Monday, October 31, 2016

Air Serbia considering long haul winter charters


Air Serbia is looking into the possibility of introducing long haul charter flights with its Airbus A330-200 aircraft this winter season. The carrier is exploring the idea in partnership with the National Association of Travel Agencies of Serbia (YUTA). In a statement to EX-YU Aviation News, the Association confirmed that initial talks are taking place with the airline but noted that the carrier's initiative is still at an early stage. "Keeping in mind that YUTA is one of Air Serbia's biggest partners in charter travel through our members, Air Serbia suggested a meeting with tour operators where we would discuss possible charters to far-off destinations", YUTA said in a statement.

According to the Association, tour operators are interested in long haul charter flights to Thailand and Cuba during the winter months, as there is sufficient demand for those markets. However, YUTA noted that all sides involved are yet to determine future cooperation models and conduct their final calculations and possible financial risks. "The potential realisation of these charters would be carried out during the winter season", the Association concluded. The Serbian government has inked a number of Air Service Agreements and Memorandums over the past year with countries which could be of interest for potential long haul charter operations including the Dominican Republic and Sri Lanka. These agreements set the legal framework for air operations between the two sides.

Air Serbia will be able to operate long haul charters with its A330-200 aircraft, which is used on scheduled services from Belgrade to New York, as the carrier will reduce frequencies on the route from five to three per week starting November 8. The last time long haul charter flights were run out of Belgrade was during the 1980s. They were maintained by JAT Yugoslav Airlines, often by its Air Yugoslavia division. Over the years, the carrier also operated five "round the world" flights. The first, which departed on November 10, 1974 had the routing Belgrade - Beirut - Mumbai - Singapore - Tokyo - Honolulu - Los Angeles - New York - London - Belgrade. Subsequent world flights would include destinations such as New Delhi, Bangkok, Hong Kong, Kyoto, San Francisco and Buffalo. The tours lasted some twenty days.

103 comments:

  1. Smart way to get quick and clean cash through charters. Better than sit at the airport for four days.

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  2. I'm surprised they didn't give the plane to Air Berlin or Etihad for the remaining days of the week.

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    Replies
    1. They may not need any extra widebodies in the winter season.

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  3. Cuba could happen but given how cheap flights are to Thailand I doubt it... especially now when flydubai is seriously dumping its fares. A friend of mine booked flights for two for a total of €360!!

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    1. That's an amazingly good deal. But it all depends whether people who go on these holidays book their entire trip with tour operators (which I think Serbs are generally inclined to doing). That way tour operators would probably sell these flights all in the package.

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    2. Indeed but tour operators already have deals with airlines like Emirates, Turkish Airlines or Qatar. Don't forget that EK has an office in Belgrade through which it sells holidays.

      Also, I am not too sure Etihad would be too happy if JU would launch its own Thailand flights.

      I wonder if the A332 could be dispatched to AUH once or twice a week.

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    3. You have a point there. I also think they should have thought about this earlier so they were ready to operate these flights this winter which goes to show the New York reduction was not pre-planned in advance.

      A330 to AUH could work. I fly often with Etihad on these flights as they suit me better then Air Serbia with the times and the plane is always full. Not sure about Air Serbia's loads.

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    4. I don't think Etihad would mind charters to Thailand. As a matter of fact, at this moment the majority of tourists from Serbia to Thailand are traveling with their competition.

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    5. Yes the same competition JU could not undercut.

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    6. @ anonymous 9,15am

      The A330 to AUH would not work as JU has problems to fill the A319 in months other than June - September. Loads have gone as low as around 30 pax. Last winter the loads were much better than in previous years, but again around 50, 55 pax and above.

      EY flights always fill very well, which I guess EY focuses more in filling their ac then sharing the load. Having said that, JU has more seats in its ac and a far inferior product of all ME airlines flying to BEG.

      JU sending the A330 to AUH would be a financial disaster.

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  4. Shame they are not looking into more scheduled long haul flights. Doubt we will see a second A330 in Belgrade anytime soon.

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    1. Doubt you are right.

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  5. The financial risk for the airline on such flights is generally low as tour operators buy all the seats. Even if the aircraft is half full the airline gets the same money as if the entire flight was sold out. There is much more risk on the actual tour operators.

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    Replies
    1. They don't always buy all the seats, it all depends on what kind of a deal they make.

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  6. I love that YUTA still uses the Yugoslav abbreviation of its name :D

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    Replies
    1. Yugoslav Travel Association

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    2. I think it's pretty cool, no need to pretend like YU never existed... as some republics do.

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  7. Last minute decision. They should have lowered the frequencies once they launched their summer timetable, to give more time for the tour operators to prepare the product and enable the people to purchase in advance.
    Almost all airlines reduce their frequencies to North America during the winter. It was quite optimistic to think they could've maintained the 5 weekly flights.

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  8. Very professional to "consider" the use of the aircraft for long haul charters when the IATA winter season aleady started. Usually such decions are made 6+x months before start of a season, including obtaining traffic rights, scheduling, sales, promotion etc.......for Antalya you can sell on short notice but nor for long haul. Must be panic inside ASL headquarters since leasing fees for A330 are tremendous. I think the should have used this aircraft in summer already. There were plenty of destinations where two Aviolet B733 took off within of 15 minutes. Would have been more economical to use one A330 instead.

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    1. +100000

      Seasonal - especially winter charters, are firmed up months in advance and offered for sale in September, the latest.

      I'm an admitted fan of JU but the airline seems to be operating in panic mode as of lately. Partial clarity we once had is all but gone. More like an MI6 op these days....

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    2. I think they didn't expect to reduce JFK to three weekly so now they have to find something to do with the aircraft. Maybe launch a one weekly flight to ORD and one weekly to YYZ. Fill those seats with p2p at least.

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    3. The aircraft was more than 60% of the time in the air during summer months! Plus 10-15% of the time on tarmac in BEG in JFK. That's a pretty damn good use of an aircraft! There needs to be regular maintenance and inspection.

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    4. 100% mad house where the left hand doesn't know what the right hand is doing ...
      Now they can only hope if some charters will fall from the sky ...

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    5. Do they have time for some New Year charters? I know two months is not a lot but...

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    6. I presume these flights would happen around New Year and in January/February.

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    7. Air Serbia sure could use a Chief Commercial Officer. As good and smart as Dane is, there needs to be a proper decision maker focused on commercial matters.

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    8. No need, seems like Dane can do it all by himself.

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    9. Ovi pregovori oko čarter letova su počeli još u Augustu ali je bilo dosta nesuglasice oko destinacija.Kako stvari stoje najverovatnije će objaviti Varadero (VRA) i Punta Canu (PUJ). Jedna agencija iz Kanade (mislim da se zove 747 travel ) je tražila nekih 16 rotacija za Toronto ali ne znam da li je i to još uvek na stolu.

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    10. Znaci lepo, znali su u avgustu da ce leteti 3 puta ali su prodavali pet letova do pre neki dan... ili su mislili da ce obavljati cartere za Kanadu sa Avioletom.

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    11. Ma ako su započeli pregovore u augustu, to znači da su ih započeli puno prekasno. U augustu su već morali da znaju gde, kada i po kojoj ceni će da lete.

      A ako su znali da će da imaju slobodne kapacitete što su do kraja oktobra puštali JFK u prodaju 5 puta sedmično.

      Ovo je totalni fijasko.

      Pa ko će da kupi aranžman za zimu ako u novembru još ne znaju ni gdje će da lete, ni kada, ni koliko, ni po kojoj ceni. Pa ne kupuju se aranžmani od 1.500 EUR za Kubu 10 dana pre letea.

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  9. I am not aviaion expert but can´t they introduce winter service to Toronto or Chicago, twice per week, this flights would be packed!

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    Replies
    1. They could but they would have to depart at odd hours, that is outside of the banks meaning no connections would be offered.

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  10. Bas ce se usreciti sa Tajlandom za 350 eur mozes redovno da nasjes kartu na Qataru ili Fly Dubaiju.
    Druga stvar su agenxije koje imaju vec postavljene grupe na kompanijama i placene depozite, malo je kasno za ove akcije.

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  11. OT
    Since F7 as part of European EY Group is switching to Dash 8-400s and AB said to be very content with their Dashes, I reckon it will be likely that JU did not make a decision on renewing their regional fleet as EY will be pressuring them to switch to Dash too. Common acquisition and maintenance will mean lower prices.

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    Replies
    1. Not unlikely anymore, that JU will swap ATRs for Bombardiers.

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  12. Would be cool to see Air Serbia in Havana, Bangkok or Phuket.

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    Replies
    1. i'm sure you said that about jfk too.

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    2. Given the current situation maybe it would have been better if these flights stayed just a dream.

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  13. Could we see the A330 on some European flights like TGD, ZRH, VIE... around the holidays?

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    1. ZRH did have extra flights last year, maybe they will suspend them and send the A332 three times per week. Would be really cool.

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    2. Yeah. While they had it Jat used to send the DC10 to ZRH on a number of occasions.

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    3. Paris also around the christams/new year holidays would be well served by the A330.

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    4. stop dreaming!!! yesterday they even cancelled SVO and there was no single JU flight to Moscow while SU operated with 3 flights. Moscow is a strategic destination and they are withdrawing ... does that paint the picture of the state they are in ?

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    5. How many times do you have to be told that no flights are cancelled to Moscow? They swapped the Sunday flight to operate on Tuesdays and that's the case for already a month and was preplanned in advanced (visible in GDS since March 2016). You were told this 2 weeks ago, of course ignored it only to come here again to claim the same thing.

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    6. Was the 23.40 departure on SU a charter?

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    7. Anon 11:43,

      Your post only paints the picture of the state you are in. No need to project it on business entities.

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    8. Especially not on JU since they are ruining their own brand just fine. ))

      Delete
  14. In the end I don't think they will make a deal but we will see. Better to have been utilized on existing flights.

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  15. In case these do start, what would they do with the business class section of the plane? I doubt they would be selling business.

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  16. OT: New pics of Zagreb terminal, looking great!

    https://www.facebook.com/ZracnalukaZagreb/photos/ms.c.eJw1zUEKwEAIQ9EbFRPHqPe~;WFsZwdXDT~_AHUDD7OyMeDJyMgfSFDgr0ygvhNR~_whb85IdWCbBJyoTBguyLTJNYvOUEbJg~-~-.bps.a.1341164175945798.1073741874.260651017330458/1341165279279021/?type=3&theater

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  17. I guess this is a new era beginning in JU! I am excited! :)

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  18. Anyone know how TK is doing in BEG? They are quite expensive so I guess loads and yields are not bad?

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    1. They are not that expensive. This winter you can book a BEG-IST-BEG with them for ~130 euro. Last winter it was 170. The winter before, 200.

      The exception is their traditional February-March sale when they offer return flights from many destinations (BEG included) for 99 USD.

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    2. I was talking about connecting flights to the US, Asia and the Middle East. They are never the cheapest option, LH is and then one or two more and then TK

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    3. You never know what they may come up with. 3 years ago I connected to JFK with them for $400 in the Xmas period (bought the flights months in advance, but still...)

      I know many people expect them to slash prices heavily now but I think they lost only 1% of pax in the period Jan-Sep, YoY. IST is also recovering quite fast.

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    4. What I am implying is that despite the crisis in Turkey, BEG seems to be performing well for them. If it wasn't then we might have seen 10 weekly flights and much lower fares.

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  19. Charters are okay for one winter, but what happens when second A330 comes around? Long time ago I mentioned LOT struggles with their 787 winter charters. Better than being in the hangar, but inferior to sending one out of two (or 2 out of 4) to Etihad, similar to Muscat that was operated by JU A319. EY doesn't need it? Package it as an offer they can't refuse, as in: "EY better take one JU A330 for the winter than endanger whole Air Serbia investment". It's simply better solution for the EY family.

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    Replies
    1. After today's news do you seriously think the second A330 is coming? I have my doubts. Imagine if they had a second aircraft now, they would be bankrupt.

      Also if EY cared so much about endangering its JU child then they would have never approved this costly adventure.

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    2. They would have never signed such a wide-ranging codeshare agreement with Aegean and BT in the first place.

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    3. October 31, 2016 at 1:23 PM +1

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    4. Long haul is the way to make money during summer season but ASL has to grow destinations and frequency. No doubt second A330 is arriving. It's a matter of when, not if.

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    5. It seems like JU is in a panic mode. A second A330 lease would kill the company during winter. Also if they really wanted they could have started 2 p/w flights to YYZ during winter, but no they want to fly half full planes to Phuket for 400 euros per pax. No hater, but I dont get the logic here. YYZ would also be 400 euro maybe, but at least would be a good preparation for the upcoming summer season

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    6. AirCEO, I agree but what's the point of making a lot of money in summer if you end up burning it in winter?

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    7. Everyone else including Wizz makes money in the summer and burns money in Nov and Feb. LCCs keep LF mostly constant by lowering fares, but that's not practical for long haul flying due to different cost model.

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  20. I guess this is the "winter surprise".

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  21. Just about to board SPUFRA OU A319 flight. Weather in Split is gorgeous. Went real quick to Trogir since I got some time left. Still quite some tourists around, mostly Asians but also Janezi, USA, Spain, UK and Germany, Austria
    My guess is that we re apx 80 to 90 pax

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    Replies
    1. 137 Passngers on OU 412 SPUFRA today
      Not a good guesser...

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    2. Bad guess....
      137 were on todays OU 412 SPUFRA

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    3. Great loads! Looking forward to SPU and DBV numbers for October

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    4. I was in Dubrovnik this Summer, soo beautiful, it's unreal! I'm totally jealous dammit! :))

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  22. Also think this is a much smarter option tgan the plane sitting in Belgrade.

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  23. Dobar dan dobri ljudi! Sećate se kako sam vam rekao pre nekih 10 dana da nam stižu mnoge promene u našoj lepoj firmi? Evo ga prvi korak ka hibridnom modelu:

    https://www.airserbia.com/sr/korporativni/vesti?newsplus_news_id=143958&newsplus_topic_id=77910

    Promotivna akcija za putnike koji putuju bez prtljaga. Naravno, dodatni troškovi moraju biti povećani jer je firma ipak u malo lošijoj finansijskoj situaciji.

    Letite sa nama da nam svima bude dobro.:)

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    Replies
    1. Dobri čoveče, da si ti nama živ i zdrav, to su Lufthansa, Austrian, Swiss, KLM, Air France, British i Iberia uveli još ihahaj...
      Što se tiče "lošije finansijske situacije", treba da budeš mnogo konkretniji i precizniji, ako želiš da izbegneš da se tvoje insinuacije ne drže za trolovanje. :)

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    2. Uradili su na letovima gdje lete drugi operatori koji nude istu opciju. Nadam se da ce na tome ostati i da nece dodavati druge gradove.

      The offer applies to travellers flying between Belgrade and Athens, Frankfurt, Vienna and Zurich between 1 November and 15 December 2016 and 15 January and 25 March 2017.

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    3. Poštovani Anon 17.45, ja nažalost ne smem više od toga da iznesem ali nadam se da to što sam ja prvi ovo obelodanio je dovoljno da vam ulije poverenje da radim za Er Srbiju (a pre toga za jadni Jat).
      Kao što sam već ranije napisao, svi znamo da je situacija lošija nego što se očekivalo ali trebalo bi svi da se radujemo da se barem nešto radi po tom pitanju. :)

      Poštovani Milivoje, nažalost ne mogu da vas obradujem. Ovo je samo mrvica onoga što nas čeka. Nažalost moj poslodavac gubi kompas i sve se manje zna koja smo vrsta avio-prevoznika. Ja se samo nadam da se u potpunosti ne zbunimo kao naš partner Er Berlin.

      Ponoviću još jednom da vas pozivam sve da leteti sa nama kako bi izbegli dalju degradaciju do skoro fenomenalne usluge!

      Pozdravim svim dobrim ljudima!

      A.Z.

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    4. A sta ste to Vi prvi obelodanili, kad je to sto ste Vi okacili ovde bilo objavljeno od strane same Er Srbije? Parolama ja znam, al ne smem da kazem ne ulivaivate nikakvo poverenje da radite za JU. Po stilu samog pisanja nisam bas uveren u to.

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    5. Poštovani Anon 19.08, molim vas pokažite mi gde je objavljeno da će se početi sa naplaćivanjem prtljaga. Ne razumem odakle tolika netrpeljivost, toliki bes... čemu to? Zar ne možete normalno komunicirati?

      Prijatno

      A.Z.

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    6. Da je objavio hvalospjeve na račun Air Serbije, Anonymous 7:08, itekako biste mu vjerovali!

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    7. Postovani anon 19.15, o ovim objavama pricate? "Plan kako da odgovore već postoji ali nažalost on se neće obelodaniti dok se ne pređe na novi sistem. Iako mislim da će ovi noviteti biti super, mnogima se neće svideti jer će približti JU hibridnom modelu."
      "Nažalost nije nam dozvoljeno da bilo šta pišemo, za nekoliko meseci će sve biti obelodanjeno. :)"
      Ako pricate o ovome, gde ste Vi obelodanili nesto o naplacivanju prtljaga? I nikako nisam besan i komuniciram sasvim kulturno.

      Prijatno i Vama

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    8. Anonymous A.Z.:
      Mozete li nam reci koliko ce niza cena biti, posto npr za Atinu se cesto moze karta naci oko 120eur, sa sve predatim prtljagom. Hvala

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    9. Poštovani Anon 7.44, vi ste rekli da to šta sam ja napisao nije ništa novo kada je to ASL već objavila.

      kad je to sto ste Vi okacili ovde bilo objavljeno od strane same Er Srbije?

      Molim vas pojasnite mi ovu vašu rečenicu. Ja sam najavio da dolaze velike vesti i evo su, stižu. :)

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    10. Čovek radi za AS, aman pustite ga više!..

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    11. Dakle da sam Dane dobio bi otkaz kao dobar dan.

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    12. Postovani Anon 19.52, to sam napisao zato jer ste Vi ovde objavili samo to, da ce biti promena, nista konkretno. Da ste izasli pre neki dan sa konkretnom informacijom, da ce se prodajati karte za putovanje bez prtljaga, e to bi Vi prvi obelodanili.

      Prijatno

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    13. Brt sto mracis, covek je lepo rekao u komentaru onaj dan da ce biti promena koje ce biti slicne hibridnom modelu i evo ti ovo danas. Ne shvatam sta drvis ovde... oladi.

      Delete
    14. Драги А.З.

      Лепо од тебе што си са нама поделио неке инсајдерске наговештаје из компаније. Мени је најупечатљивији онај део када кажеш "да ситуација није онаква каква се очекивало".

      Предпостављам да ако тако каже неки упосленик компаније право стање је много ближе оном које смо ми овде дуго времена причали да јесте, али смо добијали етикете хејтера.

      Тек чињеница коју примети свако ко није у компанији, али је велики љубитељ и познавалац комерцијалне авијације је да твој послодавац како сам кажеш губи компас. Дај боже да га нађе пре него буде касно

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    15. Stvarno velika vest Dobri čoveče.. mislim da je toliko bitna za sudbinu kompanije, da će se sve meriti do i od ove epohalne vesti! Molim te da i ubuduce nesto podelis sa nama, recimo kad nadjete kompas to bi bilo sjajno.

      Delete
    16. Stare vesti. Prica o Er Srbija hibridnom modelu komentarisana je u vestima od 26 oktobra.

      Delete
    17. Anon 5.19

      Aj brate pre nego sto hejtujes ovde procitaj malo diskusiju. Ovo danas i ono 26. je napisao isti covek, dakle predocio nam je da ce se ovo desiti.

      Valjda i cheerleadersice sada ne znaju da kazu kada je JU prosla od full legacy, do butika a sada ide na hibridni model. Na kraju postace glorifikovani Wizz Air.

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    18. @5:55 aj ti malo procitaj prepisku, Lufthansa, Austrian, Swiss, KLM, Air France, British i Iberia su ovo uvele pre više godina imi su i one postale hibrid?

      Delete
    19. Dobri čoveče,
      1. da bi informacija zaista bila insajderska i ekskluzivna, treba da bude objavljena barem malo ranije od zvaničen objave. Ti si prepričao vest koja je već objavljena na njihovom sajtu. Izvini, ali meni to liči na trolovanje/spinovanje.

      2. Pošto "izveštavaš" kao Anonymous, ne razumem od čega i koga ne smeš nešto da kažeš. Takvi neubedljivi izgovori i opravdanja samo učvršćuju uverenje da nisi ono za šta se izdaješ.

      3. Odsustvo bilo kakvih konkrentih podataka koji nisu još poznati i koji bi se mogli proveriti kasnje bi pomoglo, ali pošto kod tebe toga nema... znaš već šta hoću da kažem.

      Kolega anonimus 17.45


      Delete
  24. OT:
    http://www.juznevesti.com/Drushtvo/Odleteo-prvi-avion-iz-Nisa-za-Bratislavu.sr.html

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  25. Ovo je dobar izbor za dodatnu zaradu tokom zime .
    Naravno ima dosta destinacija iz BEG koje mogu zimi dobro da se napoune sa Turistickim destinacijama.
    INN-NS

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  26. OT:
    Intersting and a bit objective article about Etihad influence in AZ
    https://www.businesstraveller.com/features/analysis-reinvention-alitalia/

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  27. OT: good review of AisSerbia NY-Beg business class
    http://onemileatatime.boardingarea.com/2016/10/31/air-serbia-a330-business-class-pictures/

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  28. Sorry, this is off topic, but I came across this and had to post it, haha!
    https://goo.gl/photos/u3zLRqVVDcvnaiGF6

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  29. Remember when they used to serve this on flights?! :))

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  30. Check this out. Air Serbia BEG-JFK business class flight review: http://onemileatatime.boardingarea.com/2016/10/31/air-serbia-a330-business-class-pictures/

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    1. Just a short quote of the review's summary:


      'I could just go on and on all day about how much I loved this flight. The soft product was among the best I’ve had in business class. The crew was so attentive and friendly, and took such pride in what they did, which is always a pleasure to watch.

      The soft product across the board felt a lot more like first class than business class, thanks to the excellent wine selection, dine on demand menu, pajamas, turndown service, etc.
      I’d recommend Air Serbia’s New York to Belgrade flight in a heartbeat. Given that Etihad partly owns Air Serbia I had high hopes coming in, but even so was blown away.
      Well done, Air Serbia!'



      ..but then again , it's probably pointless since there are so many experts here which unanimously concluded that it's not only ASL is inferior to /insert whatever/ but to 2013.'s JU as well!

      Delete

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