Wednesday, 17 February 2021

Split-Barcelona-Split COVID-19 Trip Report, February 11 to 16, 2021

February 17, 2021 - It's been 3 and a half months since I last braved pandemic travel from Croatia to Spain. So, what's changed? My Split-Barcelona-Split COVID-19 trip report, from February 11 to 16, 2021. 

At the end of October 2020, I traveled for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic ravaged Europe. At the time, European countries were still figuring out how to introduce negative PCR tests for entry and defining what entailed being 'high-risk.' This time around, a year deep into the pandemic, it's safe to say most countries have defined requirements that work for them. Furthermore, the information is readily available for travelers online to avoid any mishaps on their journey, which I nearly avoided (more on that later). 

Not quite for tourism purposes, I booked my trip to Barcelona to visit my partner who currently plays water polo there. His birthday falls on February 13, conveniently before Valentine's Day, and fortunately, on a weekend when he didn't have any games. Much like my first trip visiting him there, I needed to bring a suitcase of his belongings, which had been sitting in my bedroom since COVID-19 forced him out of Split last March. 

Unfortunately, it wasn't much easier getting to Barcelona this time - and thanks to the double whammy of it being the offseason in the middle of a pandemic, not only were ticket prices steep, but the usual two-hour travel time turned into 14-hour travel days from start to finish. 

The only available options were on the route from Split-Zagreb-Frankfurt-Barcelona and back, operated by Croatia Airlines and Lufthansa. At least my luggage was included in the ticket price. 

I was tested for COVID-19 24-hours before my departure at the Vukovarska testing center in Split. A huge win is that testing prices were halved at the end of January, so instead of paying almost 900 kn for a PCR test and English translation, tests are currently 400 kn and 450 kn with a translation. I was tested at 7:40 am and received my result via email before 5 pm the same day, in English, and with my passport number included (another requirement for Spain). 


My 6:50 am flight time to Zagreb had me awake at 4 am to make sure I had everything in order. Arriving at the airport with just over an hour to spare, the woman at the check-in counter ensured I had a negative COVID-19 test in hand and confirmed that I had completed the health registration form for Spain as I'd need the QR code to enter the country. I did. 

"You're my favorite kind of traveler."

As you can imagine, Split Aiport doesn't have much going on before 6 am, especially during corona times, so I was through security and at my gate with plenty of time to spare. My flight to Zagreb was nearly full. 


My quick connection in Zagreb had me there long enough to examine that Costa coffee was open for to-go drinks and pastries, and Duty-Free welcomed a few shoppers. Other than that, there is not much to do but stare and each other's masks while waiting to board. 

Observation: Unlike when I traveled in October, the airport staff was not concerned with the type of mask passengers wore. Last time, we were only allowed disposable surgical masks, which were checked and distributed if needed before boarding. This time, cloth, filter, and disposable masks were accepted.

Croatia Airlines shared disinfectant wipes to all passengers once they boarded the flight. 


My arrival in Frankfurt was smooth, and a quick trip through security brought me to my gate two hours before my departure to Spain. Frankfurt airport was busy with travelers, but only cafes, hot dog stands, and small convenience shops worked. 

All that was needed when boarding for Spain was my ticket and passport - no QR code or test result was checked then, though they did announce on the intercom before boarding that both documents were required. My flight was full. 


Spain changed their entry requirements in November 2020, two weeks after I visited last time. 

"Spanish authorities require all passengers traveling to Spain to complete the FCS health control form (exceptions are passengers in transit). The generated QR code must be presented upon arrival. All travelers to Spain over 6 years of age must have a medical certificate with a negative COVID-19 RT-PCR or TMA test result. The test must have been taken at most 72 hours before arrival, and the certificate must be in English, German, French, or Spanish. Spanish authorities may impose fines up to EUR 6000 per person to passengers who do not comply with entry regulations," Lufthansa alerted me before my flight. 

We arrived in Spain and headed to baggage claim, though not before we entered an area marked for health checks, with airport officials showing passengers to one of two lines. I was ushered into the line where my entry QR code was scanned (and no COVID-19 test checked), while the other line had various health officials checking test results and QR codes. I arrived at baggage claim 30 seconds later and received an email from Spanish health officials welcoming me to Spain. 

Another thing that was different in Spain this time is that restaurants and bars are open for indoor and outdoor dining, albeit during two-time blocks - in the morning for breakfast from 7:30 am to 10:30 am and for lunch from 1 pm to 4:30 pm. While there is still a curfew between 10 pm and 6 am, delivery works until 11 pm. Barcelona closed indoor and outdoor dining a week before I arrived in October. 


This was a game-changer, given that bars and restaurants have been closed for indoor and outdoor dining in Croatia since November. 


Like my last trip to Barcelona, masks are mandatory inside and outside, and it's rare to find anyone not following the rules. Shoppers sanitize their hands upon entering any store, and the discipline of the citizens does not go unnoticed. 

Twenty-four hours before my flight back to Croatia, I took a PCR test at a local clinic that promised same-day results. The price was not as friendly as in Croatia (85 euro), but I wanted to ensure I was healthy returning home, especially since I would be in contact with my high-risk mother who babysat my cats while I was away.

Recall, if you do not show a negative PCR test, no older than 48 hours, upon arrival in Croatia, you are subject to self-isolation until you can show a negative PCR test, which is done at your expense. More on that here.

The testing experience in Spain was also a bit... aggressive. The nurse swabbed deep into each nostril for 10 seconds and continued to all corners of my mouth and gums, unlike the far more delicate experiences I've had in Croatia. I received my negative test result the same day, around 6 pm. 


After a full four days in the Catalonian capital, it was time to return home on yet another 6 am flight and 3:30 am wake-up call. The agent at the check-in counter asked to see my negative test before checking my bag and continuing to security. My flight to Frankfurt was half full, and there was no one sitting between me and my row-mate. 


Once we disembarked the plane in Frankfurt, German police greeted us to check that passengers staying in Germany had the correct documentation. Since I was on my way to Split, they sent me along.

With a few hours to spare before my flight to Zagreb, I felt a sense of relief as I was halfway home. I went to the gate only to find passengers boarding to Seattle before us - I don't think there were more than 20 passengers on that plane.


Boarding for Zagreb was slower than normal as the buses that transported passengers from the gate to the plane arrived 20 minutes apart. There was not a free seat on the always-fun propellor plane journey to Zagreb. We were asked to fill out health forms during the flight, which the flight attendants collected and turned into the authorities once we arrived.


Despite leaving 10 minutes later than scheduled, we arrived in Zagreb on time, or at 1:35 pm, with just enough time for my flight to Split, departing at 2:35 pm. While this would almost always be more than enough time to connect for a domestic transfer at Zagreb Airport, especially during pandemic times, Zagreb managed the unthinkable. 


Around 25 people from my Frankfurt flight continued onto a domestic transfer, which resulted in a larger line at passport control - but only in extraordinary circumstances could this affect me making my flight, I thought. 

However, only one passport control officer was on duty, spending on average 3-5 minutes with each passenger who:

1.) Didn't know they needed a negative PCR test to enter Croatia and tried avoiding mandatory self-isolation for various reasons, which resulted in phone calls, and even the arrival of a new officer, who didn't think to jump in and help check tests or documents 

3.) Had the wrong type of test and complained that they didn't know they needed a PCR test to enter Croatia

4.) Had a negative PCR test to enter, which the officer required you send to his email right then and there.


Boarding for my flight was at 2:15 pm, and around 2:00 pm, with another 15 or so still in front of me, I began to worry. Unsurprisingly, there was no one there to speak to apart from the lone worker at passport control. 

At 14:18, they called final boarding for Split. I panicked, as did the 7 or so passengers behind me who were also connecting to Split. I asked the man in front of me who was traveling to Dubrovnik if I could sneak in front. I approached the counter and informed the officer they called final boarding for Split and had all of my documents and test ready to go. 

He could not have cared less - nor did he hurry in the least. 

He looked at my test, told me to send him an email of it, took my phone to enter the email address, and asked for my phone number. After 3 minutes, it was over, I rushed to my gate and informed them there were still others waiting at passport control, unsure of how long it would take. I finally boarded the plane, though the remaining passengers took another 15 minutes to arrive. All because of one officer at passport control. 

We arrived in Split safe, sound, and somehow on time, with our bags arriving shortly after. 

It was smooth sailing, that is until we arrived back in Croatia. While PCR tests no later than 48 hours old are required to avoid going into self-isolation, Zagreb Airport may want to consider adding a second officer in the passport area when flights land - or you may want to re-think the timing of your domestic transfer. 

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Sunday, 14 February 2021

Flights to Croatia: WizzAir Announces Wroclaw-Split, Croatia Airlines to Launch Ancona Charter

February 14, 2021 - The latest news for flights to Croatia as WizzAir announces yet another new line to Croatia, this time from Wroclaw-Split Airport, while Croatia Airlines will launch charters between Ancona and Split in the summer flight schedule this year. 

Croatian Aviation reports that the WizzAir expansion in Split continues! For the third week in a row, this well-known Hungarian low-cost airline has announced the introduction of another new route to Split Airport. 

From June 20, the Wroclaw - Split - Wroclaw line will be introduced, which will be in traffic once a week, every Sunday, until September 12, 2021. A320 aircraft with a capacity of 180 passengers has been announced on this route. On the 13 announced rotations, the Hungarian carrier will offer 4,680 new seats.

This is the third new line to Split in just three weeks. With three new lines from Oslo, Gdansk, and Wroclaw, WizzAir will increase its market share at Split Airport with almost 30,000 additional seats!

Wroclaw is WizzAir’s new, fourth destination from Poland to Split (along with Gdansk, Warsaw, and Katowice). Given the continuous expansion of this low-cost carrier at Split Airport, it would not be surprising if they announced even more new routes to Croatia in the next month.

Ex Yu Aviation announces even more news for Split Airport. Namely, Croatia Airlines will launch charter flights between Split and Ancona in Italy this summer, organized by Italian tour operator Goro Tours.

Namely, flights will operate three times per week, on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday, from July 31 until August 28, 2021, driven by the Dash 8 Q400 turboprop.

This is excellent news for Split Airport, which is continuing to see an increase in flight connections this year. 

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Friday, 5 February 2021

Initiative to Rename Split Airport to be Launched, Says County Prefect

February 5, 2021 - Split-Dalmatia County Prefect Blaženko Boban announced that in agreement with local mayors, the competent ministry, the airport administration, and other stakeholders, he would launch an initiative to rename Split Airport.

Famous for saying, "Forgive me, Lord, for I am a Dalmatian," Saint Jerome is the protector of Dalmatia and is honored on Saint Jerome's Day on September 30. Interestingly, according to the oldest and most famous Encyclopedia Britannica, Jerome was born in Stridon, a village near Emona on the border of Dalmatia and Pannonia, probably near modern Ljubljana in Slovenia. 

However, as it has yet to be scientifically proven, Split-Dalmatia County Prefect Blaženko Boban doesn't seem to mind, so much that he will launch an initiative to confirm just how much Saint Jerome means to Dalmatia, reports Slobodna Dalmacija

"Saint Jerome is our saint, the protector of Dalmatians and Split-Dalmatia County. His birthplace, which has never been scientifically proven, was not the motive for choosing Saint Jerome, whom we have long worshiped in our area, as our heavenly protector. We sincerely hope that the whole world will worship and respect him as we do. May he be the protector of the whole world!"

Boban added:

"In my opinion, the wrong direction is to limit the worship of a saint to the place of birth. For example, Saint Dujam, the patron saint of the city of Split, is worshiped by the people of Split, even though he was not born in this area. Through the generations, numerous families give names to their children in honor of our saints, Dujam and Jerome. There is a wide range of names - Dujam, Duje, Jere, Jeronim, Jerko, Jeronima, Jerka ... And the proof of the veneration of Saint Jerome in our area over the centuries is numerous churches dedicated to this saint."

Therefore, in honor of the heavenly patron of Dalmatia, the Split-Dalmatia County Prefect announced the following important step in branding the favorite Dalmatian saint:

"Our exclusive motive is to worship Saint Jerome. Moreover, we plan, in agreement with the mayors, the competent ministry, the airport administration, and other stakeholders, to launch an initiative to rename our Split Resnik Airport after our heavenly patron, Sveti Jeronim Dalmatinac."

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Saturday, 30 January 2021

With Just 200-400 Passengers Per Day, How is Split Airport Staying Busy During Pandemic?

January 30, 2021 - How is Split Airport staying busy during the COVID-19 pandemic? Mate Melvan of Split Airport talks about conditions, restrictions, and predictions. 

After Split Airport saw a substantial investment to upgrade and expand its facilities just a few years ago, all to accommodate millions of passengers in the summer, the COVID-19 pandemic has left it empty. 

Namely, Slobodna Dalmacija reports that there are only 200 to 400 passengers who pass on average in both directions a day, on five to six planes that land on the runway. During the week, passengers can fly directly to Rome, Munich, Frankfurt, and Dusseldorf, while all other destinations can only be reached via Zagreb.

With 3.3 million passengers in 2019, figures fell to 674 thousand last year. Mate Melvan, the head of the passenger reception and dispatch service, says that nothing can be worse than last year and predicts that next summer will be much better. Turnover has decreased by five times, but there is work to be done.

"Our work is more diverse and full of challenges. From hour to hour, we monitor the database with the epidemiological situation of each country, which changes the travel conditions for passengers on these flights," he says.

"Information is important because all that is reflected on us, and every day is a new rule for a country. It can be the same, similar, or completely different from ours or some other state, and coming to work does not mean that what we did yesterday will be valid today or even during the day. Passengers face changes practically just before the trip, which can be quite challenging. Many are full of understanding, cooperative, but some do not accept, resent, and think that we or the aviation industry make the rules, not the national headquarters of the states. And when they buy a ticket, they think we are obliged to transport them from point A to place B, that we are responsible. Sometimes they point out some illogicalities for a reason, but we have no choice but to abide by the regulations. Not only are measures taken in our country without prior notice, so it is within the entire Union and elsewhere," says Melvan.

Just one difficult passenger is enough:

"Last year, at one point after reopening, Germany only allowed entry if you have an “essential reason” which includes work, death, medical treatment. A few passengers on the first flight wanted to buy a car because they are engaged in resale. They bought the ticket thinking it was a good reason. We called the carrier, he called the border control, and at the same time, we contacted the operations center by e-mail. They said - no, that can't be a good reason. If he even makes it upstairs, he will be rejected and the carrier punished for bringing him up. So we had to inform the passengers, and they were not happy. For two days, one of them called the police, and then someone at the customs, trying to prove through everyone he knew that someone was to blame. Some travelers really don't understand," he added.

And that is just one example.

Melvan's associate Katarina Dujmov, the coordinator of the passenger service, says that it is increasingly difficult to meet the paperwork some countries require:

"In recent days, we have noticed that some countries have started to close in some way. They won't say 'there will be no travel from tomorrow,' but they will complicate the situation. Norway, Belgium, the Netherlands tightened the conditions, France was quite tough anyway. You need to have a fresh PCR test, so some are looking for an antigen test, and statements on why you are traveling there. A statement that you have not been in contact with a COVID patient, that you board a plane without a fever, that you have no symptoms. Every country has something of its own. All the slightly more northern countries, I guess, are thinking about the new strain of the virus. People travel for various reasons because they have to, and hardly anyone will go for tourism now. It is complicated," says Dujmov, emphasizing that they did not receive any instructions regarding passengers who were vaccinated.

However, there are still some traveling purely for tourism.

"These are people who resist the limitations of their lives and want to realize their desires. It is possible, but it requires a lot of effort and investment, and it is also risky. You can travel, and on the way back, a new measure can change the plan. No one can predict that" they added.

They say that, like the rest of the nation, they are becoming better experts in epidemiology every day.

Goran Boric, the operations center coordinator, deals with changes in the flight lists, and still has less stress than his colleagues, as changes happen within three weeks.

Mate Melvan believes that things will improve this summer and that more people will travel. His optimism is based on the experience of the last short season in which they raised traffic to 40 percent, and from twenty percent in other months.

Also, announcements for the season are excellent. Direct flights to 100 destinations in 25 different countries are open, and the European Commission's aviation industry rules are awaited to see what will be realized. By Easter, they will get a more realistic picture of how the flight schedule from Split Airport will look.

"The old normal will return, maybe the recovery will take a little longer, and this large area of the airport now benefits us because of COVID-19. There is room for space between people; the risk is reduced. Last summer, 500,000 passengers passed through here, some of whom probably had coronavirus, but no one became infected. Wearing a mask, distance and disinfection proved to be effective during the epidemic," says Mate Melvan.

To conclude, none of the 400 full-time employees of Split Airport was fired due to the reduced volume of work, but they brought a package of austerity measures which included a reduction in salaries for all.

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Tuesday, 26 January 2021

Flights to Croatia: Wizz Air Adds Another Split Route this Summer

January 26, 2021 - The latest news for flights to Croatia as Wizz Air adds another Split route in its summer flight schedule. 

Croatian Aviation reports that only five days after it announced a new line from Gdansk to Split, Wizz Air has added another to Dalmatia's busiest airport. 

Wizz Air, a Hungarian low-cost airline, launched another new route to Split Airport, specifically in this year's summer flight schedule.

Namely, from June 6, the Oslo - Split - Oslo line will be introduced, which will operate twice a week, on Thursdays and Sundays, departing in the evening from Split Airport. 

Norwegian and SAS also connect Oslo and Split with direct flights in the summer flight schedule.

In its summer flight schedule, Wizz Air will offer over 15,000 available seats between Oslo and Split!

Wizz Air will operate A320 aircraft on the route, which has a capacity of 180 passengers in the fleet of this carrier. The line will work until the end of October (October 28, 2021), and the airline will perform 42 return flights on this route. 

Tickets are on sale on the airline's official website from today. 

Croatian Aviation reported last week that Gdansk - Split - Gdansk would operate from June 17 to mid-September, twice a week, in the evening on Thursdays and Sundays.

The new route between Gdansk and Split will be operated by A320 aircraft with a capacity of 180 seats in the Wizz Air fleet.

The airline has 26 return flights on sale on this new route, making more than 9,300 seats available between Split and Gdansk.

Split is the only destination of this well-known low-cost airline in the Republic of Croatia, for now. In the summer flight schedule, the airline will operate to Split on six international routes, two of which are new - Gdansk and Oslo.

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Monday, 11 January 2021

Less Than 2.2 million Passengers at Croatian Airports in 2020

January 11, 2021 – Unlike the record 2019, when more than 11.4 million passengers passed through Croatian airports, in the crisis 2020, that number dropped by as much as 81 percent, counting less than 2.2 million passengers.

At the beginning of each new year, the revenues from the last tourist year are added up, and tourists' numbers are concluded. However, it was inevitable that in 2020, during which world tourism experienced a massive decline due to the coronavirus pandemic, would also affect tourist numbers.

As reported earlier, the Croatian tourism sector saw 50 percent fewer tourist overnight stays in 2020 than the record 2019. Likewise, commercial aviation experienced its largest decline in history. In 2020, Croatian airports accepted and dispatched less than 2.2 million passengers, writes Croatian Aviation.

Traffic to Croatia's three largest airports, Zagreb, Split, and Dubrovnik, has been growing steadily for years, but this series has been interrupted by a global pandemic. The three mentioned airports had over 9.6 million passengers in 2019, while in 2020, they recorded less than 2 million passengers together (1,929,336). The fact that the other five Croatian airports had 242,827 passengers last year is also devastating, of which Zadar alone served over 120,000 passengers.


Source: Franjo Tuđman Zagreb Airport

With 924,823 passengers throughout the year, the main Croatian airport Franjo Tuđman Zagreb failed to reach the millionth passenger in 2020. However, almost half of the total Croatian traffic in 2020 was realized at the Zagreb airport.

Although it recorded an increase in the number of passengers in January and February compared to the same period in 2019, Franjo Tuđman Airport recorded a decrease in the number of passengers of 73 percent compared to 2019.

Unlike Zagreb Airport, Split Airport in January and February has modest traffic compared to the summer, seasonal months, and so it was in 2020. However, after the global pandemic hit Croatia, air traffic in Split almost stopped.

However, compared to other Croatian airports on the coast, Split still had a certain number of passengers in the peak season, especially in August. Still, the numbers in the post-season dropped drastically again. With 674,366 passengers, Split Airport recorded a decrease in the number of passengers of 79.58 percent compared to 2019.

Dubrovnik Airport was one of the biggest losers last year. It was closed in April, while the traffic was very poor in May and June. An increase in the number of passengers was recorded only in July and August, but not enough to avoid a large drop in the number of passengers.

Although many companies flew to Dubrovnik this summer, the planes were empty rather than full, as confirmed by statistics. The decrease in the number of passengers at Dubrovnik Airport is 88.6 percent compared to 2019.


Source: Zadar Airport

Traffic also dropped drastically at Zadar Airport, but not as much as in Pula. These two Croatian airports have been competing in the number of passengers for several years, and the difference between them is relatively small. Nevertheless, in 2020, Zadar accepted almost 40,000 more passengers than Pula. Zadar Airport recorded a drop in the number of passengers of 84.93 percent compared to 2019, and Pula Airport 89.6 percent.

In 2019, Rijeka Airport finally exceeded 200,000 passengers for the first time in its history. Still, the numbers dropped drastically in 2020 as many airlines have given up on introducing seasonal routes to this airport due to the global pandemic. Rijeka Airport thus recorded a decrease in the number of passengers of 86.22 percent compared to 2019.

In 2020, Osijek Airport had only domestic PSO (Public Service Obligation) lines and the Eurowings line to Stuttgart, but only in August. It recorded a decrease in the number of passengers of 85.72 percent compared to the previous 2019.

Brač Airport also recorded a decline in the number of passengers in 2020. A slightly more significant number of passengers was recorded only in July and August, but these are also modest numbers compared to the 2019 summer season.

You can see the graphs of the 2020 traffic from all Croatian airports at Croatian Aviation.

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Tuesday, 5 January 2021

Flights to Croatia: Volotea Announces 21 Lines to Croatia for Summer 2021

January 5, 2021 - The latest news for flights to Croatia as Volotea announces 21 lines to Croatia for summer 2021.

Croatian Aviation reports that well-known Spanish low-cost airline Volotea has announced as many as 21 international direct routes to Croatia for the summer of 2021.

Volotea, with operational bases in Spain, Italy, France, and Greece, plans to operate on as many as 21 international routes to two Croatian airports - Dubrovnik and Split.

Lines to Split Airport

According to the airline's current plans, Volotea will operate on as many as 10 international routes to Split Airport in the 2021 summer flight schedule, which will take effect at the end of March. This includes one line from Greece, as many as six from France, and three from neighboring Italy:

Split - Athens from April 25 will run twice a week, every Wednesday and Sunday,

Split - Bordeaux from April 11 will operate once a week, and from June 2 twice a week, every Wednesday and Sunday,

Split - Lyon will operate twice a week from April 11, on Wednesdays and Sundays, and from July 6, the third flight will be added (Tuesdays),

Split - Marseille will be in operation from April 25 twice a week (Wednesdays and Sundays),

Split - Nantes from April 4 will run once, from April 28 twice a week, from July 6 three times (Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Sundays),

Split - Nice from April 25 will operate once a week, from July 7 twice a week (Wednesdays and Sundays),

Split - Toulouse will operate twice a week from April 18, from July 6 three times a week (Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Sundays),

Split - Bari will operate once a week from July 7, on Wednesdays,

Split - Palermo will operate from June 2 once a week, on Wednesdays,

Split - Venice will operate 4 times a week from May 28, on Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, and Sundays.

All lines to Split should run until October 10, except for the lines to Bari and Palermo, which should end slightly earlier - on October 6. 

Lines to Dubrovnik Airport

Volotea is planning as many as 11 lines to Dubrovnik. These are two lines to Greece, six to France, and three to Italy:

Dubrovnik - Athens will operate twice a week from April 24, on Wednesdays and Saturdays, and from June 1, they will add another flight per week and operate on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays,

Dubrovnik - Mykonos will operate from May 29 twice a week, on Wednesdays and Saturdays,

Dubrovnik - Bordeaux will operate from April 10 twice a week, Wednesdays and Saturdays,

Dubrovnik - Lyon will operate from April 10 twice a week, on Tuesdays and Saturdays,

Dubrovnik - Marseille will operate from April 24 twice a week, Wednesdays and Saturdays,

Dubrovnik - Nantes will operate from April 3 once a week, from April 27 three times a week, on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays,

Dubrovnik - Strasbourg will operate from April 24 once a week, on Saturdays,

Dubrovnik - Toulouse will operate from April 17, twice a week, on Wednesdays and Saturdays

Dubrovnik - Bari will operate from June 2 once a week, from July 5 twice a week, Mondays and Wednesdays,

line Dubrovnik - Palermo will operate from July 7 once a week, on Wednesdays,

Dubrovnik - Venice will operate twice a week, on Mondays and Fridays, from May 28.

Certain routes were in traffic in the 2020 summer flight schedule, but according to a significantly reduced flight schedule, which was expected given the global epidemic. Volotea has released all the lines listed here for the summer of 2021, but there is a possibility that they will reduce the flight schedule to these two Croatian airports if bookings are not satisfactory. 

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Wednesday, 9 December 2020

Flights to Croatia: Finnair Plans Flights from Helsinki to Croatia in 2021

December 9, 2020 - The latest news for flights to Croatia as Finnair plans flights from Helsinki to Croatia in 2021.

Croatian Aviation reports that the Finnish national airline Finnair has confirmed its return to Croatia with two routes from Helsinki in the 2021 summer flight schedule.

Finnair did not operate to Croatian airports in the summer flight schedule in 2020. At one point, the airline announced flights to Dubrovnik, but they were not realized due to the epidemiological situation and restrictions at the state borders. 

The Croatian market is very important to this airline, and apart from the P2P demand itself, the airline brings a large number of transfer passengers to Croatian airports from numerous Asian destinations, primarily China, Japan and South Korea.

Given that Emirates and Korean Air will not return to Zagreb Airport next summer, Finnair expects a larger number of transfer passengers to popular Croatian destinations such as Split and Dubrovnik, to which the company intends to operate next summer.

"We are sure to return to the Croatian market in the summer of 2021. Lines from Helsinki to Split and Dubrovnik will once again be an important link between Asia and the Adriatic."

The Helsinki-Split-Helsinki route, according to Finnair's current plan, should start with regular direct operations from 11 May 2021 with 5 flights a week (every Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday). A319 aircraft with a capacity of 144 passengers in the carrier's fleet have been announced on the routes. Finnair plans to operate on this line until the fall (early October) next year.

The Helsinki-Dubrovnik-Helsinki route is planned for March 29, but the airline will still adjust the flight schedule to Dubrovnik according to the epidemiological situation.

According to the current flight schedule confirmed by this airline, there will be an increase in the number of weekly operations in April and May, so that as of May 25, as many as 6 flights per week will be available on this route (every day except Thursday). In relation to the line to Split, the airline plans to use A321 aircraft with a capacity of 209 passengers towards Dubrovnik. Finnair has as many as 19 aircraft of this type in its fleet.

The very fact that Finnair has decided to keep two lines to Croatia in its destination network for 2021 is important and positive news. It is still questionable whether Croatia Airlines will reintroduce a direct line between Helsinki and Zagreb next summer.

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Friday, 13 November 2020

Flights to Croatia: KLM Operates between Amsterdam and Split During Holidays

November 13, 2020 - The latest news for flights to Croatia as KLM operates between Amsterdam and Split during the Christmas and New Year's holidays.

Croatian Aviation reports that Dutch national airline KLM will briefly operate the Amsterdam-Split route in December this year and January next year.

Namely, the oldest airline in the world will operate on the Amsterdam-Split route during the Christmas and New Year holidays.

Until now, KLM has not operated to Split in winter, but the introduction of this line is completely logical, especially now at the time of a global pandemic when the number of international routes is significantly reduced, and passengers do not have a large selection of connecting flights.

The Amsterdam-Split route was launched by KLM on July 4, operating 7 times a week, and since the beginning of August, there have been as many as 13 flights a week on the line. In September and October, operations were reduced to 3 flights per week, and by the end of October, the line was closed for this summer season.

In December this year and January next year, KLM will run 14 flights between Amsterdam and Split.

KLM will briefly restart this line in December this year and January next year. Four flights have been announced for the end of December, and three for the very beginning of January.

Direct flights will connect Amsterdam and Split on Saturday, December 19, Sunday, December 20, Wednesday, December 23, Sunday, December 27, Saturday, January 1, Sunday, January 3, and Thursday, January 7. E190 aircraft with a capacity of 100 seats in KLM's fleet has been announced on all flights. The planes will land in Split around noon.

This is the second airline that will briefly return to Split during the holidays. Two days ago, Edelweiss announced it would operate on the Zurich - Split route at the same time.

KLM will withdraw from Split after January 7, 2021, and re-establish the line from Amsterdam on May 1. It has been announced until the end of the summer flight schedule next year, and tickets are on sale on the airline's official website.

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Wednesday, 11 November 2020

Flights to Croatia: Edelweiss Connects Zurich and Split in December and January

November 11, 2020 - The latest news for flights to Croatia as Edelweiss connects Zurich and Split in December and January, just in time for the holidays. 

Croatian Aviation reports that Edelweiss and Swiss airlines are planning a short return to Split Airport in December 2020 and January 2021.

Although Edelweiss operates to Split only in the summer flight schedule, this Swiss airline has announced flights on the Zurich - Split route for December this year and January next year. Tickets are on sale on the official websites of Edelweiss and Swiss, which has a code-share on this line.

Edelweiss will operate three flights to and from Split in December, on Saturday, December 19, Wednesday, December 23, and Saturday, December 26. The planes will take off from Zurich on all three flights in the morning.

Three flights were announced in the first half of January, more precisely, on Saturday, January 2, Wednesday, January 6, and Saturday, January 9. Edelweiss will then return to Split Airport with the start of the summer flight schedule in April 2021.

Recall that in the last 10 days, two more carriers have announced the introduction of flights on the Zurich - Split route: the German airline Condor and Chair Airlines.

Edelweiss, in cooperation with Swiss, will offer flights on the route Zurich - Split - Zurich just in time for the holidays, considering that many citizens will return home for the festive season, and it is to be expected that some tourists will also decide to spend the holidays in Split and the Dalmatia region.

A320 aircraft have been announced for all flights, which have a capacity of 174 seats in the fleet of this airline. Edelweiss's decision to briefly launch a line to Split just in time for the holidays is certainly commendable, and it is to be expected that German Lufthansa could do the same.

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