Thursday, August 16, 2012

Qatar Airways to Belgrade from November

Soon in Belgrade
Qatar Airways will launch three weekly flights from Doha to Belgrade on November 20. The service will operate via the Turkish capital Ankara. As reported earlier, Qatar Airways has not secured rights to sell tickets on the Ankara - Belgrade - Ankara sector, due to bureaucratic problems with the Turkish aviation authorities. Qatar Airways will indirectly compete with Fly Dubai, which operates four weekly flights from Dubai to Belgrade, and will hope to attract transit passengers, especially those heading to and from Australia.

The new service launch was announced by the airline yesterday where it revealed it was also inaugurating four weekly flights to the Polish capital Warsaw. Qatar Airways CEO, Akbar Al Baker, said the addition of Poland and Serbia demonstrated the airline's commitment to launch destinations that are largely underserved. "Today we are flying to many parts of the world with a global network spanning 118 destinations with almost 25% of our route structure in Europe alone", he said. "Over the past two to three years we have identified great opportunities to probe markets across Europe that are largely underserved by full service international airlines. We are delighted to have subsequently started services to some of these destinations and are extremely pleased by their performance so far. I am sure both Belgrade and Warsaw will prove to be just as successful”, he added.

Flights from Doha to Belgrade will operate with the Airbus A320 configured in two classes, with twelve seats in business and 132 in economy. Each seat features an interactive audio and video entertainment system. It will be the first time that flights will operate between the two cities. Details for the new service can be viewed here.

44 comments:

  1. Are they still hoping to obtain the rights to Ankara? Can we have the details of the Warsaw service as well, thanks.

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    1. QR980 DOHWAW 0920 1320 A320 1-3-56-
      QR981 WAWDOH 1535 2255 A320 1-3-56-

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  2. Great news. God I hope one day we will read news of some new airline coming to SJJ

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  3. They are never going to get rights from Turkey, were they out of their mind to hope so?

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    1. Even if they did, with the entrance of Pegasus things have changed considerably now on that market.

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    2. Pegasus still havnt got approval from the Directoriate.It would be crazy if they reject Pegasus because of this. Sounds possible

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    3. Whose directorate, Turkish? They behave as if entire TK will collapse if they get any competition whatsoever.

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    4. Serbian one. Next week they will know the answer and probably let the tickets in sale.

      Exactly my man! Also Turks dont even think about launching ESB-BEG flight. I cant get their problem...

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  4. As if their life depends on BEG -> Turkey/ME monopoly. By the way, FZ reachded ~300Euros one way mark on BEG-DXB. They started with 170...

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    1. Would be much better if Air Arabia came instead of them (FZ).

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    2. FlyDubai has failed at what was there ultimate aim and that was to take JU’s transit pax to Australia. Big brother EK couldn’t care less because JU’s SPA with them means that Jat flies passengers(and a huge number of Macedonians as well) to cities like Paris, Athens, Zurich, Frankfurt etc where they continue with EK all the way to SYD/MEL/PER/BNE and soon ADL. That means FlyDXB is left with point to point passengers only and loads are worst during the summer because no one is going to Dubai to sizzle on 50+C heat.

      P.S. I like the new look of the website :)

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  5. So, BEG 6 months after ZAG, and just 3 times per week instead of ZAG 7 times per week. Center of universe what happens?

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    1. Qatar Airways is five star company and Serbians don't have money to pay expensive tickets, they just want to travel cheap while people from Croatia and Croatia's tourists choose better service on more expensive flights. Flights from Zagreb to Doha are from beginning of August upgraded to A321 and all of them are full 7 times per week.

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    2. Hmmm maybe the fact that Qatar has to compete with flydubai, Turkish Airlines and Aeroflot for the market?
      Belgrade doesn't need to prove anything to Zagreb, all the Croats need to do is to compare the passenger numbers.

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    3. You are forgetting that it was mentioned on here that the increase is mostly driven by Budapest and that the business class gets empty to Zagreb.

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    4. And you are also forgetting that there is increasing number from both BUD and ZAG as well..don't be so jealous on others!

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    5. If the demand for Zagreb was so great there would have been more competition there.
      One thing is what you wish but a completely different thing is the reality.

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    6. @Anonymous 10:39 AM

      So, Croats have some kind of genetic predisposition for comfort and quality vs. Serbs? Pathetic.

      Oh, by the way, Qatar has the lowest fares ex-BEG to Far East in 2013 at the moment - below 600 euro/rt. What now? Serbs have the option to fly "five star company" (sic!) which is also the chepest option. Will they choose something else, so they wouldn't have to fly with "better service"?

      Real money travels first and business and this is real profit for airlines, and alliance memberships and company policies play a decisive role here. This is why Croatian business pax tend to fly with Star Alliance carriers, as they have monopoly in ZAG (OU, LH, OS are *A). Economy is more or less the same anywhere, and since you obviously did not travel with "five star company" let me tell you - DOH is an absolute mess, NDIA is couple of years overdue. Their economy service is adequate, superior to OS in every aspect, to LH in some, but EK is way better, especially on A380.

      Would you kindly point to the airline you believe is of lesser quality and thus preferrable to Serbian population? As I have flown all of them, and really could not distinguish many of them apart in Y, except for long haul Austrian Airlines, which is far worse than low cost carrier.

      As for capacity, just wait and see the numbers in a year or so.

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    7. You've said it all. Congratulations. Those remarks were really low and pathetic. Just look at the average size of planes serving ZAG, is ridiculous... Just i disagree on QR/EK comparison. QR outmatches all airlines i know, despite DOH being a big mess, at least until 2010. Don't forget that EK is using 3-4-3 configuration on their 777 instead of the 3-3-3 with QR. I think 3-3-3 is already limit, 3-4-3 is just horrendous (2-5-2 would be ideal but anyway). Been there few months ago and can tell you that things have considerably improved, even the quality of staff which was appalling before - the low-grade Indian immigrants used to work at the main transfer desk...

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    8. BEG would be perfectly fine even without QR. I rather think that EK or EY had to step in, cause now the main destinations from BEG (DXB, Australia, JOH) become at least 2 stops away, instead of just one with EY or EK. I think EK could have started a 3/4 weekly with 332, if they think they can make work WAW with daily i'm sure they wouldn't have failed in Belgrade, especially given the good reputation they have in Serbia for many years, i mean they're known to the public and no body would hesitate to use them. Now this Turkish issue really starts to intrigue me and to become an embarrassment.
      Apparently Pegasus BEG-SAW service is in doubt now cause of Serbian directorate.
      It cost horrendous money to reach any place in Turkey or Middle-East from BEG (besides IST) cause of TK monopoly and apparently everybody wants it to remain that way.

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    9. The fact is, every single news about Zagreb is about:

      - Delays
      - Passengers decline
      - Airlines leaving

      QR947 is NOT served by an A321 everyday, just on some days and that's especially because of Asian tourists flying to BUD.
      Nemojte da se kitite tudjim perjem. That's the only A321 serving ZAG less or more regularly anyway. All the rest is mostly A319 and Turboprops.

      Make your conclusions yourself.

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    10. True, their 3-4-3 in 777 isn't the greatest thing they did - but nevertheless, it was always pitch rather than width I had concerns with :) Anyway, I constantly try to fly A380 and A340, while former is much better in Y, plus has huge capacity in C, which allows very frequent op-ups for frequent travellers (say 30-40% chance on busy Y destinations, especially for golds, which is really good).

      Have you had a chance to visit Oryx lonunge at Y terminal in DOH? Is it worth the cost?

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    11. Nope, but would not hesitate to use it the next time i go, for 40USD i am sure it's absolutely well worth-it. Don't know the fee for using the SPA though.

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    12. QR947 back on A320 from September, confirmed.

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  6. Still enough to double Zag in terms of pax for 2012.

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  7. That is not true, and you know it. It would be maximum 3,5 to 2,5 million, and that is far away from double.

    And what will happened next year when Croatia will enter EU and USA will remove visas for Croats?

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    1. Don't overestimate the significance of US visa waiver - it's not like going to a neighboring country, anybody willing to fly to the US and making all the arrangements finds visa application the easiest obstacle, particularly with 10-year visas for both Croatian and Serbian citizens...

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  8. 2.5 no way with declining trend. You will be lucky to snag 2.1m... tough fall and winter is coming. Europe is in deep mess.

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  9. Keep beating on a boosh with, /when We become swiss, when this, then that/..... Your germans tricked you.

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  10. Pegasus Airlines will not receive licence for flights BEG-SAW, shame.

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    1. Where did you get the info from? Is that confirmed?

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  11. Why are you all so stupid and ignorant? First, Serbs would be happy if QR had a disaster in ZAG...why the f...k you care? FYI, business is doing pretty good and increasing according to sources I find reliable to trust. Secondly, Croats enjoy that QR is daily in ZAG and thrice weekly in BEG. That's companies decision and goes well with the fact that as of 20th Nov ESB drops from daily to thrice weekly...and what's that got to do whatsoever with ZAG business? Then, why compare BEG and ZAG apt and how when one is the ONLY apt in the country while in Croatia you have at least two more with very significant numbers (SPU and DBV), with ZAD, PUy, RJK also serving....I'm a Croat, but my God, this forum is full of ignorant people from both sides.

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    1. Firstly, I totally agree that only ignorant people would be happy about any service to ZAG going under... and to BEG as well, by the way.

      Secondly, I would question whether it's ZAG daily because BUD is so close and there is high demand on ZAG-BUD route than anything else; and vice versa, that 3-weekly BEG is due to fact that there will be no revenue BEG-ESB sector and BEG is at least two hours from ESB, but that would be (an educated) guess. Lets see which service gets separated from its tag, how soon and what frequency and capacity will it get. I suppose we'll know more in W13.

      I don't really get "ZAG business" argument. I think you're mixing C class and business as economic parameter. If that's too hard to grasp, or if you don't understand importance of loads in C and flex Y class fares, then lets not get into who's ignorant argument, please.

      Finally, is this a Croatia/Serbia contest? So, because BEG is only functioning international airport in the country, it cannot be compared to ZAG? We are talking airports and airlines, not countries, and nobody is saying that Croatia, a tourist powerhouse, has only one airport - but see, Croatian capital airport is inferior to BEG. I personally believe you are better off, as the whole country is better serviced; on the other hand, more competition and more capacity at BEG offers better prices and choices to those passengers. So, while Croatia is better off than Serbia, Belgrade is better off than Zagreb; but this is a comparison noone tried to talk about before you did.

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    2. Regarding 'ZAG business', wanted to say that ZAG frequency has nothing to do with BEG's...two separate businesses...not in classes, but in general.

      For many people it is a contest, just tried to indicate that comparing the things that cannot be compared leads to needless arguments. Of coure BEG has more pax, would be a wonder if ZAG would be superior in that aspect. Croatia is diversified, Serbia is not.
      ZAG started as daily as BUD was daily, BEG gets less as ESB will have less, WAW gets 4 weekly as 4 weekly are available when ESB falls from daily to thrice weekly (WAW operates on days when ESB will not). Once QR gets more narrow bodies, ZAG and BEG (remains to be seen how successful the ops will be in BEG) will be delinked with frequencies to be seen. Business between ZAG and BUD is inferior(cca 5 pax a day), ZAG DOH and beyond is what counts and what works. Business in general, not as class of travel, wouldn't want to confuse you again.

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    3. Honestly, I think ZAG did a very bad job in recent years, and had they didn't, surpassing BEG in terms of pax wouldn't come as a huge surprise. Here is why:

      1) Belgrade is larger than Zagreb, however not by a factor of two. However, ZAGs catchment area is much more affluent than one of BEG (say, the whole of Slovenia), while BEG bleeds traffic to BUD (especially from Vojvodina, which is also the richest region in the country);

      2) BEG had de facto Star Alliance monopoly for several years now. ZAG should have attracted BA long time ago and force a price war between Star and Oneworld.

      3) ZAG is much better connected with its catchment area than Belgrade - Croatia has far supperior motoway network, plus motorway connections with Slovenia on four border crossings, Hungary on two, and Bosnia all along its border. Serbia didn't really advance much since 1980s.

      4) With EU membership imminent, development of infrastructure and EU aid should be accessible easier.

      5) Business (as number of companies in Croatia) in, again, superior in Croatia, at least for now, and number of multinational companies has their regional HQ in Zagreb, vs. the old days when all of them were in Belgrade. This is great source of C-pax.

      So, had ZAG capitalized on these advantages, the airport might have been superior to BEG in terms of pax number; however, it seems that the management was too busy with their salaries instead. Other forums are full of questions from people living in Eastern Croatia (e.g. OSI) where to park near BEG, what are the related costs, etc. meaning they have decided to use BEG rather than ZAG. With border along the way, they must have found much better deal from here.

      Sure enough, the fact that BEG is Serbia's only airport helps - but I would really like to know how much of ZAD, DBV, SPUs traffic is from domestic pax, and how much of it are tourists. Perhaps winter numbers should give a clearer answer, as these airports are highly seasonal.

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  12. "I would question whether it's ZAG daily because BUD is so close and there is high demand on ZAG-BUD route than anything else"

    There is up to 3 passangers on QR ZAG-BUD leg per day! That is high demand?

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    1. Well, QR themselves decided to upgauge to A321 due to high demand on ZAG-BUD leg, it's not something I made up. Perhaps their press release is wrong, but I wouldn't bet on it.

      Also, do not forget that BUD-ZAG is 190 miles, while ESB-BEG amounts to 722 miles, making that flight much more expensive and the fact is they will send the plane on to BEG only if they have enough pax to pay for it. ZAG hop from BUD on the other hand is at least three times cheaper, so it will require lesser demand to make it profitable, especially with lot of interest from BUD for Doha flights.

      Unfortunately, without numbers from QR, this is all a game of guesstimating their reasons. Like I said before, once they get more A320s and have a chance to run separate flights to all these destinations, we will have a clearer answer regarding demand and load factors.

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  13. I guess ZAG is as important as BEG and WAW together cause both cities combined have been given an equal number of flights as ZAG - following the logic of those ignorant people.

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  14. Yeah when you arrive from WAW to ZAG it feels like Somalia.

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    1. When you arrive from ZG to BEG like just landed in Dhaka.

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  15. Yes, especially if you compare the Skyline of the both cities, Belgrade is really like a village... LOL. Are you crazy or what?

    My friends own a hotel in Belgrade and i often stroll around there and meet foreign people. All of them, without exception when they come to Belgrade from Zagreb say one and same thing:

    "Belgrade is more like a city", "Zagreb is small and there isn't much to do". Another guest from the US was shocked about how the Zagreb airport was small and he said that he enjoyed Belgrade more than Zagreb and Budapest, that he found Belgrade to be the most active and interesting city in the region for a visitor to be in.

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  16. Nono but when Zagreb builds a big city, when we build a big airport when purger .... When

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  17. Oh ffs. Time to lock this topic.

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