Route Analysis: Dubrovnik-Los Angeles

The market for nonstop routes between Croatia and the US continues to grow.

Startup Pragusa.One is preparing to launch operations in June, with two routes connecting the Croatian city of Dubrovnik (DBV) to points in the US. Flights to New York Newark (EWR) will begin on June 21 operated by Airbus A330-200 aircraft, while service to Los Angeles (LAX) starts a day later on board A340 equipment. Both routes will operate three times per week.

The planned launch comes amid heightened interest in the US-Croatia market. American Airlines began serving Philadelphia (PHL)-DBV during summer 2019, becoming the first nonstop flight between the two countries in more than 25 years. Although the route was suspended because of the pandemic, Delta Air Lines and United Airlines are this summer vying for leisure traffic between New York and Dubrovnik.

Delta plans to start a 4X-weekly route from New York John F Kennedy (JFK) on July 2, which will be its first nonstop service to Croatia, while United will begin an EWR-DBV route on July 1. United’s flights were initially scheduled to be 3X-weekly, but the airline has added an extra weekly frequency in response to Delta’s plans.

According to data provided by Sabre Market Intelligence, O&D traffic between Croatia and the US totaled 370,507 two-way passengers in 2019—all of which was indirect. The top city pair was Zagreb-New York, followed by Zagreb-Chicago. Dubrovnik-New York was the third largest, with Dubrovnik-Los Angeles ranked seventh.

Overall traffic between Dubrovnik and Los Angeles was 9,560 in 2019—a rise of 24.3% on the previous 12 months. Frankfurt (FRA) was the biggest one-stop market, followed by Munich (MUC) and PHL.

Pragusa.One was founded in 2020 by CEO Kresimir Budinski and is registered in London. After launching the US routes in 2021, the airline intends to open six more long-haul routes from DBV in 2022, connecting the city with Johannesburg, Beijing, Tokyo, Chengdu, Kuala Lumpur and Singapore. The airline also plans to open a base in Prague (PRG) and operate the same route network as from DBV.

DBV-LAX 

Carrier:

Pragusa.One

Aircraft:

Airbus A340

Frequency:

3X-weekly

Start date:

June 22, 2021

Distance:

10,433 km

O&D traffic demand (2019):

9,560

Annual growth:

24.3%

Average base fare (2019):

$744.76

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