Air Serbia

Belgrade Nikola Tesla

Air Serbia ( until October 26, 2013 JAT Airways ) is the largest Serbian airline based in Belgrade and based on the Belgrade airport.


Founding and first years

The airline is the successor of Aeroput founded in 1927, renamed in 1947 in Yugoslav Airlines ( JAT ) and was also known as Yugoslav Airlines since the 1980s up to the dissolution of Yugoslavia in English.

JAT Airways was with delivery on July 31, 1985 the first European operator of the Boeing 737-300.

After the early 1990s, UN sanctions were in force, JAT was allowed no international flights longer perform, but this was canceled again since then.

1998 JAT planned procurement of eight Airbus A319 -100 and signed a contract corresponding thereto. On 7 September 1998, the EU has but one takeoff and landing prohibition is enforced. After 2000 JAT wanted to convert to 737, however, is bound by the contract with Airbus, which consist of 20% cancellation fee unless JAT should get out of the contract. Airbus leads the order with Stand November 2013 still in the order books and had them transferred in the meantime also the successor company Air Serbia. In March 2014 this order, however, was almost 16 years after its notification finally canceled.

A single McDonnell Douglas DC -10-30 was sold due to the high maintenance costs in mid-2005. The for years envisaged replacing the whole fleet is due to the parlous financial situation of Serbia continues to be difficult.

Development since 2006

In 2006, Serbian media reports announced a collaboration with Air India. The goal of this partnership would have had to build a new society result. Air India also planned to use the Belgrade airport for stopovers for flights to North America. Beginning of August 2007 it was announced that JAT should be privatized until the summer of 2008, after the airline had achieved first time in 2006 a profit. Interest in a takeover expressed Air India, Aeroflot, Air One and Icelandair. Turkish Airlines has also announced interest in a purchase.

In September 2008 it was announced that the debt with € 250 million airline checked the setting of flight operations, but this was ultimately not implemented. At this time of flight operations was maintained with only nine aircraft of the comprehensive 15 units fleet for reasons of cost.

In June 2010, negotiations on the acquisition of JAT by Turkish Airlines were very advanced and the airline should be renamed Air Serbia. These discussions were, however, failed with status August 2011. Then JAT was still looking for a new, much needed investor to refinance the debt-ridden society.

JAT was planning to lease four Airbus A319 -100 in the spring of 2013. However, had recently been parked some existing aircraft for economic reasons and routes are deleted and thus the A319 were not included.

Participation by Etihad from 2013

In June 2013 Etihad Airways announced to examine an extensive involvement in JAT. To this end, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed on 17 June 2013. On August 1, 2013, finally, the acquisition of 49 percent of JAT by Etihad Airways was announced. The remaining 51 % will remain with the Serbian state. Etihad also takes over the management of the Serbian airline for at least five Jahre.Insgesamt the company receives by both shareholders a loan of 80 million U.S. dollars, is initially renew its fleet with two aircraft of type Airbus A319 -100 and its network to 1 October. revise 2013. In addition, the company was renamed October 27, 2013 Air Serbia; all Boeing 737-300 were ausgeflottet the winter timetable 2013/2014 and replaced by another eight Airbus A319 -100. At the press conference for Etihad started a completely new corporate design was presented.

In August, more details of the reorganization were known, are successively added the announced new routes from late October to December and existing converted to run on the new Airbus A319 -100. In September it was also announced that Air Serbia will adjust their own frequent flyer program and join the program of Etihad, Etihad Guest.

In September 2013 were prepared in the USA the first A319 -100 for transfer to Air Serbia, while already equipped with the new corporate design of the company. On 19 October 2013, the first A319 of Air Serbia in Belgrade arrived.

On October 26, 2013 led the former JAT Airways, now as Air Serbia, its first flight by. This led from Belgrade to Abu Dhabi.


Air Serbia operates from its base at the Belgrade airport from 33 European destinations, including Frankfurt, Berlin- Tegel, Stuttgart, London-Heathrow, Paris -Charles de Gaulle, Dusseldorf, Vienna, Zurich and Skopje. In addition, there are several codeshare agreements.

With the revision of the route network in October 2013, the destinations Paris, Athens, Vienna and Zurich are now served twice daily. In the winter timetable 2013/2014 also ten new destinations are provided. These are Abu Dhabi - the headquarters of the new shareholder Etihad - Banja Luka, Beirut, Bucharest, Cairo, Kiev, Ljubljana, Prague, Sofia, Varna and Warsaw.


As of March 2014, the fleet of 17 aircraft from Air Serbia is with a mean age of 13.4 years:


  • When flying accident on the mountain Leopold 1955 a Convair CV- 340, the former JAT Airways crashed on approach to the airport Vienna in dense fog with the terrain, with seven of the 29 passengers were killed.
  • When the Yugoslav Aero Transport Flight 367 on January 26, 1972 exploded a machine of type DC-9 on the village Srbská Kamenice in the Czech Republic. The aircraft was supposed to fly from Stockholm via Copenhagen to Zagreb and Belgrade. All occupants, except for the stewardess Vesna Vulović were killed. They survived a case of alleged over 10,000 meters in height and stands for the Guinness Book of World Records.


  • Air Serbia has named an Airbus A319 -100 after tennis player Novak Djokovic.