During the evening hours there is not too much traffic at Belgrade expect for some regional flights to former Yugoslav republics and the Abu Dhabi service. I quickly checked in, passed security and passport control. Offcourse, as usual, the metal detector at the airport is so sensitive that you can expect to practically strip naked until you can pass through. When I came to the gates area I walked around a bit and after passing yet another security checkpoint I got on my flight. Unfortunately it wasn’t one of their refurbished aircraft with the new economy class seats. To my surprise the load factor was 85%. It was very full. The cabin crew consisted of 2 middle aged women, one guy in his late 20s and another guy in his 50s. The two female stewardesses were completely crazy. Before we departed one of the female cabin crew (who was also the purser) yelled to her colleague named Slavica through the whole aircraft: “Its 40C in Abu Dhabi, we are fu*ked Slavica!” An embarrassed Slavica ran up to the galley. After the safety demo we were ready to depart.
After departure the crew immediately served drinks (the economy cabin was being served by Slavica and the 20 year old guy), while Zorica the purser (whose name I heard from her own loud chatter) came to economy to perform entertainment acts (you will see later on). After they served drinks they immediately served food. There is no choice of meal – there is only one option. It was a piece of beef soaked in cheese. As you can see below it looks revolting but it actually had a good taste.
They served drinks again while people were eating and when they took our trays they asked if anyone wanted tea or coffee. I really can’t say anything bad about the two that were serving us especially the guy who was really polite to everyone. After that it was lights out (the plane departs just after 10PM) and many people quickly fell asleep in the pitch black cabin. I have to admit I fell asleep too and was woken up by the PA. Our pilot told us we were starting our descent into Larnaca, Cyprus.
When we landed in Larnaca we were told that all passengers continuing to Abu Dhabi were to stay in the cabin. A huge number of people offloaded in Larnaca and the cabin was left half full. No passengers boarder in LCA. All passengers were told to take their seats and unfasten their seatbelts while refuelling was done. Cleaners came in and so did our dear purser Zorica who decided to harass the passengers. She came up to 2 Arabic guys sitting across me and asked them if they were from Abu Dhabi. After they confirmed her suspicions she told them she was there in May and couldn’t believe how expensive it was. She then went on and repeated around 50 times how expensive it was and talking about her whole itinerary during the time she was in Abu Dhabi (the two men politely nodded). She then chatted with Slavica in the centre of the aisle about some shoes she bought. She talks so loud I think we all knew by the end of it that she bought snake skin shoes, her son passed with excellent marks in school and that she was going to Greece on holiday for the summer at the beginning of Auvust. She then ran back to the front of the cabin to greet the station manager. After the refuelling and cleaning was done, the doors closed and we were off to Abu Dhabi.
The same process like the one from Belgrade followed. Drinks, food+drinks, tea/coffe. For this sector we were given a huge ham sandwich (I didn’t take any pics). It was tasty. Once they used to serve a proper meal on this sector (it used to go to Dubai instead of Abu Dhabi) but I think everyone was still digesting their cheese coated beef that we were all more than happy that the meal was light. They turned off the lights soon after. We then landed and most passengers ran to make their connection to Sydney on Etihad. I left the airport and entered the 40C heat.
Overall the flight was very good. Pretty high standard for an airline like Jat. We were given pillows and blankets (you would think you wouldn’t need the blankets but they chilled the cabin so much if it were a bit colder I would have been able to see my breath). I realised I haven’t said anything about the seats. They are standard economy like in all other airlines. The business class cabin was full from Belgrade to LCA while from Larnaca to Abu Dhabi there were 3 people left.
The return flight with pics will follow and on that flight there were the new seats in economy (but I got upgraded ) and I have much more pics then on this flight (this one was a night flight so I didn't want to use flash and disturb other passangers).