The precarious state of Slovenian flag-carrier Adria Airways has rarely been better exemplified by news this week of the airline leasing an Airbus A320 for presumably the 2015 summer season. Ordinarily, an airline chartering extra planes for its fleet isn’t a newsworthy story – it happens all the time. What though makes Adria slightly different is that it has in recent times quite literally been kept in the air only by using aircraft not in its ownership. Several of its fleet have been operated on sale and lease back terms, not a tenable situation one would link with a national carrier.
The A320 in question has previously been used by Adria – as recently as October last year. It has since been operated by Danish Air Transport until arriving this week at Ljubljana’s Brnik-based airport. Whether Adria previously owned this particular airliner during its three year service with the state-owned airline hasn’t been made clear but their familiarity with this 21 year old jet obviously makes it a ‘go to’ Airbus when the need for extra resources arises.
One positive regarding this deal centre upon the size of the jet. With a capacity of 180 seats it will hopefully make regular appearances this summer season on the Manchester-Ljubljana route, which until recently had been blighted by insufficiently sized Bombardier regional jets whose capacity totals less than half of the A320. Presumably hired on Damp or Dry Lease terms, it is hoped when the protracted denationalisation of Adria has been completed that it can once again count the majority of the planes it operates as their own.
I am indebted to the excellent Ex-Yugoslav Aviation News blog for the basis on my post. A link to their article can be found here: