Croatia Airlines celebrating its 30th birthday

On this day thirty years ago, the Croatian flag carrier was born. Exactly three decades ago, on 7 August 1989, Zagreb Airlines d.d. (Zagal) was registered in Zagreb. It started operating in December 1989 as a postal carrier. About a year later, on 23 July 1990, Zagal changed its name to Croatia Airlines d.d., national airline company for the transport of passengers, cargo and mail.

Croatia Airlines’ first commercial flight was carried out on 5 May 1991, on the Zagreb − Split route, establishing domestic passenger transport in Croatia.

A year later, on 5 April 1992, the company performed its first international flight on the Zagreb – Frankfurt route, which marked the beginning of Croatia’s connections with the world. That year, the company began forming its own fleet with the acquisition of a Boeing 737-200. The fleet soon included ATR42 aircraft, followed by a commercial momentum and enhancement on all levels of operation.

The first development phase of the company ended with the mid-range fleet renewal cycle from 1998 to 2000, when Boeing aircraft was replaced with six new Airbus aircraft (four A319s and two A320s). A new chapter of the company development was marked by the renewal of the short-range fleet (from 2008 to 2010) when six new Dash 8-Q400 aircraft replaced the ATR42 aircraft.

Over the last three decades, offering services in the transport of passengers and cargo in scheduled and charter transport, Croatia Airlines has grown into a European airline that is recognized for its safety, professional staff, and high quality of service. From its first flight until today, the company has flown a total of 603,000 flights and transported 39,240,000 passengers. Croatia Airlines has gained membership in the most important airline alliances – the International Air Transport Association (IATA) and Star Alliance, the leading global alliances of airlines.

Croatia Airlines’ fleet now consists of twelve aircraft: four Airbus A319s, two Airbus 320s, and six turboprop Dash 8-Q400 aircraft. The Airbus aircraft are named after the Croatian cities (Zagreb, Split, Zadar, Pula, Vukovar i Dubrovnik) while the Q400 aircraft are named after Croatian regions (Slavonija, Lika, Dalmacija, Istra, Zagorje, and Primorje). During this season, Croatia Airlines flies to 8 domestic and 30 international destinations and directly connects Croatia to 24 countries.

In this celebratory year, the company and its passengers fly under the slogan Creating memories for 30 years, which, along with birthday visuals, was selected and created by company employees. Many activities related to the improvement of business processes and service quality have also been introduced. In March, we started a visual redesign of the fleet, which makes Croatia Airlines aircraft an even more recognizable promoter of Croatia. We’ve introduced a new business class menu on international Croatia Airlines flights, offering meals based on autochthonous Croatian recipes and ingredients, which allows the company to boost the gastronomy of Croatian through taste, color, and smell even more strongly. The company has also redesigned the Croatia Airlines mobile application for iOS and Android devices, which now enables an even simpler and quicker check-in and offers many other improved functionalities.


In order to thank the users of its services for their loyalty of 30 years and celebrate the continuous connection of Croatian destinations with the world, this year the company will organize valuable prize contests for the passengers and citizens. Today, on the company’s thirtieth anniversary, passengers in Croatian and international destinations and on domestic and international flights of Croatia Airlines will be in for special surprises and prizes.


Wishing to create memories with passengers in decades to come, Croatia Airlines extends a heartfelt thank you to everyone who has used its services in the last 30 years and looks forward to new flights together! – Croatia Airlines states in its media release


Foto © Croatia Airlines