Wednesday, June 10, 2009

The Turks are coming

Pegasus Airlines 3 times per week from Belgrade
After a long row with Turkish Aviation authorities the Serbian Civil Aviation Directorate has approved a license for charter carrier Atlasjet and Pegasus Airlines to commence services to Belgrade’s Nikola Tesla Airport, in return for the 300 charter flights Jat Airways will operate to the Turkish coast this summer. Both airlines have received a license to operate 3 weekly flights from Antalya to Belgrade although both airlines have yet to disclose how they will organise their flights. Atalsjet will also commence flights from Serbia’s third largest city, Niš, from June 16. Another Turkish airline is also interested in commencing services from Serbia to Turkey. The airline in question is Tailwind, which has shown interest in flights from Niš. The spokesperson for the Serbian Civil Aviation Directorate has said that the airline will most probably receive a license if it requests one. Tailwind is a British/Turkish joint venture airline which has 3 aircraft in its fleet and began services a month ago.

However, Serbian tour operators, which have been determined to see Turkish carriers commencing services to Belgrade, are now stepping away from previous comments and sticking to the national carrier Jat Airways. Serbian tour operators are sceptical to use Atalsjet due to the air disaster the airline had 2 years ago where 56 passengers lost their life. Further scepticism comes from using Tailwind Airlines due to the fact that it is unknown and new. Tour operators have welcomed the news that Jat Airways will decrease ticket prices on charter flights by 5% but they are demanding a further reduction. A spokesperson for Jat says that tickets for charter flights on Jat Airways are significantly cheaper than last year and that ticket prices only account for 20% of the entire arrangement holiday makers pay to their tour operators.

6 comments:

  1. Funny title: 'The Turks are coming.' It's a good thing, isn't it?

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  2. Does anyone know anything about the forthcoming Open Air Act and if flights are going to be allowed to travel non-stop from the US to Serbia and vice-versa?

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  3. @ Bosnian: Yes, this is good news for tour operators and tourists.... not so good for Jat.

    @ Anonymous: Flights between Serbia and the United States (operated by a Serbian airline) can occur when Serbia is upgraded to a category 1 rating by the American FAA. American airline companies can fly to Serbia although none have shown interest.

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  4. @ ex yu aviation news and anonymous

    Just as the main discussion on this page is about flights between the areas of former Yugoslavia and USA, if you have time please read this:

    http://www.airliners.net/aviation-forums/general_aviation/read.main/4269236/

    ....and why didn't Jat keep its DC-10 aircraft? Does that plane fall in the 1st category by American FAA? If they kept it they wouldve been able to start flights to the USA and non-stop flights to Australia and its other previous destinations!

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  5. @ Bosnian: FAA classifies countries not airlines. Basically if the country is ranked by the FAA as CAT2 then all the airlines in that country are unable to fly the US. This offcourse has more to do with politics then anything else as some countries in which airlines have been blacklisted by the EU can freely fly to the US while some airlines, like Jat for example, which has a good safety record can’t. Similarly Croatia has been placed on CAT2 only a few months ago.

    No matter if Jat had the DC10 or not it would be unable to fly as the country is in CAT2. The DC10 was dumped because another D check was coming up which was extremely expensive and there was no point in using it anymore.

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  6. @ex yu aviation

    It's sad that it all has to do with politics. Hopefully all the countries within former Yugoslavia can build up a strong relatonship with USA and work towards flights there.

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