|Sarajevo, Belgrade and Podgorica affected by Swiss cuts|
Swiss International Air Lines will suspend flights from Geneva to Sarajevo next month and is likely to do the same with its Geneva - Belgrade route, just a few months after terminating services between Zurich and Ljubljana. Furthermore, the Swiss carrier's subsidiary, Edelweiss Air, will suspend its seasonal summer flights between Zurich and Podgorica, launched last year, and has terminated ticket sales on the route. It comes following Swiss' aggressive expansion into the former Yugoslavia in the summer of 2015 when it launched services from Zurich to Ljubljana, Zagreb, Sarajevo and Podgorica (operated by Edelweiss), as well as flights from Geneva to Sarajevo and Skopje (also operated by Edelweiss).
The Swiss carrier is scheduled to operate its last service from Geneva to Sarajevo on Sunday, April 17. The airline maintained two weekly flights between the two cities last summer and operated a one weekly service during the winter. However, flights on the route have been cancelled on several occasions over the past two months. The carrier will continue to maintain its flights from Zurich to the Bosnian capital. On the other hand, Swiss will resume two weekly flights between Geneva and Belgrade on March 29. The service turns seasonal as of this year. However, only flights until April 16 have been scheduled for operation and the airline is still considering whether to terminate the route altogether from mid-April onwards. Tickets for flights beyond April have not been put up for sale. Swiss competes against budget airline easyJet on the route.
In January, Swiss suspended its Zurich - Ljubljana service just nine months following the route's initial launch. In a statement last year, Swiss told EX-YU Aviation News, “The former Yugoslav market is very interesting for Swiss, as there is a big community from the Balkan area living in Switzerland. Therefore, there is a high demand for flights to these countries. We focus on our customer’s needs from and to Switzerland. The growth is based on our market analysis that identified a great demand for the Balkan area”. Edelweiss Air, which last year launched seasonal flights from Zurich to Podgorica, competing directly against Montenegro Airlines on the route, will not resume the service this summer. Other Swiss and Edelweiss flights have not been affected.