Swift Air to combine Belgrade and Zagreb flights due to poor loadsSwift Air, which was to commence flights from Chicago to Zagreb and Belgrade from June 17 and June 19 respectively, will now combine the service due to poor tickets sales. Instead of an individual one weekly flight to Zagreb and Belgrade, the service will now operate Chicago – Zagreb – Belgrade and return. Swift Air has sent a request to both the Serbian and Croatian civil aviation directorates for a new license to be granted based on these changes. Both have are said to be in the process of granting the new license to the American charter airline. The spokeswomen for Serbia’s Civil Aviation Directorate, Katarina Andrić-Milosavljević, said that there was no reason for a new license not to be granted since all technical and safety measures have been met by the airline.
Swift Air has told the civil aviation agencies that it has been unable to sell enough seats and is requesting for a license to be issued for a combined service based on economic reasons. This is despite earlier announcements from the airline that tickets were selling like hot cakes. As a result, Belgrade and Zagreb will be connected via the air for the first time in 20 years, although no tickets can be purchased for travel between the two cities.
Recently, a spokesperson from the Ministry of Infrastructure in Serbia said that such seasonal charter services are unlikely to succeed as they do not offer the same leniency as scheduled carriers when it comes to date changes and baggage. Furthermore, he noted that such airlines do not connect onto other regional services.
The flights from Chicago to Belgrade are still scheduled to commence on June 17. Although the departure and arrival times are certain to change, no new schedule has been officially published.