Air Serbia carried 83% more passengers in 2021 than in 2020

Air Serbia issued this traffic report:

  • 1,586,665 passengers were carried – 83 percent more compared to 2020
  • 39 percent more traffic compared to 2020
  • Average load factor was 64 percent
  • Load factor on flights to New York reached up to 80 percent
  • The share of direct sales channels was increased from 35 percent in 2019 to 52 percent
  • Air Serbia Cargo saw its performance increase as much as 55 percent compared to the pre-pandemic period

After 2020, which was marked by the biggest crisis in the history of global aviation, Air Serbia carried 1,586,665 passengers in 2021, which represents an increase of as much as 83 percent. Although 2021 was also marked by the coronavirus pandemic, the average load factor on Air Serbia flights was 64 percent.

For the best part of 2021, the Serbian national airline has continuously recorded a market share at Belgrade Nikola Tesla Airport of close to or even more than 50 percent, exceeding the pre-pandemic result from 2019 and further solidifying its leading position at the Belgrade airport.

In 2021, Air Serbia’s volume of traffic increased 39 percent compared to 2020. The accomplished result is 35% lower than in pre-pandemic, record-breaking 2019, but it is significantly above the European average in 2021, which was -44 percent compared to 2019.

“Being flexible, adapting quickly to the market changes, using sound resource management and constantly embracing innovations, we managed to accomplish satisfactory results during the biggest global crisis in our industry. We are glad that the previous year was better than 2020 and we are prepared for a strong expansion in the coming period. The challenges we successfully overcame represent a firm foundation for further development and continuing to implement the strategy planned before the pandemic. We are looking forward to a further expansion in European and Middle Eastern markets, which awaits us from April and June, when we will be launching flights to as many as 12 destinations from the Serbian capital. We began a stage of continued growth as a regional leader, and we are on track to meeting the goals set already now for 2023 – reaching the pre-pandemic levels from record-breaking year 2019,” said Jiri Marek, CEO of Air Serbia.

Ten of Serbian national airline’s most popular routes, which posted the best performance in 2021, were between Belgrade and the following destinations – New York, Moscow, Tivat, Paris, Podgorica, Zurich, Istanbul, Amsterdam, London and Athens.

During the summer season, from mid-April to the end of October of 2021, Air Serbia operated a total of 1,100 round trip charter flights, carrying approximately 140,000 tourists to popular resorts in Turkey, Egypt and Greece, as well as other tourist destinations around the world. The most popular charter destinations among Serbian travellers last year were Antalya in Turkey and Hurghada in Egypt.

Air Serbia’s direct sales channels grew by 17 percentage points – from 35 percent in 2019 to 52 percent in 2021.

On flights to New York, in 2021, Air Serbia reported an average load factor of 71 percent, reaching as much as 80 percent during the summer months. Performance from the transatlantic route almost reached the pre-pandemic levels. Since the launch of flights in June 2016 until today, Air Serbia carried more than 360,000 passengers between Belgrade and its destination in North America.

Air Serbia Premium Lounge at the Belgrade Airport was visited by 29,090 guests during 2021, marking the second-best result since it was founded in 2015. Last year, Air Serbia signed cooperation agreements with Luxair, Turkish Airlines, Qatar Airways and Fly Dubai, as well as with the Collinson Group, which owns world-famous travel programs at airports around the world – “Priority Pass”, “LoungeKey” and “Lounge Pass”.

In 2021, Air Serbia Cargo had record results with performance surpassing the pre-pandemic period by as much as 55 percent.