Belgrade Airport secures new winter flights


Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport has secured a number of new flights for the upcoming winter season with Etihad Airways and AlMasria Universal Airlines becoming the latest to announce additional services to the Serbian capital. The national carrier of the United Arab Emirates will maintain double daily flights between Abu Dhabi and Belgrade during the busy holiday season, between December 20 and January 13, up from the daily service it operated last winter. It comes after the airline ran twelve weekly rotations between the two cities over the peak summer months.

Egypt's AlMasria Universal Airlines, which has been operating two weekly flights between the holiday resort town of Hurghada and Belgrade with its Airbus A330-200 aircraft throughout the summer, has upgraded the service to year-round operations. It will become the second carrier to maintain services between the two cities throughout the year, with Egypt Air's subsidiary Air Cairo also operating on the route. AlMasria will run two weekly rotations from Hurghada to Belgrade this winter. Last week, the Egyptian Ambassador to Serbia, Amr al Jowaily, said the number of Serbian nationals visiting Egypt increased 60% this year, with 90% of all travellers heading to the Red Sea resort. Earlier this year Mr al Jowaily said the two countries were working on the resumption of flights between Cairo and Belgrade.

Austrian Airlines, Aeroflot, Belavia, easyJet, LOT, Norwegian Air Shuttle, TAROM and Transavia will all introduce additional frequencies this winter when compared to last. Aeroflot will add a third daily service to Belgrade for a total of 21 weekly flights, LOT Polish Airlines will boost operations, from daily last winter, to ten weekly starting October 28, while Belavia will maintain its third weekly service from Minsk to Belgrade launched this summer (two via Budapest and one nonstop). Austrian Airlines and TAROM will introduce an extra weekly service to the Serbian capital for a total of nineteen from Vienna and nine flights per week from Bucharest. Iran Air has filed its scheduled from Tehran for the winter, with the airline to operate two weekly flights. Air Serbia will increase its frequencies to Zurich with an additional three weekly services for a total of seventeen, add an extra weekly rotation to Stockholm for a total of four per week and upgrade its seasonal Larnaca service to year-round operations.

Low cost airlines will also be adding frequencies. easyJet will maintain all three of its routes to Belgrade - Geneva, Basel and Berlin - on a year-round basis, with the latter two to be operated for the first time. Furthermore, Transavia will run five weekly services between Amsterdam and Belgrade for the entire season, whereas additional flights were introduced last winter from February onwards. Norwegian Air Shuttle plans to boost its frequencies from Oslo to Belgrade from two to three per week, while it will also maintain its Stockholm service throughout the winter with one weekly flight. Wizz Air, which will downgrade its Belgrade - Larnaca route from year round to seasonal summer operations will compensate by adding additional frequencies on its existing services. On the other hand, Flydubai will decrease its flight offering from daily to five weekly.

EX-YU Aviation News will publish all winter network changes for the former Yugoslavia's capital city airports, as well as national airlines, over the coming month.

Comments

  1. Nice to see Etihad going double daily, even during a short period. But wouldn't it be wiser just to send an A330 instead of having two flights?

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    1. It depends if they have a spare A330 available to sit at the airport. The turnaround time for that flights is over 7 hours.

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    2. wow that's a long turnaround time for a relatively short flight in their network. Why don't they just operate a flight on behalf of JU while they are there?

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    3. They need the second flight for connectivity. That said, their flight two days ago was overbooked so its a shame they don't upgrade Belgrade on a year round basis.

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    4. It’s the same strategy as Qatar in ZAG, increase frequency instead of capacity to better meet the needs of as many transfer pax as possible. I think this is much better than sending a widebody, for airline, pax and the airport.

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    5. frequency is better for passenger than capacity...not only you get more flights during a day and week, but also smaller planes save time for passengers at airports.

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    6. I hope Etihad starts sending A321 like Qatar

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    7. Hope we finally get Emirates instead of FlyDubai

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    8. Good to see Etihad doing a bit more in BEG then usual.

      I notice that there 1pm flight today has been moved to 1AM? I know it's because of the incident at BEG this morning but can't they operate the return earlier? Get the plane from Timisoara to BEG?

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    9. Probably crew duty times have been exceeded and they have to find and dispatch crew to Timisioara to bring the plane to BEG and operate the return to Abu Dhabi.

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    10. @Anon12.14, 1.50AM to be precise.

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  2. Fascinating!!! No wonder the airport expects six million.

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  3. So Hurghada will actually be 4 weekly in winter. Interesting. Time to get that scheduled flight to Cairo running.

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    1. Hurghada is not equal to Cairo.

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    2. There is just no demand between Belgrade and Cairo at the moment. And to have it just for sake of offering cheap transfers to Egyptian travelers - no thanks :)

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  4. Pretty much every single foreign airline is either boosting frequencies or capacity. For example Aegean will be flying all flights with A320 equipment, Austrian will also no longer fly turboprops to BEG.

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    1. Plus OS has upgraded many of its flights to A319/320 this winter.

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    2. Nemjee, do you think Laudamotion will launch flights from Vienna to Belgrade next spring? On the Ryanair website, there was an announcment that they made a large aircraft order. I also checked that it seems they ordered morning slots in Sofia but still no 100% sure sources.
      Maybe they will inherit the former Niki flights. The good old days.

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    3. I think it would make sense for them to launch Belgrade especially since Wizz launched VIE INI making BTS INI obsolete.

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    4. Yes, that is why Austrian is increasing to fend off the possible competition. Since WIZZ and LAUDA have gone into TLV from VIE they have increased TLV from VIE to 3 daily. Stratigic positioning.

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    5. There is also increasing demand. BEG VIE grew quite a bit this year. Since JU didn't add flights it had to be Austrian. Then again feel sorry for all those flying on OS long haul. They just suspended the second meal and replaced it with a muffin.

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    6. This would be great. We need low cost alternative to Vienna. Good OS is upgrading to jets. JU might be squeezed frim Vienna in coming period.

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    7. JU does well, they are mostly full because they have really convenient times.

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    8. @Nemjee 9:32, you said you do not have any BEG numbers. Would you please send us the pax development ex BEG as you did in yesterdays ZAD post for ZAG! Thanks.

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    9. I have Belgrade paired up with other EU cities. I would need to check each country separately. I will post some tonight once i am back at home.

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    10. OMG...OS seem to be struggling. I think they will be hit really hard because I am expecting LEVEL to launch long-haul flights as they seem to be doing well in Vienna. They had huge success in BCN and CDG. They literally kicked AR out of BCN and stole the BCN-EZE route!
      I love the IAG Group, they are smart and quick. Also neat product.

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    11. @Nemjee
      JU flights are convenient for people going to do business from Belgrade to Vienna and return the same day?

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    12. Actually Level does quite badly in Vienna but they are still a completely new airline there. They fly mostly half empty planes and you can buy tickets a day before departure for some 40 EUR. They also confirmed many times they will not fly long haul from Vienna, at least not for quite a while.

      And truth be told, OS is very successful in Vienna adding a lot of capacity and selling even more seats than they have added. Also I dont recall ever getting a second proper meal on OS long haul to North America. Second meal was always just some snack in Economy.

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    13. any idea how W6 is doing in VIE?

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    14. LEVEL started selling 2 weeks before their launch. They are doing amazingly well for that reason. OS is filling its planes, but losing so much money. Wizz is doing really well. the question is who will withstand who...

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    15. The OS CEO predicts a fatigue within 3 years after the boom, after all Austria has a population of 8 million only, this is not Poland, France or Germany you see. Also Wizz are agressively stationing more A321s to increase capacity and be very price competitive. I think BUD will no longer be their most important base.
      Now the new ones bringing them cash is Luton and apparently Vienna.
      Who would´ve thought that W6 can fly routes like: VIE-MAD, VIE-LIS, VIE-KEF, VIE-TFS even!
      Of course INI will be priveleged too with the new Airbus 321.

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    16. Level sold 100,000 Tickets from VIE at 1 Cent Price. And they still fly half empty, but probably also because many of the 1 Cent Ticket owners are No Shows. However that shows you they are- at least now- not doing amazingly well at all.

      Oh and btw I have now checked about a dozen different dates during winter season for BEG VIE on Amadeus and I can tell you that on each day I checked there are at least 1 turboprop Dash flight by Austrian, mostly more than 1 per day. What makes you guys think OS is not using props anymore on that short sector?

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    17. OS have always sent their Dash since decades to BEG.

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    18. It is funny how that short flight to ZAG on OS is always more expensive than to BEG.

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    19. Last Anon, sad but crystal clear. To ZAG (which is even shorter) OS has zero competition, OS and OU are from S* and have a monopoly (oligopoly) together (surely price rigging in place). To BEG you have 2x daily JU so that is a clear competitor which is bringing the fares down.

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    20. Vienna airport has a catchment area of 14.3 mill people (official stat from LOWW), this does not include Incoming tourists, nor business pax. Thing is, that VIE is perfectly positioned to serve 4 countries: 7 out of 9 Austrian states, almost whole of Slovakia, the whole Western part of Hungary (till BUD), the South and SE of Czechia as well as a good chunk of Slovenia which is proven by quite some Slovenian car number plates there - 2,5hrs by car from MBX.

      No wonder that W6 does well there (decided to develop/invest there compared to BEG and other even smaller Eastern European airports) and that LCC competition for OS is badly needed after disppearance of AB and HG.

      I also wonder when will there be flights to SPU (summer and winter) and OMO...

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    21. It is supply and demand that drive prices not the distance or flight time

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    22. Not if an oligopoly is ripping off customers. That is a distortion of the market.

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  5. Will AlMasria continue operating A330 to BEG this winter?

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    1. I don't think there will be the need for a widebody during winter but who knows, maybe around New Year.

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  6. With all those increases and capacities, I wonder if Wizz will station at least one A321 and launch it on the busier routes to Sweden and Germany. It's been ages that they haven't touched Belgrade. This is simply unbelievable.

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    1. They have been focusing mostly on their operations in western Europe lately.

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    2. With easy jet becoming more present in BEG and now going after one of Wizz's routes, I think they will start paying more attention and make some changes.

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    3. I hope they launch ORY next.

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    4. I really hope Wizz Air will diversify its offer from BEG soon. They have been stagnating mostly.

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    5. I think connecting Belgrade with Lisbon or Malaga will be very wise move.

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  7. Aeroflot jumping from two to three daily is quite impressive - and in winter!

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    1. They have completely destroyed Air Serbia on this route.

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    2. I believe JU will simply exit Moscow.

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    3. Of course they won't.

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    4. JU and SU codeshare on each others' flights.

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    5. SU is increasing significantly in the Balkans this winter. LJU will finally be linked to Moskva.
      10 weekly flights to Bulgaria is also crazy. Not to mention how Pobeda is expanding rapidly too.

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    6. Moscow route is a good example how politics could intervene and help a national airline. Government of Serbia could negotiate this for JU. Russia is not an open market anyway.

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    7. So sad and true what you said An 10:05 :(
      Russia is trying to increase its dominance in Eastern Europe. Closer ties with Hungary, now investing in Serbia and Bulgaria. Only Macedonia is not friendly with Russia - no wonder why there is no flight from Moscow to Skopje. But this with Serbia is pure politics...

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    8. Hahaha sure it is. Like someone said yesterday everything with Belgrade airport is just "coincidence or politics" LOL. I always wonder how powerful Serbian politicians are, securing all these routes and frequency increases. No matter that Moscow is one of the busiest routes from/to Belgrade for years and that Russians don't need visas to enter Serbia or vice versa.

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    9. Coincidence? NO. But it is not always demand that drives flights or equipment. Like in the case of Mahan from Teheran, the reason was political and obviously not demand!

      Then it might be equipment/ change/ rotation/ strategy to fend off competition like for OS, which of course generates passengers, because prices go down / the wish to connect two countries with good relationships etc.

      The thing is, decisions of airlines are not always driven by demand, but because of certain decisions made can drive demand.

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    10. Of course it's all coincidence and politics. Forget about the fact that Mahan Air has been blacklisted by Americans and that Iran is again under sanctions. They were obviously flying empty A340s all summer to Belgrade. Iran Air has obviously just upgraded their flights to A330 (yes A330) because of no demand.

      All politics. They should build a monument to Vucic for getting Austrian Airlines, Aeroflot, Belavia, easyJet, LOT, Norwegian Air Shuttle, TAROM, Transavia, AlMasria, Etihad to increase frequencies. It was his negotiating skills with these airlines which forced them to willfully loose money and operate more flights to Belgrade.

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    11. Didn't you know there are no more powerful politicians than Serbians when it comes to securing new lines?

      Have a look...JFK political route, PEK political route, IKA political route, now even Moscow political route... Maybe we should export these politicians to the neighbours in order they could get some political routes as well?

      Or they are securing new routes from "udruzeno oglasavanje" (direct cash injection)?

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    12. OK lets move away from the word POLITICS. What I am saying is, that there are multiple reasons for an airline to consider flights or expand flights to a destination. LCCs have huge A/C orders which they need to fly somewhere. OS for example reacts to that knowing there is a HUGE chance Lauda or Level will start flights to BEG due to the big diaspora. To make it harder for them to enter they increase flights. It is not always purely demand driven, but in turn generates demand. Look at SOF how they gre with the arrival of LCCs.

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    13. 10 airlines increasing flights and/or expanding operations from BEG didn't happen by accident.

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    14. It's also true that the Brnabić adminstration did a lot for Belgrade and Niš...from the concession to the airport management. Belgrade has one of the most organised managements in the Balkans. The airport website is extremely user friendly. The airport is very easy to use and intuitive. The bus takes you to Slavia Square in no time, etc, etc, etc.

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    15. @Anon 11:43

      You're right, not by accident, just by bigger demand :)

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    16. JFK is political route and just simply that. Group of politicians considered it good for promotion of their country and themselves and keeps investing public money in that project. PEK is to the great extent political route, one company was advised by Chinese government to introduce this flights after request from the Serbian side. The company found the least onerous solution.
      Moscow - Belgrade route is not covered my any open sky agreement, it is governed by bilateral and our government should secure the better share for our national company, for example to secure equal number of weekly flights 14+14. At the end companies code share on this route and majority of passengers are Serbian citizens and tax payers.

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  8. Nice to see. I think winter will be very strong for BEG.

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  9. Finally Norwegian keeping Stockholm throughout the year. Good news.

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    1. But once a week? What is the point?!

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    2. Well it's an alternative to JU at least.

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    3. I hope they start Copenhagen next summer.

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    4. They flew from Copenhagen one season and it didn't work out. I think now it would be worse with JU in CPH and W6 in MMX.

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  10. Great work BEG. Nice to see so many legacy carriers introducing extra flights.

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  11. So is 6 million possible this year?

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    1. I don't think so, but 5.8 could be achieved.

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  12. Which flights will Wizz Air increase in favor of Larnaca?

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    1. Eindhoven is getting increased by one flight. There are others but not sure which ones.

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  13. Transavia must be doing well to keep 5 weekly.

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    1. They have great fares and offer an overall ok service for an LCC. Not surprised.

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    2. Plus HV provides connecting traffic for KL and DL as well (that flight has KL and DL numbers as well). Transavia has limitations in AMS with landing slots (that's the reason why KL is also in constant negotiation with government) which is why they are not expending even more.

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  14. This is amazing that BEG will have so busy winter. We hope to see RAM in Belgrade soon that will only enrich already excellent offer of flights from BEG.

    We shall maybe not see 6 million this year, but it won't be far from it.

    Vince will take over the airport starting from January next year and we could expect nothing but increasing of already fascinating air traffic in Serbian capital.

    It is especially encouraging seeing that JU will increase frequencies to ZRH and ARN as well as introducing LCA as year round destination.

    Let's not forget that for next year second Chinese destination is planned as well as YYZ flights from BEG.

    All these will only cement Belgrade's nr. 1 position among airports of ex Yugoslavia

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  15. Waiting for someone to say that all these increases are a result of politics or "pure coincidence" :D

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  16. one thing goes without saying, people of Serbia have more money to spend on vacations (even if Egypt is rather on the more affordable/cheap side) and it is a good sign for the whole region

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    1. Agree with you. Although Serbian economy is on yet on the strong feet there are many signs of recovery.
      At least nobody can say the routes to Egypt are political or emigration

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    2. The day is still young. There are many concerned onlookers who will tell you it's the result of politics or if all else fails "coincidence".

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  17. Nice to see Norwegian sending a MAX8 to BEG today. Also I expect some airlines to send larger aircraft to BEG this evening due to disruptions this morning.

    Congrats BEG on the winter growth. It will definitely be the strongest winter ever.

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    1. Politics strongest ever? Wow, lucky Serbia

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    2. Yep @anon 11.49 you are right. Turkish has already upgraded their evening flight to an A330-300. Although Norwegian was scheduled to fly the MAX 8 tonight, not related to this morning's events :)

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    3. @12.33 I think he was being sarcastic considering other comments on here.

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    4. Did TK receive permission to fly A330 to BEG?

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    5. Obviously they did. It's an outstanding issue, so they can pick up stranded passengers from the cancelled morning flights from Istanbul. Interestingly it seems neither Pegasus nor Atlasglobal who are flying between Istanbul and Belgrade had enough seats to accommodate TKs passengers.

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    6. No way politics has to to with that. It is BEG airport which forbid TK to use the A330. Politicians wanted it because of the demand but then BEG airport management said NO!

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    7. Why did they say no? Protecting JU or?

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    8. They are operating an A330-300 tonight instead of A320 as planned because of the in cident this morning.

      As for the rest of the story you have it here
      https://www.exyuaviation.com/2018/02/serbian-regulator-blocks-turkish-a330.html

      https://www.exyuaviation.com/2018/07/serbian-regulator-blocks-turkish.html

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    9. Yes the airport as an owner of JU wants to protect its investment in JU/EY. Thants why BEG airport said no to TK using their A330. Politics has nothing to do with that.

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    10. Airport is JU owner?

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    11. Yap he thinks Vansi will run JU.

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    12. The concession was designed and agreed for the sake of a strong and untouched ASL. TK is being limited capacity because it's a big shark.

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    13. Don't forget the government also blocked TKs request to operate ESB-BEG. Additional frequencies were turned down not because of JU but EY.

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    14. BEG and JU have the same majority shareholder - state.

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  18. Did I read this right Air Serbia is actually INCREASING flights?!?!?! Finally.

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    1. It's good to see them recovering. I think next summer we will see more growth from JU.

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  19. Good job BEG :)

    I'm particularly happy easy jet is keeping all of its flights.

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    1. easyJet will most likely open a base in BEG in 2020. This week they opened a base at their 5th Vinci airport.

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    2. I can't wait for the 20th September when they launch their U2 summer 2019 schedule. I think BEG-TXL will become daily and GVA 5 weekly.
      Something tells me INI will also see a German connection....

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  20. I just checked that there are EIGHTY SEVEN daily movements in Belgrade today. AMAZING!!!!!

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  21. Also should be noted that TK applied to operate 18 weekly flights to BEG this winter (+4) but they were not issued permits
    https://www.exyuaviation.com/2018/07/serbian-regulator-blocks-turkish.html

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    1. Again that Politics issue. If Serbian Politicians were that powerful..... Would be same as if they could stimulate demand to Iran by certain measures. hahah noo they are not that powerful.

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    2. Every opinion here is sometimes taken so personally.
      Serbia for political routes, Croatia for EK downgrade, Macedonia for its subsidies. The rest of the ex-Yu don't seem to complain that much...don't take things so seriously for Christ's sake, this is a forum and everyone should talk openly.

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  22. Back couple of years ago there was multiple people complaining about fairly toxic atmosphere in Air Serbia caused by then CEO's behavior. I'm wondering if those people with insight are seeing any changes with the new leadership in place?

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