Air Serbia is preparing for its inaugural service between Belgrade and New York on June 23 with the carrier expected to host a major event in the Big Apple upon the launch. According to local media reports, passengers on the first flight will include the United States Ambassador to Serbia, the Serbian Prime Minister, as well as some of the "living legends of Serbia" whose names are featured on Air Serbia's aircraft, such as footballer Dejan Stanković, former basketball player Vlade Divac and actor Miki Manojlović. Air Serbia's CEO, Dane Kondić, told the "Elevate" magazine publication, "Launching a new route is always an exciting time for an airline, but it takes on even more meaning when it comes to our New York service, which will be the first nonstop air link operated by a Serbian airline between Serbia and the United States since 1992, nearly a quarter of a century ago". He added, "Over the past few months, I have spoken to many people who told me they can't wait for our new transatlantic service to take off. We also know how important it is that our guests can catch easy onward connections from New York to cities such as Chicago, which is a big Serbian population centre, on one end, and from Belgrade to cities in the Balkans on the other. We have some exciting announcements in that regards coming soon".
Air Serbia will operate flights to New York with a 254-seat Airbus A330-200 aircraft five times per week. "We've gone to great lengths to make sure it [A330] offers the best possible travel experience over the Atlantic, with completely lie-flat beds in Business Class, menus showcasing Serbian cuisine and personal entertainment systems loaded with movies, TV shows and music in both Serbian and English", Mr Kondić said.