Sunday, 14 November 2021

Air Canada Toronto-Zagreb Flights Discontinued for 2022 Summer

November 14, 2021 - Air Canada Toronto-Zagreb flights will not operate next summer as planned, with ticket sales officially suspended on the line. 

After Air Transat announced it would be running between Toronto and Zagreb next year, Air Canada has suspended ticket sales for the same route next summer. The airline was meant to re-establish flights in June. Recall, Air Canada was meant to take over the Air Canada Rouge Zagreb service, after all wide-body aircraft was axed due to the pandemic, reports Ex Yu Aviation.

The Air Canada route was to run from June 2, 2022, three times a week, with 54 flights and 32,076 seats between the two cities. The route would have been serviced with the 297-seat Airbus A330-300 aircraft.

Air Canada will, however, run summer flights to many cities around Europe - Athens, Barcelona, Edinburgh, Lisbon, Manchester, Nice, Reykjavik, Rome, and Venice, with Amsterdam, Brussels, Copenhagen, Frankfurt, London, Lyon, Madrid, Milan, Munich, Paris, Vienna, and Zurich running year-round. 

Fortunately, Air Canada can still get passengers to Zagreb with a connection in Amsterdam  

“It is no secret the resumption of medium and long haul flights primarily depend on travel restriction imposed by different countries. Zagreb Airport had a notable number of passengers from the Far East, Australia, and North America. The return of these flights will depend on border restrictions. We expect the gradual resumption of these services between 2022 and 2025," said  Zagreb Airport’s General Manager, Huseyin Bahadir Bedir. 

Canadian leisure airline Air Transat announced earlier this week it would reintroduce the seasonal route between Toronto and Zagreb when announcing next summer's flight schedule. Zagreb is among the 44 international destinations in its network, reported Croatian Aviation.

The airline plans to operate to almost all destinations as before the global pandemic, adding new ones, mainly in the United States, with 13 international routes to Europe, including to Zagreb. 

The first flight from Toronto to Zagreb has been announced for Saturday, May 7, 2022. A month later, from June 7, the second weekly flight with departure from Toronto on Tuesday will be introduced. Two-weekly flights are currently announced until the end of the next summer season - October 29, 2022.

A330-200 aircraft have been announced for the Toronto-Zagreb route, with a capacity of 332 to 345 seats. Thus, Air Transat will offer more than 31 thousand seats between Toronto and Zagreb next summer. 

It is no surprise that the Canadian market is important for Croatia. In 2019, Air Transat and Air Canada Rouge handled 65,486 passengers, or a 14.6% increase on 2018.

For more on flights to Croatia and other travel announcements, make sure to check out our dedicated travel section.

Wednesday, 17 February 2021

Flights to Croatia: Air Canada Rouge Cancels Toronto-Zagreb

February 17, 2021 - The latest news for flights to Croatia as Air Canada Rouge cancels Toronto-Zagreb.  

Ex Yu Aviation reports that Toronto and Zagreb will no longer be connected by Air Canada Rouge, as tickets were officially removed from sale this week. The news comes just after Air Canada was given government approval to acquire leisure carrier Air Transat, which also operates to the Croatian capital.

Namely, the federal government approved Air Canada's purchase of competing airline Air Transat last week. Air Canada should now merge the Rouge brand into Air Transat, thus leaving the chances of both Air Canada and Air Transat operating Zagreb services unlikely. It could also raise competition in Europe.

“The Commission is concerned that the transaction could significantly reduce competition on 33 origin and destination (O&D) citypairs between the European Economic Area (EEA) and Canada. The Commission's preliminary market investigation revealed that Air Canada and Transat have been historically competing head-to-head for the passenger air transport services between the EEA and Canada. In particular, with its Air Canada Rouge brand, Air Canada developed a business model to address the lower-cost and leisure-oriented nature of the EEA-Canada passenger air transport markets, thus directly competing with Transat," said the European Commission. 

Zagreb is not the only victim of this merger, as Air Canada Rouge has also canceled services in Central and Eastern Europe, like Warsaw and Bucharest.

Recall, Air Canada Rouge did not work in 2020 thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic but had plans to resume traffic on May 6. Toronto and Zagreb were to be connected four times per week until early October, with 140 return operations planned.

In 2019, both Rouge and Air Transat handled 65.486 passengers in the Croatian market, a 14.6% increase compared to the year before.

However, the good news is that Air Transat plans to resume seasonal flights between Toronto and Zagreb on May 11, increasing their operation up to three flights a week during the peak summer months.

Air Transat should operate 114 return flights with 36,660 seats available, with services operated by the Airbus A330-200 jet.

Ex Yu Aviation adds that as it currently stands, all Canadian citizens must quarantine upon returning to Canada for two weeks, while entry for most foreign nationals is banned into Canada. These restrictions have been in place for almost a year, and whether they will change by May remains to be seen. 

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