|TAP adding more flights to Belgrade this winter|
TAP Portugal, which launched services from Lisbon to Belgrade last week, will continue operating to the Serbian capital throughout the winter season with additional flights, as well as a stop in Budapest on selected days. The Portuguese carrier, linking the two cities for the first time in history, is satisfied with the route’s performance and advanced bookings so far. It will introduce an additional flight between the two at the start of the 2014/15 winter season, from October 26. As a result, the airline will operate a total of four weekly flights between Lisbon and Belgrade, with services running each Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. Triangle flights via Budapest will be introduced on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. Passengers flying out from the Portuguese capital to Belgrade on Tuesdays will endure an intermediate stop in Budapest, while the return service will operate direct from the Serbian capital. On the other hand, flights on Wednesdays departing Belgrade will run via Budapest as the airline looks to optimise the use of its aircraft during the slow winter months.
Discussing the new route, the Portuguese Ambassador to Serbia, Augusto José Pestana Saraiva Peixoto, says, “The new route between Belgrade and Lisbon will contribute to improved political, economic and other ties and bring together two nations which are similar in many ways. As a result of this new service, Portuguese investors will come to Serbia”. The inaugural flight from Belgrade to Lisbon saw 117 passengers on board the carrier’s Airbus A319, which has the capacity to seat 132 people.
During the winter months, TAP Portugal will continue to operate flights between Lisbon and Belgrade with its A319 jet. The carrier has finalised its winter timetable and tickets are already on sale through the airline’s website. TAP won’t enjoy fifth freedom rights between Budapest and Belgrade, meaning it cannot sell tickets between the two cities and thus join Air Serbia and Belarus’ Belavia which already operate on the route. TAP has a very limited presence in the former Yugoslavia with its only other destination in the region being Zagreb, with the flights operated via Bologna in Italy.