:26

      Errr, read the first part of today's article:

      Airport Passengers H1 2019 Passengers H1 2018 Change (%) Difference
      Belgrade 2.611.700 2.463.720 ▲ 5.9 + 147.980

      It's +5,9% and not 10,5%.

    7. Anonymous11:27

      Errr, read my comment. We are talking about the month of June, not January - June.

    8. Anonymous11:31

      Aha, gotcha. Sorry, my bad. Still hangover :P
      Nice figures for June!

    9. Anonymous11:36

      Nice growth for BEG, great to see double digit growth. No wonder Vinci is rushing to expand terminal they see the numbers.

  21. Petar11:18

    Do you guys think BEG will manage to finish the year with 6,2 million passengers?

    1. Anonymous11:34

      No way. For that to happen BEG would have to grow by well over 15% for the July to December period.

    2. Anonymous11:35

      6.2 is overly ambitious in my opinion but 6 to 6.1 is more realistic. Mahan can bring nice volume of Chinese tourists especially in winter since they are adding 3rd flight in September.

    3. Anonymous11:37

      If it maintains a growth of at least 8-10%, then yes.
      I think it will be somewhere over 6 million. 6,050,000 - 6,100,000. It will all depend on the trend.

    4. To be specific BEG during the second half of the year needs to have 3,6 million passengers to achieve a 6,2 million yearly record. That is about 415.000 extra pax during the 2nd half or a 13% increase.
      I also do not see it happening this year but it will definitely happen next year!

    5. Anonymous11:56

      July and August can have double digit growth but not to sure about other months.

  22. Imam dvije pripomene.

    1) Autoru članka: zašto je na članku o aerodromima Jugoslavije fotografija terminala u MUC?
    2) Ljubljana najsporiji rast u državi. Kad uz to dodam brojke Varne i Burgasa mogu reći samo bravo FRAPORT. Stvarno stručnjaci. A bravo također Alenki Bratušek koja je prodala i aerodrom i Adriju najboljim mogućim investitorima. Samo tako dalje.

    1. Anonymous11:40

      lol nije MUC vec DBV :D

    2. Anonymous11:41

      To je Dubrovnik :D

    3. Anonymous11:50

      Jesus Christ, you do need to wake up momko.
      The photo is from Dubrovnik and not Munich, but thanks for the compliment.
      Secondly, you wanna deny the importance of Fraport? Come on! Fraport invested so much in their airports and guess what? Ljubljana is getting a new terminal soon and has shown no signs of negative growth. Given its complicated geographical position and proximity to major airports it still hasn´t stopped.
      As for the Bulgarian coast, why not check the previous years? :) Burgas served up to 700,000 pax in 1 month. Did you even know how both Varna and Burgas looked like 10 years ago?
      Or even the old pathetic Varna runway? Those negative figures are because the previous figures were insanely high.
      Fraport will also improve the situation of the helpless situation of the most Greek airports that look so third world.
      I am not defending Fraport but they have definitely done a great job so far and this will be seen when Ljubljana gets its new terminal in 2021.

  23. Anonymous13:01

    6 airports with over a million passengers in H1. These numbers are really good, shows that the region is developing nicely. Bravo Ex-Yu :D

    1. Anonymous13:05

      Hopefully next year BEG will be over 3 million in H1.

  24. Anonymous13:20

    Projections (2025):

    BEG 7,500,000
    ZAG 5,000,000
    SPU 4,500,000
    DBV 4,000,000
    SKP 2,900,000
    PRN 3,100,000
    LJU 2,500,000
    TGD 2,000,000
    SJJ 2,100,000
    TIV 2,000,000

    ZAD 1,000,000 (arrival of Jet2.com)
    INI 1,000,000

    1. Anonymous13:31

      Ah these projections... if they were reliable shouldn't ZAG already be at 5 million by now?

    2. Anonymous14:18

      If Kosovo gets visa liberalization, in 2025 PRN will have at least 4 million passengers.

    3. Anonymous14:31

      I highly doubt they will get it though. At this point it's empty political promise

    4. Anonymous15:28

      Is Serbia joins EU in 2025, the numbers will be much higher after 2026. By 2030, given Serbia is an EU member, Belgrade will be 11 million and INI around 3 million.

    5. Anonymous18:36


  25. Anonymous13:34

    I know people will laugh or hate at me, but i am dead serious when i say Vinci should eye at least ten million pax minimum at Belgrade !

    1. Anonymous13:37

      I think that's their goal for the future and they are definitely heading in that direction.

      More good news is that Wizz will most likely bring back FDH flights as now they colored Monday in the timetable in addition to Wednesday that was already there before. Three flights until 23.10 and then 2 weekly until the end of summer. So there is definitely something going on there.Fares are still not loaded but I am sure that will happen soon as well.

    2. Anonymous13:46

      You missed the news:


      FDH will be temporary, because of the FMM current expansion. This affects all the W6 destinations.

    3. Anonymous13:49

      Ugh I didn't miss anything. Seems like FDH flights will stay two times per week even AFTER FMM opens. They just added Monday flights which were not there a few days ago. Something is definitely happening .

    4. Anonymous15:25

      No flights BEG-FDH after 29.11.2019.
      Something is definitely happening in your head, yes.

    5. Anonymous15:38

      Time will tell but I find it interesting how determined you are to prove us wrong. Says more about you and your obsession about BEG not getting more flights.

  26. Vlad14:24

    Quick update on the new terminal in SPU as of today:

    - check-in and all operations are completely moved to the new terminal
    - check-in is still the same mess it used to be, with all desks doing all flights and playing the row lottery
    - one dedicated row for business class and three for bag drop
    - security is vastly improved, there are modern belts and electronics such as laptops no longer need to be removed from hand luggage for separate inspection
    - full body scanners are present but not used atm, so belts still need to be removed and pockets emptied etc.
    - departure area before security is huge but there's insufficient seating space for whatever reason
    - there is a free observation deck accessible before security on level 2
    - departure area after security has more seating space, but is still 95% full in the afternoon
    - duty free is way better and looks like a proper shop now, with about 5x the floor space of the previous one

    That's all of the top of my head, feel free to ask me any additional questions.

    1. Anonymous14:30

      So all check in desks are used for all flights? They are not separated by airlines and flights?

    2. Vlad14:33

      That's correct. It used to be like this in the old terminal as well during the high season.

  27. Anonymous16:17

    Why is there an Egypt Air Airbus330 flight tomorrow from Cairo to Belgrade ?
    Any sport events or other special occassion ?

    1. Anonymous16:20

      I don't see it listed on beg.aero but maybe it's a cargo flight?


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