Monday, December 6, 2010

Tirana – Belgrade in 2011

Soon in Belgrade
Albanian Airlines will commence flights to Belgrade in the first half of 2011, according to the Albanian Minister for Economy, Trade and Energy, Ilir Meta. Meta announced the new service at a Serbian business forum in Tiranam, the “Macedonian Information Agency” reports. The Serbian Secretary for Aviation, Miodrag Miljković, welcomed the news and said the service could commence if Albanian Airlines has such intentions.

Jat Airways operated flights between the Albanian and Serbian capitals until 2008 when the service was terminated along with the likes of Prague and Gothenburg in a series of cost cutting measures. Albanian Airlines operates two BAe 146 jets. The airline has suffered greatly at the hands of Albania’s low cost airline Belle Air, which is the country’s leading carrier. Visa restrictions for Albanian passport holder for entry into Schengen zone countries will be abolished on December 15, 2010 which is expected to result in an increase in travel from the country. Albania abolished visas for Serbian citizens in April this year while Serbia reciprocated with the same measure several days ago.


  1. Well, first of all I would like to say that I am more than happy that these flights will take place. Additionally I am also happy that the mess that the Kosovars are making is not affecting the relationship between Serbia and Albania.
    Now, with only such a small fleet I highly doubt that these flights will try to get some connecting passengers via Tirana but it would make more sense to have Albanian Airlines feed Jat's flights in Belgrade.
    Let's wait and see and hope for the best!

  2. These Azeris have promised so much and delivered so little that it's a surprise they're still going.

    They started marketing the TIA-PRN route: promoted the starting date and promised 'the lowest ever prices.' The date came and went, no flights, no statements, it was business as usual. Why do people do this? I mean, what do they gain?

    So, considering the track history of the 'new and improved' Azeri management I think nothing will come of the new TIA-BEG route. Although, I do wish them well.

    Having said that, TIA-BEG might be more sustainable since TIA-PRN no longer is. The two cities are too close and although there is a lot of traffic between the two, the brand new motorway linking the two cities has killed off the air link. One (almost) daily flight is nowhere near attractive enough. It didn't help that the fares were so expensive either.

    Good luck, nonetheless.

  3. JU's avg cabin load factor on this route for 2007 was 34.5% on a 5x/week basis.


  4. Albanian Airlines, mirë si vini në Beogradi :) i dua shumë suksesi.

    @ Visit Kosovo

    Tung miku ime nga Prishtinë. Çka po bën?

    Those Azeris i have heard have 2 ex SQ B744's in their inventory apparently. Was intresting seeing that B752 in LV colours. What ever happened to that and their B733's? is that South African MD still in the fleet? As for the highway, i heard the Albanian side is finished or almost complete, where as from the border to Pristina isnt finished and little is done???

    I agree. I think it would be another one of those announced destinations that doesnt realise.

  5. These Azeris investors ruined that company. It is so true that LV have had a 737, 757 or whatever but it did not worked at all.
    As far as I know their fleet now consists of only three BAe-146 -- not such a enviable fleet for a national carrier!

    Off-topic question.
    Does anyone has any further information about PRN-TIA flights? LZ has not resumed them yet!



    B757 is now serving for Mint Airways (EC-LHL)

    As I know B737 (OM-ASD) is being stored.


  7. What a stupid route to start no one will fly between these two cities. People in the Presesvo valley will probably use busses to commute to Albania. I cant imagine a serb like myself wanting to fly to Tirrana.

  8. To the last anonymous: Maybe you cannot imagine yourself flying to Albania, but I flew with JAT in 2006 and also couple of my friends who live in Albania and studied here in Belgrade were very much affected by this, so there is definitely a necessity for it.

    And please, portraying of Albanians as bad guys and Albania as a "what are you gonna do there" country is at least primitive.

    Pozdrav iz Beograda.

  9. Fingers crossed 4 this to happen! :)

  10. If these flights do take place I do not think they will serve the O&D market but rather feed the flights departing from Belgrade. I suppose for them doing this in Belgrade is better than in Vienna or Germany for several reasons.
    First of all the flight is 50 minutes meaning the flight doesn't have to leave THAT early in the morning- especially compared to the departures on Austrian Airlines...
    Second of all it is probably much cheaper to get slots in Belgrade especially if they decide to go to Terminal 1 which I would do as most of the passengers would only connect meaning they could bypass the nasty check in area in the terminal.
    The morning flights from Belgrade fly to places where there is a large Albanian diaspora, places like Vienna, Rome, Paris, Amsterdam, Scandinavia...
    Third, I believe that they could do five times a week. Three times a week fly it early in the morning and then the other two times have it fly in the afternoon around the same time as Air B&H in order to get the passengers back from Europe on the first wave of arrivals from Europe.

  11. There is no thing like stupid route, just the profitable and those ones which are not.
    I did not fly JU on BEG-TIA route, but maybe it was wrong they abandoned it, especially now with visa abolition for Albanians, there could be some potential for transit passenger to Europe via BEG.
    Every airline should be welcome to BEG and with the right price, I would not mind going for a weekend to Tirana, why not, just out of curiosity..
    I but I highly doubt this route will come up. Lets wait and see.

  12. Interesting that such a route will commence in the middle of the Kosovo mess. But again, Kosovo is separate from Albania, a fact that most people fail to realize.

    I do not have any feelings on this matter, except that the more services from Belgrade, the better. I do not really see Serbs going on those flights to Tirana, but I can see the value of Albanians using Belgrade as a transfer link...especially with the North American flights commencing in 2 years.

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  14. If this materializes it will be the best proof that Belgrade is becoming a major hub in the area. This is because many odd airlines are beggining services to the city. airBaltic with their four flights a week, Aerosvit adding additional three flights, Wizzair, Spanair....

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  16. I'm really thinking to change this blog's name into!
    Come on, don't talk bullshit while on aviation blog. Be less abusive and more open minded.

  17. If the price is right and the departure/arrival times good for a weekend in Tirana I as a Serb living in Belgrade would love to go for a weekend of sightseeing and getting to know a different country and culture.

  18. They only have 3 BAe's in their fleet. No other aircraft, I mean they had a few Boeings 757&737's wet leased from Slovakia but these leases were terminated due to financial reasons. Just goes to show what Albanian Airlines is, a basket case of a carrier. Although this is a good step in political and cultural terms! The best thing that could come of this is Belle airlines or what ever they are called takes over this route and operates somthing like an ATR or A319 to BEG.

  19. This route will not make sense unless it is scheduled to offer connection via Belgrade.
    I am sure that there is some small demand on the route (O&D) but not enough to make the route last.
    Additionally I believe something like two times a week will not be enough, the route needs to go at least 4-6 times a week in order for people to have flexibility.
    Maybe it wouldn't be such a bad idea if they would codeshare with Jat or some other airline on some routes from Belgrade.

  20. I´m looking forward to fly with Albanian Airlines to the albanian coast!


  21. Only problem: Albanian citizens need visas to come to Belgrade. I know someone who tried to get one. It finally arrived 3 months after she was supposed to go to Belgrade.

  22. @Doot

    If you read carefully the last sentance you will see that Albanian citizens do not require a visa to travel to Serbia anymore.

  23. I think the flights will be great. Considering the visa issue is gone between Serbia and Albania, Ive been wanting for a long time to head down to Duressi and Tirana just planing the trip without an agency is very very dificult.

    @ Fatmir

    Ju falaminderit shumë.

  24. Well... If this happens, I will invite all bloggers for a free drink. me and my wife are traveling back and forth from Belgrade so often. My wife is Serbian and I am Albanian and we live in Tirana. From the moment Jat quit flights we have been traveling to Podgorica by car and flying from there to Belgrade. A torture...

  25. Right now traveling from Tirana to Belgrade by bus costs 65 euro (2 away tickets via Skopje) If the airline will have a reasonable price (wich I doubt) it would be great


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