Air Serbia will charge passengers flying with the lowest economy class fares out of Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport thirty euros unless they check-in online starting June 1 for tickets purchased from April 21 onwards. The measure comes as the airline looks to cut costs and evolve its business model. Passengers booking flights on Air Serbia for travel from June 1 in economy subclasses T, E, U and V (lowest or reduced fares) will have to check-in online to avoid the charge. This will not apply for passengers from any other airport in the airline's network or those connecting on flights through Belgrade (unless they purchased their ticket with a stopover service). Passengers flying in the remaining economy subclasses L, Q, M, K, H, B, Y (more expensive fares), as well as business class can continue checking-in at Belgrade Airport free of charge. Additional charges for airport check-in are mostly limited to low cost or hybrid carriers. In a circular e-mail to travel agents and tour operators, the airline stressed that no fees will apply to any passenger checking-in online up to sixty minutes prior to their flight.
|Fare type and check-in fees (click to enlarge)|
The airline's switch to Sabre sales, check-in and boarding system over the weekend also allows for passengers to personalise their journey while booking their ticket or later through Air Serbia's website. They include: preferred seat selection, the purchase of additional baggage prior to their flight, mobile boarding passes and premium lounge passes for economy class passengers available for a forty euro fee.
Commenting on the changes, Air Serbia's CEO, Dane Kondić, said, "The upgrade to Sabre was a tremendously complex operation which took more than a year to plan and involved hundreds of staff who worked to install, configure and test the new software this weekend. Our team was ably assisted by experts from Etihad Airways and Sabre, who worked round-the-clock to make sure the software, was implemented on time and with minimum disruption to our guests". He added, "Moving to Sabre has equipped Air Serbia with a cutting-edge platform that will allow us to better meet the needs of modern air travellers, who are increasingly looking for ways to tailor their journeys according to their requirements. Next month we will celebrate the 90th anniversary since the national airline of Serbia was established, back in 1927, and as this project demonstrates, we are committed to securing our long-term future”.