Airlines and airports shift to winter operations


The 2019/20 winter season begins today and will run until March 29 of next year, signalling changes for both the national carriers of the former Yugoslavia, as well as airports across the region.

Ljubljana Airport has lost its main customer and is expected to experience an almost 40% reduction in capacity this winter. Despite this, it will see several new arrivals. Today, Lufthansa will launch operations to the Slovenian capital from Frankfurt, which will be followed by Munich next week. It will be joined by its partner Brussels Airlines, which will inaugurate flights from its Belgian hub on November 4. Furthermore, low cost carrier Wizz Air, which was to discontinue services from Charleroi to Ljubljana over the winter months now plans to resume operations on the route on December 19. Almost all airlines currently serving the Slovenian capital are increasing their operations to the city this winter season, including Aeroflot, Air France, Air Serbia, LOT Polish Airlines and Montenegro Airlines.

European scheduled capacity growth W2019/20 - top 15

MarketGrowth (%)
Montenegro28.1
Albania22.0
Macedonia18.0
Bulgaria17.9
Cyprus17.8
Bosnia and Herzegovina16.8
Hungary16.3
Malta16.0
Serbia14.0
Poland12.8
Greece12.3
Turkey12.3
Ukraine11.5
Moldova11.5
Luxembourg10.3

Air Serbia will increase frequencies on a number of its routes this winter from Belgrade, including Banja Luka, Bucharest, Larnaca, Ljubljana, Podgorica, Skopje, Tel Aviv, Thessaloniki, Tirana and Venice. In addition, it will maintain all its new year-round services inaugurated over the summer from the Serbian capital, among which are Barcelona, Cairo, Helsinki, Kiev, Krasnodar, Madrid and Rijeka. For the first time during the winter, the airline will operate from two bases, in Belgrade and Niš, with ten routes to be maintained from the latter. Overall, Air Serbia will operate 532 weekly services, an increase of 102 flights or 24% more than the same period last year. In the busier months of December and January, this figure will grow to 596 flights, or almost 18% more than in 2018/19. Niš Airport itself will also see two new routes inaugurated by Ryanair this winter – to Malta and Hahn, however, Swiss International Air Lines will suspend flights for most of the season. Kraljevo’s Morava Airport will mark its maiden commercial operations this winter with subsidised services to Vienna, which are to launch in December.

Croatia Airlines will make minor changes to its winter operations. The carrier will add an additional weekly flight from Zagreb to Brussels and has partially upgraded its seasonal Dublin service, which will run until January 26, 2020. Furthermore, at Zagreb Airport, Greece's Aegean will add an extra weekly flight on its service from Athens for a total of three. The new rotation will operate on and off throughout the winter, until January 15, before it goes on a month-long hiatus, and resumes on February 24. British Airways will add an extra two weekly flights between London Heathrow and the Croatian capital for a total of nine for most of the winter. However, during certain periods, frequencies will vary between seven and nine weekly. Spain's Iberia will introduce an extra weekly rotation from Madrid for a total of three per week. On the other hand, Korean Air will suspend its operations from Seoul for the winter starting November 29, while Flydubai will operate three weekly flights less. Elsewhere in Croatia, Freebird Airlines will replace Aegean Airlines on winter charters from Dubrovnik Airport. The Turkish carrier will run two charters per day from Dubrovnik, a significant increase from last year, and will operate to numerous points across Europe.

Montenegro Airlines will be making minor amendments to its 2019/2020 winter season operations by adding an additional two weekly flights to Ljubljana. At Skopje Airport, Wizz Air has upgraded all its seasonal flights to a year-round basis. Last year, the airline downgraded its operations from Skopje to Barcelona and Vaxjo, as well as from Ohrid to London Luton, to seasonal summer flights. However, this winter, Wizz will maintain services on all three routes twice per week. In addition, it will continue to run all new routes launched from the two cities over the past few months. Pristina Airport will see both Eurowings and Wizz Air introduce services to Vienna this winter. Furthermore, Bulgarian charter carrier Alk Airlines will start regular flights from Pristina to Dusseldorf and Munich at the end of December on behalf of a local tour operator.

Sarajevo Airport is gearing up for a strong winter with FlyBosnia to maintain services to London Luton and Rome, with the latter to be inaugurated next Saturday. In addition, Eurowings will maintain its new service from Berlin, which was launched this summer, while Turkish Airlines will boost frequencies from Istanbul from eleven to fourteen per week.




Comments

  1. Good luck to Lufthansa on the Ljubljana route. Anyone know the loads for today's flight?

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    Replies
    1. Don't know about LH but I flew on LX on Friday and we were maybe 40 passengers onboard.

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    2. What aircraft did they use?

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    3. That's not great. But we can't judge based on one flight.

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    4. JU today to LJU 33 and 118.

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    5. Swiss is sending A220 today.

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    6. Which Friday? On Oct. 18 I was on a flight to Zurich with 10 business pax and almost full economy (4 empty seats).

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    7. I would assume he meant this Friday.

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    8. Yes this Friday

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    9. Until they improve the schedule timings they can't expect excellent loads.

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    10. Frankfurt - Ljubljana 63 pax (75%)
      Ljubljana - Frankfurt 83 pax (99%)
      D-ACKB

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    11. Ok those are not bad numbers but I'm surprised loads were not better on the inbound flights since it was carrying officials.

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    12. I don’t know if there were any, as there was also no water salute.

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    13. I think official launch will be tomorrow, same like it was for Wizz Air to LYS from BEG. Officials don't want to go celebrate on their day off. :D

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  2. LCA is definitely seeing more demand this winter. Yesterday's Wizz Air flight departed with 161 passengers while JU 507 tomorrow morning arrives with 10 in business and 156 in economy class. So the A320 only has two empty seats in business class. Impressive growth overall.

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  3. didnt JU increase SKP by one frequency?

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    1. Yes they did

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    2. SKP was increased right when JP went bankrupt.

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    3. i asked because it wasnt included in the text earlier. thanks

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  4. This winter season in ZAG will be rather dull. I hope the airport does a better job for next summer.

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    1. We should be lucky if there is 3% growth.

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    2. Growth might be stronger because of Adria's bankruptcy. There are a lot of Slovenian registered cars parked at the airport so this might boost numbers, not because of better flight offering.

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    3. Maybe that's the 3% growth he was talking about. lol
      I doubt numbers can be that massive in order to push numbers up. ZAG is not having a good winter.

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    4. Exactly the way the concessionaire wanted unfortunately.

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    5. FZ is only four weekly to DXB - are they serious?

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    6. I noticed two OU billboards in Kranj today (Return flights from 110 EUR from ZAG).

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    7. Hopefully Slovenes help boost ZAG numbers. FZ reducing ops, LH today all with CRJ, no more Korean... Not a good season.

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  5. Good luck to all airlines/airports. Hope some records will be broken.

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  6. "Furthermore, Bulgarian charter carrier Alk Airlines will start regular flights"

    PRN - the most exotic airport in ex-Yu.

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    Replies
    1. They have an ancient fleet of 2 MD82s and B737 classics.

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  7. The other day I noticed EW sent Q400 from DUS to ZAG. Is this a regular or a one off?

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  8. There are five flights from BEG to SVO today because of the season switch so SU has a flight at both 00.45 and 23.35 in addition to their departure at 12.45 and 18.40. :D

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    1. Wow nice catch :D

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    2. In total 6 flights to Mosocow today
      4 - Aeroflot
      1- Air Serbia
      1- Red Wings

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    3. Wow 6 flights. Wonder what the loads were like.

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    4. *are like :)

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  9. "Overall, Air Serbia will operate 532 weekly services, an increase of 102 flights or 24% more than the same period last year. In the busier months of December and January, this figure will grow to 596 flights, or almost 18% more than in 2018/19."

    Impressive. Still don't get how they will manage with the current fleet.

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    1. The fleet question was answered already.

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    2. Ok I missed it. How will thay manage?

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    3. By adding a lot of new flights at night when they had spare capacity. Like the 13.15 LJU was added by increasing TIA to A319 on those days.

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  10. Thanks for posting that capacity growth data. Very interesting.

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  11. Those charters are very good news for DBV.

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    1. Yes, apparently there will be charters to Amsterdam, Vienna, Leipzig, Hannover, Gothenburg, Berlin, Billund, Brussels, Dublin, Helsinki, Copenhagen, Oslo, Munich, Rotterdam, Stockholm and Stuttgart.

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    2. With 2 daily charters passenger numbers should continue to grow strongly in the winter.

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  12. Cudos to Sarajevo. New routes this winter.

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    1. Yes Rome, London and Berlin. Finally some European destinations!

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    2. Finally! Though I'm not so sure how long the FlyBosnia flights will stick.

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  13. Hopefully many new route next summer.

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    1. Seems Zadar is doing best in securing new routes for next summer.

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  14. Good luck to all ex-yu airlines and airports during winter 2019/20. Hope to see many new routes and more passengers for ex-yu carriers during next summer.

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    1. I still hope we will see more cooperation between not only ex-YU airlines but Balkan ones.

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    2. ^ Not gonna happen.

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  15. FZ only four weekly from Zagreb - are you kidding me?

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    1. Double daily in next 2 weeks, not every day, after that 3 per week, not 4.

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    2. What do you mean by double daily?

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  16. Air France has boosted the capacity to ZAG switching from HOP to AF mainline ,deploying A318 for most of the winter season.

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  17. Those winter results indicate top two airports of ExYu region will likely continue to diverge next year. Estimates for 2019 year-end based on published growth rates for 2019 Jan-Aug periods (7,3% for BEG and 2,4% for ZAG) point to approx 6,052 mil for BEG and 3,416 mil for ZAG. You can find many aviation charts about the ExYu region online but this one has been elusive for many analysts:

    https://postimg.cc/HVPVVZ20

    Interesting points:
    - out of 10 years, BEG has been growing faster during 8 years, ZAG during 2.
    - two key events for ZAG (entry into EU in 2013 and new terminal in 2017) did not reverse the trend
    - gap has increased over eight times since 2009.

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    1. Wow. If trend continues Belgrade will be ahead of Zagreb by 3 million passengers next year or in 2021.

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    2. ZAG is gearing for a rather disappointing winter season, that's when BEG will further increase the difference. ZAG needs a new management team right away, this winter should be the alarm.

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    3. BEG?BEG have no competition in Serbia whatsoever, all air traffic happening through the BEG. INI 150K pax ,BEG 6mil. Imagine how many pax Zagreb would have if their are in the same position as BEG.It would be ZAG 12MIL BEG 6MIL.Serbia is a small market for Air Traffic.

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    4. So sad, XXXXX1111 strikes again by changing the topic. In this thread no one compares total country numbers of Croatia to Greece, that would be like 12 to almost 60 million. Or to Spain. Or UK. Open a new thread if you want to compare that but this one looks only at BEG-ZAG gap in the last 10 years. Deal with it.

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  18. ME is really a success story. Quietly and professionally growing with no cheerleading hub bs.
    Glad for both TGD and TIV for continuously bringing new airlines and FR.
    Also big bravo for MK! SKP having cheaper rates to Spain compared to BEG for instance.
    Bulgaria figures not bad at all.

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    1. So basically you congratulated everyone but trashed only Serbia. Ok.

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  19. Worth mentioning that LOT will be operating 11 weekly flights to Zagreb in November and March. Last winter, it operated 9 flights per week throughout the entire winter.

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    1. Yeah but unfortunately it's not enough to compensate for other things. ZAG should have made a deal with LO to launch BUD-ZAG flights.

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    2. Nonsense. ZAG missed to negotiate direct NYC flight with LO. Why would anyone who wants to expand airport network and position the airport as hub negotiate the feeding route for BUD?

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    3. "Why would anyone who wants to expand airport network and position the airport as hub negotiate the feeding route for BUD? "

      That's also a great question for VINCI at Belgrade.

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  20. soon Flybosnia will realise that they wont make any money if they fly to Tuzla

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  21. Fly Dubai is decreasing SOOO muchhhh, probably due to taxes and how expensive it is to fly to fly to ex yu

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