Thursday, September 19, 2013

Air Serbia to acquire A320s

A320s to enter service next summer

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Photo credit: Salinger Igor / Aermedia.com

Air Serbia will introduce two Airbus A320 aircraft to its fleet at the start of the 2014 summer season. The airline will acquire the two jets through a financial lease and they will join the carrier’s fleet of eight Airbus A319s and four ATR72 turboprops. The new aircraft will enter service on March 30, 2014 and will initially be deployed to Paris, Skopje and Podgorica. The arrival of the A320s will also mark the retirement of the entire Boeing 737-300 fleet which includes Europe’s first B737.

Meanwhile, Air Serbia’s A319 fleet is taking shape with the first aircraft to be delivered on October 21. The most recent acquisition includes the lease of a former Kingfisher jet which has been stored in Istanbul since the airline’s demise. The A319s will be entered into the Serbian register as YU-APA and onwards (YU-APB, APC etc.). The Kingfisher aircraft, the third to be leased, is now being painted into the airline’s corporate livery in Dublin. Air Serbia’s first set of newly employed cabin crew members and in flight chefs will begin their formal training for the aircraft next week in Belgrade, while the forty Jat Airways pilots which have been undergoing training in Dusseldorf and Berlin are set to return to Serbia.


Starting October 28, Air Serbia will introduce its new frequent flyer program in cooperation with Etihad Guest Miles. Passengers will be able to earn Etihad Guest Miles when travelling with both Air Serbia and Etihad. “By integrating the frequent flyer program, Air Serbia passengers will be able to earn Etihad Guest miles points through the booking systems of both the national carrier of Serbia as well as the United Arab Emirates, meaning they will be able to earn and use their points worldwide”, Dane Kondić, Air Serbia’s CEO commented yesterday. Passengers using Jat’s current Extra Flight Club frequent flyer program will be able to redeem their points for travel until October 2014 and will be invited to join the new Guest Miles program. In addition, Etihad Holidays will soon take control over Jat Airways’ own leisure division “Air Lift”. Once a major tour operator in Serbia, Air Lift has gone into oblivion since its separation from Jat’s mainline business several years ago under the orders of the government.

46 comments:

  1. In flight chef!? WTH?

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    Replies
    1. Quite normal these days, especially in C. TK has them on short haul as well.

      Delete
  2. To EX-YU, do you know if the frequent flyer program will be connected to virgin australias program as etihad owns a percentage of that airline too?

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    1. ^ It seems now that Air Serbia FF= Etihad Guest.
      As Air SerbiaFF/Etihad Guest member you are automatically connected to Virgin Australias program and also can use their lounges worldwide.

      Delete
  3. FF integration with EY is a big thing for me, and this is the first time JU will have a meaningful program. However, some questions still remain open - website quotes earning classes for "Guest Miles", but what about Tier Miles? Will the segments also count, as with EY? Are the rules - status wise - the same, or are there any differences?

    Also, I suppose Air Serbia branding is just that, but the program is effectively Etihad Guest - just as you can see OS or LX logo on Miles and More cards.

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    Replies
    1. ^ With Etihad Guest you can also earn Tier miles on Virgin Australia ,so it should also be so for Air Serbia.
      You should go on Etihad.com and look for :
      Eithad Guest
      Our partners
      Airlines
      Air Serbia...
      I think they listed there everything you can earn (miles etc.).

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  4. Since that 3rd a/c will be YU_APA, what about two previous? Does anyone know registrations of the first two 319s? Will they operate under Jat (A/S) or Etihad AOC?

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    1. I know for one , it is YU-APC

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    2. Nobody said 3rd A319 will be registered as YU-APA, rather all A319's will start with rego YU-APA and so on, i.e 1st as APA, second as APB, and so on...

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  5. Does any one know what will be plan for 737 retirement. Which 737 will be the first, and last, and what will happen whit these planes.

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    1. I hope they will be selled for some decent money to Africa or ex SSSR, to a country like Nigeria that has no fuel issue due to its natural resources. They don´t fit for any kind of econimical use in Europe.

      Those planes are old, but well maintened and with a refurbished cabin. They can bring perhaps 20-30 M in total for JU?

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    2. 20 millions... hahaha if you get 10 millions you should be happy

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    3. 10 millions for 8 aircraft?

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  6. I have a question guys. I read that as of 27th october, Air Serbia will be landing on Sabiha Gokcen instead of Ataturk. Do you think that would reduce prices, since maybe airport taxes are lower at Sabiha, than at Ataturk?

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    1. Well, they'll go directly agains Pegasus, so unless they do, their O&D will come crashing down. Fees are indeed much lower at SAW in comparison to IST.

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    2. The lowest price for RT ticket (including everything) is 131 euro (Air Serbia), Pegasus sells tickets at lower prices.

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    3. Air Serbia is not a low cost airline and the standard of service will be much greater than the one offered on Pegasus

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    4. Well, I guess you never flew Pegasus.

      By the way, if the meal is the "much greater service", because frankly I can't see what else could it be, I'd rather pay 8,5 EUR to Pegasus for a pretty elaborate meal, than have it included in my ticket price.

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    5. Because unlike on Pegasus you get the possibility of booking business class, gaining air miles, using lounges, PTV in every seat, greater baggage allowance, connections from BEG to the region...

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    6. €130 is not that bad for a legacy carrier. I would also like to add that when it comes to legacy vs. lowcost, the latter usually doesn't take great care of you when there is a delay (natural causes such as weather delays).
      A friend of mine flew on Pegasus last week and there were only three empty seats. Naturally, good loads don't mean good yields but its great to see that they have no problem filling their aircraft.

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    7. Nice to see that Pegasus has good loads on its BEG-route.
      But its rather disappointing that they only fly four times a week this winter and only five times next summer.
      The airline is popular and good value for money.
      Would like to see them flying daily to SAW.

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    8. In my opinion there could be two reasons for this:

      1. Pegasus did expand rapidly so they might have a shortage of aircraft which disables them from adding flights to Belgrade.

      2. They could add more frequencies but they want to wait a little bit more until yields improve. I believe anyone could fill a plane to Istanbul with fares as low as €39, but no one can make a profit off of it.

      Just my 2 cents.

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    9. AirSerbia has a promo period with a tkt price of 88EUR. The lowest standard fare is 120 (+ tsc)

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    10. AirSerbia has a promo period with a tkt price of 88EUR. The lowest standard fare is 120 (+ tsc)

      Delete
  7. Little Off-topic:
    Does LCCs have some kind of last-minute offer? Like selling tickets at very low prices (on departing day, in a few hour before departure)?
    MV

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    1. It's usually the other way around ;) If you want to travel today, it means you are in a hurry, therefore less price sensitive. A friend of mine missed her flight from Madrid to La Coruna with airEuropa, due to the fact that Swiss was late from Zurich, the price for a one way ticket that she had to pay was 235eur for the same day flight.

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    2. depends from company to company. friend of mine bought ticket to RHO (W6) last minute and paid 60€ rt. other time, he bought last minute with JU to TIV and paid 150€ one way.

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    3. usually charters have also some good last minute offers. for normal flgihts it´s usually more expensive if you wait "last minute" to purchase your ticket.

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  8. The new frequent flyer cards look wonderful!
    Especially Elite Gold. Also its clear visible that it is a variation of Etihad Guest -
    a more exotic variation actually.

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  9. The new frequent flyer cards look wonderful!
    Especially Elite Gold. Also its clear visible that it is a variation of Etihad Guest -
    a more exotic variation actually.

    ReplyDelete
  10. They should skip reg YU-APC!! "C" is traditionally bad luck in YU register!!!

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    1. yu registration will be deleted from all
      aircraft and all Serbian government official documentation. Not on this moment, but in no distant future. For one simple reason: yu is in museum! So logical. So natural. Serbia mean future.
      Leave past to people who love history.
      Rodney Marinkovic AME(ret.)Griffith AUS

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    2. YU regs won't be deleted. It might be your wishful thinking but there is no "museum" for airline registrations. YU regs are set to remain.

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    3. AFAIK, both YU and YT continue to belong to Serbia and there are no intentions for any change to happen in the forseable future. Besides, those ranges have been determined ages ago and it would be impractical to change all that for no apparent reason. Similar to JU code for Air Serbia. Both available country codes and airline codes are scarce and it would serve no purpose to change any of those into some meaningless alphanumeric one, just for the sake of change.

      Best regards from Novi Sad

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    4. AFAIK, both YU and YT continue to belong to Serbia and there are no intentions for any change to happen in the forseable future. Besides, those ranges have been determined ages ago and it would be impractical to change all that for no apparent reason. Similar to JU code for Air Serbia. Both available country codes and airline codes are scarce and it would serve no purpose to change any of those into some meaningless alphanumeric one, just for the sake of change.

      Best regards from Novi Sad

      Delete
  11. Sorry, but it has done!
    YU-APC Air Serbia entered paintshop at DUB 16sep13

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  12. I followed the instructions from the email I received as JAT FF Program member to transfer to Etihad Guest and it seems I ended up in an Etihad`s Etihad Guest FF program, the proper one, not in the AirSerbia branded one.

    Noone at the JAT call centre was able to tell me whether I shall be receiving AirSerbia branded FF card on the Etihad branded one... strange. Oh well, I should find out soon enough.

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    Replies
    1. I am sure that's happening because it is still early and they have not sorted out all the details. Plus, there should be no difference between being Etihad's FF and Air Serbia's.

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    2. @ Nemjee

      My thoughts exactly. I just found it odd that we all received an email from the CEO himself before everything was sorted out in there. It's not such a big deal but as we said many nice things here it seems reasonable to report the oddities as well ;-)

      Delete
    3. Oh yes, definitely.
      I remember a few weeks ago Etihad said that they want the transition to be completed by January 2014. I guess the transfer of Jat's points onto Air Serbia's is also part of the plan; hence why they want the process completed by December.
      I would be curious to see how many people actually applied for Jat's programme. Personally, I found the system quite depressing and horrible.

      Delete
  13. off topic

    Someone keeps talking about Wizzair's financial perfomance. Here is some insight:
    http://centreforaviation.com/analysis/wizz-air-why-europes-second-lowest-cost-producer-may-be-looking-for-fresh-capital-103429

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    1. Finally a proper comment on the topic. A decent piece of analysis as well.

      Hopefully this will lay to rest any doubts of Wizz Air's profitability. 2013 numbers are even better if you check the source of the financial statements. And I'm not even starting to speculate on the current year.

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    2. Hmm I do not see what's so great about what's being reported by CAPA. Especially if you compare Wizz Air's performance to its closest competitors, Ryanair and easyJet.

      'Its last reported financial year (to Mar-2012) saw a healthy EBIT margin of 5.8%, after seeing net losses in six of the previous seven years, suggesting that the business may be maturing.'

      We can only talk about success if they keep recording positive results in 2013. Otherwise the good results in 2012 will be a one-off.
      Also, 2012 was probably better than the other years because of Malev's bankruptcy and their takeover of Budapest. Ryanair did not last long there as they announced cuts only a few months after opening a hub there. Their current presence there is no threat to Wizz Air.
      If Solyom takes off then Wizz Air's financial performance will take a hit in Budapest as they will have to wage a price war with them. Mind you, Wizz Air is not that cheap out of Budapest.. unless you can book your flight months in advance.

      Delete
  14. So Air Serbia is partner of Etihad Guest ,
    Adria and Croatia Airlines of Miles&More and Behaj Air of Turkish Airlines programme!
    Not bad for people in Balkans.
    One and the same person in Ex Yu can profit now from all three at the same time!

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  15. A bit sad for Boeing to lose this customer but they only have their government to thank. Good job keeping sanctions in force in the second half of 1990's...

    ReplyDelete

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