Belgrade - Toronto flights expected in 2019


Services between Serbia and Canada are expected to resume next year with both sides working on the introduction of flights between Belgrade and Toronto. The Serbian Minister for Construction, Transport and Infrastructure, Zorana Mihajlović, and the Canadian Ambassador to Serbia, Kati Csaba, met recently to discuss the future flights. "I would be delighted to see a nonstop service between Belgrade and Toronto, and we are ready to support this initiative whichever way we can. Air Serbia has postponed its plans the launch nonstop flights until 2019, due to various factors. Once these plans go ahead, I think it will significantly contribute to business and tourism cooperation. With the large Serbian diaspora in Canada, there should be lots of potential passengers", Ms Csaba said earlier.

In a statement, the Canadian Embassy in Belgrade confirmed there were no longer any bureaucratic obstacles for the resumption of flights between the two countries. "The Air Transport Agreement between Canada and Serbia was signed on May 21, 2018. However, the Agreement has been in administrative effect since 2006. The Agreement regulates the provision of air service between Canada and Serbia by designated airlines. We believe this is an important step in facilitating business, tourism and people-to-people contacts between our two countries", the Embassy said. Ms Csaba noted, "People of Serbian origin have been migrating to Canada for decades, so the Serbian diaspora includes second and third generation Canadians, as well as recent arrivals. According to our most recent census in 2016, there are almost 100.000 ethnic Serbs in Canada".

Late last year, Air Serbia noted, "We are working on a complete analysis and we are seriously considering all aspects. A final decision on the potential introduction of a new transcontinental service will be made in the coming period. It is a complex project which takes several months and does not depend solely on us, but also on regulatory authorities since all procedures must be harmonised with the laws and regulations of the country we fly to". At the time, the two countries had still not put into effect their bilateral Air Transport Agreement. Flights between Serbia and Canada were last operated a decade ago by leisure carrier Skyservice, which has since gone bankrupt. During the 1970s and 1980s, JAT Yugoslav Airlines maintained services from Belgrade to Toronto and Montreal. Belgrade Airport recently said it hopes "to soon make announcements regarding the introduction of nonstop services to several unserved destinations", among which it cited a point in Canada.

Comments

  1. It all sounds like Air Serbia will be starting the flights, but we will see. Can Air Serbia make NYC and Toronto work with 1 plane?

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    1. Yes they can with lets say 3+2 schedule or 4+2

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    2. But they have been flying New York 6 weekly this summer so I don't think they will be reducing JFK.

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    3. What would they do with 2 A330s? Fly daily both JFK and another destination?

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    4. You can easily do daily with a 2 hour rotation either way. Use 2 aircraft for 5-6x NYC and 3-4x YTO. Then on the other days potentially rotate the aircraft to other destinations. Or...
      Mon BEG-YTO-BEG
      Tue BEG-SHA
      Wed SHA-BEG
      Thu BEG-YTO-BEG
      Fri BEG-YTO-BEG
      Sat BEG-SHA
      Sun SHA-BEG

      If timing works better they could beg-yto-beg-sha all in one day and fly back the next day.

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  2. That's obviously very good news, but this sure means either JFK frequency reduction of the arrival of the second A332 YU-ARB because with 1 sole aircraft it would definitely be a challenge.
    Maybe they can lease a 787 fom Norwegian or borrow a Jet Airways one, who are in extreme financial problems...

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    1. If they take a second widebody, it would be logical to stick with A330 due to costs.

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    2. There is a rumor that JU will take 2 B737-700s from Jet for next summer but don't know if it's true.

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    3. Transferred to Aviolet?

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    4. Yep. That's what I heard. It would make sense seeing as they retired 2 B737-300s (then brought back one but will return it to retirement after summer).

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    5. I am so glad that JU is finally thinking charter. They can expand more horizons next year: Jordan, Spain, Portugal.
      Or they can base another aircraft in BNX and operate more charter flights.

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    6. @anon 09:38

      Do you have any official information or link saying YU-ANI will be again retired after summer season?

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    7. The 787 that has issues and causes Norwegian to constantly wet lease in order to avoid cancellations?

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  3. Good because of another great destination is to be reached direct from Belgrade, but in some way it's bad to see how many Serbians live abroad because of bad situation in Serbia (at least in the past, I hope things are getting better). Well I suppose this applies to all Balkan countries. Maybe the least diaspora abroad has Slovenia.

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    1. Slovenia had quite large diaspora in Cleveland Ohio and Argentina. On the other hand there is quite large Serbian and Macedonian diaspora in Slovenia.

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  4. Does Air Canada codeshare on any flights to BEG?

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    1. Yes, Lufthansa from Frankfurt and Munich
      AC 9436/9437
      AC 9166/9167
      AC 9840/9481

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    2. Great, thanks :)

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  5. Wow so ASL is indeed flying to YYZ in 2019, that's great!!!!
    Meanwhile LO just announced flights to MIA next summer!! Is there a market for BEG-MIA?

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    1. No, main markets in US besides New York are Chicago, LA and Washington.

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    2. LAS could be tried after MIA!

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    3. Las Vegas baby!

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    4. Nah, don't think there is a market for BEG-LAS, BEG-LAX or BEG-SFO, definitely yes.

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  6. The major issue with YYZ from BEG is seasonality, which is much greater than on US routes.

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    1. Business links between Canada to South East Europe are constantly growing. Just like in USA.

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  7. May or June launch would be the most logical, the only question is 2nd plane coming or not.

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  8. They announced New York in November for launch in June so maybe we can expect an announcement soon?

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    1. But they only started selling tickets in February.

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  9. Yields to YYZ could probably be better than to JFK.

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    1. JFK razbija ove godine. Šteta za tri zimska meseca, ali od proleća do zime su letovi iz Beograda za Njujork i obrnuto odlično popunjeni. Biće vremenom i zima bolja.

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    2. Nije bitno koliko je let pun vec koliko para pravi.

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    3. Sama cinjenica da je JFK povecan na 6 puta nedeljno znaci da se i finansijski rezultat poboljsao, odnosno preciznije da se izrazim, da se gubitak smanjio.
      Ne sumnjam da ce, uzimajuci u obzir povecanje broja putnika kao i zavidni cargo na ovoj liniji, vrlo skoro JFK poceti da donosi profit.
      Slican proces razvoja linije ce morati da prodje i YYZ.

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  10. I hope this materializes. It would be fantastic to be linked with Canada in addition to USA and China.

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  11. Good news. It will benefit the Serbian diaspora.

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  12. If it is JU, then they need to get second longhaul plane

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  13. Well they keep dragging their feet. In the end I think Rouge will launch these flights seasonally.

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    1. Rouge announces its summer 2019 timetable at the end of this month, so we will see soon enough.

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    2. I think something similar to the flights in Zagreb could be sustained. One or twice per week, seasonally with a leisure airline

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    3. Agree. Two weekly AC Rouge onboard the B763 could work especially when you factor in the feed, not only to Canada but to the U.S. as well.

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    4. I could very much see Rouge starting these flights. They also serve the major destinations in the region like Athens and Budapest and are adding more and more B767s.

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    5. An. 9. 31
      Once or twice per week seasonally by one leisure airline is far from being similar to ZAG because ZAG has 6 weekly flights with two airlines

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    6. By similar to Zagreb I was referring to the flight being operated by a leisure airline on a seasonal basis, not the frequency. No need to get your knickers in a twist.

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    7. According to bilateral between Serbia and Canada only Air Canada and Air Serbia can fly between these two countries.
      Now, I wonder if Air Canada Rouge is considered as Air Canada?

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    8. S obzirom da je takav medjudržavni sporazum sa Kanadom, pretpostavljam da će za Toronto leteti Air Serbia. Sumnjam da bi tu liniju održavala Air Canada, a i sumnjam da bi dozvolili da leti Rouge, a ne i Transat. Nema logike. Očigledno je da će leteti JU.

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    9. Rouge je samo marketinski brend. Kompanija je Er Kanada. Svi letovi Rouge imaju denominaciju AC. Dakle, DA, Rouge moze leteti po sporazumu koji daje pravo letenja samo Er Kanadi i Er Srbiji. Transat ne moze, to je potpuno druga kompanija koja nije predvidjena sporazumom

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    10. Nedavno sam putovao YYZ-LIS sa AC Rouge i moram reci da cu probati da ih izbjegavam kad god mogu u buducnosti. Air Transat je puno bolji po mom misljenje, usluga, avioni, hrana, legroom itd itd

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    11. And Air Transat is known for small legroom...

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    12. Air Canada Rouge is part of Air Canada, so yes it is part of Air Canada anon at 12:38.

      Air Canada R could fly and serve Belgrade, question is, will they? Not sure, but Air Transat seems more realistic option. How many Canadian and US visitors to Serbia, anyone got that date ?

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  14. Nadao sam se da ce letovi krenuti sa zimskim redom letenja da im A330 ne zuji 5 dana parkiran,al dobro,znaju valjda sta rade. Ako letovi krecu na prolece to znaci da mozemo ocekivati i dolazak drugog sirokotrupca pre leta.

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    1. Ako krenu u ovu aventuru, to znaci najranije krajem letnje sezone 2019. Pre od toga bi bilo cisto ludilo.

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    2. Saznacemo veoma brzo kskvi su im planovi,mislim da ce objaviti letove kad Vansi preuzme Teslu,da uvelicaju ceremoniju :)

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    3. Ako i kada preuzmu aerodrom.

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    4. "Ako i kada"? Još uvek postoje nade u negativan ishod?

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  15. If JU launches Toronto next year I doubt it will only be Toronto. They will probably launch several other new routes like they did when New York was launched. If I remember correctly they launched 6 routes that summer.

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  16. Did Sky service used to fly from Toronto to Belgrade via Dublin or was it nonstop?

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    1. Via Dublin for technical reasons. The B757 could not make the journey nonstop.

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    2. 757 via Dublin

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    3. How many flights per week were there?

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    4. I think it was once per week.

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  17. A market they could get quite a lot of feed from is Macedonia. That is if they offer some competitive prices and good connections.

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    1. It would be hard to compete against the likes of Austrian and Turkish in Macedonia.

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  18. Well I don't see why JU should not start this route. They posted 17 million profit in 2017 anyway so they are obviously doing well financially :D :D

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    1. Yes, another transatlantic route will only enhance the "profitability" of the company!

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  19. A codeshare with Air Canada would be very beneficial and would guarantee more passengers.

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    1. Highly doubt AC would consider codesharing with JU since they already have a codeshare to Belgrade with their star alliance partner Lufthansa.

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    2. That's true however they have interline with JU for 3 years now. This is by far the best and cheapest option for YYZ-BEG pax and you can also checkin 2 bags. Somw peopleIknow used it for DBV, SJJ, SPU (probably not a lot but...)

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  20. NY is performing great during the summer, so they would need an additional plane. However, they will stuck in winter with two planes and I think they are postponing the hole idea due to this reason. I expect them to postpone it even further, unless they find some way to deploy planes during the winter and the additional one during the summer (because they cannot fly 6 times a week to Canada). Probably they will go with 2-3 routes once they decide for this next gigantic step (for them).

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    1. They should open destinations in Asia.

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  21. This never gets old :D
    https://www.njuz.net/er-srbija-dala-ime-novom-avionu-za-kanadu/

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  22. I wonder if there would be any chance of securing rights to do BEG-YYZ-ORD-BEG?

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    1. They would never get sale rights for YYZ-ORD.

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    2. True. Canada would not allow it. They are very protective of their skies and national airline. From a US perspective, under the bilateral agreement, JU actually has the right to fly to a third country from the US.

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  23. Regardless of Toronto, their usage of widebodies must become far more efficient during the winter.

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    1. But what else can they do with the A330 in winter? What do you suggest?

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    2. Long haul charters.

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    3. Probably nothing, but they could a. have more flights 15/12-15/1, b. have some charter rotations for holiday destinations, c. schedule plane servicing during February and November.

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  24. A second long haul route for Air Serbia will significantly increase costs. Apart from leasing a second plane, any long-haul expansion should be followed with the strengthening of the regional network. That will also mean that they would have to expand the regional fleet. So it will be an expensive exercise.

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    1. With smart planning and aircraft utilization, the route could turn a profit in a year or two. They have much more experience now after JFK.

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  25. Do the majority of Serbs in Canada live in Toronto area?

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    1. Yes, by far the most in Toronto. Then Vancouver and then Edmonton.

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    2. City | Population | Serbian population (2016)
      Toronto | 2,731,571 | 25,160
      Vancouver | 631,486 | 7,690
      Edmonton | 932,546 | 3,420
      Calgary | 1,239,220 | 3,205
      Windsor | 217,188 | 2,875
      Montreal | 1,704,694 | 2,225
      Ottawa | 933,596 | 1,800

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    3. Excellent. Thank you!

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    4. These are very conservative estimates based on the firs language question on the latest census. There is a lot of what we call old imigration who naturally consider English as their first language. Some of them still have very strong ties to homeland, especially older ones

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    5. @SM in this case I prefer those conservative estimates because people from "old immigration" are less likely to travel to Serbia. I live in Canada so I know such people, they really don't care about Serbia that much

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    6. That's true and that's why I said SOME of them. However, you'd be surprised how often some of them go beck and forth. If we are assessing the realistic market, the number is probably somewhere in the middle

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  26. They really need to join an alliance if they want more North America flyers and destinations.

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    1. They are in an alliance - Etihad Partners!

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    2. I meant one of the mainstream alliances. Oneworld maybe?

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    3. Hopefully Star Alliance but they will probably go with Sky Team.

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    4. It is not Air Serbia to choose an alliance- the members of that alliance need to agrre and invite JU. Since JP and OU are covering ex-yu for Star, and Qatar is a member of OneWorld. The only option might be SkyTeam, if Tarom accepts.

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  27. "The Serbian Minister for Construction, Transport and Infrastructure, Zorana Mihajlović, has said that flights from Belgrade to a second destination in China and a city in Canada will be announced later this year."

    She said this two months ago. Fingers crossed we hear some announcements soon.

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    1. And both Shanghai and Toronto will be announced this year.

      Vucic goes to Beijing this month after Chinese bought RTB Bor for $1 billion last week. That's when flights to Shanghai are expected to be announced.

      Toronto probably in November/December.

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    2. Wow that would be fantastic :)

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    3. Shanghai by JU?

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  28. Ove letnje sezone za Njujork lete 6 puta nedeljno i letovi su prepuni. Ako ne uzmu još jedan širokotrupac dogodine, moraće da lete 4 puta za Njujork i 2 puta za Toronto. Sa još jednim avionom morali bi pored Toronta da otvore i Čikago, kako bi uz Njujork održavali dovoljno konekcija nedeljno i ti avioni bili dovoljno uposleni. Zima je problem, tako da je možda najbolje da prvo krenu sa jednim avionom za Njujork i Toronto, pa kasnije da dodaju i Čikago sa novim širokotrupcem.

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  29. Interestingly it took 8 months from when the ASA was signed between Serbia and the US until flights were announced between two countries.

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    1. By that logic they will announce YYZ in December :D

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    2. Vec sam napisao gore,verovatno ce objaviti Toronto kad Vansi preuzme Teslu,da uvelicaju ceremoniju :)

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    3. Vansi nece preuzeti aerodrom pre 1 januara.

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    4. Nije Vansi nego Vensi, po pravilima srpske transkripcije.

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  30. Less talk more action :)

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  31. Maybe they will fly BEG/NYC/YYZ/NYC/BEG or BEG/YYZ/NYC/BEG

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  32. biggest problem for NYC flights - airplane itself is taken care of, now that they have ARA

    regulatory problems shouldn't be so much of an issue, since they already jumped over hurdles put in front of them by TSA (US transportation security administration)

    however, if they didn't launch it by now themselves, that means that most likely it wouldn't improve profitability, which means that government would possibly need to cough up some more money, most likely on account of this tourism development, a subsidy which they hid in yearly reporting by lowering OPEX

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    1. Even if the countries in EU use certain funds to sponsor their airlines I do not see why it would be the problem with JU.

      We have the case in Croatia that so called "udruzeno oglasavanje" gives cash money to foreign airlines to start flying to Croatia (minister announces proudly how it will be doubled next year) and we have EU funds that financially sponsor navigation updates of OU's Q400 and it all happens in the country where financial help to its aircarrier is forbidden.

      And why on Earth would it be surprise now GoS to cough up the money for the product that wouldn't maybe bring direct, but surely indirect financial benefit through the tourism, cargo business and many other aspects?

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    2. what indirect benefit? city breakers for 10hr flight as vučić suggested?

      also, croatia is paying for flights of tourists willing to spend money on their coast. serbian and albanian diaspora will not spend much money in belgrade. more likely is that serbian tourist will burn cash in NYC

      money losing stuff, this is

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    3. Don't be so harsch Petar, majority of this forum believe that BEG-JFK flights are successful, Air Serbia is profitable and everything goes brilliant. Be quiet please :)

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    4. @anon 16:09
      Nobody believes it, except maybe you.

      @Petar
      It become more than absurd each half legal move from western neigbours to be justified (EK flies to the ZAG that is...on the coast?) and same / similar attempts in Serbia to be attacked. I suppose it speaks more about the person who makes such comments.

      Indirect benefits throught tourism, cargo, connecting flights loads, country's presentation / image, diaspora connections, economy ties, huge advantage comparing to other regional carriers etc are simply "meaningless".

      But, why do I explain it to the people who don't want to hear / read about it?

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    5. Of course there are benefits. This is pretty obvious. BUT, why would a (economically oriented) company care about connecting the diaspora to its homeland? Why would a (economically oriented) company want to carry the name of its homeland abroad for prestige? RIGHT, because it is NOT an economically oriented company, but one serving politicians to achieve their goals, i,e for example to get votes. If this was a privately run company Vucic could cetrainly not force it to open routes with no economic benefit to the company itself. In that sense it is a means to achieve other things.

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    6. Dakle sledece godine mozemo ocekivati pojacavanje JFK i novi let za YYZ.
      Pored ogovga gotovo ocekujte u ovom trenutku nerelano ali gotovo sigurno CAI, GEV, KBP i vrlo verovatno vracanje IST.
      Pored ovoga ocekujte da Vueling pojaca BCN na celogodisnju liniju kao i ekpanziju Easy jeta.

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    7. why would a (economically oriented) company care about connecting the diaspora to its homeland?

      Ask Wizz why they connected Tuzla and Nis only with diaspora locations. They didnt offer Ibiza ;)
      Same for LOT, their long haul was based for a long time on diaspora strongholds in YYZ, ORD and JFK. So dont pretend you are smart just because you hate Air Serbia.

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    8. @16:25

      tourism: as i explained, it more benefits new york than belgrade, thus increasing the outflow of cash from serbia.

      cargo: it is included in profitability of the route , which is negative. therefore it is not indirect effect, but already taken into account in the money loosing calculus.

      connecting flight loads: are you familiar with the logic that pricing is such that you make money on longhaul, not on connecting shorthaul flight, where you either lose or brek-even? sorry but no money there. and yes, that effect is already in the calculus and is not indirect effect.

      economic ties: no US investments here so far. only thing they bought are some IT companies, which are because of the owners personal connections, not thanks to JFK. today wilbur ross visited belgrade, so maybe something will happen (btw he didn't use YU-ARA for his flight).
      for diaspora - sorry, but they do not invest or spend much money.

      it would make sense, if there were americans, which are premium tourist group, visiting serbia, like in china/iran arrangements, but that is not the case.
      also, the story that was sold that american businessman would come to serbia and invest. it didn't happen.

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    9. So, I was hoping you understood from the beginning that I was talking about Canada, not USA. This article is about Canada.

      We concluded that Croats offer direct financial motivation not only to the airlines flying to the coast but also to the airlines flying to ZAG, but somehow you intentionally missed to confirm it.

      Talking about foreign tourists, you will much easier attract them if you offer them direct link to your country. Demand needs to be created and direct air link is one of the ways how it can be done. So, there is no argument in your obsession that only Serbians fly to N.America

      There is no route that is profitable from whole beginning and YYZ is not going to be as well, but cargo will surely contribute profitability to be reached much sooner.

      Of course that connecting flights earn less money that TATL! One more reason YYZ to be opened and developed and it will be done by support of connecting flights. Do you really think that it is much better to have empty seat on for example SOF-BEG and BEG-YYZ than to earn money on BEG-YYZ even if you have zero profit on SOF-BEG? In that aspect connecting flights are very important although not so profitable.

      If you have year round connection to Canada it is big benefit for big diaspora who will visit mother land more often and contribute financially even more than foreign tourists. But after I saw your statement that diaspora is spending no big money I am afraid I need to stop this correspondence. It is simply pointless to explain anything further.


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    10. You do know that Zagreb is no 1 tourist destination in Croatia by number of tourist and that even have 10% more tourists than Dubrovnik (2nd).

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    11. Anon @19:47
      That's unusually reasonable and down to Earth thinking on the forum, thank you. I am afraid Petar and many of his buddies have the same mindset stuck in negative preconceived notion when it comes to JFK route. They fall for the same narrative instead of having an open mind and researching the topic before jumping to conclusions. That lazy thinking is obvious in his comments. For example, he thinks TSA was the hurdle, when there were many others and more serious challenges along the way; he doesn't know "city breaks" term is nonexistent in the N.American tourism; he does not know most JU500/501 passengers and sales originate in the US, not Serbia; he has no clue about cumulative economic impact and spending habits of N.American diaspora in Serbia etc. None of the above prevents him from attacking JFK route. Sad attitude for a budding entrepreneur.

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    12. @Petar 15:57

      Surely you're well aware of the economic situation in Serbia to know that the average person can only dream of travelling to New York to "burn money." Air Serbia didn't launch that flight to JFK with travellers from Serbia in mind, because very few have the money for that. Most of the people flying from BEG to JFK are probably only going to "visit family" (and you know perfectly well why I use those quotation marks)

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    13. @Petar Čelik, 17:14 The main reason why the number of American companies is presently relatively low in Serbia, with many pulling out or giving up from investing further is that US judicial system is serious in prosecuting corruption. If you catch my drift. France and Israel, on the other hand...

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    14. Who exactly pulled out or gave up on investing?

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  33. What happened to the Friday promotional offers from JU? Did they stop them? In previous years they have had a big sale in early to mid September if I recall correctly?

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  34. You guys are all delusional!
    1) they said resume in winter months ergo they will fly only in winter
    2) they will not add aditional bird
    3) if you think this is a hood news you are crazy! This will just like JFK be a money loosing route!
    4) air serbia is now a stable company and their Europe business is doing well - why destroying that with no sence flights !?!?

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