Air Serbia sees glimmers of recovery as operations grow


Air Serbia is beginning to increase its operations and continues to rebuild its network after recovery efforts stalled in July and the first half of August. According to the European air service provider Eurocontrol, Air Serbia saw its operations grow 8% at the end of last week compared to late August, with the airline restoring flights to Podgorica, Tivat and Brussels over the past few weeks. Furthermore, as of yesterday, the carrier doubled its operations to Zurich to two daily flights after Switzerland lifted quarantine requirements for incoming passengers from Serbia. In addition, the airline has increased capacity on select routes such as Tivat and Tirana and ramped up charter flights to Turkey due to growing demand.

Travel restrictions remain an obstacle for the carrier as the majority of European Union member states, in most cases, do not permit Serbian nationals from entering their country. However, there is growing indication the bloc will advise its members to reopen their borders for Serbian citizens at a meeting on September 15. Although each country makes its own final decision on entry requirements, the advisory has a significant impact on member states. In the coming weeks, Montenegro is also expected to lift its requirement for all passengers from Serbia to be in possession of a negative PCR coronavirus test, which would further boost travel between the two countries.

Air Serbia currently maintains scheduled flights to thirty destinations from Belgrade and four from Niš. It plans to increase frequencies to Istanbul to daily from September 19, outstripping the number of flights operated on the route prior to the coronavirus pandemic. It will also resume services to Rome and Milan from September 25, although changes remain possible. The carrier has said, “We continue to closely monitor developments and will constantly adjust operations to possible changes in travel restrictions and demand”. According to Serbian travel agents, the strongest demand is currently being registered for flights to New York. Air Serbia also recently said that the Big Apple and Zurich are its two most successful routes at the moment. As a result, Air Serbia will be boosting frequencies to New York next month.

Comments

  1. Anonymous09:03

    Good to see slowly some positive developments.

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  2. Anonymous09:03

    Them flying to 30 destinations from BEG in these circumstances is not bad at all.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:07

      Agree. I''m quite surprised.

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    2. Anonymous09:09

      From BEG they fly at the moment: Amsterdam, Athens, Banja Luka, Berlin, Brussels, Copenhagen, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Istanbul, Larnaca, Ljubljana, London Heathrow, New York JFK, Oslo, Paris, Podgorica, Prague, Sarajevo, Skopje, Sofia, Stockholm, Stuttgart, Thessaloniki, Tirana, Tivat, Vienna, Zagreb, Zürich, Dubrovnik, Split.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous09:23

      Well done JU!

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    4. Anonymous09:51

      What matters is that a total collapse of air traffic was avoided. Kudos to all parties involved.

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    5. Anonymous10:08

      Considering the situation, we should be happy with this

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    6. Anonymous11:24

      I for one am happy.

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    7. JATBEGMEL15:22

      I was saying in another article several days ago that, while some airlines will take a few years to recover, JU could possibly be back to 2019 capacity as early as next summer.

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    8. Anonymous17:05

      Well that is one of the good things at smaller airlines. JU, OU and YM will recover faster then LH, LO or TK.

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    9. Anonymous17:06

      I wonder if the new routes they had planned for this year will ever launch in the future.

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    10. Anonymous19:04

      Some probably will

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  3. Anonymous09:05

    I wonder if this winter we night see JU add a morning or an evening departure to Istanbul. This would be mostly for locals than tourists. Demand seems to be growing by the day.

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    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:10

      I see that the A320 is scheduled to Istanbul today again. Loads must be fantastic.

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    2. Anonymous09:15

      Such great news that Serbs and Turks remained reasonable in this whole messy situation. This can be fantastic news for local economy especially hotels in Belgrade which suffered greatly.

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    3. Anonymous09:17

      There is no IST JU flight today and the 320 is going to SVO on a charter.

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    4. Anonymous09:19

      I think they were referring to tomorrow's flight
      Istanbul Airport JU 803 A320 17:20 Air Serbia

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    5. Anonymous09:47

      Yes, tomorrow, sorry.

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  4. Anonymous09:18

    Not surprised about New York. My friend is moving back to France this month. He told me that people are leaving the city in masses every year because of high taxes or moving to other sunnier states. That said, JU will benefit quite a lot bringing people back to not only France but other Europeans too. The trend is likely to continue even during the winter as this downtrend has been ongoing for a number of years.
    The odds of a pandemic and the strange fate of the Big Apple, which JU will benefit quite a lot...

    https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/news/residents-leaving-new-york-city-in-droves-moving-companies-report

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  5. Anonymous09:21

    The flights from New York are currently packed.

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    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:23

      Tomorrow, there are only 2 seats left in economy.

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    2. Anonymous09:27

      Saturday flights to New York are always the busiest. Almost always sold out. For this Saturday there are just 5 seats left in economy and 1 in business. And it will be sold by then.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous09:32

      Nice

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    4. Anonymous09:46

      FInally JFK pays off.

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    5. Anonymous09:47

      I am surprised they didn't increase it.

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    6. Anonymous09:49

      They already fly it 4 times per week...

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    7. Is everybody here work in Air Serbia and know all this information?!!

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    8. Anonymous09:53

      O think he meant five

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    9. Anonymous09:54

      You don't have to work in Air Serbia to know that information. You can work in a travel agent. You can even look at their site.

      Delete
    10. Anonymous10:21

      Well here we go. They are increasing New York next month :)
      https://www.exyuaviation.com/2020/09/air-serbia-further-boosts-new-york.html

      Delete
    11. Anonymous10:39

      Let's nag and bitch about them not increasing something else, maybe it works like it did for JFK :D

      Delete
  6. Anonymous09:22

    Vindication for JFK service. Finally being the top route of the network.

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  7. Anonymous09:32

    What are the routes that still haven't resumed? And I'm not talking about the ones that they said the won't restart.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:35

      Moscow, Krasnodar, Rome, Milan, Venice, Barcelona and Bucharest.

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    2. Anonymous10:10

      Moscow and Krasnodar resume on October 27, Milan and Rome on September 25, Bucharest on October 1.

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    3. Anonymous11:13

      Anon 10:10 Moscow resumed already 4 times but in reality it didn't resume so do not bet on Oct 25-27th resumption either.

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    4. Anonymous11:16

      It's not related to Air Serbia. No foreign airlines are currently allowed into Moscow.

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    5. Anonymous11:25

      Kiev.

      Delete
    6. Anonymous11:28

      Kiev was already announced as suspended until next summer season.

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    7. Anonymous12:34

      With Sky Up being the new sheriff on the UA-RS market I don't see them coming back.

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    8. Anonymous13:10

      JU was carrying transfers.

      Air Serbia should launch LWO.

      Delete
  8. Anonymous09:36

    Let's hope the EU borders are reopened next week and they can spread their wings further.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Anonymous09:38

    They plan to resume Italy flights on 25th of September. There is currently a flight ban for flights from Western Balkans to Italy. What I don't understand is how is Montenegro Airlines operating a one weekly flight to Rome even with the flight ban?

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    Replies
    1. Anonymous10:09

      Noticed that too and not sure how they are operating those flights.

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    2. Anonymous11:28

      They probably got a special permit of some kind. Unless they schedule it as a charter every week

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    3. Anonymous11:32

      They operated just one flight to Rome and they got special permission for it (it was most probably organized for the elections). There are no longer MGX flights to Rome.

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    4. Anonymous19:06

      Ah ok makes sense now.

      Delete
  10. Anonymous09:40

    The charters to Antalya and Hurghada must be helping them somewhat.

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    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:48

      Bodrum as well there are days with three flights

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    2. Jatovac10:25

      I am just surprised they do not fly DLM. It is also a big touristic area. BJV and AYT flights are packed for sure, a good thing in today aviation

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    3. Anonymous10:27

      It's not up to them but Serbian tour operators. I'm guessing they don't have any deals with hotels.

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    4. Jatovac11:08

      yeah, I know, and that is interesting, that they do not have any deals. But i do not know if there were DLM flights las year, I know there were 2 years ago

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    5. Anonymous11:17

      Those are the more affordable destinations. Something like Chalkidiki and Kusadasi or Monastir.

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    6. Anonymous11:28

      They had Dalaman flights last year, not many but a few each week.

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    7. Anonymous11:30

      These things change. I remember once upon a time Sharm el Sheikh and Monastir used to be the most popular tourist destinations but not anymore. Aqaba also used to be a popular charter destinations but I don't think there have been any flights to there in years.

      Delete
    8. Anonymous12:34

      I think RJ flew to Aqaba in 2004 for one season and that was about it. It was an early morning arrival, at around 04.30.

      Delete
    9. Anonymous12:37

      Jat Airways flew to Aqaba afterwards. Until 2011 or 2012.

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    10. JATBEGMEL15:00

      I think Aviogenex also flew to Aqaba.

      Delete
    11. Anonymous17:03

      Why are there no charters from INI with JU?

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    12. Anonymous19:09

      Because there is not enough demand to fill a plane from Nis to a charter destination. Or the risk is too great for local tour operators to pre purchase a certain number of seats on each flight.

      Delete
    13. Anonymous06:46

      Plus northern Greece is very close so most end up going there. INI has TIV which basically carries the same kind of clientele a charter flight would. It was reported yesterday that Budva is saved by tourists from Serbia and Srpska. Such a shame that the ban wasn't lifted earlier.

      Delete
  11. Anonymous09:41

    This is good as it shows that JU is not sleeping despite all the challanges.

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    Replies
    1. Anonymous18:56

      They have been very proactive in the last year or so in responding to market conditions and competition.

      Delete
  12. Anonymous09:41

    Maybe it wouldn't be such a bad idea for them to launch Munich.

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    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:44

      I doubt they could compete against LH.

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    2. Anonymous09:49

      Interestingly enough, today is the first time after covid started that LH is sending A319 from MUC.

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    3. Anonymous09:50

      ^ What were they sending up to now?

      Delete
    4. Anonymous09:53

      CRJ

      Delete
    5. Anonymous09:54

      Good upgrade then

      Delete
    6. JATBEGMEL11:05

      I also think they should retry MUC, especially now LH is down on frequencies.

      Delete
    7. Anonymous17:08

      I never understood why JU did not launch flights to MUC. Currently all flights from MUC to the region are operated by Star Alliance or LH group.

      Delete
  13. Anonymous09:44

    Good news

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  14. Anonymous09:44

    Good to see some growth but it's a drop in the ocean.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:47

      Of course it's a drop in the ocean. But this is a comparison to what we had a few weeks ago. Comparing to last year makes no sense at the moment.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous09:49

      8% growth at JU is not really a drop but rather a step in the right direction.

      Delete
  15. Anonymous09:45

    What is Air Serbia's largest market?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:46

      Zurich

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    2. Anonymous09:47

      Switzerland without doubt.

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    3. Anonymous10:40

      I would say Germany does the best for them when you factor in all the destinations they fly to.

      Delete
  16. Anonymous09:46

    increase JFK if it's going so well.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:47

      They are flying 4 times per week at the moment.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous10:22

      They are increasing it next month
      https://www.exyuaviation.com/2020/09/air-serbia-further-boosts-new-york.html

      Delete
    3. Anonymous23:34

      Fantastic news

      Delete
  17. Anonymous10:08

    Congratulations

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  18. Anonymous10:09

    It's good to see some growth. I hope that by the start of winter more routes can be reestablished.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Anonymous10:19

    JU flights to Istanbul even has more capacity now compared to before pandemic when you consider JU sends A320 recently. Before it was just A319 daily.

    And Pegasus sends A321NEO today.

    TK last week sent A330 and apart from that, always sends A321 or A321Neo.

    Istanbul must have the highest capacity out of Belgrade by far.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous10:25

      Nice

      Delete
    2. Anonymous11:29

      Serbia should give Pegasus daily flights as we can only profit from more Turkish tourists.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous06:48

      Luckily they can send the A321neo which has 239 seats! Like that they have enough seats to compensate for one weekly flight. I still think they should be allowed daily flights to BEG.

      Delete
  20. Anonymous10:52

    I think the situation will improve this and next month.

    https://www.blic.rs/vesti/drustvo/srbi-se-masovno-spremaju-za-letovanje-u-septembru-ali-bi-trebalo-da-znaju-da-korona/w057q48

    ReplyDelete
  21. Anonymous12:37

    And in the mean time, Slovenia without a national carrier, has less and less connections. Well done!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous23:33

      National carrier brings its benefits but each market is specific.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous08:06

      So what you're saying is, Slovenia doesn't have a market, yet some would be more than happy to heavily subsidise foreign carriers but not a national carrier? Where's the logic in that?

      Delete
  22. Anonymous13:55

    I just noticed that Pegasus will send the A321neo on the next flight on Thursday as well. I hope JU adds more flights as demand seems to be booming right now.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous15:08

      Thursday, Friday and Sunday actually.

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    2. Anonymous16:08

      There were 2 A321NEO's in BEG today and it belongs to TK and Pegasus.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous23:33

      Nice

      Delete
  23. Anonymous18:58

    Since Zurich is performing well why not go ahead and launch Geneva as planned. Might be good, especially now when Easyjet will be temporarily suspending flights.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous19:04

      But if easyjet can't make it work with diminished demand at the moment, how will JU?

      Delete
    2. Anonymous20:53

      With transfer pax.

      Delete

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