The largest budget airline in the world, Ryanair, is looking at introducing further flights to Croatia and has held talks with the Croatian Minister of Tourism, Gari Cappelli. The Irish airline has for years operated flights to Croatia through Zadar Airport and recently expanded to Osijek. And now the budget airline is pushing to introduce flights to Split and Zagreb.
For a number of years the Irish airline has been trying to open the door to Dubrovnik but the airport has constantly turned down working with the airline. The business policy of Ryanair is not in line with that of Dubrovnik Airport. And it seems that Split has a similar policy as the General Manager commented “In Croatia, Ryanair still operate exclusively from airports which provide support for their flights. We have held meetings with them and established contacts, however, for now, they will not come to Split as we have not changed our policy. Neither Split, nor Dubrovnik, need to stimulate carriers during the season as traffic continues to grow. That would only create a mess on the market. We are always open for talks, but we do not intend on changing our business policy.”
In spite of this obvious distance between the larger Croatian airports and Ryanair they are still hopeful of finding a compromise. The low-cost airline had a meeting with the Minister of Tourism in an attempt to find a solution and after the meeting Ryanair commented for EX-YU Aviation that “Ryanair has held positive discussions with the Minister regarding longer term traffic growth and route development at its existing Croatian airports as well as potential new airports like Zagreb and Split".
Ryanair only operates flights to Croatia through the summer months and has yet to commit to any flights outside of the main tourist season.