Tuesday, 27 April 2021

Connecting Korea and Croatia: T'way Air Flights to Zagreb from 2022?

April 27, 2021 - The latest flight news to Croatia as T'way Air flights to Zagreb could connect the two capitals from next year. 

Croatian Aviation reports that South Korea’s low-cost airline, T’way Air, has signed a lease agreement for three A330-300 wide-body aircraft it will take over in early 2022. So far, the company has not had wide-body aircraft in its fleet and plans to launch several long-haul routes next summer, including one to Croatia. 

T'way currently has only narrow-body aircraft type B737-800 (27 of them) in its fleet, with which it operates on routes within South Korea, but also on several international routes to China, Japan, Russia, the Philippines, Taiwan, Thailand, and Vietnam.

After Korean Air canceled the Seoul-Zagreb-Seoul route, T’way received permission from the South Korean Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure to introduce a direct flight from South Korea to Croatia (up to a maximum of four flights per week). The company planned its first long-haul flights for this year, but as the global pandemic has not yet calmed, plans have been postponed until next year.

Tickets on the company's long-haul routes are not yet on sale for next year, and T'way has not yet announced the line between South Korea and Croatia. Still, when announcing the introduction of long-haul lines, the company's CEO confirmed that Croatia would be among the first destinations.

On the other hand, Korean Air is selling tickets on the direct line between Seoul and Zagreb starting in April next year, but it should be reminded that the tickets on the direct line were on sale this year as well, and there are no flights due to the global pandemic.

If Korean Air returns to Zagreb in the spring of 2022 (chances are slim), T’way’s logical destination would be Dubrovnik. As the largest Korean carrier is unlikely to return to Zagreb Airport, it is expected that this low-cost carrier will introduce a line between Seoul and Zagreb.

Korean Air had no success in Zagreb. There are several reasons, but one of the main ones is the company's pricing policy. Namely, for passengers departing from Zagreb to Seoul and other destinations in Asia and Australia, Korean Air was almost always the most expensive option. Also, the competition offered significantly more weekly flights (Emirates, Qatar Airways, and Turkish Airlines). Due to all the above, the share of Korean citizens on the line to and from Zagreb was 98%.

If T’way really launches flights to Croatia next summer, we can expect significantly cheaper ticket prices compared to those offered by Korean Air. Connections via Seoul would allow travelers from Croatia to continue traveling to numerous destinations in Japan and China. Since Emirates does not plan to return to Zagreb, it would be another good option for travelers to these countries. South Korean tourists have been one of the most important in Croatia for years, especially in Zagreb.

Before the pandemic, Korean Air planned a series of charter flights between Seoul and Dubrovnik in the summer of 2020 with a B777-300ER aircraft, and in addition to the regular route to Zagreb, which was to continue to operate 3 times a week with the aircraft type B787-9, additional charter flights to the capital of Croatia are planned.

Follow the latest on flights to Croatia HERE and the latest travel updates and COVID-19 news from Croatia HERE.

For more on travel in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Monday, 4 January 2021

Flights to Croatia: T’way to Launch Seoul-Croatia in Late 2021, Ryanair Announces Naples-Zadar

January 4, 2020 - The latest news for flights to Croatia as T’way plans to launch Seoul-Croatia in late 2021, and Ryanair announces Naples-Zadar. 

Ex Yu Aviation has reported that Korean low-cost carrier T’way Air will operate flights between Seoul and Croatia at the end of this year. 

Namely, a letter of intent has been signed to lease three Airbus A330-300 aircraft for new medium and long-haul routes. The Korean Ministry for Land, Infrastructure, and Transport has already given the Korean airline the necessary permits to run four weekly commercial flights between Seoul and Croatia.

This news comes as T’way plans to bounce back this year after a turbulent 2020 caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The airline currently has a fleet of 27 Boeing 737-800s, which operate on flights to Vietnam, China, Japan, and Taiwan. 

Ex Yu Aviation adds that by leasing three A330-300 jets later this year, new destinations are on the horizon for the Korean low-cost carrier, and in addition to Croatia, they will include Singapore, Malaysia, and Australia to their flight network this year as well. 

Recall, Korean Air canceled its Seoul-Zagreb route in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, without any plans to relaunch the service this year. However, the airline is said to have kept its permit for 3x weekly flights to Croatia and could choose to bring back the Zagreb service at any time, according to Damir Kušen, the Croatian Ambassador to South Korea. 

In a normal year, Croatia welcomes around half a million Korean tourists annually. Over 43,000 passengers flew on Korean Air between Seoul and Zagreb in 2019, though many Korean tourists are also interested in visiting Dubrovnik. 

Croatian Aviation reports that the largest low-cost airline, Ryanair, has announced a new route to Croatia in the 2021 summer flight schedule.

Namely, from June 2021, the Irish low-cost airline will launch Naples-Zadar, on which Ryanair will operate for the first time.

There have been no direct commercial lines between Zadar and Naples so far, but that will change this summer. From June 4, Ryanair will introduce the mentioned line with two flights a week, on Mondays and Fridays, with B737-800 aircraft.

The line will be in operation until the end of September (September 27), during which time Ryanair will operate 34 return flights. In total, from the beginning of June to the end of September, this well-known low-cost airline will offer a total of 12,852 seats between Naples and Zadar.

Tickets for this route are already on sale on the airline's official website.

Recall that Ryanair has withdrawn from sale several lines to Croatia for the summer of 2021, but it is expected that most of them will be released by the end of February.

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