Former Yugoslav flag carriers outline summer fleet plans

Air Montenegro, Air Serbia and Croatia Airlines have outlined their fleet plans for this summer, with the former two significantly increasing capacity compared to last year. Air Montenegro has introduced two wet-leased aircraft to its fleet for this summer season to supplement its in-house capacity during Montenegro’s peak tourist season. An Airbus A320 from Lithuania’s Heston Airlines and an Embraer E190 jet from Ukraine’s Windrose Airlines have been wet-leased for the summer. “Existing sales, loads and average fares give us optimism that this will be a record year for the national carrier and that our goal of handling close to half a million passengers this year will be achieved. Seeing as the height of the summer season is ahead of us, it is in the interest and of great importance for the tourism sector and the economy as a whole that we have added these two aircraft to our fleet”, Air Montenegro said.

Air Serbia is already wet-leasing a number of frames and taking on additional dry-leased capacity. The airline is currently wet-leasing two ATR72s, two B737-800s, one A319 and A320 each, as well as one Dash 8 turboprop, with the latter operated by Germany’s Avanti Air. It is expected to be part of the fleet on a short-term basis. In the coming weeks, the carrier will wet-lease an additional two A320s. As previously reported, Air Serbia will dry-lease an extra two ATR72-600s, both of which are from the GOAL leasing company. One has already been painted in Air Serbia’s livery and will bear the registration YU-ASB. It is expected to arrive in Belgrade in the coming weeks, while the second is due in August. The carrier is also in discussions with another lessor for options of up to another four turboprops, although initially, it will likely settle for just two of them. Furthermore, the national airline is negotiating the dry-lease of two A321s and one A330-200 aircraft.
Air Serbia’s latest ATR72-600 has been painted ahead of its delivery

Croatia Airlines is the only national carrier from the former Yugoslavia with no plans to add any additional capacity this summer. The carrier has begun preparations for the delivery of its first A220 aircraft early next year. It recently participated in both the Airbus Training Conference the Airbus Maintenance Conference in Zagreb, during which the company devised plans for its A220 “entry into service program”, details of which are expected to be revealed later this month. Late last year, the Croatian carrier concluded a lease agreement for four 149-seat A220-300s and two 127-seat A220-100s with the Air Lease Corporation and paid a deposit for the jets. The carrier plans to eventually replace its entire fleet with the A220s, with the lease of a further six jets of the same type earmarked for 2025 and 2026. The carrier also has the option of adding a further three units in 2027.

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