Air Serbia reschedules launch of select new routes


Air Serbia has delayed the launch of several new routes planned for June 1 and June 2, however, all are scheduled to go ahead and have not been scrapped at this point. The services have been delayed only by several days, although further changes remain likely. The inaugural flights from Belgrade to Amman, Chisinau, Lviv and Rostov-on-Don have been moved, while services to Geneva and Florence, to be introduced on June 1 and June 6, are to go ahead as planned. At this point, the airline has retained the same frequencies on all the new routes as initially set. Services between Kraljevo and Thessaloniki, which were to launch on March 31, have been moved for May 2.

RouteOriginal dateNew date
Belgrade - AmmanJUN 01 JUN 04
Belgrade - ChisinauJUN 01JUN 07
Belgrade - LvivJUN 01JUN 08
Belgrade - Rostov-on-DonJUN 02JUN 05

The Serbian President, Aleksandar Vučić, yesterday reiterated the country’s plans to provide aid for its national carrier, labelling the company as one of the pillars of its economy. “I don’t want to talk too much about it now, during this crisis, and will be speaking more about it in two weeks. We saw how important Air Serbia has been for us during this situation. Imagine what we would have done without Air Serbia. Would anything be possible without Air Serbia? How long would we have to wait for aid and how long would it take to repatriate our nationals? We are doing it for free. The government pays for it, unlike in some other countries. We were able to do this because we saved our national carrier several years ago. And we will strengthen it even more. We have a very ambitious program planned”.

Air Serbia has suspended its commercial operations until at least May 1. The carrier has been running a number of repatriation flights and will continue to do so over the coming days. Over the weekend, it operated services to bring back stranded citizens from Dubai and Vienna. This week, flights are also planned to Malta, Bratislava, Prague, Stockholm, Oslo, Berlin, Frankfurt and Paris. Serbia has signalled it may relax some measures introduced to combat the coronavirus Covid-19 pandemic in late April or early May, which would include the lifting of the existing state of emergency.

Comments

  1. Anonymous09:01

    Unfortunately I don't see a chance of Florence starting. But who knows.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:04

      FLR was selling quite ok, third best behid GVA and ROV. It's the only seasonal destination from new routes so if they have to move it to July they might as well scrap it for this year.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous09:05

      And it should't be. The government should ban flights to at least northern Italy untill the virus situation is firmly under control.
      Same thing for the whole of Spain, Belgium, Netherlands, Sweden, UK, France, Turkey where the spread of the disease is massive.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous09:07

      @Anon 9.04. Interesting. Do you have any info on how Amman is doing? I'm really interested in this destination.

      Delete
    4. Anonymous09:08

      Well the situation in Italy seems to be going under control.

      Vucic said that he expects the state of emergency to be lifted either in April or early in May. My money is on 10.05 after Djurdjevdan/Ђурђевдан

      Delete
    5. What's about Belgrade-Toronto?

      Delete
    6. Anonymous15:29

      Probably next year, my money is on Rouge

      Delete
    7. Anonymous15:30

      BEG - YYZ in the next few days apparently. Repatriation flight. Other than that though, nothing without another wide-body. We can expect more demand from Canadian travelers to come directly than flying through CDG/FCO!

      Delete
    8. JATBEGMEL17:43

      Its been mentioned here that YU-ARA's lease ends next year. Options are in my opinion:

      - Extend the lease, however renegotiate the contract ie cheaper rate.
      - Replace the aircraft with another at a cheaper rate.
      - Cancel JFK and return the aircraft.

      I dont see JFK being cancelled. The government has boasted about it too much to allow it to be cancelled. After 4 years, the route is seeing much better results, with them experiencing limitations with 1 route 1 ac in the winter, which eats more of their profits made over the summer.

      Its been interesting to watch JU the past year. They quickly reacted to the collapses of JU and KK, launching IST and boosting frequencies in their slowest period, which was unexpected, however successful.

      I think 1 of 3 scenarios would be good for them:

      - Launch YYZ in december at the start of the christmas holiday season at 2 pw when JFK is down to 4 pw. Boost JFK to daily and YYZ to 4/5 pw in May with the delivery of a second ac.
      - Launch YYZ in late march, early april while JFK is at 3 pw, again, as above increasing frequencies in may as above.
      - Launch YYZ in June when a second aircraft is delivered, and boost JFK to daily.

      Overall, I think itll be JU who will launch the route first and not AC/RV.

      Delete
  2. Anonymous09:02

    My money is on these being further delayed or even cancelled.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:03

      It really depends if these make sense. Most of them are for transfer traffic.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous09:04

      Think so too, unfortunately!

      Delete
    3. Anonymous09:05

      Don't forget that for JU the current extremely deep crisis in LH Group is a blessing in disguise. Austrian government wants a say in OS' future and so do the Swiss for LX. LH on the other hand is requesting 10 to 15 billion Euros and has grounded around 54 aircraft. JU could profit massively from all this.

      Delete
    4. Anonymous09:07

      ^ True

      Delete
    5. Anonymous09:30

      Another good thing for JU is that FR is now saying that the Austrian government shouldn't bail out a German company. They also add that if OS is getting aid then why not Lauda.

      Delete
    6. Anonymous09:41

      I don't think the Austrian government will care much what Ryanair says.

      Delete
    7. Anonymous10:05

      They might if they are taken to court. They can accuse them of discrimination for helping a German company but not an Irish one. After all, Lauda has its planes registered in Austria and employs local staff and pays taxes there.

      Delete
    8. Anonymous10:08

      FR, W6, U2, DY etc will cry about every legacy airline receiving state assistance. They will just be ignored though.

      Delete
    9. Anonymous11:00

      To be fair, OS is actually mostly owned by an Austrian private trust founded exactly when LH Group bought it so that it still is officially owned by Austrians.

      Why would AUT want to save Lauda or Level when they also operate a lot of routes solely outside the country or Wizz that employs mostly Hungarians and Slovakians and all taxes for these employees go to to those foreign countries?

      Delete
    10. Anonymous14:23

      From what I know Lauda operates mostly from Vienna, they might have a few routes from STR but that's about it. Fundamentally they are as Austrian as Austrian Airlines.

      Delete
    11. Anonymous15:46

      it is probably not wise to save austrian;
      but the PR campaign of lauda fo the last days is rediculous to say the least: they tryed to bend so much regulations to get subsidies after the shutdown; (they were quiet until all papersgot signed and now they are getting aggressive again)
      now they are talking about taxes that they are suposed to be paying; there is no indication that lauda as a company payed taxes in any significant amount in austria (or in any country for that matter; the whole lauda operation is structured in a way produce losses for the time beeing to keep the preassure high for avoiding any labour unions; even in austria nobody pays taxes on losses; and to explain how the employee wages/benefits/social contributions/taxes is handled is not even according to the very low ryanair standards)

      there is not a single operator in vienna that will benefit the society when it is kept alive by further subsidies

      Delete
    12. Anonymous20:54

      "Why would AUT want to save Lauda or Level when they also operate a lot of routes solely outside the country or Wizz that employs mostly Hungarians and Slovakians and all taxes for these employees go to to those foreign countries?"

      In most European countries you pay tax where you work first and then top up in your residence country, if required.

      Delete
    13. Anonymous10:18

      Last anon, that is not correct for labour resources. If the company where the flight crews are employed are legally registred in e.g. Hungary and Slovakia or regarding Lauda in Ireland, then taxes apply there. It does not matter where staff are being deployed to.
      Many crew will even live in Bratislava or Gyor and just drive half an hour over the border to VIE airport to fly from there, you have very good direct motorway connections. Living costs are a fraction in SVK, HUN - they would be stupid to live in Austria/Vienna, from where you will also need almost half an hour to the airport.

      Anon 14:23: You seem to know not too much about Lauda. They alreday have bases in DUS, VIE, PMI, STR and were to open another "small" one in ZAD (Small meaning "only" 3 planes). Vienna is just one out of those 5 bases.

      Delete
  3. Anonymous09:03

    I'm very interested to see what the government has planned for JU. It's good that they have shown such support for JU continuing ops.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous14:35

      @9:18 Belgrade airport really need more space.

      Delete
  4. Anonymous09:04

    Will the new terminal expansion be ready by winter season?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:08

      It will take longer than that to complete. Probably until next summer.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous09:08

      Hope so, we desperately need this extra space.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous09:12

      It won't. That's the reason they have built (almost complete) two new bus gates since most C gates will be closed during the summer as this area is getting expanded.

      Delete
    4. Anonymous09:18

      @Anonymous 09:08
      Not any more. The massive fall in traffic means that extra space won't be needed for the next two-three years at least.

      Delete
    5. Anonymous09:23

      Anon 09.18
      I guess you don't fly from BEG that much. Are you even Serbian? Thing is that once this expansion happens BEG can close gates A6-A10 for renovation without disrupting the traffic. BEG's current capacity is 7 million, by closing these old gates it would drop to around 4.5 which won't be enough even with the corona related drop.

      So yes, this expansion is very much needed for practical reasons. I guess since you are not Serbian you did not fly from BEG when A gates were reconstructed and what a mess that was.

      Delete
    6. Anonymous09:30

      @Anonymous 09:23
      I guess you were asleep for the last two moths. Air traffic will take years to rebound to the pre COVID-19 levels. Everywhere on the planet. Including our country.
      So please, go back to sleep.

      Delete
    7. Anonymous10:05

      I guess your freshly polished crystal ball told you that. Numbers will be back to normal more or less next summer.

      Delete
    8. Anonymous10:12

      I guess the rest of the planet is wrong about the massive economic depression and Anon 10:05 is right!
      Prepare to receive your Nobel prize for economics.

      Delete
    9. Anonymous14:25

      Today on the radio YUTA president said that they were told to expect normalization in holdaymaking from mid-June with the first markets being Montenegro, Greece, Egypt.. while Spain and Turkey will come later on. So I guess numbers will start picking up sooner rather than later in case of Serbia.

      Delete
    10. Anonymous20:56

      Until there's vaccine for COVID-19 or herd immunity, expect social distancing requirements to stay as they are.

      Hard to travel in an airplane and go to the beach when all the restaurants are closed and you have to be 2m away from other people.

      Delete
    11. Anonymous21:42

      That comment is more appropriate when discussing airlines from tourist countries that actually have a beach, like Greece, Montenegro or Croatia. They will be more affected.

      Delete
    12. Anonymous22:23

      He is Right. It will take years to recover from this Corona 👑 virus.
      BEG will most likely recover its traffic by 2024 When the terminal opens.

      Delete
    13. 2024 lmao

      Next summer will already be business as usual. There will be no massive economic recession, just a correction of the markets.

      Delete
  5. Anonymous09:24

    Hope it stays like this and isn't moved more.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous11:04

      Does anyone really believe that in 1.5 months all boarders will be open again and minimum 14 day quarantine force will be removed on all sides? Well, I definitely don't!

      Delete
    2. Anonymous14:25

      Those quarantines will disappear the moment countries start to feel negative effects on their economy

      Delete
    3. Anonymous15:48

      at anon_14:25: which country is not experiencing any negative effect on its economy already?

      Delete
    4. Anonymous07:16

      It's not about not experiencing but about the extent of the damages caused by the crisis. Some will be more affected than others.

      Delete
  6. Anonymous09:29

    I also wonder if Beirut will be resumed. They suspended the route just before the corona disaster hit Europe apparently because of "Lebanese economic situation". It is due to restart in June. Even if it does come back I'm pretty sure its going to become a seasonal route.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:31

      Why the inverted commas? Lebanon was/is on the verge of bankruptcy and the government imposed capital restrictions.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous09:41

      Because not a single other airline cancelled flights to Beirut.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous09:44

      Also I have to ask how do they expect that the economic situation in Lebanon will improve in June for them to come back?

      Delete
    4. Anonymous10:06

      Because in summer point of sale is not in Lebanon, it's in Brussels, Copenhagen, Paris, Brussels...

      Delete
    5. Anonymous10:58

      And in winter the point of sale is Beirut?

      Delete
    6. Anonymous14:04

      Beirut is very seasonal regardless where the point of sale is. In winter there is less of 'dijaspora' travelling back as you can see the same all over Ex-Yu. There is a reason EK sends its metal only in summer. Hope that helps.

      Delete
    7. Anonymous14:43

      In winter market is much smaller so it's more difficult to make money especially with TK going crazy there. So when the crisis hit them JU had to respond.

      Delete
  7. Anonymous09:46

    Expected. I expect they will move it further.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Anonymous09:47

    JU will be quite impacted because it relies on a lot of transfer passengers. Since restrictions won't be lifted across the world at the same time, a lot of their routes will be impacted since they won't get the necessary feed.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. JATBEGMEL16:58

      Alot of airlines rely on transfer and not just JU. Most of JU pax are still O&D.

      Once restrictions are lifted, no airline will pick up where they left before the pandemic.

      JU also needs to replace quite a number of ac, up to 40% of the fleet (3 ATR's, 3 B733's and 2 A320's), so JU can afford to reduce some frequencies for the short term. The B733's alone represents about 14% of the fleet. 1 A320 (YU-APG) is due to leace the fleet to be replaced with an A319 (smaller seat count and cheaper lease). I dont think the situation is that bad for them, in fact it might help them attain cheaper rates for an eventual fleet renewal.

      Delete
  9. Anonymous09:48

    Considering the situation, it would be normal for Air Serbia's CEO or the company to release a statement on the state of things, when they expect to resume flights and to what extent. Most airlines have done this. Air Serbia was selling tickets for mid April until last week. Some sort of official communication from the company would be the responsible thing to do. Or has the entire management gone back to their own countries?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:51

      +1

      Delete
    2. Anonymous10:59

      I agree. It would be the rational thing to do and might increase consumer confidence.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous16:23

      Wizz CEO said normal services could be restored by July, see March 22 article. That kind of irresponsible comment only destroys consumer confidence. Some services might be back by July but there won't be normal level of Wizz services as they were before for many months.

      If you read today's ariticle you would know that Air Serbia will have government support: "we saved our national carrier several years ago. And we will strengthen it even more. We have a very ambitious program planned."

      That statement and ongoing construction at Belgrade airport is bigger boost of consumer confidence than any CEO saying "we will be back to normal in July"

      Delete
  10. Anonymous09:56

    It will be a miracle if any of these go ahead.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous10:00

      I actually think most will.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous10:58

      let's wait and see

      Delete
    3. Anonymous11:59

      They would be stupid not to. With all the competition in disarray this is the moment to launch them.

      Delete
    4. And who is gonna travel @ANONYMOUS 11:59 with those flights? Are you aware that Serbia still have over 200 positive coronavirus patients daily? You think the measures will stop just like that? Please spare me you are fooling yourself.

      Delete
    5. Anonymous14:29

      Bello, Connection flights are not that prone to the current Covid situation in Serbia

      Delete
    6. Anonymous14:44

      YUTA expects the situation to go back to normal from mid June, they know what they are talking about. It's as if some on here desperately want the crisis to last longer and for markets to collapse.

      Delete
  11. Anonymous10:00

    I don't worry about Air Serbia because the Serbian government will not let the company go, no matter what

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous11:00

      And comment about all other Ex-YU governments helping their companies in 3, 2, 1...

      Delete
    2. Anonymous14:17

      all other Ex-YU governments helping their companies :)

      Delete
    3. I am more than happy to help JU fly with money from my taxes.
      Air Serbia is one of the best things happened to Serbia in the last 10 years.
      Once this chaos is finished JU will kick in like never before.
      There are some good years ahead for Serbian aviation...

      Delete
    4. Anonymous10:39

      Hey Парти, can you tell me the cabin seating scheme if a distance of 2 meters is to be maintained between the guests? - Windows seats in every third row available, max 20 guests per flight?

      Delete
    5. Anonymous12:18

      Hey Anon, if you think hard about it social distancing makes no sense in an airplane since we are all sitting together in a closed space. You can be separated by 15 meters and still get infected. That is why this separation will not make sense for a long period of time.

      Have a blessed day.

      Delete
  12. Anonymous12:06

    Why are they prolonging the inevitable, none of these flights will happen in 2020....

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous13:01

      no one knows and no one can say the way this will go.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous14:05

      That's why all your wishes, calculations and discussions are meaningless, sorry!

      Delete
    3. Anonymous14:12

      This is an aviation site. So of course people are going to calculate and discuss aviation matters. Better than constantly whine and predict the worst.

      Delete
    4. JATBEGMEL17:15

      I dont think any airline will go back to pre pandemic levels immediately any time soon, including JU.

      I think the new destinations will go ahead, but maybe not many of the upgrades in frequencies as well as the increases for charter flights.

      Delete
  13. Anonymous14:39

    Fingers crossed! I'm not very optimistic about the starting date of flights in Europe. It will definitely be very, very slow: international events are now cancelled already for September, the biggest international congresses postponed, mass gatherings won't be possible, we can forget about mass tourism etc. And Air Serbia has very unpopular approach towards coronavirus situation with changes of tickets possible according to regular rules and classes. My company explicitly instructed us to buy tickets until the end of the year that allow maximum flexibility, e.g. Lufthansa group or Turkish. So, if I would have to fly to Belgrade, the option would be via one of Lufthansa group hubs. According to situation it is perfectly understandable and reasonable decision. Air Serbia should definitely consider more flexible approach if they want to fill the planes. Or maybe they just don't care.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous15:31

      True, they have a disastrous approach to selling tickets which is why they had a 30% increase in traffic in the first two months of the year.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous18:58

      Anon 15:31 Corona time and not before, not the time when our government still promoted shopping in Milan. Maybe you could read the original post again. I fully agree with anon 14:39, lots of web agencies that sell tickets now promote tickets with clear indication "NO CHANGE FEE".

      Delete
  14. Anonymous20:38

    I personally think that the time for expansion is over for at least a year/two. They will have to focus on their markets that work. Now it‘s not the time for experiments. Therefore, I am sure all new routes will be cancelled.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous21:06

      That's what you wish for. As weaker airlines fail after this crisis Air Serbia will be in a position to take over passengers from them and expand even more than originally planned.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous22:20

      Absolutely correct but not on the planned routes.. probably more on those existing routes that the competition is giving up and there will be some.. by the way I’m a fan of AS.. I wish them all success

      Delete
    3. Anonymous22:35

      anon 21:06, Air Serbia is in no position go “gobble up” other “failed airline” routes, they will have problems staying alive on their own routes, let alone creep into defunct routes. I respect your patriotism, but patriotism is not what fuels businesses, strong leadership does, and Air Serbia doesn’t have that at the moment.

      Delete
    4. Anonymous01:05

      Anon @22:35 Your annual performance review is not looking good, you are not meeting expectations. You have not been able to negatively impact Air Serbia this year with any of your comments. On top of that you failed to comprehend the most important info on Air Serbia leadership at this point: Government will support it and strengthen it even more. They have a very ambitious program planned post crisis. Time to start looking for a new job?

      Delete
    5. Anonymous09:58

      precisely as I wrote my dear friend, Air Serbia doesn’t have strong leadership, they never made money, expanded on the gratuity of tax payers, completely unsustainable. You can even run that company as per your analytics!

      Delete
    6. Anonymous12:19

      History proves haters were always wrong. Government support guarantees they wil be wrong once again.

      Delete
    7. Anonymous12:20

      And how many years did the UAE taxpayers fund Emirates before they became profitable? Why shouldn't we do the same? I for one believe in Air Serbia and I think they can make it eventually. Their time is only coming now, they will thrive sooner rather than later.

      Delete

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