Air Serbia gets its first A330 - ready for the long haul

  The first Airbus A330 aircraft to enter Air Serbia’s fleet is greeted by a traditional water cannon salute upon arrival at Nikola Tesla Airport. Picture: Air Serbia

The first Airbus A330 aircraft to enter Air Serbia’s fleet is greeted by a traditional water cannon salute upon arrival at Nikola Tesla Airport. Picture: Air Serbia

Here is an airline that, in great measure thanks to Etihad's recapitalization, is experiencing quite a remarkable turnaround - from basket case to one of the emerging flag carriers in Eastern Europe.

After renewing its brand and fleet, Air Serbia is now about to launch direct flights between Belgrade and New York. This is a destination that had already been covered forty years ago by JAT, the Yugoslavian flag carrier that is at the origins of present day Air Serbia. Direct regular flights between Belgrade and the US ceased in the early 90s, as a succession of conflicts engulfed the former Yugoslavia.

Thus, the arrival of an Airbus A330, on lease from Indian carrier Jet Airways (another tangible result of Etihad's growing network of partners that both air Serbia and Jet Airways belong too), is quite a vote of confidence on the possibilities of the Serbian and broader Balkan market to support long haul flights, besides the link to Etihad's Abu Dhabi hub.

  Air Serbia’s first wide-body aircraft, an Airbus A330, lands at Nikola Tesla Airport. The aircraft has 256 seats and will be operated on the Belgrade-New York route. Picture: Air Serbia

Air Serbia’s first wide-body aircraft, an Airbus A330, lands at Nikola Tesla Airport. The aircraft has 256 seats and will be operated on the Belgrade-New York route. Picture: Air Serbia