Route Analysis: Air Serbia to launch Geneva service

Serbia’s national airline is adding a second route to Switzerland.

BEG-GVA

Carrier:

Air Serbia

Aircraft:

Airbus A319

Frequency:

2X-weekly

Start date:

March 1, 2021

Distance:

1,115 km

O&D traffic demand (2019):

59,060

Annual growth:

17.8%

Average base fare (2019):

$52.55

Air Serbia has revived plans to begin flying to Geneva, the second-most populous city in Switzerland. The destination was one of six new markets announced by the airline in February 2020. However, plans to begin serving the city were put on hold because of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

From March 1, Air Serbia will connect Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport (BEG) with Geneva (GVA) twice a week, operating on Mondays and Fridays. The carrier already serves Zurich (ZRH) with 5X-weekly flights.

Air Serbia said the Monday flights would provide good connectivity from GVA to other destinations in the airline’s network, including Athens (ATH) and the Montengrin cities of Podgorica (TDG) and Tivat (TIV).

“We are carefully monitoring all the changes in travel restrictions and demand, trying to act quickly and seize all the opportunities that open up on the market,” Air Serbia general manager commercial and strategy Jiri Marek said.

“In July, we launched a new destination—Oslo—which proved to be an excellent business decision as the Norwegian capital is currently one of Air Serbia’s top five destinations. Additionally, establishing a codeshare partnership with Turkish Airlines resulted in the introduction of daily flights to Istanbul, which have excellent passenger load factor that reaches more than 80%.”

According to OAG Schedules Analyser data, easyJet and Swiss currently link GVA with Pristina (PRN), operating 3X-weekly and 2X-weekly respectively. LCC easyJet recently suspended its GVA-BEG service although the route is scheduled to resume 2X-weekly from March 5.

O&D traffic between Geneva and Belgrade totaled 59,000 two-way passengers in 2019, up from 50,100 during the previous 12 months.

Yves-Daniel Viredaz, head of marketing and business development at GVA, told Routes: “There is an important Serbian community in our catchment area, and we all know that the VFR traffic will be the first to restart post-COVID. We are optimistic about the demand on this market. 

“There will also be furthermore diplomatic travels between Belgrade and the UN agencies in Geneva. Air Serbia is so far the first new airline to announce a new route to/from GVA in 2021 and we welcome this decision.”

Photo credit: Geneve Aeroport 

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