Air Serbia Eyes August Return To Israel & Russia

Air Serbia has scheduled a resumption of its operations to Israel and Russia for early August. In both cases, flights will resume the moment that the authorities in Israel and Russia allow Air Serbia to do so.

Air Serbia
Air Serbia will be resuming flights to Israel and Russia in early August, as soon as it is allowed to. Photo: Getty Images

Flight resumptions

Data from Air Serbia’s booking engine shows that the Serbian flag carrier is going to resume its operations to four destinations in Israel and Russia in early August. All resumptions will be from Air Serbia’s base, Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport. The resumptions will happen as soon as Israel and Russia allow international flights into their airports.

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It is unsurprising that Air Serbia is resuming flights as soon as it is allowed to in both of these countries. For the whole duration of the COVID-19 crisis in the aviation industry, Air Serbia has been making major developmental moves in hopes of extending its dominance in the region.

Serbian ministers expressed an intention to purchase the Air Serbia shares owned by Etihad in May. In June, Air Serbia expanded its fleet with former Adria Airways Airbus A319 aircraft.

Air Serbia Etihad Airways Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport liveries
Air Serbia is using the COVID-19 crisis to re-shape its relationship with Etihad, with the backing of Serbian Government ministers. Photo: Getty Images

Air Serbia in Russia

To Russia, Air Serbia will resume flights as follows:

  • Moscow Sheremetyevo International Airport (SVO) on August 1st, daily
  • St Petersburg (LED) on August 1st as well, twice weekly
  • Krasnodar (KRR) on August 2nd, three times weekly

Flights from Belgrade to St Petersburg will operate on Thursdays and Saturdays with an Airbus A320 aircraft. This will also be the case for flights from Belgrade to Moscow. On this route, Air Serbia codeshares with Aeroflot, which will start flying to Belgrade on August 1st as well.

Air Serbia A320 Belgrade Airport
Air Serbia’s Airbus A319 aircraft, as pictured, will operate flights to Krasnodar. Photo: Getty Images

To Krasnodar, Air Serbia will fly on Sundays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays. These flights operate overnight, so the aircraft will be departing Krasnodar to return to Belgrade on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. This is the same frequency as last year.

Both the departure from Belgrade and the arrival from Krasnodar are part of a well-planned schedule of departures and arrivals to and from Europe at Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport. By timing flights at these times, Air Serbia is allowing passengers to make numerous easy connections between Krasnodar and Europe via Belgrade. In fact, after Air Serbia launched flights to Krasnodar, Austrian Airlines withdrew from the route.

Air Serbia in Israel

To Israel, Air Serbia is resuming flights to Tel Aviv Ben Gurion Airport (TLV) from Belgrade on August 3rd. These will operate three times per week with an Airbus A320 aircraft. They will carry the flight numbers JU816 and JU817.

Air Serbia faces no competition on its route to Israel. The three-weekly frequency is a strong way to resume the route, considering that the frequency was five weekly in summer 2019.

What do you think of Air Serbia’s flight resumptions to Israel and Russia? Do you think it is too early for European airlines to start flying there? Let us know what you think of this story in the comments.