Now you see it - now you don’t … Air Arabia pulls out of Priština
Air Arabia will suspend its Sharjah - Priština service from tomorrow, marking another failure for the low cost airline in the former Yugoslavia. Air Arabia launched two weekly flights to Priština just over a month ago. Services will be suspended due to low interest. In November, Air Arabia CEO, Adel Ali, said, “Ever since we began operations nine years ago, Air Arabia has prided itself on being an airline of firsts. We are pleased to become the first UAE carrier to offer a scheduled service to Kosovo. We are confident the launch of our first destination in the Balkan Peninsula will bring great benefits to the economic ties between the UAE and Kosovo and will support Air Arabia’s rapidly expanding network in Eastern Europe”. However, it now seems Mr. Ali might have been too optimistic in his expectations.
Air Arabia surprised many in 2011 when it launched flights from Dubai to Tuzla in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The service proved to be unsustainable and was cancelled shortly after. Throughout 2011, some 9.000 passengers travelled between Priština and the United Arab Emirates, transiting through various airports.
Air Arabia was the third Middle East based airline to operate scheduled flights to the former Yugoslavia. FlyDubai continues to run services to Belgrade and Skopje, with two weekly flights to Sarajevo to be inaugurated in April. Qatar Airways also maintains flights to the Serbian and Croatian capitals.