Saturday, December 24, 2016

Air Serbia sees long haul success


The Chairman of the Air Serbia Supervisory Board, Siniša Mali, has said the carrier has recorded strong results on its Belgrade - New York service since its launch in mid-June, adding that the airline is on "the right path" to record continued passenger growth on the route in 2017. "More people are flying on the Belgrade - New York service (and vice versa) than we expected and this is a good indicator that we made the right decision to open this route. Over the past six months, we have carried more than 40.000 passengers on these flights and have managed to position both Belgrade and Serbia as a prominent point in the region", Mr Mali said. He added, "We are the only country in the region to have flights to New York operated by our own national carrier". In addition to solid passenger numbers, Air Serbia has transported a wide variety of cargo to the United States, including food products made in Serbia and Italy, garments and machine parts from Turkey and Romania, mail from Russia and Greece and safety glass from Croatia.

Mr Mali noted that the airline's New York service has been popular with transfer passengers who either start or end their journey from places such as Sarajevo, Skopje, Zagreb, Sofia, as well as other cities, adding that this was one of the aims of the route. "It was a major decision to launch these flights, the first to the United States operated by our airline since 1992 and I think we have shown that we are on the right path with the results achieved over the past six months. I expect for passenger numbers to grow next year. This year, the public first found out about this route and people need some time to get used to it".


The Chairman of the Air Serbia Supervisory Board confirmed that the airline will not be the operating carrier of the upcoming flights between China and Belgrade, which are to launch "in the next few months". Instead, these will be run by Chinese airlines. "This will be another great opportunity for Belgrade to position itself as the bridge between East and West. This is extremely important for our economic and trade growth", Mr Mali concluded. Air China, Hainan Airlines and China Eastern Airlines have all entered into negotiations to commence flights from Beijing to Belgrade next year, while a fourth carrier, from China's South (tipped to be China Southern Airlines) is also considering the service. Another city in China could also be linked with Belgrade next year. China and Serbia will abolish visa restrictions for each others' nationals on January 1, 2017.

83 comments:

  1. Good numbers considering how late they started selling tickets. Good luck to them.

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  2. Great news and let's hope they increase the route to daily when the second A332 arrives.

    That said, why isn't Dane or the airline's PR making these statements? Air Serbia needs to distance itself from the political landscape of the country.

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    1. Well Mali is the chairman of the board...

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    2. And how often do you see the chairman of the board make similar statements? You don't. Not even in airlines like AB or EY.

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    3. Inace jos da dodamo da je i veliki strucnjak u oblasti avijacije! ... Obicni muljatori koji primaju plate iz raznih izvora zato sto sve znaju.

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    4. Actually he was asked this by the a member of the press but anyway

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    5. Mislim da se sve više meša u slučaju da ne prođe kao gradonačelnik pa da ima alternativu. Ja se i dalje nadam da sada kada je Hogan otišao iz Etihada da će se i u JU ceniti neke druge stvari a ne slepa vernost prema menadžmentu.

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    6. What second a332 , what daily route ? They reduce it to 3 per week.Get serious please.

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    7. AnonymousDecember 24, 2016 at 9:12 AM

      Did the press contact him directly or was he present somewhere where his presence wasn't needed? ;)

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    8. It was an interview with one question related to JU.

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    9. You still didn't answer my question if the media contacted him or was he somewhere where his presence wasn't needed?

      Chairman of the board is not someone who is present in the media, his role is important and he is active behind closed doors.

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    10. I don't understand your question. He is the mayor of Belgrade and was doing the interview at the City hall as far as I can see. And all of the interview was related to city matters except this. I'm not his press advisor or his fan so I don't really care.

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    11. Činjenica ostaje da se nameće tamo gde mu nije mesto. Er Srbija ima svoju PR službu koja inače super radi i ona treba da komunicira sa javnošću a ne kontraverzne ličnosti poput Malog.

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    12. I te kako mu je mesto da daje izjave, kao predstavnik vlasti u kompaniji gde je vecinski udeo državni.

      What is not clear to you in this instance?

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    13. Odaću ti priznanje ako mi pokažeš gde je ovo normalno i u kojoj drugoj kompaniji se tako radi.

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    14. Chairman of the Board releasing results is acceptable and understandable in the situation when there is ongoing transition in EY. JU CEO Kondic is reporting to both Board and EY so it's politically dangerous for him to speak publicly at the moment even about positive results. He is trying to keep his position in JU.

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    15. Yeah but Dane ws always quiet... he didn't make many statements from day 1

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    16. He's made many statements and done plenty of interviews - just not with Serbian media - they have all been with international business media and aviation publications. Just do a google search and you will more than satisfy your needs

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    17. Verovatno mu domaći mediji nisu dovoljno prestižni... klasičan balkanski mentalitet.

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    18. Na pijaci jutros nije bilo ovoliko baba da se prepiru ko je ovaj ili onaj. Siniša je deo tima AS iz vladinih institucija i čovek koji je učestvovao u celom projektu pokretanja linije za Njujork, a trenutno je sa Zoranom u razgovoru sa kineskim kompanijama i nadam se da će nas i dalje obaveštavati šta se planira i šta je sve dogovoreno šta se tiče AS i novih aviokompanija zainteresovanih za BEG.Najveci problem za neke ljude ovde je da je JFK uspešniji nego sta se očekivalo a posebno da je kargo promet napravio pravi bum na ovoj liniji i da se ustvari ostvaruju zarade a ne gubitci koje su vlada i vukovodstvo AS planirali.

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    19. Anon at 3.26pm - he's Australian, so that explains why he is focusing his time and energy on serious international media, not Balkan "zuta" stampa.... I know the guy, so trust me, there's no Balkan mentality there at all

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    20. Hahaha i ja ga poznajem posto radim za JU i mogu da kazem da ga ocito uopste ne poznajes

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    21. Anon @6:07
      He is Serbian too, got the citizenship. During 3.5 years he was constantly ignoring local media underestimating them. Not all media in Serbia are tabloids.

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    22. ALL media in Serbia are tabloids ....

      Having a Serbian passport doesn't define who or what you are ... he was born, raised and educated in Australia. He is 100% Australian and thinks and behaves like an Australian... There is nothing Balkan in his ways, actions or behaviours....

      That's probably why he doesn't engage with local media, since he doesn;t relate or understand them.

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    23. Nije uobičajna praksa da predsjednik Nadzornog odbora daje izjave. Da u Hrvatskoj predsjednik NO Croatie (Mateša) daje izjave ljudi bi ga ismijavali.

      Koliko vas zna da je Wolfgang Mayrhuber predsjednik Nadzornog odbora Lufthanse i koliko puta ste ga čuli da daje izjave od kada više nije CEO. Od kada je postao predsjednik NO nema ga u medijima. Sve izjave daje Spohr ili netko od managemanta ili PR-a.

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    24. 1: interview with the local media:

      http://tangosix.rs/2016/07/03/ekskluzivno-intervju-sa-direktorom-er-srbije-prodaja-karata-za-njujork-ide-odlicno-tom-linijom-jacamo-svoju-regionalnu-mrezu/

      2: If LH was majority owned by government with minority owner tasked with management contract, it would be normal and expected for politicians to talk publicly about LH. That's what politicians around the world do all the time where government has ownership or influence. UK politicians talk all the time about BBC. Trump lowered government contractor Lockheed's stock with a single tweet over F35 program cost, and so on.

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    25. There's many more interviews other than the TangoSix one - just google it and you can read to your heart's content

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    26. Of course he is going to be upbeat with the performance on the route, especially given that it is likely that EY are going to withdrawal its investment. Interesting that all the hype around possible JU entry into the china market has dissipated into a plethora of Chinese airlines going to enter the market in 2017? I'm not sure if Serbia has the infrastructure to support an influx of Chinese tourists in the volume they are talking about. Possibly a good long term plan to aspire to.

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    27. @Ante. Everyone of your comments here have been highly negative, of course you only find it worth commenting on news from Serbia. Seems like living abroad has not cured your hate.

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    28. @anonymous. My comments are based on commercial reality. At this rate I would be surprised if any former YU airlines survive, bit like MA. There one day Wizz Air the next. JP, OU, JU, YM - lov'em all. I've worked for an airline that disappeared overnight so I guess I know the signs and making recent announcements about flying to Astana are of serious concern. The Q is do you?

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  3. Good. What's more exciting to me are the China flights and that they will be operated by Chinese carriers

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    1. Yes this is fantastic and could be the highlight in 2017. Still wondering which airline will fly and will we see just Beijing or Shanghai too.

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    2. With visa free and new flightS, I already can see Belgrade overcrowded with Chinese tourists

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    3. There is 14.200 Chinese tourist in Srbia (official data). And that is nothing, negligible number.

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    4. And you know that number will not increase when Serbia becomes the only European country with no visa restrictions for Chinese? The Chinese are obviously launching these flights which will of course be empty because of their love for Serbia. Is that the argument you are going with?

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  4. And what happens with Mali announcement that 2nd A330 will come till end of the year. It was not "maybe" but "it will come". End of year comes and there is no 2nd A330. Even more first one decrease frequencies from 5 to just 3 flights pw.

    It is so strange that when those politicians make promises we all get exiting and react as it will really happened, and than when that does not happened it is OK, nobody cares, nobody even judge them.

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    1. Frequency decreasing during the winter is completely normal practice. It's the case for most airlines in this region. They didn't decrease the frequemcy for next summer. At the moment the flight operate 4 times per week.

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    2. Well, anon 9:18 don't be so hard on them they are trying really hard but can't even count the number o pax they had on this route ...the ceo clown the other day mentioned 60k, now the politician clown mentions about 40k ... In the midtime this AM almost every flight is about 60min late, that must be because the PM clown the other day praised the new de-icing station saying that on time performance will be above 90%. Imagine if it snowed in Dec how good on time performance would actualy be! most important is that they are trying really hard!))

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    3. De icing platform opens in January.

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    4. And why deicing platform was not open earlier. It was planed for 2015!!!! Together with A6-A10 rebuild, new C7-C10 gates, new floor, self-luggage check-in...

      But again, what happens with 2nd A330 announced by Mali to come till end of 2016?

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    5. Same thing that happened with Split Airport's new terminal from 2011.

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  5. I like the video. Product looks good.

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  6. OT - Let's pause for just a second today to reflect and pay respects to Vesna Vulović. How nice it would be from JU to name of their A319s after this brave lady.

    May she rest in peace

    http://www.b92.net/info/vesti/index.php?yyyy=2016&mm=12&dd=24&nav_category=12&nav_id=1213575

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    1. Legenda. Neka joj je laka crna zemlja.

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    2. Bog da prosti Stjuardesu Vesnu Vulovic.
      Na nebu Rajska naselja, na zemlji, bar na Beogradskom aerodromu naziv jednog lokalnog puta, staze, prolaza. Terminala. Zar ljudi koji imaju ovlascenje za davanje imena nece dati posthumano naziv Vesne stjuardese? Verujmo da ce Vesnino ime biti zapisano i posthumano. Verujmo. Imajmo srca. Vesna, mir ti u naseljima Rajskim. I nase secanje na tebe i sve koji lete.
      Rodney & Son.
      Kraljevo + Sydney

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    3. RIP dear Vesna

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    4. Fantastic. 4 LX in BEG wowwwww
      Wondering why they dont send widebodies
      PRG ATH LIS in October for autumn holidays were served with A330 and A340s

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    5. I think you misplaced your comment. :P

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  7. Happy about the results. Wish them success in 2017.

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  8. Buducnost Er Srbije bice uspesno sa vecim stepenom privatizacije. Isto vazi i za Beogradski Aerodrom Nikola Tesla. Privatizacija sa pravim investitorima jeste osiguranja rasta i buducnosti u komercijalnoj avijaciji Srbije!.
    Nova 2017 godina bice pocetak novog razvoja letenja iz i u Srbiju.
    Let hoppe. Let fly. Let be positive. Let be objective.
    let be fair and successful.
    Pripadaj Er Srbiji i nebo bice tvoje...
    Rodney & Sydneysiders.
    Kraljevo, Srbija

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    1. Radovane, Etihad ne moze imati boljeg, kooperativnijeg partnera od Vlade Srbije u svakom pogledu. To sto vi pricate, moguce bi bilo samo u slucaju da Etihad izadje iz partnerstva a zameni ga neka evropska kompanija zasta su sanse ravne nuli.

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    2. Radovane, ja sve mislim da ste vi napisali da će 2015. biti godina za razvoj i BEG-a, a i za AS, nova krila jugoistočne evrope.
      Jel grešim?

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    3. Postovani Anon 5:05 PM.
      Verujem da ste u pravu. Moje procene nisu mnogo precizne. Obzirom da u Srbiji mnogi zakoni i propisi vladaju iz proslosti uz mnoge iz toga vremena. Promenom zakona i delimicno ljudi koji usporavaju dinamiku promena i dalje ocekujem da ce od iduce godine biti po romena o kojima sam u proteklom tekstu pisao. Koliko sam objektivan, brzo ce vreme pokazati.
      Svako Vam dobro.
      Rod.

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  9. Congratulations to Air Serbia for transporting more Pax than anticipated and being the only national carrier to operate that route by its national carrier. In the end however the only thing will be economics. If the route generates high enough yields to support the ops. it will continue, otherwise it will be difficult. NY is a mass market with generally low yields in Eco. I dont know how well full fare Biz fares are performing on that route, but in the end time will tell. Best wishes.

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  10. The arrival of Chinese carriers should worry airlines like Qatar, flydubai, Turkish Airlines and Etihad not because these will offer a superior product (far from it) but because the Chinese are known as the masters of low fares.
    Their arrival will most likely steal a great deal of passengers flying to Chinese cities, Japan, South Korea and the ASEAN region.

    On the other hand their arrival will be great for the Serbian traveler and the local market. It will further stimulate demand and make Serbia a popular tourist destination among Chinese tourists.

    I am certain JU will codeshare with them to China but I also hope that they will put their codes on Air Serbia's flights to the Balkans, The Middle East as well as Italy.

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    1. You are spot on Nemjee - that is exactly the plan ! Air Serbia will be an important feeder for these Chinese carriers, that will benefit both Air Serbia and BEG airport. They are currently being capped capacity wise, at many slot constrained European airports, so this will work out great for both sides ....

      Wait until the Iranians come - tht will also further help in strengthening both Air Serbia and BEG airport

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    2. We will have to see what will happen in the end. There are way too many variables at this point. We don't know who will operate the route, if they will code-share with Air Serbia or even if their schedule will make sense.

      If they end up cooperating then I see the Chinese mostly feeding the Balkan network.

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    3. Hope this Chinese flights will not finish as Mali announcement of 2nd A330 till end of 2016.

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    4. Actually it is the Chinese Ambassador in Belgrade that has announced the flights and the list of airlines involved in the talks. Google it.

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    5. If they plan to open the route in say May of 2017 then they should be announcing the route by this time or beginning of January. I do believe there is demand for these flights especially in the case that a codeshare agreement is singed with good timings that connect to JU network. At the same time if these flights are not announced soon then most likely nothing will happen until the summer of 2018. Just my prediction, but I could be wrong.

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    6. Mali je rekao krajem 2017 a ne 2016

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  11. Arrivals from ZRH at BEG today:

    09.10 LX A320
    09.25 LX A320
    11.10 JU A319
    14.00 LX A320
    16.45 JU A319
    18.20 LX A321
    22.25 JU A320

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    1. Are these extra flights for holidays?

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    2. 09.10 and 09.25 are charter flights bringing people to Serbia. They are flying back empty.

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  12. We use to fly with JAT nearly overloaded back and forth, now except for passengers Airserbia flies nearly empty, and cargo was a money maker. I don't see that a success.

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    1. How exactly they fly nearly empty?

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    2. He meant that besides passengers they don't carry anything else.

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    3. He should read the text again. There is a lot of cargo on these flights.

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  13. Next year they could easily carried 100 000 pax . With some small correction of schedule they could carried even more. On example :
    JU500 BEG0750 - 1200JFK 14
    JU500 BEG1315 - 1725JFK 25
    JU500 BEG1750 - 2200JFK 6

    JU501 JFK1440 - 0530BEG+1 14
    JU501 JFK1930 - 1020BEG+1 25
    JU501 JFK0700 - 2200BEG 6

    With some additional flight on Tue and Fri in the morning to South-East destination (ATH,SJJ,SKP,LCA..) they could much more.


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    1. JU501 JFK0700 - 2200BEG 7

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    2. Great schedule. I wonder if JFK has enough free slots/gates for a 07.00 departure. I suppose it's a busy time of the day for them.

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  14. I've never heard of flights from N.A. leaving for Europe at 07:00. Would this even work?

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    1. In Air Serbia's case it would work as it would arrive at around 22.00. You could even move the departure to 08.00 so its arrival at 23.00 would have short connections to BEY (23.40) or LCA (23.55). The rest of the region leaves after midnight.

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    2. Virgin Atlantic have very similiar, departing JFK at 08.15.

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    3. I think only in summer. In winter AA JFK-LHR departs first at 10.15

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    4. BA has had that schedule for years now. BOSLHR and JFKLHR departing JFK/BOS in the morning and arriving at LHR late evening.

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    5. Guys - JU flies the slots it has - that's it .... Don't you think that they would have considered all of these things ? In the end, these were the best slots they could get and have had to make the most of what they could get.

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    6. Sorry we troubled you with this.

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  15. I think AC has a similar flight to LHR from YYZ.

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  16. ASL je od 23.06. do danasnjeg dana imala 237 letova ka i od JFK do BEG. Prevezeno je vise od 40.000+ putnika sto ako uzmemo za primer da je putovalo tacno 40.000 putnika, a putovalo je vise, daje prosek od 168,77 pax po letu ili prosecnu popunjenost od 66,45% popunjenosti (tj i vise od toga jer je uzet grub podatak od 40k a ima ih i vise).
    Ako uzmemo u obzir los marketing jer vecina putnika koja koristi te linije nije bila adekvatno obavestena, nisu bili sigurni jer im taj let ASL nije bio pouzdan, nije se znalo sta se desava sa a332 do 3 nedelje pred let, dozvola od USA je dobijena tek 18.06. kada je ASL naveo tacno uvid u upravljacku funkciju u kompaniji (upravljacku funkciju EY) i kada je stavljen EY A346 kao backup koji ce ASL moci da koristi u slucaju nekog duzeg kvara, ako uzmemo u obzir to sto je na "silu" otvoren let (pravi primer kako linije treba da se otvaraju je Qantas koji otvara liniju Perth - London sa B789 tek u martu 2018.), ako uzmemo u obzir da iz JFK ka USA nema mnogo opcija za presedanje, da svaki let ima barem 6t cargo tereta posebno placenog i tako jos po nekih stvari onda mozemo doci do zakljucka da su ovo odlicni rezultati iako sam moram priznati bio jako, jako, skeptican.
    Od ASL u sledecoj godini ocekujem da isprave za pocetak ove sve mane, a od 2018. iskreno ocekujem i jos neko otvaranje interkontinentalnih letova.

    Posebno moram da istaknem odusevljenje vecine putnika i osobljem i uslugom na letu i pre leta (recimo u BEG postoji devojka iz ASL koja daje objave za let u cekaonici na Albanskom jeziku zbog velikog broja putnika sto prica albanski) ali moram i da kazem da kao linija imaju jako malo prodatih biznis karata (ne racunam upgrade na aerodromu ili na izlazu). To bih voleo da posebno poprave u budnucnosti.

    Hvala.

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    1. There is room for improvement on this route but it seems to be doing ok so far. With more Balkan connections, Kiev, Petersburg, N. Africa, M. East, Caucasus region, & Iran -- JFK, and future ORD & YYZ should also do well.

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