Search Bosnia and Herzegovina aviation news

Saturday, February 17, 2024

✈Flydubai to operate 3 daily flights Dubai-Sarajevo

Flydubai has added a third daily flight between Dubai and Sarajevo. The airline will operate three daily flights from  July 15. to September 01. During the summer timetable Flydubai will operate a total of 556 round-trip flights offering 96.744 seats. Together with Air Arabia and Wizz Air, United Arab Emirates will be second most served market from Sarajevo International Airport with 199.692 seats on offer from April to November.


Source: Zahid Krkić

✈Mostar International Airport Summer Timetable 2024

In the upcoming summer timetable, Mostar International Airport will see the arrival of two new airlines Air Serbia and Sky Alps, introducing five new routes. Both airlines have been awarded subsidies to start flights from Mostar. Sky Alps will connect Mostar with Rome, Verona, Bari, and Munich. All four routes will be operated twice weekly onboard 76 seats Bombardier DHC-8-400 aircraft.  From April 15, 2024. Air Serbia will connect Belgrade and Mostar,  Greek Airline Marathon Airlines will fly the route on behalf of Air Serbia with Embraer E175 aircraft. Flights will operate three times per week on Mondays, Fridays, and Sundays.



During summer timetable Mostar Airport will be connected to five destinations in four countries. Three airlines will operate a total of 726 round-trip flights, offering 57.168 seats.

  • Air Serbia will operate 166 round-trip flights to/from Belgrade, offering 14.608 seats
  • Croatia Airlines will operate 180 round-trip flights to/from Zagreb, offering 13.680
  • Sky Alps will operate 380 round-trip flights to/from four destinations, offering 28.880 seats



Source: Zahid Krkić


Thursday, February 8, 2024

✈Sky Alps should open base in Tuzla and Mostar

During Summer Timetable 2024 Tuzla International Airport will see a significant drop in flights and seats offered when compared to the year before. For the same months last year Tuzla Airport had 501.480 seats on offer, while this year the airport has 206.988 seats, representing a decrease of 59%. 

The number of flights last year stood at 2.786, while this year is 1.276, representing a decrease of 54%. Due to Wizz Air closing its base at Tuzla Airport and withdrawing two Airbus 320 aircraft from the airport,  many destinations are discontinued without suitable replacement. Tuzla Airport management was surprised by the abrupt Wizz Air base closing and was scrambling to find any replacement for Wizz Air. 

With the financial help of Tuzla County Government, Tuzla airport was able to sign the deal with Greek airline Lumiwings to open base at Tuzla Airport with one Boeing 737-700 (149 seats). Lumiwings was awarded 2.400.000 Bosnian Marks (1.227.000 Euros). The airline opened five routes to secondary airports in Germany, Sweden, Denmark, Nederland’s and just recently one main airport, Istanbul in Türkiye. 

Lumiwings is very small, unknown airline with a fleet of only two aircraft, one Boeing 737-700, currently based in Tuzla and one Embraer 195, currently based at Foggia Airport in Italy. The airline operates only subsidized flights, making it unappealing by its competitors and airports. 

Since local governments are offering large sums of money as subsidies to airlines, more attention should be paid to other airlines besides Wizz Air and Ryanair. Great example of an airline that could establish itself on Bosnian market is Sky Alps or Aegean Airlines, with its sister company Olympic Air, both airlines have perfect fleet for Bosnian market operations.

Tuzla is paying way too much to Lumiwings  for such a small number of flights and very unappealing secondary airports it operates too. 

Tuzla Airport management team together with Mostar Airport  should reach out to Sky Alps to nagotiate a deal that would benefit both airports. Sky Alps has ideal fleet for Tuzla and Mostar airports and could benefit of basing airplanes between both airports. Two airplanes could be based at Tuzla  during summer and offer Mostar flights as well (for example flights could operate as follows, TZL-MUC-OMO-MUC-TZL etc. This way Tuzla and Mostar could get flights to main airports like Munich, Copenhagen, Berlin, Cologne, Rome, Ljubljana, Vienna (there won’t be a problem of selling 76 seats on Dash8 aircraft compared to 180 seats Airbus 320). During winter months airline base should be in Mostar since weather conditions are more favorable in Herzegovina, flights could operate as follows OMO-FCO-TZL-FCO-OMO. 

Smaller aircraft is perfect for seasonal markets like Mostar and Tuzla, it would have year long great bookings, regardless of the season. This would ensure sustainability to the airports and safety to the customers, that their flights won’t be canceled very last minute. 

At the very first year of operations, passengers numbers won’t be as great as they were in 2019, but is should be around 400.000 for Tuzla and 150.000 for Mostar. Being connected to major airports in Europe is the goal of every small airport including Tuzla and Mostar. Both airports should put their resources together to achieve same goal. Both airports should cancel current very unfavorable subsides, Tuzla Airport (Lumiwings), Mostar Airport (Air Serbia and Croatia Airlines). 

Sky Alps would definitely be more affordable, and offer better services then current airlines. Since Sky Alps has Italian AOC it would be able to offer flight to both Belgrade and Zagreb. Unfortunately routes out of Mostar to Belgrade and Zagreb are purly political, based solely on political agenda, without any analysis on routes optimization and profitability. Sky Alps signed agreement with Lufthansa on feeding its route network, which could impact Mostar and Tuzla operations in big numbers, providing route to Munich, Frankfurt, Berlin, Stuttgart or Cologne and offer endless number of connecting flights on Lufthansa network. Such a deal would be big win for both airports, even if only one of the above mentions routes would be established, most likely it would be Munich.   

Zagreb route has been in service for awhile, and we can definitely confirm that this route is loosing big amounts of money without any benefit to the city or airport. Belgrade has more potential due to connecting flights but still, its way to expensive for what it is. 

Following routes could operate as year long with 2-3 weekly flights. All flights are possible to operate with two Dash8 aircraft with bases in either Mostar and Tuzla or one in each. After network development and frequency increases, all Italian flights could operate with crew and aircraft based in Italy.


Source: Zahid Krkić

Wednesday, February 7, 2024

✈Banja Luka International Airport Summer Timetable 2024


Banja Luka Airport - Photo by David Segic

During Summer Timetable 2024 Banja Luka International Airport will see a significant drop in flights and seats offered when compared to the year before. For the same months of last year Banja Luka Airport had 535.350 seats on offer, while this year is 300.528 seats, representing a decrease of 44%. The number of flights last year stood at 2.886, while this year is 1,734, representing a decrease of 40%. Discontinued destinations this summer are: Tivat (Air Montenegro), Bergamo (Ryanair), Berlin (Ryanair), Nuremberg (Ryanair), Hamburg (Wizz Air), Malmo (Wizz Air). One new destination in Germany is being introduced, Karlsruhe Baden-Baden, will be operated by Ryanair twice weekly.

Banja Luka Airport - Route Map Summer 2024

Germany is market with the most flights and seats on offer, representing almost half of the airport business, followed by Sweden and Austria. Banja Luka Airport management needs to work with local government to offer subsidies to any LLC to offer low-cost flights to Malmo, Copenhagen, Berlin, Hamburg, Eindhoven, Istanbul and Athens. Air Serbia should either increase its service to Belgrade to daily to enable connections to its network or discontinue its service altogether.  After so many years of operations to Banja Luka two weekly flights are laughable. In order for Banja Luka to be sustainable as a LLC airport, number of passengers should be around 800.000 to cover basic needs of airport operations. Next to Germany, Türkiye should be on airports radar with flights to Istanbul, preferably Turkish Airlines with 5 weekly flights during summer and 3 weekly during winter months. Pegasus Airlines could work as well, since they offer many connections via their hub at Istanbul’s Sabiha Gokcen Airport. SunExpress would be ideal with two weekly flights to Antalya. With airport struggling financially, the management of the airport should be proactive on finding solutions, before government decides to sell it to cover holes in 2024 budget.

Source: Zahid Krkić

Tuesday, February 6, 2024

✈Bosnia and Herzegovina air traffic report for 2023

Four international airports in Bosnia and Herzegovina handled a total of 2.425.716 passengers, representing an increase of 10% when compared to the year before. Even with Wizz Air closing bases in Sarajevo and Tuzla, the airports managed to make up numbers by increasing frequencies on existing routes mainly from airlines in Gulf region (Abu Dhabi, Bahrain, Dubai, Doha, Jeddah, Kuwait City, Muscat, and Riyadh.

Bosnia and Herzegovina







Sarajevo (SJJ)




Tuzla (TZL)




Banja Luka (BNX)



Mostar (OMO)



Source: Zahid Krkić and BHDCA

Sunday, February 4, 2024

✈Wizz Air continues to reduce operations in Bosnia and Herzegovina

With Ryanair announcing flights to Sarajevo and additional frequencies to Banja Luka, Wizz Air is definitely losing Bosnian market share, and its slowly making its way out of Bosnia and Herzegovina. In the past two years Wizz Air lost the trust of Bosnian customers due to constantly opening  “new” routes, just to close them months or sometimes only weeks after, lack of transparency and very unhelpful customer service. In two years time Wizz Air started over 20 routes from Bosnia, just to close them all in less than a year. 

Recently announced route reductions:

Basel – Banja Luka from 3 to 2 weekly flights

Basel – Tuzla from 3 to 2 weekly flights

Abu Dhabi – Sarajevo from 7 to 5 weekly flights

The only reason Abu Dhabi and London-Luton flights are not canceled yet is due to subsidies provided by Sarajevo tourist board.

Wizz Air was named the worst short-haul airline by UK passengers in 2023. Passengers surveyed by consumer group (WHICH?) gave the Hungary-based carrier one star out of five for boarding experience, cabin environment and seat comfort. The budget airline’s seat pitch in standard economy is only 28 inches, two inches smaller than rival Ryanair. The airline’s overall customer score of 48% put it at the bottom of the ranking, below Ryanair (52%), Eurowings (53%) and British Airways (56%).

In December, the  UK Civil Aviation Authority said it had significant concerns about Wizz Air’s “unacceptable” behavior as its passengers were far more likely to make escalated complaints than those of other carriers. The regulator also found that the airline was delaying paying money owed to passengers.

Source: Zahid Krkić

✈Record January for Sarajevo Airport

Sarajevo International Airport has recorded its busiest January by handling 77.545 passengers, representing an increase of 26,8% or 16.386 passengers more when compared to the same month of last year.

Source: Sarajevo Airport

✈Lumiwings to launch Tuzla-Istanbul flights

Lumiwings will introduce two weekly flights between Tuzla and Istanbul. Flights are scheduled to start on March 5th, operating on Tuesdays and Sundays. Lumiwings established a base at Tuzla Airport in December of last year with flights to Saarbrucken in Germany, Halmstad and Stockholm Skavsta in Sweden, Esbjerg in Denmark, and Maastricht in the Netherlands.

Tuzla (TZL) – Istanbul (IST)

Route

Flight number

Flight times

Operating days

Valid from-to

TZL-IST

L9 351

09:50-13:50

-2-----

05.03.-26.03.

TZL-IST

L9 351

13:35-17:35

------7

10.03.-24.03.

 

 

 

 

 

IST-TZL

L9 352

14:40-14:40

-2-----

05.03.-26.03.

IST-TZL

L9 352

18:20-18:20

------7

10.03.-24.03.

 

 

 

 

 

Source: Zahid Krkić

Saturday, February 3, 2024

✈Air Serbia to start Belgrade-Mostar flights



From April 15, 2024. Air Serbia will connect Belgrade and Mostar. Greek Airline Marathon Airlines will fly the route on behalf of Air Serbia with Embraer E175 aircraft offering 88 seats. Flights are scheduled to operate on Mondays, Fridays, and Sundays.

Belgrade (BEG) – Mostar (OMO)

Route

Flight number

Flight times

Operating days

Valid from-to

BEG-OMO

JU 634

13:35-14:25

1---5-7

15.04.-25.10.

 

 

 

 

 

OMO-BEG

JU 636

15:10-16:00

1---5-7

15.04.-25.10.

 

 

 

 

 

Source: Mostar Airport