Air Serbia registers busiest month since December 2019


Air Serbia recorded its busiest month this June since the pre-pandemic December 2019 by handling 170.413 passengers, representing an increase of 68% on May of this year. The airline’s market share at its Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport hub stood at 54.1%. During last month, the Serbian carrier maintained scheduled operations to 39 destinations, with Tivat, Podgorica, Paris, Moscow, Zurich and New York being the busiest. During the second quarter of the year, Air Serbia registered a market share of 52% at Belgrade Airport, up nine points on Q2 2019, which was a record breaker for the Serbian capital in most respects.

Commenting on its recent performance, the airline’s General Manager for Commercial and Strategy, Jiri Marek, said, “The results we accomplished in June are a product of strategic planning, efficient recognition of business opportunities, and a quick reaction to changes within the market. We are pleased the situation is slowly heading in a positive direction and the demand for air transport is constantly increasing”. He added, “As a regional leader, we remain committed to intensifying the volume of air traffic wherever we can, in order to continue to provide strong connections between cities in the region, in Europe, as well as the entire world”.

Air Serbia has continued to strengthen its commercial partnerships with other carriers, which now count 48. After recently concluding a Special Prorate Agreement with Luxair, as well as a deal for business class passengers of Luxembourg’s national carrier to utilise its premium lounge in Belgrade, the Serbian carrier has expanded its codeshare partnership with Turkish Airlines. Air Serbia will now place its designator code and flight numbers onto its Turkish counterpart’s services from Istanbul to Odessa, Kiev, Cairo, Amman and Tel Aviv, as well as on domestic operations in Turkey such as Izmir, Antalya, Bodrum, Ankara, Gazipasa, Adana, Dalaman, Gaziantep, Kayseri, Konya and Trabzon. On the other hand, Turkish Airlines will add its marketing code to Air Serbia flights to Banja Luka and Tivat via Belgrade. “We already have a successful cooperation with Turkish Airlines. We are pleased that by expanding our mutual business relations, we will further contribute to improving and strengthening the cultural and economic ties between our countries. We are happy to be able to provide passengers of both companies with an even more attractive travel offer”, Mr Marek noted. As a result, Turkish Airlines will restore its pre-pandemic frequencies to Belgrade, at two daily flights, from next week.



Comments

  1. Anonymous09:05

    They need an extra plane ASAP.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:52

      Their fleet is starched to the limit.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous17:58

      SOF and BNX had to be moved to 16.00 today because they lacked planes for the proper regional wave. I guess this is all part of their strategic planning.

      Delete
  2. Anonymous09:05

    Good news

    ReplyDelete
  3. Anonymous09:06

    Can someone explain why they restored Barcelona but still haven't resumed Madrid?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:10

      I guess because Barcelona is heavily used by tourists and Serbian tour operators sell the Barcelona flight for tour packages to the Spanish coast.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous09:10

      BCN was first introduced and I suppose it works better for JU.

      It is also closer to BEG as MAD was their farthest European destination.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous09:11

      Seeing as vaccinated Serbian citizens can enter Spain without even a PCR test, it would be nice they bring MAD back.

      Delete
    4. Anonymous09:13

      They simply don't have the aircraft anymore. The MAD rotation isn't so short.

      Delete
    5. Anonymous09:17

      Market is much bigger than MAD. Even Wizz Air considered launching it and I am sure they will next year.

      Delete
    6. Anonymous09:21

      They should also consider Lisbon.

      Delete
    7. Anonymous09:22

      MAD was selling much better than BCN at the time.

      Delete
  4. Anonymous09:08

    There are some really positive developments coming out of JU lately. They are restoring the network and introducing new routes, signing new partnerships, adding aircraft when needed. Good job.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:09

      And recording tens of millions of euros in losses...

      Delete
    2. Anonymous09:11

      Which airlines does not record lossesin these times?

      Delete
    3. Anonymous18:17

      Anon909, try sometimes to say something nice, positive, try not to hate. You'll be amazed how your life will suddenly be much much better. ;-)

      Delete
    4. Anonymous02:02

      Try not to take criticism of JU as a personal attack on you. You'll be amazed at how clearly you will think.

      Delete
    5. Anonymous03:39

      Anon @02:20 stop obsessing about Air Serbia losses and you will have less stress in your life.

      Delete
    6. Anonymous06:53

      Obsessing? Whatever.

      Delete
  5. Anonymous09:09

    Good to see demand returning

    ReplyDelete
  6. Anonymous09:09

    Great to see positive news after so much doom and gloom this last few months. Hope we see them expand even more.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Anonymous09:12

    They really should take the SSJ100s, Russia would give them almost for free, and they REALLY need new planes. Do mind that average consumer doesn't even know the difference between Boeing and Airbus

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:28

      And you are REALLY boring with SSJ100.

      Air Serbia will not buy these planes. Try to live with it.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous09:35

      Absolutely agree with anon 09:12. Sukhoi is the perfect aircraft for ASL. And a good replacement for their current fleet in need of modern aircraft.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous11:10

      Define perfect?

      If we are talking about perfect then A220-100 would be a BETTER option, or E2 or CRJ900... But even those are not perfect :)

      Delete
    4. Anonymous11:41

      Sukhoi is maybe perfect. But in tehnical performance and maintanance I think a220 or crj900 or even e2 are better options.

      Delete
  8. Anonymous09:15

    How can Jiri speak of strategic planning when he returned several planes ahead of the summer season which forced JU to lease a Czech plane for the summer? Also if they were really strategically planning they would make sure they had enough regional planes for the flights they were planning. These days many ATR destinations (ZAG, SOF, PRG...) all got the A319 because ATRs broke down.

    I am happy JU is doing well but let's not kid ourselves. Most of their good results came from markets where they are shielded from competition: Russia, Egypt and Turkey.
    S7, Nordwind and Rossiya all got turned down to add flights to Belgrade. Anadoloujet also wanted to launch charter flights and they were turned down.

    Then we have Crete where Wizz Air and Aegean basically took over the market from JU. Was this also part of strategic planning or the lack of it?

    Effects of their strategic planning will be felt in places like GVA, OSL, FRA, AMS, ATH... where they face direct competition from other airlines.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:19

      It's a PR fluff piece, what else is there to be expected?

      Delete
    2. Anonymous09:21

      They seem to be doing rather well in GVA, OSL and ATH.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous09:29

      What's wrong with AMS?

      They offer weekly more seas than KLM.

      Delete
    4. Anonymous09:31

      They are increasing OSL to 4 weekly and it started with 2 weekly last summer. This is great considering how strict the quarantine measures still are in Norway.

      Delete
    5. Anonymous09:41

      Good to see. Nice to hear OSL performing well too.

      Delete
    6. Anonymous09:42

      Anon 09.29

      Don't forget that KL only launched BEG this year and in an extremely short time went from 3 to 7 weekly flights. They also ignored JU on this market by not signing a codeshare agreement with them. This goes to show that KL will be extremely aggressive on this market and we will have to see how well JU responds.

      As for OSL, DY only returned last week. The jury is still out.

      Delete
    7. Anonymous10:14

      Wizz is also planning on launching Oslo.

      Delete
    8. Anonymous10:19

      But Sandefjord. Quite far away from OSL.

      Delete
    9. Anonymous10:54

      Anon 09:42

      Yes, KLM launched BEG in May this year, but they planned at the beginning to increase frequency to 7 pw. So it was not done based on increased bookings but it is normal procedure for KLM when they open new destination.

      JU had code shate with KLM, but Air Serbia was one who first stopped selling KLM flights on their web site, so the logical reply came from KL.

      Delete
    10. JATBEGMEL12:20

      Wizz announced Oslo 12 months ago and still nothing. JU announced OSL after them, launched the route and doubled frequencies in the mean time.

      JU does codeshare with KLM as JU7636/7637. KLM has been for years codesharing on JU flights.

      FRA and AMS have been slot restricted for years. LH is apparently making a hard time for JU to obtain more slots in FRA.

      ATH has been doing well for JU for years. They've held on to seasonal double daily frequencies almost since rebranding as Air Serbia. They also codeshare with A3.

      GVA has just started. Let's wait and see how it performs. Easyjet is 4 pw currently however JU also has regional connections.

      Fleet was reduced when their aircraft was not even operating 1 flight per day. An A320 was returned as its lease expired, which was one of those overpriced leases from EY. It was replaced with 2 A319's. YU-API will not return, another EY lease. Considering the amount of aircraft that have left, the new destinations added and frequency increases to scheduled routes, only 1 was brought in short term which seems ok. We typically find out in January of the new additions to JU's fleet in preparation for the upcoming summer season.

      JU can't have 100% of market share. Competition is good to force JU to remain competitive.

      Delete
    11. Anonymous13:07

      The A320 was not one of the Etihad leases, it was negotiated and secured by JU.

      Delete
    12. Anonymous13:08

      Btw if you go on klm.com and try to book AMS-BEG, KL doesn't offer nonstop flights on JU, what it does is that it sends you on JU via CDG for a lot of money.

      Delete
    13. Anonymous13:20

      JATBEGMEL
      JU to ATH has 7 weekly flights while A3 has five on the A320. That is what I am talking about. Aegean is putting pressure on them especially with charter flights from RHO and HER.

      Delete
    14. JATBEGMEL13:34

      @ 13,08

      Yes, and its the same when you book via the JU website. Not sure how their agreements work, however JU has been sending pax onto KLM flights via AMS for years. Each have their codes on the other carriers flights.

      @ 13,07

      It was negotiated and secured in the days of EY management. We all know how 'favourable' the lease rates were.

      Delete
    15. JATBEGMEL14:03

      @ 13,20

      JU's typical ATH frequencies are 14 weekly. Just because their frequencies are currently down, it doesn't mean they are losing the 'battle'.

      And what if A3 are putting pressure on JU? They should. JU puts pressure on them too, especially on LJU and ZAG.

      Delete
    16. Anonymous17:59

      If Aegean is back to their pre-pandemic levels but JU isn't then it means that A3 is actually catching up, they are surely not winning the race for the time being.

      Delete
  9. Anonymous09:21

    Nice

    ReplyDelete
  10. Anonymous09:22

    Good news are coming on a daily basis from JU. It is good to see how well they maintain their network and increase frequencies.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Anonymous09:28

    Time for a second A330 to join the fleet.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:31

      Too late for this summer. Maybe next year.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous10:55

      Someone has to be responsible for being too late for this summer.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous10:59

      For the flights to have worked sales should have started last October/November. You know full well what the situation was like then and no one could predict how things would turn out. On top of that demand is far away from recovered. Air Serbia is still operating significantly fewer flights with significantly lower load factor. And the situation could turn in a week.

      Delete
    4. Anonymous11:05

      First boom was experienced around Easter, that's when sales picked up. Unfortunately no one responded to these changes at JU. Do you think July and August charters were arranged in June? No, they were already negotiated in April, May. Egypt has been open for Serbian tourists for a long time now.

      Delete
    5. Anonymous11:08

      How did no one respond when they have been adding flights on an almost weekly basis? Long haul is an extremely expensive excercise. Especially for an airline that lost 80 million last year and has a huge loan to pay off in a month.

      Delete
    6. Anonymous11:12

      Yet that long-haul is bringing in money. Most of their losses are not generated by flights but rather by an overblown workforce.

      Delete
    7. Anonymous11:14

      It took 5 years for long haul to start bringing money and a new long haul route would need a few years to do the same.

      Delete
    8. Anonymous11:45

      Not necessarily. If they launched ORD this year they would have profited from the EU ban in the US.

      Delete
    9. Anonymous13:09

      Too late for ORD now. TK just announced that it is increasing it from 10 to 12 and OS is bringing back the B777 on the route. Both of these airlines are after the same market as JU.

      Delete
    10. JATBEGMEL13:17

      @ 11,12

      Their work force isn't overblown. Going by 2019 numbers, they have amongst the lowest staff count per aircraft in the Balkans. A3 has a lower staff count, but the difference isn't too drastic.

      Overinflated lease rates compliments of EY was a bigger problem.

      @ 11,45

      Launching a route isn't for free. You dont just announce 'I will fly here' and magically money starts appearing.

      Just to take another A330 requires an additional $220.000+ per month in lease rates, plus acquisition costs, livery painting, interior fitting, onboard equipment.

      Crew need to be hired for the new route (typically 12 crew per A330 flight). New crew need to be trained. A330 training is not done in Serbia, so crew need to have their travel expenses paid for, as well as training. A contract with a hotel needs to be organised for the new route, where crew will remain on the layover. For US & Canada, JU also need to organise visa's for the crew.

      You also need to market the new route. Advertising can be expensive. Airlines typically announce long haul routes several months in advance, AC announced ZAG 12 months in advance.

      This is in short some things JU would need to do for another long haul route. For a cashless airline that officially lost around 80 million euros last year, with another EY loan due soon and shortages in their short and medium haul fleet, one can imagine A330's are not a priority at the moment.

      Delete
    11. Anonymous13:21

      Yes but such circumstances won't ever come back. That's why they did so well in JFK. It's a missed opportunity for JU.

      Delete
    12. JATBEGMEL14:23

      Pre pandemic travel will not return for the next few years.

      JFK did well precisely because they didn't have to invest in it.

      JU's finances are non existant. With what money do you suggest they use for another long haul route?

      Delete
    13. Anonymous16:28

      Myth busting:

      "For the flights to have worked sales should have started last October/November. You know full well what the situation was like then and no one could predict how things would turn out."

      Myth. UA and DL announced DBV on a very short notice, not last Oct. JU could have done the similar yet they decided to ignore long haul expansion.

      "On top of that demand is far away from recovered. Air Serbia is still operating significantly fewer flights with significantly lower load factor"

      Myth. Air Serbia JFK flights are busy despite it. They had sufficient regional feed for JFK and that feed would also work for another long haul destination.

      "Just to take another A330 requires an additional $220.000+ per month in lease rates, plus acquisition costs, livery painting, interior fitting, onboard equipment."

      True but it's an argument for not against long haul. Air Serbia used to pay $500k for their first A330. Now we hear that $220k is too much? No, it' a great deal! Air Serbia could have done a deal for two A330 for less than one A330 they had.

      "It took 5 years for long haul to start bringing money and a new long haul route would need a few years to do the same."

      This one is true. They should have started this year to be able to enjoy benefits in the future.

      The more we hear about JU's efforts with charters and regional flights, the harder JU is trying to keep our attention from the fact they failed at long haul expansion.

      Delete
    14. Anonymous16:31

      You can't compare the UA/DL flights. These are 3 month tourist flights which at the time they were put on sale was the one of the few European countries Americans to enter. No to mention DBV is a world known tourist destination.

      Delete
    15. Anonymous16:45

      Everything can be compared. Argument that long haul flights have to be announced 9-12 months ahead have proven wrong. Argument that no one could have predicted how things would turn out have been proven as irrelevant for long haul expansion. On top of that, Air Serbia could have used second A330 on flights to MOW, charters to Egypt, flights to TGD etc on top of second long haul destination. Second A330 would have given them much more flexibility. Defending JU decision not to expand long haul is just wrong.

      Delete
    16. Anonymous17:47

      Another 330 to Moscow...what for? they barely can fill a 319/320 on this route. Planes to SVO are packed but on Aeroflot not on JU.

      Delete
    17. JATBEGMEL17:55

      @ myth buster

      1. True. JFK was announced 4 months prior to launch.

      2. JFK does well. That doesn't mean it's the same for the whole network.

      3. Replacing ARA for ARB was a cost cutting initiative. As explained in that exact comment that you chose to selectively read, you don't point fingers at a map and say I will fly hear and magically money appears. JU has invested millions the past 5 years into JFK at a time when their finances were significantly better. Their loss grew by over 750% last year.

      4. Homeless people with no money don't shop in Hermes or Louis Vitton because they might be millionaires one day. It doesn't work like that. You need money to buy things, surprisingly enough. Serbian Government cannot choose how much money it pumps into JU.

      5. You need to start something to fail at it. They haven't tried to expand long haul thus they haven't failed at it.

      @ 16,45

      Additional A319's would have given them better flexibility, not an A330.

      Delete
    18. Anonymous19:03

      Every airline had a loss last year and will use loans and government help. Air Serbia will need another A330 for flights to China next year anyway. They failed at seizing opportunity this year. Next couple of years will show magnitude of this failure.

      Delete
    19. Anonymous19:05

      China is closed to foreigners and Chinese citizens living in China are not allowed to travel internationally. So who do you expect for them to carry this summer?

      Delete
    20. Anonymous19:53

      Belgrade to ORD and YYZ would serve same profile of people as on BEG-JFK. Mostly diaspora from Serbia, Albania/Montenegro/N.Macedonia, Greece and the rest of Balkans etc. It's too late now to start this summer and AC/UA/AA will likely deny JU any chance to start those routes in the coming years.

      Delete
    21. Anonymous02:14

      There is at least 200000-300000 diaspora in Toronto region and same if not more in Chicagoland.

      Delete
  12. Yes a 2nd A330 should join.. start other USA markets and Toronto, Asia expansion.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Anonymous09:38

    Charters have been Air Serbia's saving grace this summer.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:41

      This is the best way to make money.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous09:53

      As they managed to get charters to pre-pandemic levels, lets see how fast they can restore regular flights.

      Delete
  14. Anonymous09:39

    Good to see Air Serbia reacted on that increased demand.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Anonymous09:41

    It just shows the market will recover much faster than some expected.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Anonymous09:41

    Congratulations.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Anonymous09:42

    Will they be leasing any more aircraft besides the Smartwings 737?

    ReplyDelete
  18. Anonymous09:42

    Fantastic to read some good news :)

    ReplyDelete
  19. Anonymous09:42

    It's going to get even more busier

    ReplyDelete
  20. Anonymous09:43

    Wondering how many passengers BEG will manage this year considering the entire situation.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:48

      That is very difficult to predict. It depends what happens with the epidemiological situation, the travel bans and so on.

      Delete
  21. Anonymous10:02

    What is the average load factor?

    ReplyDelete
  22. Anonymous10:03

    Loads are solid and things are returning to normal

    ReplyDelete
  23. Anonymous10:03

    Good to see New York among top performing routes.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous10:09

      It's been like that for a while.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous15:43

      I have a question, if someone could explain to me. If JFK route is in such demand and so profitable, how come none of US carriers have decided to launch direct flights to BEG. I'm certain that they keep their eyes open on all opportunities and if they'd see a chance in making any money on this routw they would grab it for sure. Something not adding up here...

      Delete
    3. Anonymous15:47

      US carriers have extremeley small coverege in Europe.

      Delete
    4. Anonymous15:47

      I fly regularly between BEG and JFK with Air Serbia. Flights really are full. But I guess everyone is lying and its a major conspiricy.

      Delete
    5. Anonymous15:50

      Well those are answers in style:
      Q: Why
      A: Because.
      I guess this answers my question actually. Thanks.

      Delete
    6. Anonymous 15:43,the answer is simple. Because Belgrade is not a tourist destination. It's not let's say like Athens with three American carriers and one from Dubai for the summer season.

      Delete
  24. Anonymous10:03

    This is a great result. I expect July will perform even better.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous10:05

      Yes, especially since the EU ban was lifted in middle of June.

      Delete
  25. Anonymous10:06

    Could we see any more new routes?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous10:11

      If an opportunity presents itself I'm sure they will.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous10:38

      They already launched 3 new ones in the last year.

      Delete
  26. Anonymous10:11

    Montenegro Airlines' bankruptcy certainly helped.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous10:28

      On the Montenegro-Serbia flights they certainly did.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous13:57

      And others.

      Delete
  27. Anonymous10:25

    That is a really good news that something is getting back to normal. But then reading a statement from Mr. Marek, that product of strategic planning is to fly to Tivat, Antalya and Hurghada in summer is really a big question mark, how Air Serbia is managed, and where will end

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous10:38

      Where did he mention that?

      Delete
  28. Anonymous10:36

    Keep up the good work

    ReplyDelete
  29. Anonymous10:38

    Them codesharing with TK to Amman and Cairo does not bode well that these flights will come back in my opinion.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous10:40

      They never flew to Amman

      Delete
    2. Anonymous10:41

      They were planning to launch it.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous11:00

      They announced AMM for summer 2020.

      Delete
    4. JATBEGMEL12:43

      @10,38

      They also codeshare with TK to IST. Do you think JU will not return to IST as well?

      Delete
    5. Anonymous13:10

      Hopefully they survive in IST. Just a month ago they sent the ATR when TK was boosting it to A333 and A321. Pegasus is also doing really well but they can't add more flights due to the bilateral.

      Delete
  30. Toronto please! Asap

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous02:18

      Sounds like yous may be from Toronto. How much would yous be willing to pay for return ticket in summer season?

      Delete
    2. Anonymous03:09

      For a nonstop at least 10% premium over connecting flight for the same class, baggage allowance etc. Could be more based on frequency, departure/arrival times, other service, type of aircraft etc.

      Delete

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