“Regent Holidays”:https://www.regent-holidays.co.uk/?infinity=ict2~net~gaw~ar~301886610383~kw~regent%20holidays~mt~e~cmp~BRAND~ag~Regent%20Holidays%20-%20Exact&gclid=EAIaIQobChMIsNW7sZHi4gIVC5ztCh1wRgo1EAAYASAAEgIw6PD_BwE booked our flight from London Heathrow (T4) to Belgrade with “Air Serbia”:https://www.airserbia.com/en-GB?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIt9r155Di4gIVwpPtCh3k2As-EAAYASAAEgJqdPD_BwE, an airline we’d not used before.
We had problems adding our ‘guest information’ online in advance as non-specific error messages appeared. Eventually, after a series of emails, the Air Serbia call centre entered details on our behalf.
Before flying, we received numerous emails asking if we wanted to ‘bid’ to upgrade to business class. Options ranged from £85 per person, plus £15 air passenger duty, to £205. If your bid was successful, your credit card was debited, or if not, you still had your original reservation. I’ve not seen this before but wasn’t tempted.
On checking in online, as instructed, 36 hours in advance, we discovered every seat attracted a supplement of some degree. We chose the cheapest at £3.50 each but paying by credit card resulted in having to enter my address which resulted in the message ‘postcode format invalid’. We tried various options and eventually Regent resolved it for us. Checking in, also gave the option of paying for an annual lounge membership, a whopping £475 per person, baggage priority tagging at £3.50 each and priority boarding at £4.30 each. We declined all.
Shortly after check-in opened, we found three desks, each with one customer, so were pleased we’d not paid for priority check-in. It was all very straight forward, and I explained we’d had problems with their online systems, hoping for an upgrade to compensate but it didn’t work. Our carefully printed boarding cards were torn up, and cardboard versions issued.
Having experienced pre-flight frustrations, we were not looking forward to our flight. However, we boarded on time, from both the back and the front and although the flight was full, the process was efficient, and we were pushing back 10 minutes before our scheduled 1.30pm departure.
We had seats 9b and 9c (aisle and middle) and I had a nice, quiet, thin young man next to me. Although I fell asleep before take-off, I’m reliably informed it was just after 1.30pm with a flight time being announced of 2 hours and 20 minutes rather than the scheduled 2 hours and 40 minutes.
Leg room wasn’t great, but adequate on such a short flight. Complimentary small bottles of water and salty snacks were provided before the trolley service with the usual array of drinks and snacks from the Elevate Menu at reasonable prices e.g. a G&T was €6 and a filled roll €4.
The crew were smart and professional and after our pre-flight experiences, it was a reasonable trip.
For those interested, the distance between London and Belgrade is 1,674 km, we flew on an A319-100 and the cost of the one-way flight was £220 each. Air Serbia is part of Etihad.