Air Serbia optimistic about the future
Air Serbia says 2014 will see “exciting developments” with the airline planning to launch new routes, lease new aircraft and improve its business in the coming months. CEO Dane Kondić says, “It will be a year when we begin to put in place the building blocks that will make Air Serbia the region’s leading airline”. At the same time, the Serbian carrier draws upon some of the milestones it has achieved in the three months since the rebranded airline was launched. Among those is the employment of over 100 new cabin crew members which have undergone training at the Etihad Airways training facilities in Abu Dhabi. In addition, the Serbian carrier has recruited 29 pilots among which are three females, a first for the country’s national airline, while at the same time over seventy pilots have obtained certification to operate Airbus aircraft.
The national carrier says the first generation of students are currently attending the Air Serbia Graduate Management Program in Abu Dhabi. These young individuals are set to return to Serbia where they will apply their knowledge in running the airline in the future. Furthermore, the carrier adds it has set up its line and light maintenance division and hired twenty technicians and aircraft engineers.
In the coming weeks Air Serbia will take delivery of its sixth Airbus A319 aircraft. As EX-YU Aviation News learns, the delivery of the A319 fleet has been somewhat delayed due to bureaucratic procedures linked to the Serbian Civil Aviation Directorate. On the other hand, two Airbus A320s are set to be contracted by the end of the month and are to enter service from March 30 on flights to Athens, Paris, Moscow and Zurich, as well as London Heathrow on selected days. In addition, the airline has begun cabin reconfiguration of its ATR fleet which are to be fitted with new economy class seats and repainted from the Jat Airways livery to that of Air Serbia.
Over the next three months Air Serbia will launch six new routes, marking a return to old markets once operated by JAT Yugoslav Airlines as well as Jat Airways. The carrier will return to Beirut for the first time since 2006, services to Warsaw will resume after eleven years while it will jet into Sofia and Budapest after a 22 years absence. After more than a decade, flights to Kiev will also resume while the airline will operate its first scheduled service to Varna.