Belgrade among top unserved Shanghai routes


Belgrade was the eleventh busiest unserved route from Shanghai and the seventh busiest European market currently without flights to China's second largest city. According to the airline network and analysis portal "Anna Aero", some 35.390 passengers flew indirectly between Shanghai's Pudong Airport and Belgrade during the scrutinised period, from October 2017 until September 2018. Overall, Dusseldorf was the busiest unserved route from the Chinese city, followed by Manchester, Cairo, Penang, Sao Paulo, Venice, Athens, Hamburg, Berlin and Johannesburg. Behind the Serbian capital were the likes of Stuttgart, Santiago, Las Vegas and Casablanca. Despite efforts by the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade to lobby for the introduction of flights between Belgrade and Shanghai, the long haul service was never launched.

According to Sabre Airline Solutions, most of the traffic flow between China and Serbia over the past few years has originated from Shanghai. This is in part because the largest portion of Chinese nationals residing in Serbia have their origins in two provinces south of the Shanghai region. The majority of passengers on this route are currently handled by Aeroflot via Moscow, as well as Turkish Airlines and Qatar Airways through their respective hubs. During 2018, a total of 102.351 Chinese nationals visited Serbia, representing an increase of 98% on the year before. Numbers are projected to further grow in 2019, with January figures rising 19%.

Air Serbia has shown interest in launching operations to China. The Serbian carrier previously said, "China is not only important to the continued expansion of Air Serbia, but is also important to the development of Serbia and the Balkan region. We will reintroduce Belgrade as an affordable and convenient gateway to Europe, and build greater awareness of Air Serbia as the airline of choice to the Balkan Peninsula and Southeastern Europe for Chinese travellers". Hainan Airlines, which maintained flights from Beijing to Belgrade via Prague suspended the service last November after a little over a year of operations. In late 2016, China Eastern Airlines, which boasts a hub in Shanghai, held talks with the Chinese Embassy in Belgrade and the Serbian government over potential services to Belgrade, alongside Air China and Hainan Airlines.

Among Asia's top ten airports, which include Beijing, Tokyo Haneda, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Jakarta, Guangzhou, Singapore, Seoul, Bangkok and Delhi, no city from the former Yugoslavia made it into the top fifteen busiest unserved routes, with exception to the abovementioned Shanghai - Belgrade line.




Comments

  1. That's quite a lot of passengers. The route could work with very good loads twice per week year round.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Air Serbia should have started Shanghai.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. With what? :D

      Delete
    2. With an A330-200.

      Delete
    3. And how are they supposed to fly 6 times a week to NYC then?

      Delete
    4. They could have adjusted the schedule. Kept NY 3 times per week and Shanghai 2 times per week.

      Delete
    5. That would be crazy. The demand is much higher for NYC, especially in spring and summer. They could do China only with an additional plane

      Delete
    6. It would be stupid to decrease JFK for Shanghai.

      Delete
    7. Having 2/3 JFK and 2/3 PVG throughout the year would be a better utilisation of the aircraft.

      Delete
    8. They can start a second long haul route in winter since aircraft is used minimally for New York but then in 2020 summer they would need a second A330.

      Delete
  3. Shanghai is much more logical route to BEG then PEK.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There would definitely be more O&D traffic.

      Delete
    2. Or PVG-PEK-BEG twice per week.

      Delete
    3. The problem with PEK-BEG was that it was purely leisure (and not nonstop). PVG has more going for it.

      Delete
    4. Shanghai is also the business capital of China.

      Delete
    5. True. It works for business, Chinese locals living in Serbia, tourism and trade (cargo).

      Delete
  4. Time to change that! End SU's monopoly!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I hardly think SU has a monopoly. Middle East airlines are now offering the most competitive prices between BEG and China. I was looking at some fares to Shanghai a couple of days ago for this May and Qatar Airways was offering return tickets for 430 euros. Etihad was not far behind.

      Delete
    2. SU offers more generous baggage allowance and passengers are used to taking the SVO route. Also, there are more connections since they fly three daily to BEG and double daily to most Chinese cities.

      Delete
    3. Don't forget SU also code-share's with JU so there is even more flexibility which is great if there are delays and/or missed connections.

      Delete
  5. Would never have thought that. Very interesting.

    ReplyDelete
  6. This route has potential. It can be used by business people, expats and tourists. I'm also sure there would cargo traffic on this route.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Why did the government, embassy go after linking Beijing and Belgrade when the demand is obviously for Shanghai.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Because Beijing is the capital and the seat of the government.

      Delete
    2. Because that's what you get when bureaucrats get mixed up in aviation.

      Delete
    3. Or maybe because Hainan was willing to launch flights and they happen to be based in Beijing.

      Delete
  8. I would rather China Eastern start the route than Air Serbia.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Why? Have you flown with China Eastern? Have some experience to share here?

      Delete
    2. Purely because I think it would be another expensive experiment for Air Serbia. Ok, we see the passenger numbers are there, but I think the yields would be low with so much competition from Aeroflot and Middle Eastern airlines. Fares to China are dirt cheap. I was just looking at Belgrade-Hong Kong last night on Qatar and the fare was 470 euros.

      Delete
    3. ^^

      JU needs to change something with their A330. 1 aircraft and 1 destination doesnt seem to be doing them any good. Money is made in the peak summer months, then it slips into unprofitability as the aircraft doesnt get adequately utilised.

      However, with 1 or 2 extra A330's and 2-3 destinations might be enough to balance out utilisation of the aircraft, as well as boost loads on their short haul network. Growing trends from China and India, and current demand for YYZ could be a good combination.

      Peak summer, for example with 3 ac could see:
      - Daily JFK
      - 3-4 weekly PVG
      - 4 weekly YYZ
      - 3-4 weekly DEL

      In the above scenario, with winter maintence when demand and frequencies are lower, as we saw just recently where JU temporarily used an EY A330, JU would be using 2 A330 for something like, for example 3 weekly flights on 4 destinations, which matches JU's current utilisation during the peak months.

      Delete
    4. Instead of DEL I believe ORD would be much better for JU

      Delete
    5. DEL or a point in India might be good for connecting pax to boost loads on current and potential North American ops (YYZ) on top of growing O&D trends on both sides (India and North America) from Serbia.

      Besides, DEL is close enough to allow for JU to use the A330 on a short haul hop before another long haul roatation ie a charter flight (AYT) or a destination that has high demand (ZRH).

      Delete
  9. Interestingly Shanghai Airlines starts Shanghai-Budapest this June.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. What is the frequency? Is it a terminator service?

      Delete
    2. It's a terminator flight, three times per week - Wednesday, Friday and Sunday. It happened after a few years of negotiations and lobbying by the Hungarian government.

      Delete
    3. And it will be operated by the Dreamliner!

      Delete
    4. Shanghai Airlines is a subsidiary of China Eastern.

      Delete
    5. Budapest will be Shanghai Airlines' first European route.

      Delete
    6. Is that some sort of low-cost? Why they didn't fly with their own metal?

      Delete
    7. No it's not low cost. It used to be a separate company but was purchased by China Eastern. They have a substantial Asian and domestic network and they also fly to Australia.

      Delete
    8. Definitely not LCC. This is their business class on the Dreamliner
      https://www.aircraftinteriorsinternational.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/12/shanghai-787-first-class-1.png

      Delete
    9. Sorry I mean first class

      Delete
    10. Looks nice. Like Qatar Airways' Q suite business class.

      Delete
  10. One question, does anyone know where most Chinese tourists to Croatia and Slovenia come from? I am shocked not to see ZAG on the list since Croatia has much more tourism potential and it already has more tourists from China.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It shows that the majority of Chinese tourists don't come to Zagreb or Croatia by air but by bus from another European country.

      Delete
    2. Emirates, Qatar, Turkish and you will be surprised how much LOT brings Chines tourists and business passengers.

      Delete
  11. I would prefer JU focus on USA/Canada and leave this route to one of their Interline partners.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. because YYZ is long over due

      Delete
    2. YYZ alone wouldnt justify bringing in another A330, as we see with JFK. Which goes back to my above comment that JU should look into another 2-3 long haul destinations and spread out their aircraft utilisation over for example 3 A330's.

      Delete
  12. What's interesting is that the number of Chinese tourists to Serbia did not decrease when Hainan flights were cancelled.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Which shows that Hainan was flying empty to BEG.

      Delete
    2. Which shows that passengers did not like connection in PRG

      Delete
  13. Vinci should really target getting flights to Shanghai. Shanghai not only offers excellent transfer opportunities to other important Chinese domestic destinations, it also serves as a hub for people travelling to Japan, South Korea, other countries in Southeast Asia, and to Australia or New Zealand.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Crazy that there are no flights between Belgrade and Shanghai.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Šangaj ima 24 miliona stanovnika, kao jedna cela evropska država. Najveći je kineski grad i luka. Vize su ukinute i normalno je da se teži uspostavljanju letova.

    ReplyDelete
  16. How about showing a list of top unserved long haul destinations from Belgrade? That would be more relevant for starting a new route?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Or better to say...Is there any other destination from Belgrade that is "more unserved" than Shanghai?

      Delete
    2. Well it seems to be busier than US destinations (although these numbers are from a couple of years ago)
      https://www.exyuaviation.com/2015/11/strong-demand-for-belgrade-us-flights.html

      Delete
    3. Thank you. However these information are 3,5 years old, but they clearly show it is time for JU or any other Chinese carrier to start flying to PVG.

      It is for sure that it would not be profitable from the first flight but it would surely improve very much Air Serbia's European network through transfers to many existing and newly introduced JU routes.

      Delete
    4. Shanghai is a much bigger market than Belgrade so if BEG ended on the 7th European position it must mean demand is pretty high. After all there is a reason QR sends its A321 and SU increased BEG to 3 daily. I guess the market is maturing enough for Emirates to come.

      Delete
  17. Interesting about most Chinese being from two provinces near Shanghai. When did the current Chinese community settle in Serbia?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. In late 90s, that's when they start arriving

      Delete
    2. The biggest move was in late 90s early 2000 as above anon rightly says. Slobo abolished visas and many of them used it to escape to EU. That is why JAT started flights to Beijing in 1998. When Slobo was toppled the EU requested for the JU flights to be suspended and for visas to be reintroduced. During these migrations, naturally thousands of Chinese stayed in Serbia.

      Delete
    3. Thanks. Very interesting.

      Delete
    4. And to think now they can travel to Serbia without a visa and the EU has no problem with it.

      Delete
    5. Well it is a very different time now. China then and now are two different worlds.

      Delete
    6. Serbia bombed in 1999
      Serbia EU candidate in 2019

      Also two different worlds

      Delete
    7. I didn't say it wasn't. I was just saying that the fear of mass emigration from China to EU has significantly subsided for the EU to be worried about Serbia abolishing visas for Chinese.

      Delete
    8. Well China has massively reduced its poverty levels which led to increased consumption. EU companies are hoping to expand their presence in China so Brussels has to be more careful.

      Delete
  18. pročita ovakvu vest...
    napravi red letenja za Čikago, Toronto, Šangaj, Delhi, Rio i Jo'burg
    kupuje kilo farbe i četkicu...
    počinje da mala YU-ARB i YU-ARC po Etihadovim A332

    ReplyDelete
  19. Air Serbia has a huge potential here, because it also serves some of the other top unserved routes, and little bit advertising in China, and there you go: Shangai-BEG- Duseldorf/Hamburg/Cairo/Venice/Athens/Berlin and many others, so flights would be packed.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, the transfer options are quite good.

      Delete
  20. Uvodjenjem jos jednog sirokotrupnog aviona u saobracaj, Er Srbiji bi resila direktne letove izmedju Beograda sa Njujorkom, Cikagom, Torontom i Sangaja. A na ovim destinacijama je najpovoljniji potencijal putnickog i kargo saobracaja. Ova godina je pocetak preporoda razvoja aerodroma Srbije. Dali ce i Er Srbija doprineti tome sa jos jednim iznajmljenim A330-300. Bio bi to dobar potez. Sezona pocinje za par sedmica, kao nisam siguran da bi tako brzo dobili dozvolu za letenje do ovih gradova u skorije vreme...
    Za povecanje flote i linija odlucuju vlasnici Er Srbije. Komercijalna isplativost je na prvom mestu. Na drugom nada i zelja. Vreme ce biti svedok. ✈🌐✈
    Rodney. Kraljevo✈Sydney

    ReplyDelete
  21. "Among Asia's top ten airports, which include Beijing, Tokyo Haneda, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Jakarta, Guangzhou, Singapore, Seoul, Bangkok and Delhi, no city from the former Yugoslavia made it into the top fifteen busiest unserved routes, with exception to the abovementioned Shanghai - Belgrade line".

    It is interesting that there is no ZAG here as we heard here that Croatia is packed wth Chinese tourists and the direct flight between Croatia and China is almost done deal. I believe that even Purger was writing about it.
    It seems the facts speak differently.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Well it depends because the statistics here are based on O&D only. It could be that Croatia isn't the final destination for Chinese tourists. They continue on to somewhere or come to Croatia from a third country.

      Delete
    2. Yes, you are right. The most probably it is the case meaning we are far from introducing flights from China / Japan to Croatia

      Delete
    3. That doesn't have to be the case. I''m Serbian and I lived for 2 years in Shenzhen (teaching English). I moved back in December. Croatia is popular in China. Especially after the World Cup.

      Delete
    4. I believe you but the facts are telling us something else. Let's not forget that Croatia is also popular in South Korea but they still fly to ZAG during the winter via ZRH and not directly.
      I do not see flight China-Croatia happening any time soon

      Delete
    5. Route goes ICH-ZAG-ZRH-ICH, not ICH-ZRH-ZAG-ICH. So many wet dreams in these comments, geez.

      Delete
    6. I never heard of ICH airport.
      Maybe ICN?

      Delete
    7. One way or another passengers who fly from Seoul to Zagreb must go through ZRH on the arrival or on the departurefrom ZAG during winter.

      What is the point?

      Delete
    8. The fact could also be that Serbia abolished visas for Chinese and it's easier for their citizens to travel to Serbia. If they want to travel to Croatia and/or Slovenia, it's easier to go through other EU hubs since for that trip they would need a Schengen visa and therefore they can visit multiple countries within EU.

      What are you saying, that Croatian Statistic Bureau is tweaking the Chinese visitor numbers?

      Delete
    9. No, I am simply saying that there is no enough passengers direct connection between China and Croatia to be introduced despite claims we heard here that this number of passengers is sufficient and the direct flights are just round the corner.

      Delete
    10. That's what you say and you certainly don't know the numbers how many Chinese traveled between China and Croatia/Slovenia using the airports. There were 234k Chinese visitors in Croatia alone.

      Also, they have quite a few options among other airports in Croatia to travel to during the summer season besides flying to Zagreb.

      Delete
    11. He is saying that despite what some claim on here, there aren't enough passengers who start their journey in Croatia for them to launch a non-stop flight and that demand from Serbia seems to be much higher.

      Delete
    12. No, that's what Anna Aero say,not me.


      "Among Asia's top ten airports, which include Beijing, Tokyo Haneda, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Jakarta, Guangzhou, Singapore, Seoul, Bangkok and Delhi, no city from the former Yugoslavia made it into the top fifteen busiest unserved routes..."

      There is no flight between China and Croatia and PVG-ZAG or PEK-DBV for example are not on the list of unserved routes at all.

      So, 1+1=?

      Delete
    13. And I'm saying that that doesn't have to be the reason for introducing or not introducing a certain route and that there's no formula for it.
      BTW, do you have the numbers of Chinese passengers whose point of entry and/or departure was in Croatia?

      Delete
    14. I don't think anyone has those numbers besides various airports and the Croatian government. However one can assume most come by bus given the number of seats offered on the market and the number of Chinese airlines flying to the region: BUD, VIE, VCE...

      Delete
    15. Not enough passengers is not a reason for not introducing flights?
      OK...

      You can be sure that in some form airlines have the information you require and they are not happy with it as long as they do not introduce direct flight(s) between China and Croatia

      Delete
    16. Did I say that or did I say that is not the formula for introducing flights?

      And why did they cancel that Peking route from Belgrade? If there was such a demand, by that logic, they would have to drop the triangle route and make it direct. But they dropped it altogether.

      Delete
    17. Ok we get it. Demand for Croatia huge. No demand for Serbia. Is there a market in this world where the demand for Croatia is not huge?

      And tourist numbers are not the only metric that make a route successful otherwise there would be year round flights between Stockholm and Zagreb.

      Delete
    18. Cut the drama and sulking.

      Who said there's no demand for Serbia? For the 45th time, I said there's no formula by which you'll introduce flights. And I've brought Belgrade-Bejing route just to emphasize that even though Belgrade is so undeserved for Chinese passengers, that it still didn't work.

      Delete
    19. Ok,let's put it on this way... for introducing direct flights you need passengers.
      There are not enough of them for direct flight. Simple as that.

      Because PEK does not have for Serbia so much potential that PVG has. Big majority of Chinese people living in Serbia come from Shanghai region.
      Also the fact that PEK-BEG was going through PRG did not help at all.

      Delete
    20. It's underserved from Shanghai not Beijing. Check the distance between the two.

      Delete
    21. PVG is underserved, not PEK.
      Big difference

      Delete
    22. PEK-BEG suspension can only be attributed to airline's incompetence given today's topic. Hainan should have introduced non-stop flights to BEG so as to make the most from their domestic and regional network.
      Also, Chinese arrivals kept on booming even after they suspended flights meaning their role on the Serbian market was irrelevant.

      Why would someone fly Belgrade-Prague-Beijing-Shanghai when he can fly via Moscow/Istanbul/Doha/Abu Dhabi... with a single stop?

      Belgrade has the demand but it didn't have the right airline for it. I am sure someone will eventually step in as BEG seems to have the most potential.

      Delete
    23. Jesus... I never said that BEG shouldn't or won't get the connection. I was stating that Zagreb has potential with the numbers on the rise, but that there is not guarantee that they would choose either just because of the number of visitors to certain country. Yes, BEG has more chances because it's not in EU for which they need visas and there are many Chinese that live in Belgrade, but saying without hesitation that Zagreb has no or slim chances is absolutely unnecessary.

      Delete
  22. Does Air China fly from Shanghai to European cities?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes they fly Barcelona, Frankfurt, Milan, Munich and Paris.

      Delete
  23. Come on Belgrade, we can do it!

    ReplyDelete
  24. I honestly believe this is more the sign for Air Serbia to start flying to Shaghai than for any Chinese carrier to start flying to BEG.

    It is obvious that second wide body will be introduced to JU fleet in next max 6-9 months and they will use it to fly together with YU-ARA to JFK, YYZ and PVG. Later on maybe ORD as well depending from the flying schedule.

    ReplyDelete
  25. One of those unserved destinations will be launching soon. Lucky Air is starting Shanghai-Cairo in November.

    ReplyDelete
  26. It's odd JU didn't consider this route before. On top of clear O&D demand they serve a lot of the unserved routes from Shanghai. They could have gotten good transfer feed from the route.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Maybe due to high costs of leasing wide-body plane?

      Delete
  27. It would be nice if this route launched to serve the existing demand.

    ReplyDelete
  28. There are rumors JU is getting a second A330 very soon. So this is a possible route.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think they will start Toronto and Chicago with second A330, if it ever comes.

      Delete
  29. Could PVG have more passengers than JFK?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. In first full year of New York flights (2017) Air Serbia carried 72.257 passengers on the route
      https://www.exyuaviation.com/2018/06/air-serbia-eyes-profitability-on-long.html

      Delete
  30. I can guarantee there were fewer passengers between Belgrade and Helsinki then between Belgrade and Shanghai last year, yet Air Serbia is opening Helsinki flights this summer.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is the same situation with KRR.

      Simply JU can open HEL and KRR for transfer passengers much quicker than PVG simply because they do not need any permissions and more important - because they have planes available.
      For PVG they do not have wide-body plane available.

      Delete
    2. Doesn't matter, airlines can create artificial demand, just look at JU in BEY. I bet there were almost no demand before flights were launched yet now flights operate daily with A320. (summer season)
      From 31.03. flights will operate 4 times per week while daily flights start from June.

      Delete
    3. Mesas Arape koji idu u njihov Pariz sa Kinezima.

      Delete
  31. I really love the visa policy of Serbia. They know what connecting (for business, tourism etc.) people means. Bravo!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wait until you enter the EU

      Delete
    2. Ireland is in EU but they still have their own visa regime

      Delete
    3. They do, but it's due to their history with UK, the Troubles with Northern Ireland and the fact that there is a Common Travel Area between Ireland and UK.

      I very much doubt Serbia would be in a position to negotiate such things after joining EU.

      Delete
  32. If Beijing didn't survive then why should Shanghai do?
    The market is still fragile and might need more time.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You can find the answer few posts above

      Delete
    2. Cemu uopste govoriti o direktnoj liniji kad je samo 39k ljudi putovalo iz Sangaja za Beograd. Krnjava linija za JFK duplo vise preveze.

      Delete
    3. Chinese tourism and trade in Serbia and the region continues to grow. Current O&D figures in the article show that a direct 2 pw flight would still leave pax connecting via other hubs to BEG. Throw in a transit pax and cargo as we currently see with JFK and I'm sure JU could make a 4 pw rotation work.

      Delete
    4. 39.000 путника је путовало између та два града али колико би се увећала цифра када би се нудила преседања за Атину и шири регион? Не кажем да ЈУ треба да уведе линију већ неко са ким би сарађивали а да није у проблемима као што је то био Хаинан.

      Delete
  33. Opportunities to expand long haul network exist but Air Serbia is moving at a very slow pace. At this rate, they will add PVG in 2024, YYZ in 2028 and ORD in 2035. By then Air Transat will fly to INI, Air China to OMO, American Airlines to TZL and Emirates to MBX. Okay, maybe not MBX, MBX is hopeless but you get the picture: JU has to wake up and start moving ahead.

    ReplyDelete
  34. 35.390 passengers is not sufficient to sustain a year round long haul flight as people opt for days in a week and go for better price. In addition, there are not enough premium passengers, in this case 15K+ (half of which would use the route at least one way) to sustain the flights. However, it is a solid basis and if some airline work with tourist agencies that flight might materialize.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If a direct flight became available, do you think it would increase demand? Both in China and in ex-yu region.

      Delete
    2. It certainly would but mostly tourism i.e. price sensitive and economy class. Like in JFK case, too little business passengers so no chances of profitable route.

      Delete
    3. If you would just learn a thing or two about aviation business before making a comment. Air Canada Rouge and Air Transat both fly YYZ-ZAG without any business class.

      Delete
    4. Samo sezonski sa pretrpanim turistima.

      Delete
    5. Unfortunately I know thing or two :)
      As stated by previous commentator - it is possible in high season with high LF and top prices for economy.

      Delete
    6. Top prices? TS and RV are killing each other with low yields on already low yielding route. Definition of trash yields: YYZ-ZAG.

      Delete

Post a Comment

EX-YU Aviation News does not tolerate insults, excessive swearing, racist, homophobic or any other chauvinist remarks or provocative posts with the intention of creating further arguments. A full list of comment guidelines can be found here. Thank you for your cooperation.