Sarajevo International Airport, also known as Butmir Airport, is the main international airport in Bosnia and Herzegovina, located 3.3 NM (6.1 km; 3.8 mi) southwest of the railway station in the capital city of Sarajevo in the suburb of Butmir.
Since the Dayton Accord in 1996, the airport has welcomed a thriving commercial flight business which includes B&H Airlines, Austrian Airlines, Lufthansa, Jat Airways, Croatia Airlines, Turkish Airlines, Germanwings and others. In 2006, 466,186 passengers traveled through Sarajevo airport, compared to only 25,000 in 1996.
In 2011 Sarajevo International Airport had 599,996 passengers which is more than all of the airports in Bosnia-Herzegovina had together and 6,5% more than in 2010. In 2012 the company has a slight decline in traffic. In 2013 Sarajevo International Airport expects the most frequent year since the opening of the airport.
In 2005 the European branch of the Airports Council International awarded Sarajevo the award of Best Airport Under 1 Million Passengers.
SARAJEVO INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT HISTORY
First regular flights from Sarajevo to Belgrade and Zagreb started in 1935 from an airfield in the suburb of Butmir, near Sarajevo. The airfield remained in use all the way until 1969. The need for a new airport in Sarajevo, with an asphalt-concrete runway, was acknowledged in the mid-1960s when JAT, Yugoslav national carrier at that time, began acquiring jet planes. The construction of the airport began in 1966 at its present location, not far from the old one.
The Sarajevo Airport opened on June 2, 1969 for domestic traffic. In 1970 Frankfurt became the first international destination served. Most of the time the airport was a ‘feeder’ airport where passengers embarked for flights to Zagreb and Belgrade on their way to international destinations. Over time the traffic volume steadily grew from 70,000 to 600,000 passengers a year. The first renovation came for the 1984 Winter Olympic Games, when the runway was extended by 200 meters, the navigation system was improved, and a new terminal building was built, designed for 1 million passengers a year.
At the beginning of the Bosnian war the airport was put under control of Yugoslav federal army (JNA). When the regular flights were stopped the JNA evacuated some 30,000 people, mostly women and children, who were fleeing clashes in Sarajevo; the first humanitarian aid from the US and France arrived in this period too. After JNA left, the airport was for a while under control of Bosnian Serb forces and in June 1992 they handed over the airport to the UN to use it for humanitarian purposes (UN Security Council Resolution 757). In the biggest humanitarian operation in history of the UN that followed, during the Bosnian war, some 13,000 flights were carried out and over 160,000 tons of international humanitarian aid was delivered to the besieged city of Sarajevo.
SARAJEVO INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT LOCATION
SARAJEVO INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT FACTS
Elevation: 1,708 ft.
Runway length available: 15/33 7242×154 ft.