The Ministry of Transport of the Russian Federation has granted Air Serbia approval to launch up to seven weekly flights between Belgrade and Krasnodar in the country's south. It comes following a permit request filed by the Serbian Civil Aviation Directorate with Russian authorities in January. In its request, the Serbian regulator noted, "Our designated airline, Air Serbia, has expressed its interest in establishing scheduled air services to Krasnodar with seven weekly frequencies". In its response, published yesterday, the Russian Ministry noted, "The Russian side is ready to give the administrative permission to Air Serbia to perform services from points in Serbia to Krasnodar with up to seven frequencies per week on a temporary basis until the next round of consultations between our aeronautical authorities. We hope to develop successful and mutually beneficial cooperation between our authorities".
Air Serbia currently codeshares on Aeroflot's flights between Moscow and Krasnodar, in addition to Kazan, Samara, Sochi and St. Petersburg. Last year, Air Serbia introduced flights to its second destination in Russia - St. Petersburg - which it currently serves three times per week on a seasonal summer basis. Due to the route's relative success, the airline also ran a number of flights during the winter. It carried some 12.000 passengers between the two cities over the year. Furthermore, Air Serbia also maintains services between Belgrade and Moscow. Krasnodar Airport is Russia's ninth busiest. Apart from Russian based airlines, European carriers serving the city include Austrian, Air Moldova and Belavia.
The Serbian carrier has previously announced it will be introducing four weekly flights to Venice this summer. It recently discontinued services to Istanbul and will no longer serve Warsaw, which it suspended at the start of the winter season. Furthermore, summer services to Varna and Kiev are unlikely to be resumed this year either. The 2017 summer season begins next Sunday. EX-YU Aviation News will bring you all the changes the national carriers in the former Yugoslavia will be making to their network's this summer over the coming week.