Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Air Serbia considering Croatia expansion


Air Serbia is mulling the possibility of introducing flights to both Zadar and the island of Brač in Croatia this year. Speaking to the "Avioradar" portal, the General Manager of Brač Airport, Tonči Peović, said, "We have been in talks with Air Serbia for a number of years. I met with the company's CEO recently. They are interested in flying to Brač. They are considering linking the flights with Zadar. Introducing services from Belgrade is a high priority for them with an ATR 72-500 aircraft". On the other hand, the General Manager of Zadar Airport, Irena Čosić, said last month, "It is unfortunate that we have been unable to introduce direct flights between Zadar and Belgrade with Air Serbia. We have been trying to do so for the past two years and reach an agreement but we have been unsuccessful. There are some higher up forces involved but I hope we will succeed in the end".

News of possible flights between Belgrade and Brač were first made public in 2015 when Croatian media reported that Air Serbia would begin a one weekly seasonal service, each Friday, from the Serbian capital to the island in May of that year. However, the carrier rebuffed the claims, noting it had no immediate plans to fly to Brač. During May 2015, talks between Zadar Airport and Air Serbia began over the potential new service, with Ms Ćosić holding talks with the airline's management. Despite negotiations, the service was never launched. Last year, Zadar Airport told EX-YU Aviation News that the route failed to materialise "partly because of the cancellation of financial support on behalf of the Croatian Tourist Board". It added, "This service would have been a great opportunity for Zadar because we know the route would have excellent loads. Zadar Airport will continue to negotiate and persist in having a Zadar - Belgrade connection just like other Croatian airports, such as Pula, Zagreb, Split and Dubrovnik".

The new services, if launched, would become Air Serbia’s fifth and sixth destination in Croatia, following Zagreb, Dubrovnik, Split and Pula, with the latter three operating during the summer months only. For the upcoming summer season, Air Serbia plans to maintain double daily flights to Zagreb, six wekly to Split and Dubrovnik, as well as four weekly services to Pula. These frequencies are preliminary at this point and may change in the lead-up to the summer season. In contrast, Croatia Airlines runs a seasonal service between Split and Belgrade, which is scheduled to operate three times per week during the 2017 summer season. The last scheduled commercial flight between Zadar and Belgrade was operated by JAT Yugoslav Airlines on August 3, 1991. There have never been services between the Serbian capital and Brač.

131 comments:

  1. If they do start these flights I think linking them up is the smart thing to do.

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  2. Their seasonal summer flights to Croatia must be doing well if they are considering more routes.

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    Replies
    1. There is scarcely a free seat on any of those flights in July and August.

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  3. I'm surprised they haven't kept Dubrovnik or Split year round. Let's see if these materialize but good news nevertheless.

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  4. Air Serbia could easily add also weekly service to Maribor and Portorož.

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    1. +1
      Maribor could be served also at least 3 times per week.

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    2. Well they need to put the A330 to use when its not flying across the Atlantic

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    3. ATR72 has payload restrictions for Portorož, I doubt it would be economical...

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  5. Considering they will most probably cancel Varna seasonal flights they will have an aircraft freed up so they will probably launch something new. This isn't a bad idea.

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    1. Varna used to depart at 00.20 so I highly doubt the aircraft will come from there.

      Since this might be a 'triangular' routing then I highly doubt they will try to fit it into one of the waves.

      They can schedule it with the Atr that returns from its morning flight to TGD.

      Otherwise I don't see this happening, unless they add another aircraft to their fleet.

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    2. They seem to have scheduled one flight less to Split and Dubrovnik each this summer so my guess ZAD/BWK aircraft could come from there.

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    3. Yeah and that's Saturday (Split) and Dubrovnik (Sunday). Could be...

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    4. it is the only possible solution. Extension of Brac airport will reduce some pressure on SPU of course. Reduction in numbers @ SPU will be easily compensate.

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  6. Great news for Zadar/Brac, I'm sure these flights will be packed during summer!

    Greetings from Dubrovnik!

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  7. Although I would personally not like to see Air Serbia in Nis, I simply can not figure out how come would Brac-Belgrade be more profitable, than having them flying ATR from Nis to Vienna 2 times a week. It´s obvious that something is wrong with the management of that company, and that it is not the lack of turbo props in the fleet! #nationalcarrier

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    1. Because their strategy is to have a single hub. Having a plane based in Nis you would have to have crew based there, pay for their accommodation, you would have to have your own ground staff in Nis, at least one technician, you would have to have some form of catering available too. The cost would just grow. If you were to fly BEG-VIE-INI-VIE-BEG the ATR would be out of action for most of the day.

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    2. Flying out of Nis proved to be a failure in the past. They can't match the prices people are willing to pay.

      The only way INI could happen is if it is launched from BEG so as to feed the airline's network.

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    3. Because their aim and philosophy is to funnel all the flights through Belgrade. Another words, make Belgrade the >only< hub in Balkans. Croatia has tourists from all over the world. It is quite logical they want some new faces from Europe, USA and the Far east to introduce them to Air Serbia and BEG, than to serve same old gastarbeiter folks who would come to Serbia or use Air Serbia this way or another. That's longterm strategy, versus immediate profit.

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    4. So what if you have BEG-VIE-INI-VIE-BEG and to occupied plane for all day? You would have it occupied if you do it BEG-VIE-BEG-BNX-BEG. Same time. Isn't it normal to have plane occupied? That is core of air business, isn't it?

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    5. But Air Serbia does not fly BEG-VIE-BEG-BNX... The plane should be occupied but it should be occupied on a route that brings it more revenue or better feed to its network.

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    6. If you read the text carefully you will notice that they are talking about the Croatian tourism board supporting these flights financially. So the risk of operating this service seasonally with some form of subsidies is minimal compared to Nis.

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    7. For sure that route will not be subsidies from Croatian tourist board. It is not according to rules of CTB "zajedničko oglašavanje".

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  8. I hope they do fly the route more than once per week. Anyway it would be a nice addition to the network if it starts.

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  9. The Zadar-Brač leg would probably be one of the most scenic and beautiful flights in the world.

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    1. True. BTW How long would Zadar-Brac approximately take?

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    2. I'm guesstimating not more than 25 mins

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    3. could they sell tickets on the ZAD-BWK leg?

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    4. No because its an intra-EU flight operated by a non-EU carrier. They could only if they got special permission like Jat Airways did a few years ago to fly Portoroz-Rome but never took up the offer. And I doubt Croatia would give that sort of permission. They attempted to stop them flying to Zagreb.

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  10. Great news. Hope it happens.

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  11. "partly because of the cancellation of financial support on behalf of the Croatian Tourist Board"

    So it means that it is highly likely these flights will be susidized.

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    1. I think they might have the same issue this year too. The tourist board doesn't have the money to finance Ryanair Zadar flights either let alone Air Serbia.

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    2. I don't understand why the tourist boards still subsidize foreign airlines in Croatian coasts (apart from the off-season). Coastal cities are so packed with tourists that their infrastructure barely handle the load. All bed capacity is sold, prices double, triple. And it is not because of subsidized airlines, tourists reach these destinations mainly by land road. Yet, these geniuses spend millions relentlessly and seek for more!

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    3. Think its mostly Zadar with the subsidies

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    4. Croatian Government does not give subsidies unless they're part of the agreement to provide essential service to local community. So far only Trade Air and Croatian Airlines revive some subsidies. Both airlines receive around 30-40 million kuna in total, Osijek, Brac, Zadar and Rijeka flights are all subsidized during off-season. Only Croatian or EU based airline that operates with in Croatia can receive subsidies.

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    5. The Croatian tourist board and Croatian airports offer a number os incentives to various airlines.

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    6. Not true.

      1. Trade air and Croatia gets 12 million EUR per year (not 6 million like you mention).

      2. Lot of companies are subsided by Croatian tourist board, not just Croatia and Trade air. Don't mix PSO and subsidies.

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    7. Naprimer AirTransat dobiva ogromne pare da leti za ZAG kroz organizaciju pri ministarstvu za turizam koja se nalazi u konzulatu u Misisagi i koja je ogromnim parama uspjela i da pokrene yyz-zag.Znaci nije tačno da se ne daju pare.

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    8. Naprimer AirTransat dobiva ogromne pare da leti za ZAG kroz organizaciju pri ministarstvu za turizam koja se nalazi u konzulatu u Misisagi i koja je ogromnim parama uspjela i da pokrene yyz-zag.Znaci nije tačno da se ne daju pare.

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    9. Ako je tako kao sto tvrdis, onda ce placati i letove za JFK? A mozda placaju i EK. Mislis li da je tako?

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    10. @AnonymousJanuary 18, 2017 at 2:40 PM

      My bad, confused PSO with what you guys were talking.

      Yes some airports do give subsidies and incentives.

      I think AirTransat gets around $5 per passenger, this was first year, no idea if they'll be getting same treatment this year.

      Initially first year airports do give some reductions in fees, for Zagreb airport this was $3 per passenger.

      So AirTransat received at least $56000 for their first year, which equates to around $2800 per flight.

      But think this is only applied for first year, no idea if this goes beyond...


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    11. Alen Šćuric PurgerJanuary 18, 2017 at 11:27 PM

      Hot Line that is not true. It is lie.

      Air Transat gets discounts in ZAG like every new company, but nothing else. Croatia CAN NOT DO THAT! It is illegal in EU.

      I checked and that is not true what you wrote.

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    12. No it's not illegal in the EU, ZAG concessionaire can provide incentives to TS and EK.

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    13. Alen Šćuric PurgerJanuary 19, 2017 at 8:41 AM

      I said they have some discounts. They also can get some subsidies form Croatian Tourist Board and Zagreb tourist board which they did not get by financial plans of those institutions.

      But this "under table" deal which someone mention here is impossible.

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  12. Air Serbia needs more regional aircraft and they need them fast.

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    1. JU has no cash for new planes unfortunately

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    2. Get rid of the loss making A330 route, invest in regional fleet expansion then when you have the adequate feeding numbers re-start the A330 game. A330 is superb but mst be in the air 7 days per week!

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    3. Getting rid of A330 would mark the end of Air Serbia as they have no long term future without long haul. The opposite is true: Air Serbia should have planned for more agressive expansion with at least 2-3 A330, financially supported by both stakeholders.

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    4. One shareholder has no money even for education and hospitals.

      Second shareholder is on edge on bankruptcy and try to pule out of European acquisition.

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    5. "Second shareholder is on edge on bankruptcy"

      hahahahahahah

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    6. Nooo, it is not, but they want to pule out of Air Berlin, Alitalia, Darwin and Virgin Australia, Hogan will be sucked, they will ask 3.000 workers to leave... They are in best possible shape.

      And even if they are, they don't want to spend any money on any company, Air Serbia included.

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  13. Is Brać considered an international airport... so are they considering Zadar - Brać triangle to get around this?

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    1. Brac is an international airport but I do think it would be logical to fly this as a triangle route.

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    2. @ Q400 it's Brač, not Brać.

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  14. If they start these flights they will be flying to pretty much every commercial airport in Croatia. Only Rijeka and Mali losinj left lol

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    Replies
    1. haha true but you forgot osijek ;)

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  15. More good news for Zadar if this happens. I think 2 p/w would be enough to start off this. They should consider Dubrovnik year-round.

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    Replies
    1. Zadar needs other carriers besides Ryan

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    2. Well it is getting them :) easy jet starting flights this summer. Zadar has been doing relatively well actually. But I agree you should always watch you back with Ryan. Osijek is a good example.

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    3. Alen Šćuric PurgerJanuary 18, 2017 at 2:48 PM

      All year Dubrovnik has no sense concerning fact that Tivat is so near.

      But all year, 3 flights pw with ATR to Split make all the sense in world. Airport has much more potential for winter flights.

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  16. I wonder how many passengers Air Serbia handled between SRB-HR in 2016

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    1. and what are their ZAG loads like.

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    2. Vice versa, what are the OU loads between SRB-HR for 2016 as well. It would be interesting to see how these are affected by JU's SPU service.

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    3. @Zagreb Air Serbia had 48000pax both ways, in Croatia overall, they had ~106000 pax.

      90% Serbians who visit Croatia do so with Air Serbia. Croatia had 110 000 Serbian visitors in 2016, and they generated ~600 000 nights and spent $66 million in Croatia.

      Hopefully that number improves a bit in coming years. Say double would be nice, 220 000 visitors from Serbia and 140 million spending.


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  17. Still waiting for Beograd _ Pristina not with Air Serbia but with a ,neutral, airline (anyway with code sharing with Air Serbia). Any chance for this from end of March or end of October 2017?

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    1. I doubt it. This still has to be negotiated at the Brussels talks. And they probably won't resume for months. Pitty really.

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    2. Until they change the name of the airport there shouldn't be any flights between the two cities.

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    3. Yeah I don't we will see planes flying this route soon. Trains can't get through at the moment

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    4. I would rather see CAI or AMM than PRN truth be told, there is a whole world beyond the Balkans.

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    5. Daily train service between Kraljevo and Kosovo runs normally each day. Left Kraljevo this morning actually.

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    6. BEG to AMM and CAI on an ATR? No thank you.

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    7. Last anon,

      What a miserable attempt at being funny. PRN was never supposed to be an Atr destination but one with B733. Flight time was scheduled as 45 minutes.

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    8. imho, there is too garbage in relations for those flights to start. first airport bears the name of terorist/freedom fighter (depends on which side are you on), then there's the matter if JU starts flying it will have to respect certain rules set by kosovo civil directorate, de facto recognizing kosovo institutions (which is too much to take for any serbian government), also i believe there is a big security issue

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    9. If I were a crew member I would be afraid to operate the route. Also I am sure insurance would go up just like when EK sends its planes into Afghanistan.

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    10. Remember that OU crew also dislikes flying into PRN.

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    11. They disliked (route has been suspended) because the layover was extremely short and basically a waste of time (and sleep).

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    12. Sure, let's go with that.

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    13. About PRN airport name, well, Serbs also don't like the (new) name of ZAG airport, but still are flying there. We all know that airport name is not a problem.

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    14. You can't compare the two names. Also naming ZAG Tudjman did not go without controversies in Croatia.

      They should have done what the Serbs, Hungarians and Poles did.

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  18. I think we might get more info on Air Serbia's network plans during the Belgrade Tourism Fair which is in late February. That's when they usually make some announcement. Last year they started ticket sales to the US on that day, released schedule and so on.

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  19. Is this the first time that Brač was mentioned on this blog ? :)

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    Replies
    1. there was news about new routes and I remember a few articles about the runway extension.

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    2. I think JU to Brac rumor is traditional, we read once a year how likely Brac is to conclude a deal with JU.

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  20. There is TOO much mulling done at ASL on various fronts but the output is relatively insignificant. IKA needs to be #1 focus for expansion ASAP.

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    1. They seem to be all over the place and they throw destinations left and right. In the end all we will get is a weekly glorified charter funded by the Croatian Tourism board.

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    2. They serve 40 destinations on 3 continents.

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    3. I think we can say they serve 43 because Almaty, Baku and Tehran are about to be announced.

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    4. I think we can also add Chicago, Beijing and I heard more recently possible flights to Johannesburg? That's 46 total. Amazing expansion for JU.

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    5. Not funny really.

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    6. Let's not forget the possibility of introducing flights to MEX via JFK as proposed by our minister of transport.

      Also, they dropped the idea of JU flying to China, they gave the privilege to the Chinese .

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    7. Really - I missed the MEX discussion - thank you. Total 46 still if we take out china

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    8. You missed it because this site never reported it.

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    9. Yeah it was all over the media when she said it. A true gem.

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    10. A source for your outlandish claim, perhaps?

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    11. http://www.telegraf.rs/vesti/politika/1900309-produzeni-let-zorana-produzava-liniju-za-ameriku-do-meksika

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    12. Thanks last anon... I hope anon 12.16 was satisfied with the read since he didn't miss an opportunity to attack and belittle others.

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  21. JU recorded worse results on all Croatian Adriatic routes during S16 compared to S15. Therefore they cut one frequency weekly to DBV and PUY for S17. This Summer competition will be even tougher.

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    1. Do you have any evidence to support that. Cutting one weekly flight could be associated with allocating capacity for a new service, like this one for example. But it would be nice if you provided some numbers.

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    2. It's true, I heard the same thing. JU was affected by both TK and A3.

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  22. How much, but how much is it possible to fly to Croatia?? Is there anything at all at the East of Serbia? Romania, a country of 23 million with a growing economy is barely served by a single city. Yet, the only Croatian destination that should be year-round DBV is not served in winter.

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    1. Or Targu Mures which is a city with a booming economy. That's where the IT sector is expanding now.

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    2. Targu Mures was recently closed due to runway structure issues.

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    3. It will be re opened eventually

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  23. Ima nekoliko destinacija gde bi taj ATR mogao vise koristi doneti kao npr ODS ili INN koji bi imali vise koristi ili ima i Rumunija. Mislim da se trebaju letovi uvoditi izvan EX YU .
    INN-S

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  24. Opet neki pricaju o Rumuniji kao da Rumuni dolaze u Srbiju. Nikakvo presedanje ne moze da se takmici sa LCCovima koji lete direktno na svaki manji aerodrom u Italiji.

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    1. +1

      Slazem se. Ja nemam vremena pa ako mozes ti molim te napisi mejl OS, LH, LO... da obustave letove posto ocito nisu primetili da lete prazni i da gube pare.

      Unapred hvala

      Srdacno

      Covek sa mozgom

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    2. or TK in CLJ.

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    3. aerologic & inn-ns are nailing it with their strategic views in the last couple of days

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    4. Views shared by many airlines around the world.

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    5. What makes you think Brac makes more sense than Cluj or Ankara?

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    6. good luck with a ATR service to Ankara

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    7. Who mentioned the ATR? It's not even mentioned as the plane that will be used for Brac.

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    8. It is. "Introducing services from Belgrade is a high priority for them with an ATR 72-500 aircraft".

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    9. They are just being polite. If it was such a high priority for them it wouldn't be a one weekly, triangular flight. lol

      Even Ohrid is higher for them.

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    10. Also, that statement ws not made by JU but by the airport. Read more carefully.

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    11. Who said Ankara should be served by ATR? It's one of the high-profile destinations completely ignored in ASL's network.

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    12. Who said it would be one weekly or trianular?

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    13. Ankara high profile? Five airlines fly to Ankara. Only european based airlines flying there is Luthansa and Germania.

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    14. So listen to this. When you tell them they should fly there because it's a popular destination, they say it's madness cause there are other European airlines and LCC flying there. When you give them an example of a large undeserved airport, they tell you "there is no European airline flying there"? So what's the sense? By the way Ukraine International is also an European airline.

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    15. Kad se uzme taj primer leti ovaj, onaj ili niko na taj Aerodrom kakve veze to ima .
      A kao sto sam gore napisao moze se boje iskoristiti na liniji za ODS , INN ili za neke nove destinaciji u Rumuniji.
      A takodje ima jos precih linija za Bliski Istok pa cak i Afriku i treba se gledati izvan Ex Yu regije za sada je dovoljno letova .
      INN-NS

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  25. According to Anon 1:41 the LF on ZAG route was nearly 50% in 2016. It's a very poor result for the "best" airline in SEE. Isn't it?

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    1. false, it is 70%

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    2. If they had 48000 pax, and the available seats were 96360, than LF was slightly less than 50%. (BEG-ZAG twice daily with ATR). I like this JU supporters on this blog claiming every disputable route had 70% LF. Is 70% a desirable figure for JU? Dream to be fulfilled?

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    3. According to JU reports LF on BEG-ZAG route in 2016 was 57,5%. It would have been higher for sure if JU had not used A330 on many flights to Zagreb in June. The same route had higher LF by 3% in 2015.

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    4. And there were more than 60.000 passengers to and from Zagreb in 2016, 48.000 is false figure.

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    5. Anon 9:59

      Even if it was 60.000 instead of 48.000 pax it's 60% LF, far from 70% claimed by Anon 9:07.

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    6. Equally as far from the figure given by the original poster.

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    7. 60.000 passengers is correct and exact figure, not fabricated.

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    8. I think the number would have been higher if JU kept it's regional night flights throughout the winter.There are days when only AUH departs at around midnight.

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