The Time when Qantas flew their 747 to Belgrade

Hey everyone!

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I’m here with an interesting story to share!

The time when Qantas used to fly their 747 into Belgrade


The times in Yugoslavia in the 80’s and 90’s was a time of expansion, communism, and the golden age of flying. JAT Airways had a large fleet that flew to all parts of the globe, with Belgrade being their main hub, and main city of Yugoslavia. Belgrade Airport was at the time, a large attraction with many international flights to where people could go on and explore the world.

The famous Aussie “Kangaroo” route was one of the most known at the time. With multi-stops, as all most flights were in the 70’s in Sydney, Kuala Lumpur, Bombay, Athens and Belgrade, It was flown using the Boeing 747-238B, and was the only scheduled 747 flight into Belgrade. However, these stops would change at times as well. Nicknamed the “Kengur,” both my dad and my uncle were fans of aviation at the time, and because they lived in Belgrade they used to see the mighty Jumbo fly into Belgrade’s “Surčin Airport,” now called Nikola Tesla International Airport.

The route was terminated in early 1987 as Qantas wanted to focus on major power-hubs of Europe such as London, Frankfurt and Rome, all popular destinations in the 80’s and 90’s. Additionally, JAT Airways started providing competitive prices using their own routes through Dubai and Singapore, which made it harder for Qantas to earn profits considering Belgrade was one of the stops on their Kangaroo Route.


credits


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A Qantas 747 landing at Belgrade’s Surčin airport in 1987 (top)
A Qantas 747 at Belgrade’s "Surčin airport (bottom)"


Did you know that this flight existed?

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Let me know what you think!
Thanks for reading, and see you around!

Sources used

https://www.airliners.net/forum/viewtopic.php?t=90713
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kangaroo_Route

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And I forgot to say that the 747 needed to take up nearly half the size of the stands at the old Belgrade airport!

Here’s a photo of the old stands at the airport when they were being built:

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Haha thanks!

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Really interesting, never thought a Qantas 747 in the mid 20th century would fly to ly small airport like this!

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It’s extremely rare to see the 747 at small airports in real life. Your picture is amazing.

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This is very interesting, I never knew this. Keep up with these awesome posts of yours!

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Thanks everyone!

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This is such a cool story! Did know about the route itself (even though I am not sure wether I would have remembered that Belgrade was one of the stops), but the details and pictures regarding the operation of a B747 at Belgrade are very interesting!

The new airport is basically the same (Location) with a new name or is it a completely different airport nowadays?

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The airport has a new name (Belgrade Nikola Tesla International airport) and was previously known as “Surčin airport” and is at the same location, it has expanded a lot! 😉

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Surprising that this was needed to accommodate today’s traffic ;)

Thanks for the information!

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Wait what? never could have even imagined that tbh hahaha

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Haha neither could I until I heard it!

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