The airline’s management successfully completed talks with Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport which has promised the low cost airline cheaper handling. The airline’s management is optimistic that it could, if it receives a license, have many passengers after it was announced that from January 1, 2010 Serbian citizens will no longer need visas to travel to countries from the European Union. Although the airline’s management hasn’t decided which destinations would be served from Belgrade, Niki Lauda says that the most probable are Vienna (currently operated by Austrian and Jat), Munich (operated by Lufthansa), Hamburg (not operated) Stockholm (operated by Jat and Norwegian Air Shuttle), Palma de Mallorca (not operated), Milan (operated by Jat) and Palermo (not operated). These would be scheduled destinations rather than charters.
The major problem low cost airlines face when flying from Serbia is the extremely high airport taxes at Nikola Tesla. From June 1, after months of negotiations Jat Airways has been able to secure for all its passengers taxes of only 4 Euros, rather than the 16.5 payed until now. However, foreign carriers still have to deal with the high taxes although it is believed that they will be lowered to 4 Euros soon.
Meanwhile, Jat Airways’ new CEO should be named today. According to media reports it is Srđan Radovanović, a surprise choice by the government as he has neither any experience in aviation nor has he ever worked in Jat. He has a law degree and worked for a few state owned companies.