Adria Airways has expanded its fleet with the addition of a third Bombardier CRJ700 aircraft, which is due to enter scheduled service later today. The seventy-seat jet, registered S5-AAW, will debut on flight JP310 between Ljubljana and Zurich this afternoon. It ran a number of test flights yesterday. The fifteen-year-old aircraft was formerly operated by the Air France subsidiary HOP!. Adria first began utilising the CRJ700 last year with the lease of a former Lufthansa CityLine jet. Nicknamed Lodz, it is now based in the Polish city. A second CRJ700, also previously operated by Lufthansa, joined the airline in January. The lease agreement for one of the aircraft expires next year but can be renewed.
The addition of the CRJ700 comes in time to replace the ageing eighteen-year-old CRJ200, which is expected to operate its last flight for the airline between Prague and Ljubljana on November 30. The 48-seater has been sold for an undisclosed amount to Regional One, a purchaser, leaser and seller of aircraft. As a result, Adria will no longer own any of its jets, as all have now been leased. The Slovenian airline began phasing out its four CRJ200s in late 2013. Some of the aircraft have been sold, while some have been scrapped. Adria opted for the type in 1997 in order to replace its DC-9s and Dash 7s.
The Slovenian carrier has already added two aircraft to its fleet this year, including a CRJ700 and a CRJ900. At the same time, it has wet-leased some its jets to other carriers during the summer season. Despite plans to wet-lease one of its CRJ900s to Croatia Airlines this winter, the deal fell through and the jet will instead remain a part of Adria's fleet. With the retirement of the CRJ200 and the addition of the CRJ700, the Slovenian carrier will continue to boast a fleet of twelve aircraft. Furthermore, its fleet continues to be the youngest by average age in the former Yugoslavia.