Serbia warns of further flight resumption delays


The Serbian Minister for Construction, Transport and Infrastructure has warned that the resumption of commercial flights to and from Serbia may be further delayed if countries across Europe fail to reopen their airports by mid-May. Currently, the government has outlined plans for services to restart on May 18. “Our proposal is for commercial flights to resume from May 18 and for services to commence from Nikola Tesla Airport in Belgrade, Constantine the Great in Niš and Morava in Kraljevo. However, if Europe does not open up by this date, neither will Serbia”, the Serbian Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Construction, Transport and Infrastructure, Zorana Mihajlović, said.

Ms Mihajlović further noted, “There is still no clarity on the reopening of the European Union’s borders. When Europe opens up, so will we. We are prepared but we have to coordinate our activities with the rest of the world”. The government has been unclear on when it plans to allow commercial flights into the country, which have been banned since March 19. It initially announced the “controlled” opening of its airports between May 4 and May 11. It then noted that airports would reopen “around May 1” before announcing it would do so on May 18.

The Serbia and Montenegro Air Traffic Services Agency has issued a new Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) - an aviation document informing all carriers of important and urgent messages – that all commercial flights to and from the country will be restricted until 23.59 local time on May 30. This measure may be revised in the coming days and weeks. Wizz Air, which announced plans to resume flights between London Luton and Belgrade from May 1 has now moved its service resumption until May 13, while Air Serbia, which was selling tickets for flights from May 9 onwards until this afternoon has now moved all operations to May 18. Most other carriers that maintain services to the country have rescheduled flights for June 1. Serbia’s coronavirus taskforce announced yesterday that it has reduced compulsory self-isolation measures for all incoming passengers into the country from 28 to fourteen days. It said it would review and adopt other measures by May 18 in order to make flying more practical while also containing Covid-19.

Comments

  1. Anonymous09:01

    So why is JU still allowed to sell tickets for dates that no flights are allowed?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:08

      I think they are struggling a lot financially and eager on every extra eurocent possible. The situation of the company remains highly questionable...

      Delete
    2. Anonymous09:13

      Why should travelers be the ones borrowing JU money?
      They won't be travelling on those dates and for sure JU won't be returning their money.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous09:23

      With germany having prolonged the worldwide travel alert to Mid June, I doubt we will see any traffic before that date.

      Delete
    4. Anonymous09:45

      what does the travel alert of Germany has to to with anything? Passengers out of Germany don't even know what this is

      Delete
    5. Anonymous17:48

      Germany is the biggest Air Serbia's market so it is expected rules in that country to be followed

      Delete
    6. Anonymous18:53

      -The situation of the company remains highly questionable...

      Only for those who are clueless/haters. Those who follow the news here know the opposite is true:

      https://www.exyuaviation.com/2020/04/state-hints-at-post-covid-air-serbia.html
      https://www.exyuaviation.com/2020/03/state-plans-air-serbia-aid-package.html

      Delete
  2. Anonymous09:02

    What a stupid decision. Many European airports are open. On top of that many non-EU airlines fly to Belgrade. I’m sure many people stuck around the world would be thankful if QR would be allowed to resume flights to Belgrade ASAP.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:52

      Many EU airports are open but for passengers inside EU (in exYu that is Croatia and Slovenia), but nonEU citizen can not fly to those airports (including Serbia, Montenegro, Bosnia, Macdonia). That is why Zagreb has flights today (Croatia, Eurowings) and from 11th May it will have 6 flights per day, but other nonEU airports does not have logic to start flights as they can not fly to anywhere.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous09:57

      Non-EU airlines are not banned from flying to EU airports. There are many Serbian citizens who are dual citizens or permanent residents in EU countries, which would allow them to travel. Also there are many Serbian citizens stuck in EU countries wanting to get home and there are also foreigners stuck in Serbia wanting to get home. So a flight two times a week to one or more EU cities would be meaningful. Evidence to this is that within 48 hours of Wizz Air putting tickets from Luton to Belgrade on sale for May 1 there were 60 booking for that date.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous20:19

      Many? What is many? 1 million is not many, and for sure there is not a near to 1 million.

      Most of Serbian citizen was transported home by special flight, Government told us that there were so many flight for citizen, almost 2 per day. If they need to come, Government should organize special flights for them.

      Delete
  3. Anonymous09:03

    When will there be an end to the stupidity, stop blaming the rest of the world, just declare the airports open but that all airoperations will be handled and co-ordinated by Eurocontrol, end of story.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous14:29

      Don't you understand that's the price to be paid for exposing the EU flag next to the Serbian flag. We don't have an independant state, we are colonized!

      Delete
    2. Anonymous15:59

      lol

      Delete
  4. Anonymous09:04

    It would have been much smarter to open the airport. There would be few flights, and this would be much easier to organise so airport staff can be fully prepared for when there are bigger passenger volumes in the future and all new measures must be respected.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Anonymous09:07

    The stupidity is endless. All of this is being cooked up in the Air Serbia kitchen. Basically, they won’t allow air travel until Air Serbia can resume majority of their flights. There are several airlines that are ready to start flying to BEG straight away, Wizz being one of them. Idiots.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:09

      +1000

      Delete
    2. Petar09:10

      The ASL project is more important than anything else.
      More important than what is good for BEG, the city of Belgrade, the economy and definitely more important than what is good for travelers!

      Delete
    3. Anonymous09:11

      Thank you, dear. You are absolutely right. National carrier Protectionism at its highest levels ever.

      Delete
    4. Anonymous09:25

      JU carries transfer pax from across Europe to Med destinations. With markets like France, UK and Germany having travel alerts for its citizens until July it would e stupid for JU to start flying.

      Delete
    5. Anonymous09:30

      @Anon 09:25
      Then why is JU selling tickets even for this weekend and all of May?

      Delete
  6. Anonymous09:08

    This is a premeditated “cash grab”, people are paying in for flights that will most probably not happen, then JU will cancel those flights and give them vouchers for future flights??!!

    This is a sign of a desperate airline, when they start doing this things don't end well, they are going back to their JAT roots.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:12

      You can request full compensation on JU, not just vouchers.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous09:14

      why do this then? this is corporate delinquency, I'm not impressed.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous09:14

      @09:12
      You can request it but you won't get it!

      Delete
    4. Anonymous09:37

      Everyone might hate FR but they are a professional airline in all aspects. They were frank about their decisions, they made the cuts. They SHUT the calendar and did not lie about anything. It is not fair for an airline to leave the calendar open, wait for the easy money and then simply say: "Oh, we are sorry. No refund back but pick any dates with a validity period of 1-2 years". This is not the way things are done, JU. Maybe contact Michael to teach you some aviation ethics.

      Delete
    5. Anonymous09:38

      What are you talking about? Ryanair is selling tickets to many destinations they are not going to be able to fly to in next two weeks. As the date approaches, they move it by one week.

      Delete
    6. Anonymous09:48

      Give me an example?!?!! They already updated their status!

      https://www.ryanair.com/content/dam/ryanair/help-centre-pdfs/27-Apr-Customer-Notice---Covid19-EN3.pdf

      Delete
    7. Anonymous09:49

      Ryanair is refunding all tickets of canceled flights.
      It does not tell pax to choose other dates or receive a voucher for 2021!

      Delete
    8. Anonymous09:49

      They are selling flights from Nis from 15th of May. Until recently they were selling them from the 1st.

      Delete
    9. Anonymous09:50

      @9.49 JU refunds you too. You can choose a voucher only if you want to.

      Delete
    10. Anonymous09:51

      This is unlike OU for example that does not offer money compensation at all. Contrary to EU rules.

      Delete
    11. Anonymous09:57

      AirSerbia IS NOT refunding money, they are offering vouchers.

      I want one person to write me that they received their money back?

      Please remove emotions, and talk facts, what Air Serbia is doing is not correct, they are taking cash from customers to fund their grounded operations.

      Delete
    12. Anonymous09:58

      09:50
      JU says it will refund you at an unspecified future date. To date no refunds have been given for these canceled flights!

      Delete
    13. Anonymous10:00

      @9.57
      I read on Twitter just a week ago a lady who thanked Air Serbia for refunding her in 4 days of her cancelled flight. That she was surprised but said credit where credit is due. So they obviously are refunding some people.

      Delete
    14. Anonymous10:01

      @9.58 I have to wonder how do you know if a refund has been issued. You sit in their head office and know... right.

      Delete
    15. Anonymous10:25

      I highly doubt Air Serbia has any intent to pay back any money, they are filling their bank accounts with customer hard cash, since they are in BIG trouble.

      All the Airlines are struggling to pay back their customers, Airlines that are a lot larger then Air Serbia.


      I DON'T think people realize how much trouble the airline industry is in, the GoS will hemorrhage money to support and stand behind JU, because JU won't return to pre corona virus numbers until at least 2022 at best, and that's a lot of GoS money.

      Delete
    16. Luka10:33

      Not defending JU, but Ryanair is sneakiest of them all. They were giving refunds at first, but now when you apply for refund they send you a voucher and say they can't refund now as they work remotely:

      Ryanair Group Customer Care (Ryanair DAC, Lauda & Malta Air)

      Our Ref:XXXXXX

      Dear Customer,

      Over the past months the spread of the Covid-19 virus has caused many EU governments to impose flight and/or travel bans which grounded over 99% of Ryanair’s flights. We are doing everything we can to support our customers, our people and protect jobs. We are ready to return flying when Covid-19 is defeated, hopefully sooner rather than later.

      We regret that these Government travel restrictions have forced the cancellation of your Ryanair flight(s) under booking reference:: XXXXXX.

      Please see below details of your travel voucher for 299.55EUR, the full value of your unused booking. This amount can be used for the purchase of Ryanair flights and other services at any time over the next 12 months. It is simple to use this voucher when making a booking on the Ryanair website or app. Please click here for a full set of T&C's.

      Click on the below link to accept your voucher.

      https://schdchng.ryanair.com//...

      Voucher Name:  
      Voucher Number:  
      Voucher Value:   299.55EUR
      Voucher Expiry Date:   22/April/2021
      If you do not wish to accept this voucher option and wish to move your flight or request a refund, please click here to contact us. Please note that as our customer care agents are required to work from home to limit the spread of COVID-19 virus, payment security restrictions prevent us from processing refunds as quickly as we would like to.

      We invite you to use your voucher to book your next trip and we look forward to seeing you again on a Ryanair flight in the near future. Passengers who made their bookings using travel agents, or on line travel agencies should contact these companies from where they purchased their tickets to find out more about their options.

      Our priority always remains the health and well-being of our people and customers.

      Yours sincerely,

      Ryanair Group Customer Care (Ryanair DAC, Lauda & Malta Air)


      When you go on the links to decline voucher and ask for cash refund in chat they tell you that voucher will be refunded in 12 months time and that is all.

      I had 5 bookings with them, for first I got a refund. For rest vouchers.


      Delete
    17. Anonymous11:50

      Why do you do it Luka? Don't you know that blaming JU is national sport here?

      Delete
    18. JATBEGMEL13:16

      EU 'denied boarding' regulations state that airlines must refund for cancelled flights.

      https://www.theguardian.com/money/2020/apr/24/coronavirus-travel-shutdown-rights-voucher-refund

      Most airlines, including JU, have been offering vouchers as an alternative to cancelling the ticket, with those accepting the vouchers receiving an added 10% of the value of the ticket as compensation. JU have also allowed flexible booking allowing people to change their dates of travel as many times as they like until the end of the year. This is clearly stated on the JU website. JU has an online form for these processes to be completed.

      FZ for example does not refund any purchased tickets and forces their pax to take vouchers instead. Info on this is stated on their website.

      Euro news published an article 3 days ago regarding airlines refusing to refund tickets, others making it difficult, while yesterday it was published that a majority of EU states are supporting airlines not refunding passengers their tickets.

      https://www.euronews.com/2020/04/29/a-dozen-eu-states-will-today-call-on-brussels-to-suspend-law-granting-refunds-for-cancelle

      While JU generally dont have a good reputation in dealing with refunds and cancellations, other airlines have currently shown to be at best the same, or worse.

      Delete
    19. I find people on here very childish , pointing fingers at airlines instead of trying to see a big picture and understending a huge concern over passengers & crew safety. Almost every airline across the globe is trying to resume flight operation and they are all selling tickets for tentative dates as they have every possible intention to fly. Unfortunately situation is changing hourly and nobody can be sure that even after they start flying service would run permanently as virus is very active and nobody can predict what could happened when more and more people start flying . In AirSerbia situation all I can say they are working around the clock with humanitarian and rescue flights and they were one of a very few airlines to offer free rescue flights in such a situations which clearly indicates they are not just after money as some of you are constantly indicating in your comments on here. I recently start work for Expedia and can confirm 100% that AS is doing a full refund for cancelled flights. As a travel agents we got two options available to do so, via on line request ( which is very simple), or by consolidator which is done on the phone . Again no airline wants to be grounded and it is in their interest to be up and running as soon as every safety measures are implemented and ready.

      Delete
  7. Anonymous09:12

    Useless opening the airports if the pandemic is ongoing, planes will be empty. Just wait it out.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:15

      It's not about people wanting to go travel for weekend breaks. There are thousands of people still stuck around the world that want to get home.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous09:21

      Why should we forbid airlines from flying to BEG and paying airport fees?
      Empty planes? Their problem, not ours!

      Delete
    3. Anonymous09:24

      You're very naive if you still think this is "their problem" and not "ours". The fallout from a broken economy affects everyone, including "us".

      Delete
    4. Anonymous09:37

      Anon 09:24
      How allowing Qatar, Fly Dubai, Aegean or easyJet fly to BEG affects us negatively?
      Waiting for your answer and getting ready to LOL!

      Delete
    5. Anonymous10:00

      Still waiting Anon 09:24.
      Please tell us how we are harmed form these and other foreign carriers flying to BEG!

      Delete
    6. They could bring 1000s of infected people to BEG and that could impact whole country huge .

      Delete
  8. Anonymous09:16

    It is obvious they will open the airport between 18th and 30th.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Anonymous09:16

    It seems that they will introduce quick tests at the airport and that you will be tested upon arrival.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:51

      It is stupid to test people twice. They should be tested before boarding. The lack of international cooperation in thus crises is staggering.

      Delete
    2. JATBEGMEL13:38

      DXB has mandatory testing, quick blood test is done, results in around 10 mins and pax are given a medical certificate clearing them for travel. Serbia has been accepting them as valid as of now, and no retesting done upon arrival other than home isolation for 28 days (now 14).

      Delete
    3. Anonymous18:58

      Actually double negative testing is preferred. One test up to 48-72 hours before boarding, one upon arrival. With proliferation of quick testing this is likely to eventually become standard until vacine is widely available.

      Delete
  10. Anonymous09:17

    Zoka...

    ReplyDelete
  11. Anonymous09:48

    How many non-EU airlines fly to Belgrade and how many non-EU destinations Serbia has. Stupid, stupid, stupid.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous16:00

      how many?

      Delete
    2. Anonymous20:29

      There's like a dozen?

      Delete
    3. Anonymous20:32

      Etihad Airways, Flydubai, Qatar Airways, Tunis Air, Aeroflot, Belavia, Turkish Airlines, Air Cairo, Arkia, Israir, Montenegro Airlines, Pegasus, Red Wings and Swiss.

      Delete
    4. JATBEGMEL00:55

      EY/FZ - UAE borders are closed. Only cargo and humanitarian flights allowed. It looks it will stay to at least July. EY keep postponing their flights every few days. FZ have even cancelled repatriation flights due to lack of demand ie ZAG a few days ago.
      SU/WZ - Russias borders are closed.
      TK/PC - Turkeys borders are closed. May 28th is the new date of restarting flights as of now, however it was said previously that domestic ops will start first.
      TU - Tunisias borders are closed.
      IZ/6H - Israels borders are closed. I doubt Israelis will holiday in Serbia while quarantine measures are in place.

      Only airlines that could possibly come, if Serbia reopened its borders tomorrow for example , are QR and B2. However, flights wont go back to normal until more countries start reopening their borders. I hope you dont believe that Serbia had forced all these countries to close their borders for the benefit of JU.

      Delete
  12. Anonymous09:54

    "Serbia’s coronavirus taskforce... said it would review and adopt other measures by May 18 in order to make flying more practical while also containing Covid-19."

    Hopefully this esteemed panel of doctors manage to do it in the next 18 days if they can manage to find the time in their busy schedule of appearing on television, chat shows, newspaper and TV interviews 24 hours a day. I honestly wonder when they find the time to even meet.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Anonymous09:58

    Idiots. Wizz was willing to fly from 1st of May. Why not let them!?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:59

      Because Air Serbia is not willing to fly to London. Get ready for next level protectionism after this blows over.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous10:01

      JU wouldn't like it...

      Delete
    3. Anonymous10:04

      It's the same way Qatar Airways was willing to fly a full A321 on 23 March to bring Serbian people stuck at Doha Airport back to Belgrade. Guess what? Serbian government refused and instead sent Air Serbia to Doha. So they let their own people sleep on the floor at Doha Airport for days, potentially exposing them to the virus just so they would send Air Serbia instead of people coming on a Qatar Airways flight.

      Delete
    4. Anonymous10:30

      @10:04
      +1

      Delete
    5. Anonymous11:06

      Unbelievable!! Blocking W6, blocking QR and I think YM will be next :(

      Delete
    6. Anonymous13:26

      Who would have paid for the QR flight?

      Delete
    7. Anonymous13:31

      No one. It was all ticketed passengers from cancelled QR flights on the 20th (plus passengers booked on 21st). But when half of the ministry of foreign affairs is made up of starlete from Happy TV that is what you get.

      Delete
    8. JATBEGMEL13:35

      @ anon 10,04

      JU picked up those stranded in DOH for free, under the request of the government. It would of made logic to allow QR to just send them, however its not like our government makes rational decisions. This decision hurt more the state budget than JU or competition rights (again, tickets were not sold).

      @anon 9,58
      Fact is, even non EU airports are closed. In the UAE, EK has pushed all flights back to july, EY keeps pushing flights back by 2 weeks, FZ are operating repatriation flights to ex YU region, however all pax must have to be tested in DXB upon check in and be cleared for travel, on top of having approval by the embassy. Turkey is off limits, so is Lebanon and Russia. Wizz may have been ready to start May 1st but so was JU and many others. Borders are closed and that affects all airlines.

      Delete
  14. Anonymous10:11

    Britain desperately needs people to work on their berry fields, RS should allow people go out, they pose no risk if they leave.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous10:26

      are you serious?

      Delete
    2. Anonymous10:27

      Well ironically Eurowings operated special flights to bring seasonal farm workers from Romania to Germany so they can pick fruit. And this was at the height of the coronavirus.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous10:30

      I'm sure it would be much easier for them to import plenty of cheap berry picking workforce from EU countries like Croatia, Romania and Bulgaria, as the UK is still within the transitional EU economic framework. No need to look for berry-pickers outside the block.

      Delete
    4. Anonymous11:09

      Britain got rid of EU citizens because of Brexit immigration and now you are talking about Serbs becoming berry-pickers. Serbs go to Germany and not UK because it has been a gasto country for decades now. It seems that Malta & Slovenija are now becoming hot, gasto destinations too.

      Delete
    5. Anonymous11:47

      It is difficult to receive UK visa that is very expensive for Serbian citizens.

      Seasonal workers for UK can be found in Croatia, Bulgaria and Romania.

      Delete
    6. Anonymous11:55

      Your info is outdated, now Britain wants to attract non-EU migrants from Ukraine, Georgia and co.

      This could generate a lot of traffic for BEG and boost numbers in gloomy times.

      Delete
    7. Anonymous17:51

      It has no logic at all.
      Paying Bulgarian to work in UK costs the same like hiring Serbian or Ukrainisn worker but with Bulgarian or Croatian there are no costs of visa, working permit etc.

      Delete
  15. Anonymous10:33

    As per latest industry statistic, demands for refunds currently stands at 35 BILLION dollars industry wide! Airlines can't support a full refund, they are burning through cash. Air Serbia jumped on the band wagon of generating cash like all the other companies.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Anonymous13:37

    Here is a thought, why don't people just book when the airlines actually start flying. You may pay a bit more , but in the end it will be less headaches.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is a very good thought. But then what would we complain about?

      Delete
  17. Anonymous13:57

    Very stupid, if they dont know yet they shouldnt say anything yet, this is really something else, stupidity with no limits!

    ReplyDelete
  18. JU haters on duty, are wide awake and up and running :)
    Yes, JU will resume flight as soon as other countries have relaxed their travel restrictions and quarantine rules.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous18:49

      Spain is considering completely shutting its borders until the end of October so there will be no MAD nor BCN at least until 2021. If Germany does the same then it will be the end, for sure.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous20:14

      @anon 18:49.
      Could you please provide some link?

      Delete
  19. Anonymous16:15

    It is not possible anymore to purchase tickets for 15.5 on Air Serbia website

    ReplyDelete
  20. Anonymous19:30

    I keep posting essence of this every week or so but histrionics and noise of the many are stupefying. Key numbers regarding the pandemic in most areas of Europe are still not justifying reopening regular flights before late May/early June and projections are being revised on an ongoing basis. There are small pockets where epidemic is all but quashed but airports in major areas like LHR, FRA, MAD, SVO, FCO, CDG etc are not even close to being safe for medium/large scale passenger volumes. In short, forget about many regular flights during May. Interests of corporations and politicians are not always aligned with the consensus of pandemic experts.

    With so many opposing interests it's not easy keeping sane nowadays but keep in mind those projections are based on widely available, published numbers and some simple math. Keep safe and open minded.

    ReplyDelete
  21. Anonymous23:55

    Schengen countries will keep their borders closed for non-EU citizens at least until June 15. French PR Macron publicly insisted that border closure should last until mid-September but some other Schengen countries like Germany and Greece want them opened sooner for different reasons...

    ReplyDelete
  22. It seems like my wife will not be able to fly back from BG to London until June given what Minister Zorana Mihajlovic has said despite Heathrow and Luton continuing to operate. Her announcement does not sound promising. I was hoping she could could fly back on 18 May or shortly after but that seems unlikely now.

    ReplyDelete

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