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Croatia aviation: highly seasonal tourist market grows, driven by LCCs

Croatia Airlines celebrated its 30th anniversary on 7-Aug-2019. However, in recent years it has not kept pace with the rapid growth in demand for air transport to/from Croatia.

The country's 2019 seat capacity will be more than twice the level of 2012, but its national airline will have grown seat numbers by only 6.4% over the same period: Croatia Airlines carried almost 2.2 million passengers in 2018, a figure not much more than the 1.9 million of a decade earlier.

Growth has been driven by airlines from elsewhere, particularly by LCCs. Inbound summer tourism is the major agent of this growth in one of Europe's most seasonally skewed markets.

However, Croatia's total seat growth is slowing to 7.7% in 2019 – still high compared with European and global average rates, but Croatia's slowest since 2013.

The nation's government expects slower growth in tourism due to encroaching infrastructure constraints. Nevertheless, tourist demand looks set to remain healthy and Croatia's aviation market should continue to grow.

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