Air Serbia completes turboprop fleet renewal and expansion


Air Serbia is set to take delivery of its tenth and last ATR72-600 aircraft, which was recently painted in the carrier’s livery in Toulouse. The eight-year-old frame previously operated for Azul and TAP Air Portugal. It has been registered YU-ASC. It marks the completion of Air Serbia’s drive to refleet and expand its turboprop fleet, a process it began in 2022. It previously operated three ATR72-200s and three ATR72-500s, most of which were almost thirty years old and delivered new to the carrier’s predecessor JAT Yugoslav Airlines. The average age of Air Serbia’s ATR72-600 fleet is now eight years. As EX-YU Aviation News learns, the airline will utilise two ATRs during the peak summer months as back-up to avoid operational disruptions, and, as a result will not immediately use the extra capacity to grow its network.

YU-ASC



Air Serbia’s CEO, Jiri Marek, previously said that a ten-member ATR fleet would suit the carrier’s needs. “The optimal size of the [ATR72 fleet] I would say is ten because then you can start benefiting from some economies of scale”, Mr Marek said. The airline is looking into potentially introducing business class on its ATR aircraft. The plane manufacturer presented its X-Space Table seating concept in 2022. ATR describes X-Space as a “plug and play” solution that allows airlines to convert double seats into premium seats, with the seatback and armrest on one side removed and replaced with a side table. Similar to Eurobusiness-style seats, where the central seat in a row of three aboard a narrow-body is not sold to provide more space, X-Space will allow ATR operators to offer a 1-1 layout in support of a premium class configuration. Air Serbia is considering becoming the launch customer for the seat. “This is an idea we strongly believe we have the business segment for. We are looking into it, but much depends on the progress of the project. A lot of these projects are presented now but will take time to develop”, Mr Marek said.

Since the Serbian carrier owns some of the ATR aircraft it has retired, the company studied the possibility of entering the freighter market and using the planes for cargo flights. However, those plans have been put on hold with passenger to freighter conversion slots being sparse. The carrier has also previously floated the idea of a naming concept for the ATR fleet, which would be related to the country’s geography rather than personalities, as featured on some of its Airbus jets. The carrier now moves its focus onto taking delivery of its first two Embraer E195 aircraft, as well as an additional two Airbus A330-200 jets.


Comments

  1. Anonymous09:01

    Congratulations

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous22:31

      Finally Aus Serbia reach good number of Atr-s. They should increase frequencies on some regional routes such as Banja Luka

      Delete
    2. Anonymous22:33

      When Ryanair and Lauda can fill A320 to Vienna 5 per week and 737-800 to Memmingen 7-10 Times per week, Air Serbia should start with daily flights to Banja Luka

      Delete
  2. Anonymous09:01

    Are two ATRs really necessary for back up?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:02

      For this summer I mean

      Delete
    2. Anonymous09:10

      No they are not since they are not being fully used while leases have to be paid. JU lacks pilots that's why.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous09:10

      Definitely two backups are way too much

      Delete
    4. Anonymous09:15

      I gues they do not have crew for theese 2 aditional aircrafts. Also, it is good to have at least one spare aircraft in top season, in order to avoid cancelations...

      Delete
    5. Anonymous09:41

      The problem is that not too many young pilots want to fly ATRs or any prop aircraft for that matter.
      Pay is lower than jet aircraft pilots, the demand from airlines is huge all over the world and so they choose Airbus and Boeing aircraft.

      Delete
    6. Anonymous09:50

      Yes, sure… they leased aircrafts without pilots prepared

      Delete
    7. Anonymous09:57

      Pilots left after the leases were signed. Why do you think they have 4 spare aircraft. Even with 3 spare now they still have delays. Marek failed once again.

      Delete
    8. Anonymous10:28

      “Marek failed once again” indictes either your geographical location or your political party conviction. Marek brought in a renaissance to JU, and that’s where the core issue of your so called observation lies.

      Delete
    9. Anonymous10:35

      Hahahahahaha Renaissance to JU? Are you for real? Pass whatever you are smoking so that we can enjoy it as well.
      Marek's time at AS is famous for people leaving in large number and all of his big projects failing. Where is MRO, where is JV with other airlines, why isn't the app working correctly, why does he have 4 planes parked in busy summer months, why he has spare planes and still delays?

      Delete
    10. Anonymous10:39

      As long as the net profit and number of passengers continues to soar each year, I’d leave the way he achieves those targets to the expert himself and not a layman like yourself.

      Hahahahahaha!

      Delete
    11. Anonymous10:45

      You seem to have a personal issue with him. Probably disgruntled ex- employee. It would also be nice if you didn't turn an entire topic about fleet renewal into your personal vendetta.

      Delete
    12. Poenta obnove i rasta flote je da oni budu stvarni rezultati. Osim prihoda za bogaćenje menadžmenta, napredak na drugim mestima nije primećen. Odlično je što sada ima 10 ATR-a i oni su mladi i novi. ali ako i dalje ima kašnjenja i nema značajnijeg povećanja frekvencije do regionalnih destinacija, kao što je drugi dan za Sarajevo. malo je za aplaudirati za novi dodatak.

      Delete
    13. Anonymous12:56

      @anon 10:39… couldn’t have said it better myself. Always some conspiracies on here and we constantly hear the same people screaming about JU’s demise ‘any day’. For the country size, the achievement thus far is commendable. Pilots and staff always leave, and new ones arrive, it’s the circle of aviation life.

      Delete
    14. Anonymous12:57

      Hahh do not listen to Anonymous10:35, his typical hate for JU. We hardly had anyone left the company. Actually more people joined us and we are expecting bunch to comeback this summer from maternity leave.

      Delete
  3. Anonymous09:04

    I must say they replaced their ATR fleet relatively quickly, and expanded too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous12:50

      +1

      Delete
    2. Anonymous14:33

      Indeed, not a small task for any airline!

      Delete
  4. Anonymous09:04

    Would have been interesting to see those ATRs turned into freighters.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Anonymous09:05

    What a waste of money for a Airline to have two Aircraft just sitting there doing nothing.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:08

      If they survived when YU-ARA was sitting every single winter except for two days, they'll be fine.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous09:09

      There was an article here where Marek said they would have several aircraft as back up and that it will impact their bottom line but that they can't have operational disruptions like last summer.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous09:10

      They also have two A319 as back up. Very poor planning

      Delete
    4. Anonymous09:13

      ^ Why is it poor planning? They planned it that way. Last year you were complaining about delays and how when one aircraft goes tech their entire network falls apart. Now you are complaining why they have planned buffers to prevent that scenario.

      Delete
    5. Anonymous09:17

      Well delays are still very common, it's good that they have some spare aircraft, but something's still going wrong there

      Delete
    6. Anonymous09:18

      Well they don't have the spare aircraft yet. They will have them from mid-June.

      Delete
    7. Anonymous09:58

      They have 1 ATR and 2 A319 as spare right now and they still have delays.

      Delete
  6. Anonymous09:08

    Finally

    ReplyDelete
  7. Anonymous09:10

    Great news. Flew recently with the ATR72-600 and it can't be compared to the dinosaurs from before.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Anonymous09:13

    The only bad thing is that the number of seats on this aircraft type is not the same, they should've searched only 72-seaters

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:15

      What are the different configurations?

      Delete
    2. Anonymous09:22

      Some of them have 70 seats because of only 2 seats in last row, also not sure if some have a row less / 68 seats.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous09:44

      Oh i see, didn't know, Thanks

      Delete
    4. Anonymous09:53

      No, only 3 recent have 70 seats. Older ones have 72 seats all

      Delete
  9. Anonymous09:16

    X-Space Table seating concept looks like a very good solution for premium seating in ATRs - otherwise it makes no sense to offer premium class in such an aircraft where there is so little space.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:17

      I believe it is because of transfer passengers. Many flying, especially on A330s in business and connecting onto regional flights can't continue in business. As their A330 fleet is growing, there will be more premium passengers.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous09:27

      Good that they're evaluating business class, but ATR is simply not business class friendly even if they install new seat concept. Like, how will one get a business experience if you have to board a plane via bus.
      If someone's is willing to pay double the price or even more on ATR, then good luck JU!

      Delete
    3. Anonymous09:32

      Aegean disagrees, you board/deboard as business pax by a bus very often at ATH. They just set aside a bus for business pax only, so you're not in a crowded place.

      Delete
    4. Anonymous09:33

      Umm, many airlines use busses to get people to planes. Gulf carriers which have some of the best premium cabins in the world heavily use busses to get people to their aircraft.

      Delete
    5. Anonymous10:46

      @09:32 but there's no way that business pax will get their own bus to board an ATR

      Delete
    6. Vlad10:58

      Business pax board the same bus as everyone else across most European airlines.

      Delete
    7. Anonymous15:38

      Deboard? Interesting.

      Delete
    8. Anonymous17:16

      Flown Swiss business before and they usually have the business passengers go first on the jetbridge or bus, then have the other passengers go after

      Delete
  10. Anonymous09:25

    I quite like the idea of backup aircraft, especially as everyone complained about delays last year.
    The hope here is that they'll use 2024 as a year where they normalize the operations and then expand in 2025, use 2026 to normalize that schedule and expand again in 2027

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:59

      Are you aware they still have big delays so spare planes are not a problem

      Delete
    2. Anonymous11:25

      No they don’t have big delays. Not more than usual 5-10% for every airline

      Delete
  11. Anonymous09:25

    Comfortable cabin, much quieter. Great overall.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Anonymous09:26

    Are there any plans to add more ATRs into the fleet in the future?

    ReplyDelete
  13. Anonymous09:39

    Finally. Should have been done a decade ago.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Anonymous09:39

    How much do brand new ATRs cost? The ATR72-600?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:43

      These things change and vary based on numerous things but the -600 list price is $26.8M

      Delete
    2. Anonymous09:53

      Google is your friend!

      Delete
    3. Anonymous09:59

      Just answer the man if you have the answer.

      Delete
    4. Anonymous13:44

      👍.

      Delete
  15. Anonymous09:46

    They finally have a respectable fleet of ATR's

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous02:06

      Yes 10 props is not bad

      Delete
  16. Anonymous09:53

    Good but I believe they also need to expand Airbus fleet.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:54

      They need to get rid of most A319s, replace some of them with A320s but most with Embraers.

      Delete
  17. Anonymous09:53

    How many planes do they have now?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous09:58

      25:
      ATR: 10
      A319: 10
      A320: 3
      A330: 2

      Orders:
      A330: 2
      E195: 2

      So at the end of the summer they will have at least 29 of them, all in YU registry.

      They also have
      2 A320 on long term wet lease (summer+winter)
      1-2 E190 on long term wet lease (there is more and more talk about E190 staying in the fleet long term)

      No idea about summer only wet leases, apart from 2 more A320 from GetJet (in addition to the 2 on long term wet lease) and 1 from Bulgarian ACMI provider

      Delete
    2. Anonymous16:56

      Two Boeing 737 are flying again.

      Delete
  18. Anonymous09:54

    Is this aircraft somewhat unreliable since they need 2 of them as spare? I realize in the past they were older birds therefore subject to more maintenance but now that the fleet has been renewed that should not be the case anymore.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous10:00

      Not enough crew to operate

      Delete
    2. Anonymous13:50

      From where you got info that there are two backups?

      Delete
    3. Anonymous13:52

      ^ Maybe read the article?

      Delete
    4. Anonymous16:11

      Sorry, someone mentioned also 2 a319 as backup

      Delete
  19. Anonymous10:08

    I wonder why they wouldn't use those old ATR's in Kraljevo or Nis?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous10:11

      They are too costly to operate plus require constant supervision from someone in maintenance.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous13:43

      Could they be converted to cargo?

      Delete
    3. For Kraljevo there is the added problem that they can't refuel there. So operations would be strange.

      Delete
  20. Anonymous10:11

    I'm nervous about their plane naming :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous10:21

      Considering they announced it over a year ago and it still hasn't happened, it probaly won't.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous11:34

      It’s definitely studpid paying lease and keeping the plane on the ground, except if lease is paid by usage hours.
      Normally, for unplanned maintenance, companies use short term wet leases, but situation with ACMI providers is very bad due to lack of airplanes across the Europe (mainly PW engine problems). So maybe this season is not that stupid having a backup plane.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous13:43

      They should rent it ACMI to Wizz Air so they can start flying from ZAG.

      Delete
    4. Anonymous13:46

      Anon 11:34 ... you definitely disagree with yourself :) :) :)

      Delete
  21. Anonymous10:21

    Great news!

    ReplyDelete
  22. Anonymous10:22

    Why doesn't Air Serbia have ATR-42 in their fleet?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous10:24

      Because they do not need them.

      Delete
    2. Anonymous10:37

      They can't get them because they can't find enough pilots and crew to fly the ATRS they have now.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous02:06

      ^ Lol, they never even considered ATR42s.

      Delete
  23. Anonymous11:24

    Last year we got informed it's stupid for an airline to have backup plane, I'm wondering what changed?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous11:25

      And now people like yourself who said it was necessary are claiming it's stupid. I'm wondering what changed?

      Delete
    2. Anonymous13:22

      @11:25
      +1000

      Delete
    3. Anonymous14:19

      No, I think it's smart, but I was also thinking that last year too.

      Delete
  24. Anonymous12:49

    Would love to see Air Serbia Cargo logo on the ATR72s :D

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous12:49

      http://92.249.52.115/img/logo/ASL_Cargo_Logo.svg

      Delete
    2. Anonymous13:42

      I don't know what they are waiting for it. Cargo at BEG is abysmal.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous13:45

      ^ it has the most cargo out of all other ex-Yu airports.

      Delete
  25. Anonymous12:50

    Good. No more wet leases for tubroprops.

    ReplyDelete
  26. Miroslav NY13:51

    Some people will absolutely pay double to fly first class on the ATR. It's not a lot of money if you have money. And for many people 300 or 400 euros for a one or two hour plane ride is absolutely affordable.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous14:50

      Sorry but I think it's gonna be the first and the last european airline who will put business class in ATR !

      Delete
    2. Anonymous14:53

      TAROM and Iberia Regional/Air Nostrum have business class on ATR72.

      Delete
    3. Anonymous08:45

      CSA also had business class on their ATR72 in the past. LOT still has it on their Q400.

      https://www.lot.com/de/de/explore/about-lot/fleet/bombardier-q400

      Luxair has it as well on their Q400 the same like OU.

      Delete
  27. Anonymous16:33

    Not enough pilots/crew claims: 6. Without any names, examples, numbers or evidence. I would call that disinformation effort against Air Serbia.

    ReplyDelete
  28. Anonymous18:49

    Whatever, at least two aircraft sitting around unused is not good news.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous19:41

      You seem to be the same person who posted those crew shortage comments? Well it is good news but not for you. Air Serbia only received 9th ATR, not both. Once both are operational they will have enough wiggle room to install those business class seats without disrupting schedule, if they decide to go ahead. They will also benefit from having larger fleet, as they talked about economies of scale. They might also decide to change their mind once all 10 are functional and introduce more frequencies or announce new ATR routes for winter season. But you would already know that if you were respectable aviation analyst, which you are not.

      Delete
  29. Anonymous19:55

    I am glad this process is coming to the end. I also hope Air Serbia will get new ATR planes one day :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Anonymous21:07

      They are eight years old on average, some were sitting idle for a couple of years so even less. ATR 72-600 version is the latest version from the manufactures so brand new would be exactly the same.

      Delete
  30. Anonymous10:58

    Great, now that they have the short-haul fleet complete it is time to work on medium and long range. I hear that those new Chinese birds are going for a good price.

    ReplyDelete

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