Serbia unveils twelve new Niš routes


The Serbian government has named twelve routes of public interest which will be launched from Niš Constantine the Great Airport this summer. The eleven year-round and one seasonal service will be subsidised to the tune of five million euros from July 1, 2019 until June 30, 2025. The destinations in question are: Baden Baden, Bologna, Budapest, Frankfurt Hahn, Friedrichshafen, Gothenburg, Hannover, Ljubljana, Nuremberg, Rome, Salzburg and Tivat. All routes will be maintained twice per week both in the summer and winter months, with exception to Tivat, which will be operated three times per week between May and October. Under Serbia's updated aviation law, if within "a short period of time" no airline shows interest for any of the abovementioned routes, an international tender will be launched to find an operating carrier, although the government reserves the right to enter into direct talks with airlines without a public call.


Mihajlo Zdravković, a member of the assembly of the City of Niš, said the twelve new routes will fuel people to people exchange, tourism and the development of the local economy. Furthermore, it was identified that although the services were not commercially viable, they are of importance to the residents of south-east Serbia and will not affect any existing routes currently maintained from Niš. "We expect that these destinations will complement our route network and significantly increase traffic at Constantine the Great Airport. These cities are well linked with others on the continent and beyond", Mr Zdravković said.

The General Manager of Niš Airport, Dušan Knežević noted, "Last year we handled some 350.000 passengers. This year and in the years to come, this figure will grow considerably. In 2020 we expect to welcome half a million travellers. We will have to expand the terminal building next year, but we are ready to welcome new flights". The Serbian government will also offer subsidies to tour operators who bring groups of Russian, Turkish, Chinese, South Korean, Indian and US tourists arriving or departing either through Belgrade or Niš airports. The government will grant up to thirty euros per visitor from Russia and Turkey and up to fifty euros for tourists arriving from the other four countries. The exact sum will depend on the length of stay. Tour operators must form a group of at least fifteen people to be eligible for the incentives. The measure is expected to boost both air travel and tourism.




Comments

  1. So much for how this tender will be fixed for Air Serbia. Seems to me the majority of the routes will be operated by Wizz Air and Ryanair.

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    1. True. I expect that there will be split of these lines between Ryanair, Wizzair and AirSerbia and maybe Montenegro airlines could fly Tivat route.

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    2. Obviously Air Serbia said it wasn't interested and the GoS chose destinations that are served by FR or W6 and that will have as little impact as possible to JU's main routes. No London, Paris, AMS, ATH, Moscow, Munich Vienna.

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    3. What I know is that internally in JU there are talks that they will collect six or seven routes out of the 12 proposed. Air Serbia Catering has already moved a bunch of its equipment to INI in order to sustain those flights. I guess they won't be doing it for the sake of one flights.

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    4. JU will have difficulty flying the current summer schedule with its present fleet. A single aircraft going tech. would been lengthy delays.
      They need more aircraft as things are, let alone if they get some of the INI routes.

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    5. Don't forget that from tomorrow JU is slowly starting to increase their flights. Tirana goes to 9 weekly, Larnaca was already increased to 2 a week two weeks ago, it will be 3 around Easter, Bucharest goes from 6 to 8 and in two weeks night flights to Athens are introduced much earlier than last year. So JU is actually extending their 'busy' season meaning that they don't have the means to expand in INI.

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    6. Well, they have already leased one regional jet extra...

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    7. They have indeed, haven't they?

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  2. Ljubljana and Budapest are a bit unexpected.

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    1. Not really, I am sure JP contacted Belgrade the moment subsidies were mentioned. After all, they are the welfare queen.

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  3. It looks to me they have already negotiated all these routes with airlines.

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  4. Massive development for Nis. Well done.

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    1. And according to resident expert here, the airport was to be closed after Vinci took over Belgrade.

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  5. So no INI-BEG, but INI-BUD. What's the idea with BUD?

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    1. Wizz Air probably proposed them that route.

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    2. BEG - INI flights are simply not possible due to infrastructure and a lack od domestic terminal in BEG.

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    3. Who knows, maybe LO introduces BUD-INI, they could use it to feed their BUD long-haul network which seems to be struggling at the moment.

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    4. I guess Wizz will introduce BUD-INI, given their succes on BUD-SKP route.

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    5. Why not Belavia? They already operated BUD-BEG.

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    6. They still do.

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    7. I know but maybe they could add flights to INI. Like that they would also be connected to Minsk which is an important hub for CIS.

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  6. Baden Baden, Budapest, Friedrichshafen, Gothenburg, Hannover, Nuremberg - Wizz Air
    Frankfurt Hahn, Rome, Salzburg - Ryanair
    Ljubljana - Adria Airways
    Tivat - Montenegro Airlines or Air Serbia

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    1. Seems plausible although I think Salzburg will go to Eurowings.

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    2. I would be very, very, no, very, very, very surprised if Adria gets route to LJU.

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    3. Why? Someone said they applied for slots to fly to Belgrade a few months ago but then withdrew their request. They might go to Nis instead with Saabs and get paid for it.

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    4. There is much more sense to give it to AirSerbia then Adria. In fact, I would expect that AirSerbia gets more then few routes from the list.

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    5. JP is doing really well in PRN, SKP and SOF. This is a highly populated area and there is general demand to LJU. I am not surprised.

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    6. to be more precise, the demand is not for LJU but for transfers through LJU

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    7. And where exactly are they going to connect to with JP that's not already served from Nis? There aren't that many destinations.

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    8. There's demand for LJU as a final destination, too.

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  7. It's great that these flights will start in just a couple of months.

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  8. I don't see the point of Salzbirg with Vienna and Bratislava already being served from Nis.

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    1. Salzburg is at least three hours away from Vienna by car.
      its actually good for gastos living in western Austria / south Bavaria

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  9. My guess is also that routes have already been negotiated with airlines and that they were picked in cooperation with airlines. I mean they just randomly chose Baden Baden/Karlsruhe. Please.

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    1. Agree, especially because flights will already start in June. They have probably negotiated all the routes already.

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  10. This is indeed big news. Congratulations.

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  11. Lots of German destinations but overall the choice is good. Good luck INI.

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  12. Finally some good news for Nis. Expecting to see Ryan and Wizz scoop up the majority of these routes.

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  13. For the number of routes, the subsidies are not big.

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  14. I understand most gastos are in Germany, but I still think France and the Benelux are missing from the picture.

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    1. They didn't want to take too many pax from ASL flights from BEG.

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  15. Must say I'm a bit surprised with Ljubljana. but positively :)

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    1. I don't see many Slovenes flying to Niš, but still it is a good news for LJU.

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    2. Why wouldn't they? Belgrade is popular among Slovenes and I am sure Nis can be too.

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    3. Ljubljana to Nis??? Unless the price is really low it will not work.

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    4. Serbian government has said that they want to promote tourism in the region through more flights at INI. Slovenes love coming to Serbia so this is yet another way for them to come and listen to narodnjaci and get wasted on rakija.

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    5. Yes, but they love doing it when it costs them a tank of fuel and couple of EUR for tolls to go to Belgrade and back.

      With JP's record on subsidies (BRU), they will still keep the ticket prices sky high.

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    6. Yes but BRU is different as price sensitive passengers fly on W6 to CRL. So why lower the fares?

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  16. Salzburg will go to Air Serbia. you heard it first here ;)

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    1. That literally makes no sense unless JU launches this on the Atr which I don't see happening. It makes most sense for it to be Austrian Airlines or Eurowings. OS could operated it with Q400.

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    2. And what if they launch it on CRJ?

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  17. Hilarious how they specified it should be Frankfurt Hahn. Would have been funny if FR launched FRA-INI.

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  18. RIP bus companies. This is great for tourism as well, INI and south Serbia will become much more popular now.

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  19. Ostvaruje se projekat Aerodromi Srbije. Nis je pocetak.
    Za devedeset dana Vidovdan. Na Vidovdan otvaranje treceg medjunarodnog aerodroma Otadzbine Srbije. Izmedju Kraljeva i Cacka, Morava. Da, Srbija se uzdize na mapi jugoistocne Evrope u Avio saobracaju. Sa Beogradskim aerodromom na Evropsku i svetsku mapu. Definitivno, ova godina je godina uspona i pocetka komercijalne avijacije za decenije koje slede.
    Srecno i uspeh u razvoju... Vidimo se na Moravi na Vidovdan.
    Rodney. Sydney. ✈☺✈🔅✈✨☺✈

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  20. What I find really interesting is that the majority of routes are to important and mostly primary destinations.
    If you compare INI's competition SKP, there most of the destinations are even tertiary to smaller villages in Sweden and Germany.
    Very good news for INI and exciting times ahead.

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    1. yes, Bologna, Baden Baden and Friedrichshafen are important and primary destinations.

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    2. Are you implying Bologna isn't? City has 388.000 people while the region has 4.4 million. It's way more primary than SKP or any other city in the region.

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    3. Momak, BLQ has a population of nearly 400,000 and it's located in the richer part of Italy.
      It's an airport receiving 8 million which is the traffic of both BEG and ZAG together.
      Please wake up.

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    4. Momak.... that made me laugh. :D

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    5. Frankfurt Hahn and Tivat are also primary and very important airports

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    6. Haha especially Hahn which is about to go bankrupt.

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  21. Where are the netherlands,belgium and the western part of germany. Don't we get a chance to fly directly to nis?

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    1. You can fly to/from Sofia or Skoplje.

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    2. Uffff, western Germany. Millions of flights from both SKP and SOF.
      HHN is quite a good option hence W6 dropped the route from BEG.

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    3. Hmm there was never BEG-HHN. ;)

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    4. You can never make everyone happy. Three years ago we had nothing, now it's going to be 22 routes.

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  22. I think we will soon see Wizz base in Nis. I assume that they will take most of these lines.

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    1. You're right. It would be interesting to see if YM operated to TIV while LJU obviously to our dearest JP.

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  23. Congratulations to INI from Croatia. I wish our government did the same for OSI but in stead the airport is dying slowly. Shame there is no INI-ZAG as OU could do what JP is doing.

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  24. Obviously it was all planned with LCC's and honestly saying I am quite surprised with some destinations. I do not see how it is possible IST was not among new routes as JU does not fly there at all and demand is more than huge. OSL would be also doing fine from INI.

    FKB - not needed. W6 will fly then from BEG and from INI to FKB. Here should have come OSL

    BLQ - could not be more senseless. Let's not forget Wind jet and disaster they had on this route back in 2009. Here should have come IST

    BUD - this was obviously favor for W6. It seems that apart from BEG they can fly from BUD to ex-yu airports only with subvensions. I do not see much demand here.

    HHN - very good choice and obviously made for FR. It could have been even better that they offered FRA.

    FDH - recently closed from BEG. With subvensions might work, but not the main star.

    GOT - together with HHN one of the best routes new from INI. FR will fly from here

    HAJ - not necessary. W6 and JU already fly there from BEG. Too much capacity for that city from Serbia. Here should have come MLA.

    LJU - quite surprise. JU flies already very often to LJU so it might not perform well.

    NUE - same like FDH. Prepared for W6. Did not work from BEG. Prepared for W6.

    FCO - yes, this might work. Although AZ and JU fly there from BEG the demand is quite big and it could perform well.

    SZG - good choice. FInally we get traffic to some other Austrian city apart from VIE

    TIV - expected. Probably very successful for YM.

    I do not expect any route to be flown by JU as their air traffic from BEG is quite increased this summer and they simply do not have fleet to cover any destination from INI. The best proof is that no route INI-BEG has been planned.

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    1. I think in Rome it will be CIA and not FCO.

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    2. Well, a lot has changed since 2009 and Windjet to Bologna. FR has established a huge base there, with nice connection opportunities to all around Italy and Spain. Serbian citizens do not need visas anymore. JU has started VCE and is doing quite nice there, which is a routing very similar to BLQ. Other than that, Bologna is the capital of the second richest region of Italy and a heart of a big industrial center. Many people from Serbia frequent ER often on business.

      Obviously, this is meant for FR, meaning the fares will be much better than were Windjet's. And if JU somehow decides they would like to introduce BEG-BLQ, they can do the BLQ-INI leg with a subsidy then.

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    3. Ju is sending one of their Airbuses to Nis, while the CRJ1000 will fill in the gap here in Belgrade.

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    4. Nonsense, starting with the fact you wrote CRJ1000.

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    5. Objavljen je tender. Sve dobija jedan prevoznik, tačnije Er Srbija. Smešno spakovano. Neverovatno koliko su ljudi naivni, čitam komentare i ne verujem, pa da li je neko mislio da će licitirati liniju po liniju?!?
      Traženi avion minimum 125 mesta. Još jedan u rezervi na teritoriji RS. 15 povezanih letova (verovatno iz Fridrihšafena hahaha). Najmanje 3 globalna sistema za prodaju karata.... i zbirna ponuda za sve linije. Dakle Er Srbija.

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    6. Gde je objavljen tender? Mislim da izmisljas.

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  25. Say what you will, I am impressed Bergamo-Nis outlived many other more promising routes in ex-YU.

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  26. So does INI have more routes than OHD now?

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  27. Macedonia should also did something like this with OHD, I think not just 4 routes, they should added more, at least 8 or 10.

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  28. They should have introduced BCN and not second hand German airports

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    1. SKP and SOF have many flights to BCN especially summer. 3 carriers fly direct from SOF and SKP has a good schedule.

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  29. Cannot understand why MALTA is always put on hold. Large diaspora from South/ East Serbia region working and living in Malta. While having good integration with the Maltese willing to visit as tourist. However seems like it can be only limited to Vojvodina, otherwise to Macedonia and Bulgaria having low cost flights with direct flights from Malta, solely to these destinations. Reaching Nis and all the most beautiful surrounding towns, villages and other cities can be too expensive and time consuming with to much land travels and crossing borders. MLT-INI direct or with a decent connection is much needed more than ever before.

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    1. It's a myth. I am not exactly sure how many Serbs are living and working in Malta but I believe it is <3000-5000. Just not enough ppl to justify flights from INI. And on top of that most of them are doing relatively low paid jobs so even with the subsidies it would be difficult to keep the line for long enough.

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  30. Does that mean they will do the same for KVO? I don't see any other option.
    The good thing is that some destinations are not flown from neither SKP nor SOF and these are TIV and SZG.
    Also badly missing are; LTN, ATH, SVO and BVA.

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  31. bad news for SOF and SKP

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  32. Hungarian National Development Ministry is subsidizing Wizzair to fly from Budapest to Ex Yu places like Podgorica, Pristina, Sarajevo and Skopje. Subsidy helps both airline (Wizzair) and Budapest tourism. As there is almost no diaspora from Nis area in Budapest, business links are weak and visitors from Budapest are not likely to generate significant revenue visiting Nis, why is Serbia and not Hungary subsidizing INI-BUD service? Serbian subsidy makes ABSOLUTELY NO sense on this route, it should have been Hungary paying for it.

    Same goes for Tivat. Montenegro and Tivat tourism boards stand to profit from Nis tourists, so let THEM pay for subsidy if they want additional tourists. Seasonal route INI-TIV will almost completely depend on outbound tourism and Serbia has almost nothing to gain from it. Serbia paying for it would be similar to Government of Korea subsidizing Korean Air to fly Korean toursts to ZAG!!! In fact, opposite is true: Croatia is paying KE through some form of advertising and marketing as it profits from Korean toursits spending money in Zagreb! So it should be Montenegro/Tivat subsidizing this service, NOT Serbia!

    I didn't want to post this in the morning to see if anyone else would notice this subsisdy INSANITY and no one did! WTF people! Can't wait for government to change and next one to cancel clearly corrupt INI subsidies!

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    1. totaly agree with you. It is nice to see INI numbers rising but for price of subsides already subsided routes (3 uer per passanger tax is clearly a subside) is too much. Especially when there is no state interest at all in sending tourists abroad.

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  33. Very unfortunate how no major airports are included. This won't help the connectivity much. It will help Gastarbeiter population get home for holidays, but it will do nada for people still living in south and east Serbia, which is the proclaimed goal. If you are young, successful, and living in Nis, which of these do you need to get to? Hahn? Friedrichshafen? ONE route to a major airport, from which you can catch connections to the rest of the world, would have done more for the region's connectivity than all of these combined. This is very backwards thinking. Of course, it seems like they are protecting Air Serbia's monopoly from Belgrade... but that is very sad given that JU is showing no interest in flying to Nis and that their base is 2.5 hours away, not to mention that there is no direct bus link and that trains to Belgrade take, what -- let me check the 1880's timetable -- five hours?

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    1. What??? INI already has connections via major airports. Swiss has ZRH-INI service where you can connect to the rest of the world, remember? You can also use existing flights to Vienna and Berlin for other connections. New routes to Budapest and Rome will also help connect to other destinations.

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  34. HNH is nice but FRA would have been much better...
    Does anybody know if and when this all will really start?

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