Macedonia delays airline subsidy decision


The Macedonian Ministry for Transport and Communications, which was today to unveil which airlines have applied for financial support for the launch of new routes out of the country, has pushed back the decision without any further explanation. The public opening of the bids was due to occur at midday. The incentives are to be provided to the winning airline between 2019 and 2021. The Ministry annulled a previous tender held this summer after it received only one bid, believed to be from Wizz Air. It said the bidder did not clearly write its name and address on the submitted envelop as outlined in the tender documentation. Carriers had a month to apply for the latest round of incentives.

Ryanair and easyJet are also said to have shown interest in benefiting from the subsidy scheme. The head of the Macedonian Civil Aviation Agency, Goran Jandreoski, said recently, "The Ministry for Transport and Communications has adopted a decree that is aimed at attracting low cost airlines. It is not just Wizz Air, there is also interest from Ryanair and easyJet. The Agency is always at hand to provide support so everyone can enjoy the benefits of low cost travel for a long time to come. Wizz Air did not accidently station four aircraft at our airport". In 2015 Ryanair confirmed it would introduce flights to the Macedonian capital and noted it was negotiating with the government over a range of routes. Wizz Air quickly followed with the announcement of several new services to Skopje from Ryanair bases. Ultimately, Europe's busiest budget carrier shelved its plans to enter the Macedonian market. On the other hand, easyJet has said it is unfazed by Wizz Air's expansion on the Macedonian market and will only launch flights to the country if there is sufficient demand.

The selected airline must establish and/or maintain a base with at least one aircraft in Skopje or Ohrid by January 10, 2019 at the latest for the duration of the financial support program. Furthermore, the carrier in question must launch at least two new routes from Skopje by January 10 and four new routes from Ohrid, the first two in January 2019 and the rest within a year of being granted state support. The newly launched routes from Skopje and Ohrid cannot be served from the other airport and cannot have been served over the past two seasons. In addition, every new destination introduced at Macedonia's two international airports must be run at least twice per week throughout the year. Applicants are free to introduce additional new services, with the Ministry noting that the winner will be chosen based on the number of new destinations proposed. If two carriers commit to the same number of routes, the winner will be determined based on the number of frequencies. The financial support includes a one-time payment of 40.000 euros for each new route launched, as well as nine euros per passengers for each new destination from Skopje for the first year, eight euros during the second year and seven during the third. On the other hand, the carrier will receive thirteen euros per passenger during the first year of operations on a new route out of Ohrid, twelve during the second and eleven euros per traveller in the third year. A similar policy was enforced on two previous occasions, in 2012 and 2015, with Wizz Air being the sole beneficiary.

Comments

  1. Wizz Air is going to win. No doubt about it.

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    1. Of course it will win. No airline can plan the opening of a base in 3 months in a country they don't even operate too.

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  2. Is there any hint how many applied?

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    1. None so far. We will know at 12.

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    2. Probably because we all knew the outcome the second they announced the tender :D

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    3. If they want Wizz to get the subsidies, the annulment of the first tender remains a mystery for me.

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  3. Good news. I hope we finally see another airline using these subsidies.

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    1. Fingers crossed we get easy or Ryan or Norwegian :)

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  4. I don't understand why the government doesn't allow another major LCC, even to compete on the same routes as Wizz. It would benefit us passengers.

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    1. Yes. Macedonian government should sponsor someone like Ryanair to come to Skopje. That way we might have a fight between two LCCs land passenger numbers would explode while more and more routes would be offered.

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    2. im not sure our market is big enough for that with the exception of D, CH and maybe Scandi

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    3. That would be fine as well. Wizz Air is getting increasingly expensive.

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    4. expensive especially on their german routes

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    5. I doubt Wizz will tolerate more additional competition.

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  5. Well you can count FR out they have their problems, and W6 is moving its focus away from our part of Europe so the real question is who is left?

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    1. Well one applied last time, so there will be at least one interested :)

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    2. And that one is W6.

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  6. The best scenario for Skopje would be competition between Wizz and Ryan. Passenger growth would be huge.

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    1. Unfortunately I doubt we could have a repeat of what happened in Sofia in Skopje.

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  7. I have some feeling that this time might be some other airline instead of WizzAir

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    1. Hope so. We will know in a couple of hours.

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    2. It would be funny if it is someone completely unexpected like Germania :D

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    3. There are many other options. Norwegian, Vueling, Eurowings...

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    4. Transavia too.

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    5. I highly doubt any of these airlines are prepared to base an aircraft in Macedonia by next January which is the requirement of the tender. It' s gonna be same old Wizz.

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    6. none of them. shame Blue air is out of competition because of pax number

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    7. Exactly. Neither Ryan or easy jet open new bases in the middle of winter ahead of the dead season with 2 planes in a country they never operated in.

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    8. The tender is open to legacy airlines too, not necessarily just LCCs.

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    9. Yes because it's realistic that a legacy will open a base in a foreign country at such short notice.

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  8. Not so certain it will be Wizz this time. They are suspending many routes out of Eastern Europe this winter.

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    1. No, Wizz Air je u posljednjih tri mjeseca zatvorio velik broj linija po svojim europskim bazama. Tako u Bucharestu ima 5 linija manje nego prošle godine, u Katowicama 1, u Poznanu 3, Sofiji 1, Varni 1 i Varšavi 4. Ono što još više brine je što Wizz Air zatvara baze diljem Europe. Tako je u posljednjih par mjeseci zatvorio čak 4 baze u Pragu i Brnu (Češka), Lublinu (Poljska), Turgu Muresu (Rumunjska), dok će u ožujku (martu) 2019. zatvoriti bazu u Poznanu (Poljska), a u svibnju (maju) i Košice (Slovačka), Treba biti pošten i reći, da je uz ta ogromna rezanja, u nekim bazama imao ekspanziju i to: Budimpešta (povećanje za 3 linije), Chisinau (5), Craiova (1), Debrecin (7), Gdansk (3), Iasi (1), Kutaisi (1), Kijevu (3), London Lutonu (6), Rigi (1). U regiji Wizz Air ove zime smanjuje 4 linije u Tuzli, 2 u Skopju, te po jednu u Beogradu, Ohridu i Nišu. Uzmemo li da Wizz Air ima naručenih 268 aviona (uz 104 postojeća) jasno se postavlja pitanje zašto Wizz Air ima tako velike rezove po svojim bazama?

      Odgovor treba tražiti u Beču. Naime, Wizz Air je jedan od tri igrača koji su od srpnja (juna) krenuli sa ekspanzijom u Beču. U igri su uz Lufthansin Eurowings, te novopridošli Britishev Level i Ryanair koji je kupio Laudamotion. No, Wizz Airova bečka ekspanzija je veća od ostala dva nova igrača. Najveći do ove ekspanzije desit će se ovog studenog (novembra). Wizz otvara 21 novu liniju iz Beča u idućih 6 mjeseci. Jednostavno, Wizz Airov rast flote nije dostatan za planiranu ekspanziju, pa kompanija reže po svojim ostalim bazama kako bi prikupila dovoljno aviona za bečku ekspanziju.

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    2. bec pa bev. zaboravili ste da se Wizz obavezao na jedan novi aircraft u SKP i jedan u OHD (prema ponistenom tenderu od pred 2 meseci). videcemo danas

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    3. Ništa ja nisam zaboravio. Ja samo konstatiram zašto Wizz zatvara baze i u nekima reže linije i frekvencije. I da će ekspanzija izvan Beča u idućih par mjeseci biti bitno skromnija nego prethodnih godina.

      Jel ovo dovoljno novaca da svoje bitno manje kapacitete za ekspanziju prebace na Skopje, ostaje za vidjeti.

      Nitko ne zna je li Wizz bio taj koji se javio na natječaj. Pa ne možemo ni sa sigurnošću reći da se onda na nešto obvezao, zar ne?

      Što ako je sve to dogovoreno i izrežirano? Bilo bi nevjerojatno za ove prostore? Nije nevjerojatno da su imali neki deal pa su "za svaki slučaj" podnijeli molbu (ako se još netko javi), a onda, gle čuda, baš na koverti su napisali krivu adresu. I to baš na koverti. Jal koverta je "jako bitna" za natječaj, a i "teško ju je zamijeniti" (namjerno i naknadno?). Pa eto, za svaki slučaj bili su voljni uletjeti, ali im više odgovori da sa novim natječajem imaju manju obvezu (jedan avion umjesto dva i to uz dalje prolongiranje - što kasnije to lakše jer dolaze novi avioni, a glavna bečka ekspanzija je u studenom/novembru).

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    4. Визика гаси линију у Нишу али исто тако успоставља нову тако да су на нули, без промене.

      Ако се не варам, Ларнака ће бити сезонска а та два лета се преусмеравају на неке друге градове, ваљда Ајндховен и још негде.

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  9. It's time for Easy Jet to let go of its stubbornness and start flights.

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    1. another political stunt :D

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    2. what does easy have to do with politics?

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  10. Seems like the tender is suited for Wizz Air and that they will get the subsidies for a third time.

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  11. The subsidies are not too big but it will lead to new routes which is good.

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  12. It's great that they are including Ohrid too.

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    1. Agree. I like that OHD will be getting some new year round traffic from these subsidies.

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    2. I'm actually happy that both are included. Not just one or the other.

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  13. Well at least it will be good to see 5 Wizz planes departing in the morning rush hour :D

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  14. Wizz Air needs some competition.

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  15. A the same time I hope TAV management will work on bringing more legacies: Lufthansa, Air France, SAS...

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    1. SAS has announced its summer schedule for next year. No changes, upgrades or new routes to ex-Yu.

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    2. Has Air France ever flown to Skopje?

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  16. Great. I'm happy that we will see the benefits of this tender very soon.

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  17. Can't wait to see which routes will be launched.

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    1. I'm also wonsering to see which routes could be introduced that can be viable.

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  18. And what would happen if the government stopped giving these subsidies?

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    1. Currently none of the routes operated by Wizz are subsidized and as far as I can see they re still flying. So nothing would happen.

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  19. How about Wizz Air gets a Macedonian AOC.

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    1. Do they have any other AOC except British and Hungarian?

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    2. its not their priority i guess. Turkey and Swiss are the biggest market tho

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    3. @9.40 No. They used to have one in Ukraine "WU" but they shut it down in 2013.

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    4. * 2015 sorry

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    5. It's a shame because that way they could open flights to non-Eu markets from Macedonia like Russia and Israel.

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    6. i think that should be their strategy for aircratft nr.6: Turkey, Swi, Rus, Ukr, Isr, Srb there lots of opportunities

      just imagine a cheap shuttle SKP-BEG

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    7. Intra ex-Yu flights would be amazing. They would completely destroy the competition and offer low fares these routes (considering their short distance) should have..

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  20. Shame on you Macedonia for not setting up a national airline.. subsidies.. what a joke

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    1. well our ex-yu fellows are very successful with it as we see.

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    2. What was the last state funded airline in Macedonia? As far as I remember MAT was actually privately owned.

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    3. The joke's on you mate =))

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    4. It’s just too bad the country does not have a national airline. Also it’s not easy to travel from the U.S. to SKP and take wizz.. if those subsidies didn’t exist do you think these airlines would stick around?

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  21. With all these new routes Macedonian airports will be pushing towards 3 million passengers next year.

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  22. If Wizz wins, their passenger share in Macedonia will climb to 70%.

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    1. There is little room to expand for anyone else. Wizz Air has completely conquered the market.

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  23. the government didn't want Wizz Air to win the last tender and that's why they made it void. I hope we will see more choice from SKP and OHD soon.

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  24. What's the point of the tender under these conditions? Just give it to Wizz Air.

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    1. Unless that government talks directly to airlines I doubt we will see anyone other than Wizz Air apply again.

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  25. Great news for Macedonia, whoever wins.

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  26. And what happens if no one applies?

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    1. No one gets subsidies...

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    2. In that case they would probably repeat the concession and change some of the terms.

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  27. Wizz Air needs competition ! hopefully its EasyJet or Norwegian

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  28. August tourist stats in MK:

    1. TUR, 2.SRB, 3.POL, 4.NED, 5.ROM, 6.BUL, 7.GER, 8.GRE, 9.CRO, 10.ITA, 11.Australia, 12.USA, 13.SLO, 14.ALB, 15.BEL

    have to note the increase of Croatian tourists was 95%, and first time ever a small decline of turkish tourists (fall of turkish lira)

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    1. Is there potential for Croatia Airlines relaunching Split-Skopje. A few years ago they started the route seasonally but it barely lasted two weeks before it was cancelled. Maybe with a bit more marketing it could work.

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    2. fares were austronomic back then unlike now where OU has very competitive prices. If they strike a deal with the tourist agencies here in MK for their Makarska packages why not.

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    3. Well it is interesting that OU has obviously seen good growth on its Skopje flights since it's in the top 5 airlines based on market share as we could see from the article a couple of days ago.

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  29. Any update on who applied?

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  30. So if Wizz Air wins the tender, we will be up to 5 aircraft in Skopje. Which Wizz base has the most aircraft outside of London and Budapest?

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    1. Bucurest, Sofia

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    2. on 31/3/2108 number of planes per country:
      25 Poland
      21 Romania
      12 Hungary
      8 Bulgaria
      4 Lithuania
      4 Macedonia
      3 UK

      Vienna will have 5 planes in November, but I thing till April they will have 6 planes there.

      Bucharest has 10 Wizz planes
      Warsaw 8 planes
      Sofia 7 planes

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    3. Interesting. I thought they had more planes in the UK.

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  31. I'm not sure why but this is very weird, no news about this has been posted in any of the portals in Macedonia. Admin, are you sure today was the day for this?

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    1. Today is the day. It's even written in the tender documents that they announce who applied today.

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    2. Yes it was supposed to be today but decision delayed. Maybe again the government is not happy with outcome?

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    3. Is it official that the decision is delayed?

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    4. Actually it could be a good thing. Maybe someone requested a bit more time.

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    5. no there is no info ..... they didnt look into the envelopes yet if there are any

      the minister was in another city today

      drama continues!!!

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  32. This is becoming like a latin american soap opera.

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  33. They will probably do it on Monday.

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  34. This is all turning out very odd. First they annul one tender, then they miss to open bids for the other. On the ministry transport website it clearly says in tender rules that they will announce who bid today from 12.00. But it will be interesting now to see outcome of this.

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    1. Sugareski couldn't be bothered to show up :D

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    2. he made two announcements this afternoon ^^

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  35. could it be there was nobody interested?

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    1. Most likely, I think they are overestimating the size of the local market. Reality is kicking in.

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    2. bojim se da te nisam nista pitao

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  36. Najpametnije je da finansiski povecaju place uposlenika navigacije koji bi stvorili uslove za dalnji uspjeh svih aviokompanija koji lete za Makedoniju, to bi bilo fer za sve aviokompanije.

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    1. Dosta veke ti so tvoite gluposti.
      I taka najgolema plata zemate I uste ne ste srekni

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  37. The government is delaying the decision until the up front 10% cut shows up in the envelopes alongside the application :))))

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  38. Za letove do aerodroma Ohrid ne treba subvencije ko hoce da leti neka ide za Aerodrom Skoplje ili Beograd,pa oni rade za turiste i hoce da zacuvaju cistu i kvalitetnu zivotnu sredinu zasticenih podrucja od vise medzunarodnih institucija.

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    1. Uste eden bolen mozok
      Prvo toj so platite za Sk
      Vtoro ovoj so Ohrid

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    2. A da si kupea novi motori za avionot da ne se rasipuvaat vo nevreme , jas bev vo avion koga ne strese grom nad Srbija i sletavme vo Ohrid na aerodromo a trebase vo Skopje, sega imam popust za 5 naredni letovi od wizz ako im e saglam aviono mozda ke odam pak, od Mogila sum a ziveam vo Bitola.

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    3. Kolku za informacija prosecnata starosna granica na avionite na Wizz e 4,5 godini... a ti od Mogila drug pat odi so avtobus ako ne ti se sviga so letas za 100evra... Od takvi kako tebe pati i drzavata i site, neblagodarni sustestva!

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  39. Da ne se falis mnogu staro e 4,5 godini vo Mogila ima i nov avtobus samo dva meseci star proizveden vo Makedonija edinstven van-hool Belgija za turisti,plus i bojata pouba e.

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    Replies
    1. Леле муабетов =)))))))))))))))

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