Croatia's private airline, Trade Air, made a cargo flight from Zagreb to China and back to Ljubljana with its Airbus A320 (reg. 9A-BTH) aircraft. Trade Air picked up medical equipment on request from Slovenian government and flew from China to Slovenia.
Of course, to make this possible, the 9A-BTH had a few stops along the way. The A320 range is simply not enough to go that long in a single flight..
The aircraft departed from Zagreb Airport on Wednesday, 08.04. at 6 am and after 6 hours and 20 minutes landed in Almaty, Kazakhstan's largest city.
After the crew rest time, the next day the plane took off from Kazakhstan to China, where it landed after 5 hours of flying, to Qingdao City, on the coast of the Yellow Sea.
The next day, 9A-BTH set off for Ljubljana with medical equipment ordered by the Republic of Slovenia. The flight to Ljubljana had two stops..
The first leg was Qingdao - Almaty, which lasted 5 hours and 44 minutes.
After an hour on the ground, the plane took off from Almaty towards Aktobe (also in Kazakhstan). Trade Air overflew Kazakhstan in 2 hours and 30 minutes..
The last leg, Aktobe - Ljubljana lasted 4 hours and 30 minutes, and the plane landed at LJU at 22:15. The total duration of the return flight to Slovenia was 12 hours, without ground time.
After unloading the cargo, the 19-year-old A320 returned to its base (ZAG), which was 20 minutes long flight from the Slovenian capital.
Due to the global crisis caused by corona virus, airlines are making flights that are not part of their standard destination network, for example, Austrian is flying to Australia and New Zealand, Air Serbia to China and some destinations in the USA, KLM, Lufthansa and Swiss are also flying to Australia. However, these flights are in charge of bringing their citizens back to the country.
Croatia Airlines also made two cargo flights to Abu Dhabi with its A320 aircraft, and yesterday, B787-10 from Etihad Airways landed in Zagreb as well. It was also the first arrival of this type of aircraft in the Republic of Croatia.
Check the video of B787-10 landing in ZAG from our partner Fire2Hr.
In any case, the Trade Air's flight from Zagreb to China and back to Ljubljana will remain recorded as one of the longest flights by a Croatian airline. It is not the longest because this particular company flew from Zagreb to Australia with Fokker 100 aircraft back in 2007.