Starting 6 January, pilot Danijela Miletic is commencing an extensive training program in Germany to fly Air Serbia’s Airbus A319 and A320 aircraft.
The training will be conducted by airberlin, Germany’s second largest carrier, using highly experienced pilots and some of the most advanced simulator technology available.
A second female pilot, Biljana Savic, began similar training in Vienna yesterday, while Air Serbia will train a third pilot, Ivana Milojevic, to fly the airline’s ATR 72 aircraft from next month.
Dane Kondic, Air Serbia Chief Executive Officer said: “We are proud that three female pilots will be working for Air Serbia as part of our highly skilled and professional air crew.”
“This is an important milestone in the history of Serbian aviation and demonstrates our commitment to equal opportunity, which is a core value of Air Serbia. These pilots were appointed on the merit of their ability and this represents the new Air Serbia,” he said.
All three pilots have been passionate about flying from a young age.
38-year-old Danijela began flying ultra-light motor aircraft (ULM) four years ago and passed her final pilot exam at Belgium’s Ostend Air College in October 2012. Since this time, she has been flying Embraer business jets for a German airline company.
“Although women have traditionally found it difficult to become pilots, times are changing,” said Danijela. “Air Serbia is breaking boundaries and I am proud to be part of this exciting change.”
27-year-old Biljana has also fulfilled her childhood dream of becoming a pilot. With more than 11 years of flying experience to date, she is currently qualified to pilot the Cessna C525 aircraft.
“As a youngster, I travelled on a flight with my mother and was invited into the cockpit. Since that moment, I knew becoming a pilot was my destiny and I started flying at 16 years old,” said Biljana. “I thank Air Serbia for this fantastic opportunity to develop my skills and career.”
32-year-old Ivana has been flying since 1999 and was trained at Jat Pilot Academy, in addition to a London institute. Her career choice was inspired by her father’s success as a pilot. “My father loved being a pilot and I always longed to follow in his footsteps. Working for our national airline is a matter of pride and I am excited about training to fly Air Serbia’s ATR-72.”
Mr Kondic added that the opportunity to train pilots with airberlin was a direct result of Air Serbia’s partnership with Etihad Airways: “airberlin is also an equity partner of Etihad Airways and through that partnership we have access to experience and skills not otherwise available to us. The partnership with Etihad Airways is helping us to build a team of world-class airline professionals. With ambitious plans to expand our network around the world, we continue to look for talented Serbian pilots with the right skills, qualifications and attitude to join the airline.”